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Honda Rebel 500 Buying Guide

Honda Rebel 500 Motorcycle

Table of Contents

Honda Rebel 500 History and Overview

The Honda Rebel 500 is known as a fantastic beginner motorcycle that allows riders to grow into it as they gain experience and confidence. If you’re an intermediate rider who is comfortable with faster motorcycles, the Rebel 500 may be a bit underwhelming. But the Rebel 500 packs a high value given its modest price, the available features, and when combined with Honda’s reliable parallel-twin engine. The 2022 Rebel is available in three Trims: the 500 base, 500 ABS, and 500 ABS Special Edition (SE).

First released in 1985, the Rebel’s predecessor was the 1986 – 1987 CMX450. The Honda Rebel series are among some of Honda’s most popular street motorcycles and visitors to our site agree; searches for the other current Rebels, the 300 and 1100, are consistently some of the most often sought after but of all three Rebel models, the 500 is by far the most popular. The Rebel 500 joins Honda’s other cruiser models for 2022: the Fury, Shadow Phantom, and the Shadow Aero.

Sure, you could get a motorcycle with more total power output than the Rebel 500’s 471cc engine but compared to Honda’s other Cruiser motorcycles, other than the Rebel 1100, the Rebel 500 has the highest power-to-weight ratio at 0.113 HP per pound. Potential buyers should know the engine in the Rebel 500, which was first developed in 2013, is shared between Honda’s CBR500R and CB500F models. Weighing just over 400lbs, the Rebel is lightweight which contributes to its easy handling and steering; another factor that beginners will find appealing.

Riders who are 5’11” or shorter will feel very comfortable on the Rebel 500 given its extremely low seat heat that allows you to be flat-footed at a standstill. Combined with its previously mentioned low weight and you get a motorcycle that is very approachable for those looking for an entry-level, first motorcycle. But the Rebel 500 is not perfect if we’re going to be honest. There is no storage, no 12V accessory socket, no cruise control, no dual-clutch transmission (DCT) option, the exhaust is very quiet, seating is only for one unless you add an optional passenger seat accessory, the rear suspension is average, it has a small gas tank, the ergonomics are not ideal for taller riders and the top-end power is underwhelming.

What’s new for 2022? Compared to the 2021 Rebel 500, each of the three 2022 500 versions are $100 more expensive. The colors have changed as well; gone is the Matte Pearl White in exchange for Pearl Organic Green and Matte Silver. Other than that, the specifications and features are completely the same between both the 2021 and 2022 model years so if you’re thinking about a 2021 model, most of the information below still applies.

Our final verdict: If you’re looking for a medium-sized, lightweight, and affordable entry-level cruiser the Rebel 500 may be perfect for you. If you’re a taller, more experienced rider the 500 might leave you wanting a more powerful bike.

Honda Rebel 500 for Sale

Honda Rebel 500 Features

  • Parallel twin-cylinder, liquid-cooled four-stroke engine
  • Six-speed transmission
  • Blacked-out engine and frame, muffler
  • Digital LCD instrument gauge
  • Four-bulb headlight
  • All LED light package
  • Digital gear position indicator
  • Available in three color choices
  • ABS SE trim comes in only one color
  • Steel rear fender
  • Nitrogen-filled rear suspension
  • Available in three trims
  • Widebody 41mm fork
  • Widebody front wheel
  • Kick stand
  • Low rider seat position
  • Optional passenger seat and foot pegs
  • Aluminum subframe and fender
  • Cast aluminum wheels
  • Hydraulic disc brakes; optional ABS
  • Slipper assisted clutch

Source: Honda official site

Honda Rebel 500 Specifications

  • Model ID: CMX500 / CMX500A, CMX500A2 (ABS versions)
  • Model years: 2017 – Present
  • Engine: 471cc liquid-cooled parallel-twin four stroke
  • Bore and Stroke: 67mm x 66.8mm
  • Induction: PGM-FI
  • Ignition: Full transistorized ignition
  • Compression Ratio: 10.7:1
  • Valve Train: DOHC; 4 valves per cylinder
  • Transmission: Six-speed
  • Electric starter
  • Front Suspension: 41mm fork; 4.8 inches of travel
  • Rear Suspension: Dual shocks with 3.8 inches of travel
  • Brakes: Hydraulic disc, front, and rear (optional ABS)
  • Tires: Front, 130/90-16; Rear, 150/80-16
  • Rake: 28 0’
  • Trail: 4.3 inches
  • Wheelbase: 58.7 inches
  • Seat heat: 27.2 inches
  • Curb weight: 408lbs (with a full tank). 414 - 417lbs (ABS trims)
  • Maximum weight capacity: 346lbs
  • Final drive: O-ring-sealed chain. #520 Chain; 15T/40T
  • Length: 86.8 inches
  • Width: 32.3 inches

Source: Honda Rebel manual

Honda Rebel 500 MPG, Fuel Economy, and Tank Size

Honda states the Rebel 500 earns 67 miles per gallon, but we saw numerous reports from actual owners who experienced up to 70 miles per gallon under real-world conditions. The Rebel 500 has a 2.96-gallon fuel tank with a 0.6-gallon reserve. You should be able to travel approximately 198 miles on one tank of gas before the reserve kicks in. Honda recommends unleaded 86 octane gas or higher.

