Alongside engine changes such as revised fuel injection settings and a new lighter radiator, the chassis benefits from the addition of Showa 41mm SFF-BP USD forks, dual Nissin radial mount two-piston calipers biting 296mm discs, light-weight wheels feature new thinner spokes and redesigned swingarm - for improved rider comfort and handling performance. Compared to the previous model, weight bias also moves fractionally forward for enhanced front tyre grip and feel. Styling is updated with a new front wheel and larger front mudguard.
As before, LCD instruments feature a Shift Up and Gear Position function. All lighting is LED, with optimised high/low headlight beam and addition of front indicator position lights.
The 22YM CB500X will be available in the following colour options:
Light, strong and unchanged for the 2022 year model, the CB500X’s 35mm diameter steel diamond-tube mainframe has a tuned degree of yield that gives plenty of feedback to the rider as road surfaces change. The shape and position of the engine mounts, plus the frame’s rigidity balance, also reduce vibration.
Immediately obvious is a brand-new front end set-up. With the aim to heighten all-round handling performance the 41mm telescopic forks of the previous design have been replaced by spring preload-adjustable Showa 41mm Separate Function Fork Big Piston (SFF-BP) USD forks with 135mm axle travel (150mm cushion stroke), clamped by new top and bottom yokes. By dividing the functions – Big Piston pressure separation damper in one leg, spring mechanism in the other – reaction and ride quality are both improved.
The single-tube rear shock absorber (as found on larger capacity sports bikes) with its large-diameter piston and 135mm axle travel (60mm cushion stroke) ensures excellent response and temperature management; it features 5-stage preload adjustment with newly optimised spring rate and damping settings.
Handling is further improved by the redesigned, lighter swingarm. Now constructed from 2mm steel (rather than 2.3mm), it employs a hollow cross member and is stiffer rotationally, and also more flexible laterally to improve handling. A crisply redesigned chain guard completes the new look.
In line with the dynamic improvements to the chassis and suspension, the braking performance has also been improved. The single 310mm wave-pattern disc and two-piston caliper front brake of the previous design has been replaced by dual 296mm wave-pattern discs and axial mounted Nissin two-piston calipers. The introduction of the smaller discs not only keeps any additional weight gain to a minimum, but also reduces the required pressure on the lever when braking.
The redesigned 19-inch cast aluminium front wheel – lighter thanks to thinner spokes – reduces unsprung weight to aid turning ability. It’s crowned by a tough new mudguard design and heads a 17-inch rear wheel; trail-pattern tyres are sized 110/80-R19 front and 160/60-R17 rear. Weight bias has also been adjusted. with front/rear bias percentage of 48.7/51.3 compared to the previous 48/52. Kerb weight is 199kg. Wheelbase remains 1,445mm with rake and trail of 27.5°/108mm.
The CB500X wears an aggressive, ‘ready for the wild’ adventure style, with the long radiator shrouds and fairing giving a strong three-dimensional texture front to rear, linked by interlocking side covers and fuel tank. But this is a bike as much about function as form; high-pressure air flowing around the fairing and screen (with two available height settings – 1445mm and 1410mm) is managed to improve wind protection for the rider at highway speeds. The sharply-chiselled headlight is now even more piercing with extra-powerful LEDs, plus there’s added visibility from front indicator position lights.
A slim seat profile allows for free movement around the machine and aids easy ground reach. And to help manoeuvrability the steering angle is 38° from centred to full lock.
Gunmetal grey tapered steel handlebar elevate control further still. Seat height is 830mm and the upright riding position is very accommodating, while providing excellent visibility. Overall dimensions are 2155mm x 830mm x 1410mm, with 180mm ground clearance.
LCD instruments – set in a multi-surfaced and textured surround – feature a Gear Position and Shift Up indicator; this is set to a default 8,750rpm but can be adjusted in 250rpm increments between 5-8,750rpm.
The fuel tank holds 17.5L including reserve, and, combined with the engine’s excellent fuel economy of 3.6L/100km (27.8km/l) (WMTC mode), gives a range of 485km.