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Honda Rebel 1100 Motorcycle Review

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The Honda Rebel series made up of the Rebel 300 and Rebel 500 has been an excellent option for riders looking to step into the cruiser category of bikes, but for some time Honda has lacked a serious option for those looking to upgrade out of the entry-level and into a beefier cruiser with more sophisticated features.

Enter the Honda Rebel 1100.

While nobody can really argue that this bike matches up to American bikes that have dominated the cruiser category for as long as it has existed, the Honda Rebel 1100 can certainly hold its own.

For people looking for a bike that leans sportier than your average cruiser, is reliable, and is pretty affordable, the Honda Rebel 1100 could be your answer.

Honda Rebel 1100 Specs & Features

You don’t have to go much further than the 1083cc engine to see why this isn’t the same “beginner”-type bike that the Rebel 300 and Rebel 500 are. Added to these specs are some impressive standard features like traction control, switchable ride modes, and cruise control.

Here is a quick glance at the specs for the Honda Rebel 1100:

  • Engine: 1083cc liquid-cooled 22.5° parallel-twin four-stroke
  • Transmission: Six-speed manual or Automatic DCT option
  • Horsepower: 85hp
  • Torque: 72 lb-ft
  • Front Suspension: 43mm fork; 5.5-inch travel
  • Rear Suspension: Dual Showa shocks with 12.5mm shafts, adjustable preload, and piggyback pressurized reservoirs; 3.7-inch travel
  • Brakes:
    • Front Single 330mm disc with radial-mount four-piston caliper; ABS
    • Rear Single 256mm disc; ABS
  • Seat Height: 27.5 inches
  • Wheelbase: 59.8 inches
  • Curb Weight: 487 lbs

Cost and Upgrades

The Honda Rebel 1100 is available in two trims.

The base manual transmission Honda Rebel starts at a cool MSRP of $9,499.

Upgrading to the Automatic DCT trim will bump up that MSRP to $10,099. 

How Does It Ride

The theme running throughout the Honda Rebel 1100 is that it’s a modern cruiser, or depending on who you are talking to, it’s a cruiser that in many ways doesn’t seem like a cruiser at all.

The first thing you’ll notice when hopping on the Rebel 1100 is that while it certainly has a rumble to it, the bike rides extremely smooth.

It’s a zippy bike that reacts well to your demands, and reacts fast.

The bike handles extremely well—for some cruiser aficionados, it might handle too well. 

As you twist and turn around windy roads, you’ll see how the bike’s weight and torque combine for a sportiness you wouldn’t typically associate with a cruiser.

Though, it is a cruiser after all, so when you dig deep into those angles, you’re sure to find pegs meeting pavement.

However, that zippiness isn’t going to translate to faster speeds on the Rebel 1100’s top end.

The Honda Rebel 1100 isn’t going to be winning any races, but for those looking for a cruiser that will still handle like a smaller bike, this one is definitely worth considering.

Who Is the Honda Rebel 1100 For?

If one thing is for certain, it’s that the Honda Rebel 1100 is not for anybody looking for the “classic” cruiser feel.

There are Harleys, Indians, and more for those riders.

The Honda Rebel 1100 is for the rider who is ready to accept a modern take on the cruiser. 

The Honda Rebel 1100 can make a great everyday bike.

It’ll get you through your commute, especially if you get the DCT trim, and it’ll provide a great weekend ride. It looks great and will catch some eyes. On top of all this, it’s priced very well.

This is probably the cruiser for the younger generation of cruiser-emthusiasts. Though it’s not necessarily the cruiser for those just getting into motorcycles—the Rebel 300 or Rebel 500 are better choices. 

One thing to keep in mind is that while the Honda Rebel 1100 is a great option for those moving up from an entry-level cruiser, it might not have all the features and power that some riders are looking for.

If you’re dead-set on an American cruiser with a V-Twin engine, there are better options out there.

But, if you’re willing to give Honda a shot, the Rebel 1100 is a great option in the cruiser world.