Honda Rebel 500 Maintenance Schedule

Honda recommends the following Rebel items should be replaced at the following mileage increments. Please note that this is not a comprehensive maintenance schedule like that found in the Honda Rebel 500’s owner manual.

Item to Replace Mileage Frequency
600 4,000 8,000 12,000 16,000 20,000 24,000
Air Cleaner R R
Crankcase Breather C C C C C C
Spark Plug R
Engine Oil R R R R
Engine Oil Filter R R
“R” denotes the item should be replaced while “C” denotes item should be cleaned. 2022 Honda Rebel 500 ABS

Honda Rebel 500 Price

Honda Rebel 500 New Price:

The base MSRP of a 2022 Honda Rebel 500 is $6,399 for the base 500, $6,699 for the Rebel 500 ABS, and $6,899 for the Rebel ABS SE. MSRP excludes license, registration, destination charge, freight surcharge and dealer-installed options. Including all dealer fees, local tag, and taxes, the out-the-door cost could end up being $8,000 to $8,750 depending on the model you buy. With a high demand and low inventory due to supply chain issues, we have heard reports on various online motorcycle forums of some dealers charging over MSRP.

Used Honda Rebel 500 Price:

The 2022 Rebel 500 is the 6th model year and because of a crunch on available new inventory driven by supply chain issues, used pricing is going to be equal to or even greater than the price of a new model. When we analyzed actual used Rebel 500 prices on our site, we regularly found 4-year-old models with asking prices between $5,500 and $5,900 while prices of a 2021 Rebel 500 were asking more than the price of a 2022 new model. Keep in mind, that prices of used motorcycles have mimicked what has happened with used car prices since 2021.

Honda Rebel 500 Availability

Numerous online forms, such as hondarebel3forum.com and reddit, are filled with anecdotal reports of potential buyers who are struggling to find available 500s to purchase. High demand has been compounded by chip shortages and supply chain issues and the result is a negative impact on availability of these in-demand motorcycles.

Given the demand and short supply, we’ve heard consistent reports of six month wait times on new orders. Your best bet is to call numerous Honda dealers to see what is in stock. We saw one report of a serious buyer who drove 10 hours round trip buy a Rebel 500. Chances are that most of the new Rebel 500s will already have a deposit and are spoken for.

Honda Rebel 500 Top Speed

At the top end of the price scale, a premium El Camino will cost between $55,000 to $95,000. Within the higher priced examples, we found many available listings around $60,000. If you’re on a budget, we think there may be opportunities in the $35,000 or less price range. If you’re seeking a total project car, you can buy a fixer-upper for less than $20,000.

Honda Rebel 500 Color

There Rebel 500 and Rebel 500 ABS share the same color options of Pearl Organic Green and Matte Gray Metallic. The Rebel 500 ABS SE comes in only one color, Matte Silver.

Pearl Organic Green 2022 Honda Rebel 500 Green
Matte Gray Metallic 2022 Honda Rebel 500 Gray
Matte Silver 2022 Honda Rebel 500 ABS SE

Honda Rebel 500 Warranty

251cc – 500cc engines 12 months 24 months 36 months 48 months 60 months
Air Cleaner $370 $420 $490 $580 $720
With 24/7 Roadside Assistance $420 $490 $580 $680 $840

Source: Honda Protection Plan

Reported Problems and Issues

As of early June 2022, there have not been any official recalls from Honda on the 2021-2022 Honda Rebel 500 and the most common issue we found was about leaking coolant. The solution for fixing a coolant leak on a 500 is a new water pipe, flange, and 0-rings.

Pros and Cons of the Rebel 500

Pros:
  • Classic styling and design
  • Very customizable
  • Easy to handle
  • Corners well
  • Excellent first motorcycle
  • Bulletproof engine
  • Digital gear indicator on gauge
Cons:
  • Exhaust too quiet
  • No storage
  • Rear suspension not the best
  • Not ideal for taller riders
  • Seat not comfortable for long distances
  • Lacks different drive modes
  • Small gas tank size

ABS vs. Non-ABS Version

ABS primarily serves to keep the tires from coming to a complete stop so it will allow the rider to maintain greater control during a short notice braking scenario, mainly by preventing skidding. There is a reason why ABS has been standard on passenger cars in the U.S. since 2012.

If you’ve been riding a motorcycle without ABS for some time, and are an experienced rider, you most likely won’t miss it. However, we would always recommend a motorcycle with ABS over a non-ABS bike. For an additional, $300 we think the safety is well worth the minimal additional cost, especially if you live in a climate where it rains often, or the roads can get slippery.

Between the two ABS versions of the Rebel 500, if you care about the color choices, the Matte Silver option on the 500 ABS SE looks extremely sharp. The ABS SE version also includes a factory installed custom accessory package. Other than those two items, the ABS SE and ABS are the same.

