During the height of its production in the 1960s, the CB77 Superhawk was the largest Honda motorcycle on the market, giving it unprecedented speed, comfort, and power in a heavyweight (by Honda standards) steel frame.
A Pivotal Time in History for Honda
The CB-series of motorcycles is one of Honda’s longest-running series and the widest collection of models and designs under its belt. First produced in 1961, the Superhawk quickly captivated its fair share of the market, giving Honda more than just a foot in the door of large-bore engines.
Only seven years after beginning production of Superhawk motorcycles, Honda would go on to sell its one-millionth motorcycle in the US, a Superhawk, marking the historic rise of the company. Unfortunately, that same year would mark the discontinuation of the Superhawk line.
Honda’s Largest Design
Coming in at 305cc, the CB77 Superhawk’s engine strikes us today as mostly modest or moderate at best. In 1961, however, that size engine was the largest and most powerful engine Honda had ever incorporated into its motorcycle designs.
The engine’s specifications weren’t to be trifled with either. The design comprised a four-stroke, twin-cylinder, SOHC engine capable of speeds up to 104.6 miles per hour, only just under six miles per hour slower than the conservative estimates of the fastest production motorcycle in 1962.
A Singular Moment in History
The Honda CB-series has undergone countless changes and variations including more than 400 individual iterations of motorcycles and around 100 models, but the Superhawk only saw one generation for itself, occupying a singular moment in a pivotal point in history.
Honda CB77 Superhawk (1961-1968)
The design of the Superhawk by the standards of the day was purely magnificent, something fantastic to behold. Air-cooled like the rest of the motorcycles prior to the 1970s and 1980s, the Superhawk set itself apart from the others with 60 by 54 bore and stroke.
The engine’s performance potential also outshined the competition with 28 horsepower at 7,500 rpm and 17 foot-pounds of torque at 6,000 rpm.
Tributes and Treatises
The majority of news today isn’t really “news” in the conventional sense of the term, but is more like new blog posts and features. In one particular feature, published in 2011, the writers delve deep into the history of the CB77 to describe its impact on the world of motorcycling.
The King Himself
The CB77 has appeared in more than 20 films and TV shows in total. “So what?” critics might ask. “Plenty of motorcycles have appeared in film.” To those critics, we say, “Have they been ridden and owned by Elvis Presley himself? Because the CB77 SuperHawk has been!”
A great group for fans of the CB77 is Honda CB77 Superhawk page on Facebook, which has more than 2,000 likes.
Honda CB77 – Honda’s Greatest Legacy
Few, if any motorcycles, have had as great an impact on Honda’s history and the development of motorcycles, superbikes, and scooters as the CB77 Superhawk. Hopefully, we’ll continue to see more of this great motorcycle’s legacy shine through in the engines of other Hondas for years to come.