I just thought I'd post my thoughts on my 2017 Honda Rebel 500 in bright yellow. Picked this baby up a few weeks ago from my local dealer after calling almost all the stealerships in a 100 mile radius from me. Fortunately, i was able to get it at a decent OTD price. Decent, not good but I'm okay with what I paid for it. Here are my thoughts on the bike.
1. Ergonomics - this is my first cruiser bike and at first it was a little weird how you're positioned on the bike. It feels like you're actually in the bike as opposed to on it. Which is actually a good thing once you accept what the bike was designed for - which is mainly for cruising. The seat height is quite low so it gives you that confidence when starting off and coming to a stop. Your arms are not too stretched out to the bars which makes it more a laid back kind of position on the bike. The foot controls (shifter and rear brake pedals) all seem to fit the cruiser style but wouldn't say that it's too pronounced forward like in others that I've seen. The seat is quite comfortable. I have since installed the pillion seat and pegs and couldn't speak for my wife but in short distances, it seems she doesn't mind it. The width of the bike is quite narrow in the seat and gas tank which makes it all the more easier to straddle together with the ow seat height. Weight isn't so much noticeable but you can tell it's a tad heavy for what it is although it does carry the weight low.
2. Looks - well, I'm sure everyone would agree if you're on this forum that the looks is what got me when I first saw it in the show a few months back. If you look at it, it looks like a HD Iron 883 with it's big, meaty front tire but is about 80-90% the size of the Harley. I was first dead set on the matte silver color but my cousin who go his rebel a day before I did got his in this color. After thinking about it a bit more, I just got my Kawasaki Versys X300 in silver a couple of weeks before so maybe a new color would be good. After my dealer told me he had a bright yellow 500 in stock, i decided to give it a chance and I was pleasantly surprised with it. It pops out and gives it that "look at me" vibe which I really like. The single seat layout (at first) was kinda cool but I already knew at the time that I was going to install the pillion seat. The blacked out frame and bits made it even more cool. Some little things that i did notice was that it already came with a radiator guard/screen which was awesome. The turn signals, front and back were straight from a Honda Grom which was kinda cheap looking. Little details like the rebel sign on the rear fender were also very cool. The gauge pod which is a single LCD circular unit was kinda cool as well although it didn't have a tachometer which I'm sure people will be clammoring for. It does have a fuel gauge which is really, really good as well as a MPG in one of the modes on the trip meter.
3. Power - I wasn't expecting much since it was a parallel twin 500cc from the cb500r, cb500f, cb500x line but it does have a lot of get up and go. It feels like it was geared for lower end torque and surely delivers in the lower/mid rev range. Also, it has the 6 speed transmission which to be honest, i sometimes forget that it has a 6th speed when cruising on the fwy. Blasting from 2nd gear and up gives you a satisfying boost of speed. Still in the break in period but hoping that it gets better as the miles are added. One thing to note, the transmission does feel notchy at first with neutral being hard to find in the first couple of hundred miles. However, it has smoothened out after 300 miles and can say that it will get better with more miles. I had the same experience with the Grom which seems like a common Honda trait on the trannies.
4. Handling/agility - I was fortunate enough to take it on the onset to my favorite twisties during it's first week and I have to say, for a cruiser, it can handle those twisties quite well. Turn in is quite heavy which is to be expected with it's big meaty front tire but once there, the power of the 500 is able to pull you through the curve with no problem. I was able to scrape the pegs a few times during our spirited run up ACH but was not too concerned except for being surprised when it happened the first time. Don't get me wrong, it's no sport bike by a long shot but it is agile enough that you will have a good time with it in the twisities especially in those long sweeper curves. The tires maybe suspect for more than 7/10ths riding but they do work well enough if you keep the fun factor a little bit below extreme. The suspension is quite firm at least for me. I still have to experiment with the preload of the rear shocks but going through ruts and bumps on the rode, you can feel it in the seat. It seemed a little better with a passenger but I guess it was preloaded at that point.
All in all, i can say that the rebel 500 is a keeper (at least for the moment) and am looking forward to more and more accessories and mods for it. Hope you guys find some of this stuff useful or entertaining. Cheers!