2000 Honda Shadow Sabre

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Honda Sabre Switchblade Concept
Honda Sabre Switchblade Concept

Motorcycles

2000 Honda Shadow Sabre

You’re reading 2000 Honda Shadow Sabre, posted on Tuesday, July 17th, 2007 at 10:12 am in Honda. Reviews. on BrainBloggers at the Motorcycles blog. More after the jump.

The 2000 Honda Shadow Sabre is a V-twin hot rod cruiser that every motorcycle enthusiast loves to drive. Which is why Honda dubbed it as “a bold new street rod”. Honda had created the concept for the bike years before it was put into production.

They finally decided in 1998 that it was time to puch it into full devolpment. They chose to do it at this time because of the demand for cruisers at that time.


Built with new and existing parts, the new Sabre is built around an ACE frame and the same basic engine as the Spirit. The 1099cc V-twin engine is rubber mounted, has three valves and two plugs per cylinder and pumps out a claimed 64 bhp @ 5,500 rpm. Torque output is claimed to be 71.8 ft. lbs. at 3,000 rpm.

There are also some gearing changes and an advanced ignition curve for better roll-on performance.

The first thing you’ll notice when throwing a leg over the new Sabre is that the seat height is low, just 27.2 inches. The seating position is comfortable and the drag-bike inspired seat is isn’t too wide nor too thin. The bars are low, wide and comfortable. Footpegs are forward mounted similar to Honda’s other cruisers though they seemed a bit lower which we found a bit more comfortable than previous models.

Shorter riders weren’t quite sure how they liked the peg location.

This Sabre is about performance, cruiser performance. This being the case, the natural question is how does the bike run. The answer is that it runs very well, though it doesn’t posses the arm stretching power you’d expect from a company emphasizing power as much as Honda has. Aside from this, the Sabre’s motor pulls smoothly and strong enough to allow for short-shifting and rolling on the power no matter what gear you’ve selected.

The sounds produced by the bike are pleasurable though we’d like a little more exhaust note and a bit less intake noise.

Even though this bike is supposed to be about power, what struck us most about the new bike is it’s seemingly unflappable chassis, good suspension, strong brakes and what appears to be excellent comfort. It’s no fun riding a bike that’s all engine with second rate ergonomics or handling. This certainly isn’t the case with Honda’s new Sabre as these traits on this bike struck us as much, or more, than how the engine ran.

Honda Sabre Switchblade Concept

While riding over terrible concrete surfaces, it was hard to upset this new package. The suspension was quite compliant with no discernable harshness or bucking over big bumps. Just straight and steady was our initial feel of the new Sabre.

When it came to cornering, the new bike will hold it’s own and then some. What we like most is that you won’t find yourself scraping the pegs when you throw this cruiser into a serious corner.

This means you should be able to make good time on roads like California’s Pacific Coast Highway. We’ve experienced too many otherwise capable cruisers that are hampered by ground clearance on back roads. This simply won’t be the case with the new Honda.

Styling of the Sabre is, well Honda. Though there are attractive changes, the overall effect is a bike that looks pretty much like Honda’s other cruiser models. This left us wondering why Honda didn’t go out of their way to create a different overall look for their new street rod, a theme they intend to carry over to additional displacement categories.

Rest assured Honda will have you covered when it comes to accessories for the new Sabre. They already have 48 separate items developed and available from you local Honda dealer. These include items like billet ignition and clutch covers, light bars, floorboards and various luggage items. Unfortunately we didn’t spend as much time on the new Sabre as we would have liked. Only a good deal more saddle time under various riding conditions will give us the complete picture.

For now, we can conclude the new Sabre is a very competent and strong running cruiser offering a well rounded package in terms of chassis, suspension and comfort.

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Honda Sabre Switchblade Concept
Honda Sabre Switchblade Concept
Honda Sabre Switchblade Concept

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