Honda Rebel 300 vs. 500

Both motorcycles share the same chassis frame design but the 300 costs $2,000 less and is 44lbs lighter. Both the 300 and the 500 are available in an ABS option. Although they have a comparable gas tank size, the 300 does edge out the 500 in terms of fuel efficiency; Honda states the 300 earns 78mpg compared to the 500’s 67mpg.

The 300 has a single cylinder four-stroke 286cc engine while the 500 engine is a parallel-twin four-stroke 471cc engine. If you are searching for a truly lightweight cruiser and want to save $2,000, the 300 would make an excellent choice.

Honda Rebel 1100 vs 500

The Rebel 1100 is a faster, more powerful, and wider motorcycle than the 500. With a 1,084cc parallel-twin engine and a piggyback suspension, the 1100 delivers a more complete riding experience than the 500. The 1100 is roughly 80lbs heavier, $3,000 more expensive, has a larger fuel tank capacity, improved braking, an instrument panel which provides more information to the rider, has storage and the rear tire is much wider than the 500.

The seat height and wheelbase are comparable between the two bikes. With 81hp total power output, the top speed of an 1100 is 140mph compared to the 500’s top speed of 95mph. The automatic Dual Clutch Transmission (DCT) version of the 1100 has been noted as being silky smooth, responsive and worth the minor additional expense. Rebel 1100 owners have reported earning 41mpg. We also love the different rider modes and cruise control on the 1100 which are not offered on the Rebel 500.

Like the 500, critics have dinged the 1100 for its ergonomics and riding comfort in city riding. If you’re looking for a larger, more powerful, and meatier motorcycle, you might want to consider the Honda Rebel 1100 over the 500 but all that comes with a heftier price tag.

Other Cruiser Motorcycles to Consider

Other cruiser motorcycles to consider which have a comparable engine size and cost around the price of a Rebel 500 include a Yamaha Bolt, a Royal Enfield (INT650), a used Harley Davidson Street 500 and a Kawasaki Vulcan 650, although the Vulcan has a slightly larger engine. Kawasaki did once produce a 500 series motorcycle featuring a parallel twin 498cc engine but it was discontinued after the 2009 model year.

Honda Rebel 500 Popular Accessories

Here are some of the popular and useful accessories for the Rebel 500 that you might want to consider.

  • Black Diamond Stich Seat
  • Black Fork Boots and Covers
  • Headlight Cowl
  • Passenger Backrest
  • 12V Accessory Socket
  • Adjustable Brake Lever
  • Rear Carrier
  • Passenger Seat

Is the Rebel 500 the Best Cruiser for $6,000?

YouTuber HondaPro Kevin breaks down all the specs, features, and changes for the 2022 Rebel 500.


Published Jun 29th, 2022

Honda Rebel 500 Frequently Asked Questions

  • How much is a Honda Rebel 500?

    The base MSRP of a 2022 Honda Rebel 500 is $6,399 while a Honda Rebel 500 ABS is $6,699 and the 500 ABS SE version is $6,899. MSRP excludes license, registration, destination charge, freight surcharge and dealer-installed options. Including all dealer fees, local tag, and taxes, the out-the-door cost could end up being $8,000 to $8,750 depending on the model you buy.
  • How does the Honda Rebel 500 compare vs. the Rebel 300?

    Both motorcycles share the same chassis frame design but the 300 costs $2,000 less than the 500 and weighs 44lbs less. Both models are available in an ABS option. Although they have a comparable gas tank size, the 300 does edge out the 500 in terms of fuel efficiency; Honda states the 300 earns 78mpg compared to the 500’s 67mpg. The 300 has a single cylinder four-stroke 286cc engine while the 500 engine is a parallel-twin four-stroke 471cc engine.
  • How fast is a Honda Rebel 500?

    A stock Honda Rebel 500 can reach a top speed of around 95 mph. We’ve seen a few YouTube videos of owners who have reached 101 mph. Your actual top speed will vary depending on the driver’s weight and road conditions.
  • How much does a Honda 500 weigh?

    The curb weight of a Honda Rebel is 408lbs with a full tank of gas. The ABS versions have a curb weight between 414 – 417lbs.
  • How many CC is a Honda 500?

    The 2022 Honda Rebel 500 has a 471cc liquid-cooled parallel-twin four stroke engine that produces a power-to-weight ratio at 0.113 HP per pound and a total horsepower of 45.9.
  • Is the Honda Rebel 500 automatic?

    No. The Honda Rebel 500 does not come in automatic version. All three Trim versions of the Honda 2022 Rebel 500 have six-speed transmissions.
  • Does the Honda Rebel 500 have a gear indicator?

    Yes. The 2022 Rebel 500 digital instrument gauge has a gear position indicator.
  • Does the Honda Rebel 500 have a tachometer?

    No. There is no tachometer on the digital instrument gauge.
  • How much would a financed Honda Rebel 500 cost per month?

    Assuming a $8,750 out the door price (including all dealer fees) a 6% state and local sales tax rate, a 6% interest rate for a 3-year loan with $1,500 down, your financed payment will be around $237 per month. You will end up paying approximately $740 in interest over the life of the 36-month loan term. Your finance rate will vary depending on your credit score and your bank’s terms while tax depends on where you live. If you want to change these factors, you can use our loan payment calculator.

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