Honda Rebel 300 & 500 Forum banner

1 - 20 of 27 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hello Everyone,

I need help choosing the right Rebel.

For some context, I am a 20 year old full time college student. I work 25+ hours a week making what I would consider to be a decent living. I have wanted to get into riding for the last year, and am now in a place financially where I can pull the trigger (lots of saving). I know that it would be far wiser of me to find a used bike off of craigslist, but that's not exactly what I am looking to do. I'd prefer to finance a bike to help further bump my credit score, as I will be needing to purchase a home/condo/apartment within the next 5 years.

I really enjoy the new Honda Rebel. I am a big fan of the aesthetics of the bike and its easy of use for beginner riders. However, I cannot decide whether to purchase the 300 or the 500, ABS or Non. I've read that the 300 is a more of a "6 month" bike. For those of you with experience on the 300, is this the case? I'd like to be able to enjoy my bike for many years to come, and do not want to purchase a another bike. My riding will mostly take place in just the city, but there's about a 3 mile, 55mph mountain of a climb, followed by some very brief (about 5 miles) freeway riding that I will consistently be needing to take.

For reference, I am about 5'10, 170lbs. I also plan on taking a passenger on short trips (less than 20 minutes) around town occasionally. Will the 300 be sufficient, and will I still have a smile on my face in years to come? Or would I be better off with the 500? Long, long term, would even something like a Honda Shadow be better? I am open to other options and opinions.

Also, is the ABS model(s) worthwhile? I am all for added safety tech, as the extra couple hundred bucks is a small price to pay if it could save my life (or even just the bikes) once. But is ABS actually useful on a motorcycle? I've read multiple articles on this and have yet to find a definitive answer. Some argue they are better off without ABS, with some saying its a must have. What do you guys think?

I appreciate all the help! Thank you :)
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
1,234 Posts
Take the motorcycle safety course. You may get the opportunity to try several different bikes during the training. ABS is definitely worth it for a new rider. If you have doubts about the 300, I'd say get the 500.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
527 Posts
I'd say get the ABS no matter what.
Those that argue they're better off without it is just rubbish. No human can outperform what ABS does. It's better to have it and never need it, than to need it and not have it.

I would've said the 300 will do everything you wanted up till you mentioned carrying a passenger. If you're already planning riding with a passenger and up a mountain I'd say scratch the 300 off your list and go straight to the 500.

I have the 300 and it suits my needs well. Solo rider, mostly suburb riding and city, and every once in a while a few freeway jaunts. Mind you there's no mountains or steep inclines on my daily rides, and solo I'm only at 185lbs.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
814 Posts
In a city by yourself the 300 would be more than fine. But having a passenger at all in my opinion warrants the 500. The 300 could be a longtime bike, the biggest issue is most people get will get bored with it quite fast. The 500 is without a doubt more of a long term bike.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
136 Posts
I am 5'7" and 140 lbs and 29 years old. I would have been disappointed if I got the 300 and this is my first bike. I got a brand new 2018 ABS off the showroom floor and as I'm settling into riding as a whole I am glad I didn't go for the smaller 300. The 500 fits me JUST right to both bop around town in the stop and go traffic and it doesn't feel like a wind-up toy doing 70 on the highway either. It's not going to win any drag races but it goes when you need it and handles freeway speed comfortably. We differ in that I don't trust myself with a passenger even though I'm the epitome of safe-driving so my current mentality is that nobody will be a passenger on my bike, sorry future girlfriend. You're not riding with me. Deal with it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
712 Posts
After reading reviews prior to the bike's release, I opted for the 500, which is also my 1st bike... been riding for a year now.

And honestly.. if the 2017 wasn't a brand new redesign, I'd probably be trading it in this year for something bigger, but as it stands, there's no way I'd get my money's worth on the trade, so I'll keep it for at least another year.

And even being my first bike, and I've really gotten into the throttle a few times, I've never felt that it was too much bike for a starter bike.

ABS? Can't really say... I ordered the ABS model, and when I went to pick it up they had actually received the non-ABS model... but I didn't want to wait anymore, so they adjusted the sale terms and I bought it.

