I recently purchased a 2014 CBR500R to get around Los Angeles while my VFR800 is undergoing a rebuild and I have enjoyed the agility and the size of the 500. It’s a great bike for lane splitting and very nimble compared to the nearly 500+ lb. interceptor. That being said it is not a made, in my opinion for much more than city streets stop and go zipping through the gridlock of my town. It’s barely able to get out of its own way on any highway that the average speed is between 65 and 85 mph. It came with a nice yoshimura exhaust but otherwise bone stock. My first highway adventure was a trip south to the Long Beach international bike show and I was rather weary when I arrived due to the wind shear to my upper torso and the feeling that I was gonna blow the motor from trying to keep up with the average gixxers and R1’s even the Shadow 750’s were eating me up. The ride home was worse because I no longer had the wind at my back and it was blowing me all over the place. When I got home I immediately went to Ebay and got the tall puig double bubble and a 16 tooth front sprocket. The puig arrived first and I compared it to the stock screen but it was not much than a half inch gain and the screen was angled back towards the rider with no touring lip to send the wind up. Next I wanted to go with the Givi tourer so I sent away to Naples and by Xmas it arrived (it disappeared in customs for two agonizing weeks). In the meantime my sprocket arrived and what a difference that one tooth made. I’m not sure what speed I’m doing because I need to fix my speedo but it’s nice to get through an intersection without having to shift twice while making a turn from a dead stop. I’m going to get a smaller rear sprocket soon and it will still pop a wheelie no problem. Remember I’m used to a redline of 13000 on the other bike and I freak/ am embarrassed when the limiter starts choking the motor at 6500.
So the givi arrived and I’ll be damned if I didn’t strip down the entire bike to get the thing on only to be disappointed with the wind hitting my breasts and then blowing up my helmet. I have one of those turtle fur neck covers and that seems to be the best thing to repel the cold wind and the noise of the wind inside my new helmet (a very snugly fit bell)
One more thing to add. Even on the heavy VFR on a windy day down PCH the bike can be blown into the next lane because fairings act like sails on a boat and any sport bike I’ve ridden or rode with has similar issues and the trick is to slow down. Or get a nice v-twin shadow or a sportster for the windy days. And even with the sprocket change these bikes weren’t engineered to be ridden at 100 mph + for long periods. They are great for everyday getting around town and some canyon carving but don’t bother with knee dragging or you’re going to have to get new pegs because it’s not a real cbr, just a fairing covered f or x model. I’m not saying I don’t like it but it is what it is. So enjoy it and get a real bike once you have honed your skills. It’s definitely a great newbie machine but I’ve been doing this for 45 years and I like to know that I have something that can beat a Tesla straight from the factory and when I need to I can get out of a jam with a little twist on the throttle
Be safe on these 500s and you are going to enjoy the bike but if you want to feel like you’re the human cannonball try a vtec. It’s like being shot from a slingshot when you hit 6k rpm and another set of valves open and you hold on for dear life all the way to redline