Honda CB1000R concept Interceptor

2017 Milan CB1000R concept
2017 Milan CB1000R concept Picture: Alan Dowds

Honda’s a pretty conservative outfit at times, but they do let their employees go mad from time to time. And each year at Milan, the firm’s European R&D office gets to show off something a bit wild.

This year was no exception, with this very natty ‘Interceptor’ concept bike, based on the new CB1000R NSC cafe racer. There’s a super-sweet half-fairing on there, complete with FireBlade-inspired speed holes on the sides, Ohlins suspension, carbon fibre wheels, and radial Brembo superbike stoppers. Nice.

The madness? Well, that fairing has a wild air intake in the front, where you’d expect the headlight. An LED annulus does the lighting, and inside the hole is a ram-air turbine (RAT), which is spun up by the airflow, powering the dashboard. It’s a fun idea - stolen from aeroplanes, which often have a flip-out RAT to power basic electrics if they suffer a total electrical power failure. It makes good sense on a dead Boeing 747 at 500 knots over the Atlantic - on a bike, sat at traffic lights, maybe not so much…

Silly stuff aside - the Interceptor is a proper looker, and an obvious pathway for Honda to ginger up its CB1000R, while adding premium features and more usability. ‘Interceptor’ is also a name which Honda has lots of history with, especially in the US. We’d expect something like it in production form at the shows next year (or buy a naked one and build yer own you slackers!!)

2017 Milan CB1000R concept - ram-air turbine intake
2017 Milan CB1000R concept - ram-air turbine intake Picture: Alan Dowds
Carbon rims and Ohlins suspension - nice.
Carbon rims and Ohlins suspension - nice. Picture: Alan Dowds
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