Honda is making good use indeed of its current 471cc parallel twin. And that’s because this versatile fuel-injected, liquid-cooled midsize mill serves quadruple duty in the CB500X adventure bike shown here, in the sporty CBR500R and CB500F, and even in the low-slung Rebel 500 streetster. Hey, why not collect the whole set? That way, when you get tired of trolling the coffee bars in town and bored with all those pesky turns on Highside Mountain Road, you can load up the CB500X and simply get lost.
Built to an economical price point, the CB500X isn’t a technology overdog, but it does have much of what you need for modest adventure. Foremost are a favorable upright seating position and a tall touring windshield, which really boost rider comfort on high-mileage days and in wind or rain conditions. Other assets include the 4.6-gallon fuel tank—an essential ingredient for explorers—and optional ABS. On the downside, the 17-inch wheels and street tires aren’t up to dirt duty, and the minimal ground clearance and lack of a skid plate further limit off-road prowess.
Likes: Good basic ADV architecture, easy handling, favorable price
Dislikes: Needs at least a wheel/tire upgrade to head off pavement
Verdict: A reasonably sized and priced entry-level ADV