Honda H'ness CB350: 3 Months Ownership Review


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this is my 3 month and 2500 km review of the honda hness. I know that this is very less time to actually put a review about the bike but using this bike as a daily driver in these past 3 months I have got to know the good and bad parts of the bike.

I have driven the bike for almost 2500 kms in total which consists of one 500km highway ride.

WHY THE HNESS CB350?
I was looking for my first bike as a daily driver for commute to and fro my college and for long rides as well. I wanted something which was comfortable for both the rider and the pillion. I was searching for bikes for almost a year and after a year I finally decided to pick up the Honda Hness CB350.
I looked at a lot of bikes but the main bikes I looked at were the
1.Royal Enfield Meteor
2. Benelli Imperiale 400
3. Honda Hness

ROYAL ENFIELD METEOR
I was hearing a lot of good and bad reviews of the new meteor that was launched and I wanted to see for myself of how good or bad that bike is. I test rode the meteor and I really liked it as the bike was unlike any other Royal Enfield bikes, It had a new and improved J platform that was exceptionally good and it had very less vibrations. the bike was very comfortable and had a lot of customizable options with the new MIY program. I was convinced of buying the bike but my gut instinct told me to wait for sometime as the bike was just launched and I should wait for the ownership review and then actually buy it. the bike performed really nicely as it was not a performance oriented bike. It was a well designed cruiser from royal enfield, However I was not really keen of the seating position as do not actually prefer the cruiser type handle bar position in the city. In the highways its really comfortable but in the city traffic its rather cumbersome. But this was also comfortable in the city and I was actually sold on getting the meteor but I was getting a news that Honda is gonna come with their classic cruiser type bike and I was really excited in that and decided to wait for the Hness to be launched. Also in the showroom i saw the 650 twins. I test rode the bikes and immediately fell in love. the performance was just killer and i loved the bikes grunt and all the things of the bike, I almost felt like pushing my budget a little higher and picking up the GT but it did not fit in even one requirement of mine. it cannot be used as a daily driver and with the fuel prices rising i decided to wait for 2 years and pick the bike when I finally upgrade from the 350 cc segment

BENELLI IMPERIALE 400
When I first saw the pictures of the Benelli Imperiale 400, it looked really good and really classy. I wanted to check it out immediately and just drive to see what benelli had to offer with this machine. When I looked for where a showroom of Benelli was in Chennai, To my surprise there was only 1 showroom in Chennai. Chennai is a big place and it had only one showroom was really off putting about the service for the bikes. However I kept all those things for later and just wanted to see the bike and take a ride of it. Thankfully that showroom was only 10kms from my place and not too far. So I called the showroom to check with them if they had the bike for a test ride and said that ill be coming for a test ride. I reach the showroom and tell them that I have come to take the test ride of the bike and they said to me that the Bike is not available for test ride only display piece. then replied to them saying that I specifically asked if the bike was available for test ride and you said YES. they apparently misheard and I do not blame them for that it happens. I did mind the miscommunication as I at least got to look at the bike in person. it looked very good and was like a perfect classic bike and fitting into my bracket of comfortability. Now the only part remaining was to take a test ride of the bike. So I gave them my number and asked them to call me when test ride was available and after a week they called me saying the test ride vehicle is arrived and you can come to the showroom. I immediately left to the showroom with a friend and took test ride of the bike. To be honest, the looks were very good but the bike was just average to ride. The brakes were OK, the pickup was also linear and it was a good bike but I felt something was missing. I did not get the WOW factor from the bike and also the spare part costs were gonna be a little high considering benelli is premium bike. I wanted a daily driver which is reliable and also gives me that fun factor to ride it everyday. So I rejected the Benelli.

HONDA HNESS CB350
So finally came the day to ride the Hness. I went to the showroom and there stood the bike in a Matte Black paint scheme which immediately caught my eye and had my attention. They had outdone themselves with the design in my opinion. I loved the look of the bike with all LED's and the the amazing stance. I also saw a very good matte green color which also caught my eye more than the black and loved that color a lot. After gazing the bikes for solid 10 minutes I finally decided to take it out for a spin. I immediately fell in love. The smoothness, the sound, the pull all were amazing and it was a total beast to ride, it gave you power when you need it and can be driven calmly too. The brakes are amazing. I cannot emphasize this enough but the brakes are exceptionally good and Honda really kicked the ball out of the park on the brakes, I was sold, I decided that the hness is gonna come home with me and went home with a big smile on my face.

