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Honda CB500X: An Amazing Machine That Won’t Let You Down

The Honda CB500X was originally launched back in 2013 alongside the CB500F and CBR500R (the road bike variants) as part of Honda’s drive to bring more affordable bikes to the A2 market by creating three different styled machines from the same platform.

10 years later and the concept seems to have worked well with each of the bikes receiving high praise from new and old riders alike.

With the parallel-twin 500 series Honda promised to revise the machines every three years and have outstandingly kept their word with the first revision in 2016, then 2019 and then again with the latest generation in 2022.

2022 Honda CB500X Design

Honda CB500X on tour

The 4th generation CB500X builds on the big step forward Honda started with the 2019 version. The 3rd generation saw the CB500X increase the front wheel size from 17 inches to 19 inches, LED lights all round, a slipper clutch added, a newly designed digital display and the front looks of the bike changing to reflect a few design features from Honda’s Flagship Adventure model, the Africa Twin.

With the latest released 2022 CB500X, Honda have taken things further in their attempts to not only improve the bike over the previous model but to make their mid-weight adventure bike the best in its class.

New Showa 41 mm separate function big piston USB forks, a revised rear shock to compliment the new forks, a new lighter redesigned swingarm and a second front brake disc and caliper being added (now radial mounted) have really pushed Honda’s “budget” adventure motorcycle to new heights in the A2 class and mid-weight adventure category.

2022 Honda CB500X Specification (latest version)


  • Engine:                 Water-cooled DOHC parallel-twin four-stroke

  • Capacity:              471 cc

  • Max Power:        46.9 bhp / 35 kW @ 8,600rpm

  • Max Torque:      43 Nm / 31.7 lb-ft @ 6,500 rpm

  • Gearbox:             6-speed manual

  • Top Speed:         113 mph / 183 km/h

  • Fuel capacity:     17.5 L / 4.6 US Gal

  • Seat Height:        830 mm / 32.7 inches

  • Wet Weight:       199 kg / 438.7 lbs


List Price (UK & North America)

The RRP price of the Honda CB500X at the time of writing is £6,699 in the UK and $7,299 in the US.

Honda CB500X Features

The 2022 Honda CB500X is an extremely versatile motorcycle that offers a range of features for both on-road and off-road adventures. Here are some of the key features of the 2022 model:


The 471cc liquid-cooled parallel-twin engine that powers the CB500X provides steady, consistent power throughout the rpm range, making it simple to handle in a variety of riding conditions and great for new riders.

With revised fuel injection settings over the previous model, it produces 47 bhp and 31.7 lb-ft of torque. It has respectable fuel efficiency as well, with a potential range of up to 64 mpg.


The bike has a steel-tube frame that provides a sturdy and stable platform for on-road and off-road riding. The long-travel suspension system (41mm telescopic fork and Pro-Link single shock) offers 5.9 inches of travel in the front and 5.5 inches in the rear.

The CB500X also comes with cast wheels; a 19-inch front and 17-inch rear, and has a ground clearance of 4.3 inches. It is also equipped with more road-oriented tires, suitable for both on-road and light-to-medium-duty off-road riding.


The CB500X features a set of radial mounted Nissin brake calipers with dual 310 mm front discs and a single 240 mm rear brake disc providing reliable stopping power and good feedback. The anti-lock brakes come as standard, providing additional safety and control in emergency situations however is not switchable for those considering taking the CB500X off-road.


The bike’s upright riding position and wide handlebars provide a comfortable and natural posture for long-distance rides. The seat height is adjustable from 32.7 to 33.5 inches to accommodate riders of different heights.


The CB500X features a digital instrument panel that displays speed, RPM, fuel level, gear position, and other key information. It also has full LED lighting for improved visibility and a slipper/assist clutch that provides a smoother downshift and reduces rear-wheel chatter.


Honda offers a range of accessories for the CB500X, including a top box, side panniers, crash bars, heated grips, and a centre stand. Many other third party companies also make a huge range of accessories for the CB500X allowing you several options depending on both your budget and preferences.

Is it functional as an adventure bike?

The Honda CB500X can be used for various purposes, including adventure riding. However, whether or not it is functional as an adventure bike depends on your own definition of “adventure riding” and where you plan on taking it.

Let’s cover the basics; the CB500X is equipped with a long-travel suspension, comfortable upright seating position, and a tall windscreen that provides good wind protection. It also has a capable engine with good mid-range torque, making it suitable for both on-road and off-road adventures.

Additionally, it has a decent fuel range, making it possible to cover long distances between fuel stops, all ticks in the box for an adventure bike.

However, compared to other adventure bikes, the CB500X has some limitations. It has a smaller engine displacement and power output compared to the larger adventure bikes, which may limit its ability to tackle extremely rough terrain or carry heavy loads.

The stock tires are also more road-oriented, which may limit its off-road capability however, these would be easy to change to something more suitable.

Ultimately, whether or not the Honda CB500X is functional as an adventure bike depends on the type of adventure riding you intend to do. For light-to-medium-duty off-road exploration, touring on gravel and dirt trails, or long-distance trips on pavement, the CB500X is a good option, in fact it’s a great option.

