Meet one of the most eagerly-awaited bikes of the modern era; the 2020 Honda CBR1000RR-R Fireblade SP. The bike is all-new, with Honda’s engineers focusing on dragging the flagship Blade out of the doldrums and back to the very top of the litre sportsbike class. Using technology from Honda’s involvement in MotoGP, the bore and stroke of the oversquare 999cc powerplant are identical to those in the RCV213V-S, with Honda claiming the engine will produce 214hp at 14,500rpm and 83 lb-ft. at 12,500rpm. The cylinder head features new DLC-coated camshafts that actuate finger-follower rocker arms, replacing the shim-under-bucket design to reduce drivetrain friction by 35 percent and cut inertial weight by 75 percent. There are also new titanium connecting rods that are half the weight of the previous chrome-moly steel units and new forged pistons which are five percent lighter with improved durability and strength. The Fireblade is equipped with electronic rider aids that increase rider control through a throttle-by-wire system derived from the RCV213V-S. The bikes comes with five power modes and nine levels of Honda Selectable Torque Control to allow riders to set engine response and rear-wheel slip to their liking, while a Bosch six-axis IMU monitors lean and pitch angles to control power delivery. There’s also and an up-and-down quickshifter, three levels of three engine braking and two ABS modes: Sport and Track. Sport is calibrated for on-road performance, while track is suited to the higher speeds and demands of closed-circuit competition. The new fairing features winglet structures with three internal ducted wings to generate maximum downforce without affecting yaw and roll, and Honda claims these winglets generate the same downforce as those used on the 2018 RCV213V MotoGP racebike. The litre bike class just became a whole load more competitive.