So the final deciding time had come. I took the meteor and the Hness test ride back to back as the showroom were really close to each other. but in the driving pleasure and comfort Hness had won my heart. The royal enfield has a much better service network as compared to the Honda big wing but the Royal Enfield service that we have received is actually very poor. All of my friends own a Royal Enfield. We have a Classic 350 bs6, the thunderbird 350x, the continental GT650 and the interceptor 650 in the group. I was the only guy left to pick up a bike and i was confused between the meteor and the Hness, The only complaint that my friends had was Royal Enfield makes good bikes but their service is terrible. For example, my friend who owns the interceptor 650 got his bike after 6 months. he booked the bike and the bike was received after 3 months in the showroom. Mostly with all showrooms as soon as they get the bike they send it for registration and deliver the bike, but in his case the bike came to the showroom and sat in the showroom for another 3 months without being sent for registration and sitting in the showroom despite full payment. The service was the second reason I had decided I am taking the Hness

I Booked the hness DLX PRO and wanted to get the green color but was not available in the DLX PRO variant so decided to go for the matte black color, and it was promised that they will deliver the bike in 15 days as the bike has to come from their Noida plant, But they gave the bike to me in 10 days. I got the call from Honda saying bike is at the showroom and would you like to do the Pre delivery inspection? I obviously said yes and went to see the bike. it looked shining and was taken to registration after I saw the bike. they said that the bike will be delivered the next day with the number plate and they delivered their promise. I really have to appreciate my showroom for the quick delivery of my bike and the utmost quality of service which they had provided me. so I took delivery of the bike and have been happily using it for the past 3 months, Here are the good and bad aspects of my bike that I have gathered riding the bike for 2500 KMs and counting.

ACCESSORIES I HAVE INSTALLED
I have only installed functional accessories on the bike and do not have an immediate plan to add any aesthetic accessories
1. Upper and lower engine guards from Honda
2. Split seat from Honda
3. Tank pad (to protect the tank from getting scratched by my belt or jean button etc.)
4. Back Rest by Sahara seats
5. I also got my Rynox Air GT jacket from Honda as they were giving a really good deal with the bike
6.BOBO Mobile holder without charger (charger is already there on the bike )
7. Front mudguard extender
THE NEGATIVES
Let me start with the negatives first:

LONG GEARING: This is not really a negative, but its something you need to get used to, the bike has tall gearing and you need time to get used to it. I am pretty much used to it and do not keep changing the gears up and down often. one thing to mind is that the 5th gear is just an overdrive gear that means it wont give you juice to pull of a quick overtake or pass someone, for that you will have to shift to the 4th gear.

PLACEMENT OF STORAGE BOX: Honda has provided a storage space in the side panel which has a MAJOR ergonomic flaw. One side panel opens with the key and one opens with an Allen key which is fine but the panel which opens with the key has a battery and fuse box inside it and the one which opens with the Allen key is the storage space which technically defies the purpose of a storage box as i have to open the first box. remove the Allen key from the compartment and then open the other storage box to get to something which gets a little irritating at times. if I have to store documents or any cloth I have to go through this cumbersome process. I can definitely live with it but its still a think that Honda should have thought through.

MIRRORS: I cannot emphasize it enough that the mirrors in the bike are very poor. It has a big blind spot and does not provide a very good view. I am soon planning to change the mirrors as they are really bad.

CHROME QUALITY: The Hness has a lot of chrome. Some people like it but I do not like a lot of chrome. Honda could have reduced the amount of chrome in this bike as it sometimes feels like a lot of chrome. and the quality is kind of OK as its a little prone to be rusted if not taken proper care of. During the heavy 2021 Chennai rains. Even though the bike was covered and in a covered parking lot due to a lot of due the front shock absorbers bolts were having surface rust. that's the only rust I have faced till now but I have heard people getting rust in the exhaust pipe and other chrome parts of the bike but I have not experienced that. Do take extra care on the chrome parts to avoid rusting