There's only been once so far that I had to really get on the brakes... hard enough I was expecting it to lose traction, but it held firm... can't imagine how hard you'd have to brake for the ABS to kick in.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
1,234 Posts
There's only been once so far that I had to really get on the brakes... hard enough I was expecting it to lose traction, but it held firm... can't imagine how hard you'd have to brake for the ABS to kick in.
It's not only hard braking that you have to consider. Wet or sandy pavement can make the front tire skid which is an automatic dump of your bike. ABS will stop that from happening.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
712 Posts
It's not only hard braking that you have to consider. Wet or sandy pavement can make the front tire skid which is an automatic dump of your bike. ABS will stop that from happening.
Yeah, I was just referring to dry, clean pavement.

I do all I can to avoid riding when the roads are wet, and make sure to take it easy when I have to. Same with riding the more rural roads which are prone to patches of sand and gravel.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,328 Posts
Yeah, I was just referring to dry, clean pavement.

I do all I can to avoid riding when the roads are wet, and make sure to take it easy when I have to. Same with riding the more rural roads which are prone to patches of sand and gravel.
I wouldn't count on ABS helping you on the sand they spread on roads during sleet and/or freezing rain. Until after there is a really good rain storm the sand hangs around at intersections and can be treacherous on an 2 wheeled vehicle.

Kenny G
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
178 Posts
I am 5'7" and 140 lbs and 29 years old. I would have been disappointed if I got the 300 and this is my first bike. I got a brand new 2018 ABS off the showroom floor and as I'm settling into riding as a whole I am glad I didn't go for the smaller 300. The 500 fits me JUST right to both bop around town in the stop and go traffic and it doesn't feel like a wind-up toy doing 70 on the highway either. It's not going to win any drag races but it goes when you need it and handles freeway speed comfortably. We differ in that I don't trust myself with a passenger even though I'm the epitome of safe-driving so my current mentality is that nobody will be a passenger on my bike, sorry future girlfriend. You're not riding with me. Deal with it.


I'm with Json_Blob on this one. get the 500 ABS. My dad was talking me into the 300 (perfect beginner bike) but, I listened to my gut and also got a feel for a rebel 250 (some what close to a 300) at my Motorcycle training course. The 300 is good but, you'll love the extra weight and power with the 500.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
153 Posts
With ABS you can get an insurance discount. I would get the 500 ABS, it is not that much more. I'm a full-time Ph.D. student on a very, very small income and I tend to starve at times, ...more time than not. But I was so glad that I got the 500 ABS. Especially for those times I need to travel out of state for school related stuff.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
527 Posts
Hate to hijack this thread but gotta ask a question to all the 500 owners.
I bought the 300 to get my feet wet and will eventually move up to a Shadow Phantom.
Why did you all choose the Rebel 500 over a shadow? They seem pretty similar in price
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
88 Posts
Hate to hijack this thread but gotta ask a question to all the 500 owners.
I bought the 300 to get my feet wet and will eventually move up to a Shadow Phantom.
Why did you all choose the Rebel 500 over a shadow? They seem pretty similar in price
The Shadow starts at $7,799 whereas the 500 starts at $6,099, that's nearly a 28% price increase and probably enough to not be considered 'similar'. I would agree that the Phantom is probably still in the entry-level category as the 500, though. My wife and I decided on the 500 for her because she could probably stand to ride it for a longer time than the 300 and because even when she gets her second bike this will still be a good city bike due to its size. I honestly just didn't want to get her a 300 and have her complaining in three months that she needed something bigger.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
712 Posts
Hate to hijack this thread but gotta ask a question to all the 500 owners.
I bought the 300 to get my feet wet and will eventually move up to a Shadow Phantom.
Why did you all choose the Rebel 500 over a shadow? They seem pretty similar in price
I didn't want my first bike to be a 750... and I absolutely fell in love with the redesigned look of the Rebel.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
1,234 Posts
The 750 is an awesome bike but the extra weight and power is not a good choice for a beginner.

Correction: The Rebel 500 has greater power to weight ratio than the Shadow 750 according to specs - so if you want a heavier, less powerful bike than the Rebel, go with the Shadow.
 
1 - 20 of 27 Posts
Top