However, for more demanding off-road riding Honda’s middleweight will come up a little short, probably by design as they wouldn’t want the CB500X taking sales from their premium Adventure bike, the Africa Twin.

How does it perform on and off the road?


The CB500X functions superbly on the road. Notwithstanding the assumption that a taller adventure motorcycle should feel heavy and handle accordingly, the CB500X’s weight distribution and balance transcend through the stereotype, allowing you to treat it more like a naked street bike.

You can really throw the bike around into corners and if you’re brave enough scrape the foot pegs as well. I’m definitely not recommending this but it’s nice to know that it’s capable. In wet conditions the bike continues to impress, feeling planted and safe and that tall windscreen being very useful on high speed roads in the wet to protect your vision from spray.

Off road the best thing you can do to improve the CB500X is change the stock tyres to something more suitable to playing in the rougher stuff. Aside from this, the new suspension system and swingarm setup is a vast improvement over the previous models.

The bike still feels heavy at all speeds off road, however the new forks and revised rear shock absorb the abuse for it not to matter as much as it did previously. The 471 cc parallel-twin produces a good amount of torque for taking the CB off the tarmac and the power delivery is usefully smooth for those venturing off-road for the first time.

Honda CB500X Competition

The Honda CB500X, KTM 390 Adventure, Benelli TRK 502, and Kawasaki Versys are all versatile motorcycles that offer a range of features for both on-road and off-road adventures. Here’s how they compare in terms of performance, price, and functionality:

Performance: The Honda CB500X is powered by a liquid-cooled, 471cc parallel-twin engine that delivers 47 horsepower and 31 lb-ft of torque.

The KTM 390 Adventure has a liquid-cooled, 373cc single-cylinder engine that produces 42 horsepower and 27 lb-ft of torque.

The Benelli TRK 502 has a liquid-cooled, 499cc parallel-twin engine that delivers 47 horsepower and 33 lb-ft of torque.

The Kawasaki Versys has a liquid-cooled, 649cc parallel-twin engine that produces 68 horsepower and 47 lb-ft of torque.

In terms of handling, the CB500X, KTM 390 Adventure, and Benelli TRK 502 all have long-travel suspension systems that offer good comfort and stability over rough terrain. The Kawasaki Versys has a more advanced suspension system that is adjustable and offers better handling in a wider range of conditions.

Functionality: All four motorcycles are designed for adventure riding and offer a range of features for both on-road and off-road adventures. The CB500X, KTM 390 Adventure, and Benelli TRK 502 all have comfortable upright riding positions and good wind protection, making them suitable for long-distance touring.

The Kawasaki Versys has a sportier riding position and is better suited for riders who prefer a more aggressive riding style.

In terms of off-road capability, the KTM 390 Adventure and Honda CB500X have more off-road-oriented features, such as knobby tires, higher ground clearance, good suspension systems and skid plates. The Benelli TRK 502 and Kawasaki Versys are more street oriented and may not be as capable in extremely rough terrain.

Value for money: The CB500X has a starting price of around £6,699, making it one of the most affordable options in the segment. Both the KTM 390 Adventure and Benelli TRK 502 have a starting price of around £5,999, while the Kawasaki Versys is the most expensive of the group, with a starting price of around £8,349.

Overall, each motorcycle has its strengths and weaknesses, and the best choice depends on the rider’s specific needs and preferences. The Honda CB500X and KTM 390 Adventure are good options for riders who prioritize affordability and off-road capability, while the Benelli TRK 502 and Kawasaki Versys are better suited for riders who want more road-oriented features and better overall performance.


I have a heavily biased opinion when it comes to Honda’s middleweight A2 adventure bike. I saw the original CB500X in 2012 at Motorcycle Live, the annual bike show in Birmingham, UK.

Honda had their three A2 offerings triangulated on high pedestals for visitors to see but not touch. However, seeing was enough. After seeing the CB500X for the first time I was convinced Honda had made a bike just for me. It was the right height, had a good spec engine, wasn’t too heavy and in my opinion, looked fantastic.

Several months later I was one of the first to get Honda’s new A2 bike in the UK and knew I’d made the right choice on the ride from the dealership

5 years and 42,000 miles later and a car pulling out of a junction without looking ended our journey together, only to be replaced a few months later for the newly released 2019 version.

I’ve since sold the 2019 model and purchased a CRF250 in it’s wake as my pleasure riding has changed from long distance road to as much off-roading as I can squeeze in. The CB500X is a great machine yet however much Honda tries to sell it as an adventure bike, it’s more suited to long distance riding, twisty B-roads and light off-road riding rather than wet chalk, deep mud and sand.

If you are looking for a friendly adventure-style bike that will do everything from commuting, town riding, long distance and small dirt adventures, than the CB500X is a fantastic machine that won’t let you down, ever.

Even with many of Honda’s newer machine coming from their Thailand factory, the reliability is still there. I racked up over 50,000 miles between the two I owned and had no mechanical issues with either, as you’d expect from a Honda.

The CB500X just works; it rides great, looks great and doesn’t break and at £6,699 you get a lot of bike for the price. More info here.

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