FRONT MUDGUARD: The thing I hate most on the Hness is the front mudguard. Its very small so sludge or mud just flies towards the engine and the legs and I learnt it the hard way in Chennai rains where my pants were drenched as the mud guard wasn't long enough. I have added a mud guard extension which has solved the problem but Honda should have given a longer mudguard from the factory

SERVICE NETWORK: The Honda Hness can be serviced only in Honda big wing outlets and since I have a showroom which is only 5 kilometers from my place I do not have much of a problem but for the people who dont have a big wing in close proximity can have a little difficulty in the service of their bike. Be sure to check for service areas near you before buying the bike. But Honda is known to be reliable so this too shouldn't give you much travel to the service centers


THE POSITIVES

DESIGN: This bike is an head turner. Whenever I'm at a Traffic light people look at the bike. I keep getting questions on the bike. People have stopped me in the middle of the road to ask questions. Even traffic cops have stopped me but its not for a traffic offense rather to ask about a bike. This bike does attract a lot of people and its designed really attractively


PERFORMANCE: The bike on paper makes 21 PS of power which you can definitely feel. the bike pickup is amazing and I just love the performance of the engine. Speaking of performance in high altitudes. I had a chance to take the bike from chennai to yelagiri after the ECU update and the bike performed really well, it was able to lift steep curves in 2nd gear and outdid itself. I really loved the bike

BRAKING: The brakes of the bike are absolutely amazing. the bike stops really quickly and provides an amazing bite and feel while hitting the brakes. You get immense confidence that the bike will stop in a jiffy. I had a Family friend who happens to work at royal enfield and After riding the bike for the first time, the first thing he said were that the brakes were amazing. If you don't believe me ride it for yourself and see how good the brakes actually are

CLUTCH: I need not say anything about the clutch. It is light as a feather and is really easy to use.

HANDLING: The bike is really nimble and agile to ride and easy to ride as well, even a person new to bikes will be able to ride it easily without an issue. The bike weighs about 180kgs but you cannot feel it, it feels light and easy to handle.

HEADLIGHTS: The headlight throw is actually good and the led has a good visibility range. I had to climb Yelagiri Hills in pitch black as we were late in leaving but the Hness gave me no problems at all. I was able to see the road fully lit up and very easy to see

COMFORT: The Hness is a very comfortable bike not only for the rider but the pillion too. After I installed the split seat and the backrest the pillion comfort has been so much better. You can sit in that seat for hours and not feel a thing. You can go on and on for hours.

SERVICE: This is the first honda in my family and I must say that the service is impeccable. Even if I am not able to drop the bike on a weekday they have appointment based service on Sunday for only 5 bikes and the service is done in front of your eyes with a seating area with an open glass where you can see your bike getting serviced which is actually really good thing. plus the costs have been very reasonable. I have had only my first service now and the service cost of my 1st service was a mere 1200 ( labor free) but I asked a fellow Hness owner asking him what was the price of his service as he was getting his 3rd service done which he said was 1700 and has been 1700 for the 2nd service too. which is actually very good price. its completely affordable and shows how reliable Honda is as a brand

SPARES: I dropped the bike once in a parking lot and my front brake was bent. Apart from that there was no other damage on the bike. I took it to the Honda service center and they changed it for mere 170 rupees which is really great and reasonable too. It shows that Honda has made this bike premium while making it reasonable.


That's it Folks. That's my opinion of the Honda Hness CB350. Hope you liked it.
to sum up,
If you are in the market for a 350cc motorcycle which is easy to maintain, has good performance, is comfortable and gives out good fuel efficiency then the HONDA HNESS CB350 is the bike for you. if you want the same but for city and in a little more attractive looks I suggest you to look for the CB350RS but I don't particularly like it as it doesn't have a big enough pillion seat but it's definitely worth a look.




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Last edited:
Joined
Feb 21, 2015
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Ride safe and update more photos, your choice is good and bike is vibe free and once you get used to it, you will not feel like riding RE again. Add fork gators to protect it from dust. Do not use hard water to wash bike, if you go near sea side, wash with soft water and your bike will be rust free. Suggest to get a ceramic coat done, rust proof treatment done on chrome parts. Enjoy riding
 
Last edited:
Joined
Jul 23, 2020
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The CB350 is a great choice for an all rounder among the 350cc's in the market. Wishing you many happy memories and keep the thread updated regularly with more photos.
 

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