The model could be crowned “Highness” in India.
A week or so ago, Honda invited the Indian media to mark September 30, 2020, on their schedule for the launch of an all-new model. Considering the manufacturer had announced its intention to go up against Royal Enfield in its niche, everyone put two and two together and we all concluded that the new model would be the Enfield rival.
Honda has now released a teaser for its incoming cruiser which most Indian outlets expect to be the Rebel 300 or a model based on it. The clip doesn’t reveal any visual clues about the upcoming model—not even a single little taillight or badge. No, what we get instead is a musical hint, as the group of dapper young people enjoying its afternoon tea is distracted by the purring exhaust note of a motorcycle.
The note sounds pretty consistent with the Honda Rebel’s. We know, we were surprised to find out just how lovely the Rebel’s purr is too.
Picking the Rebel as an Enfield rival is a curious decision. On the one hand, it makes sense since the platform is all ready to go and hit the showrooms, so it doesn’t require much more work on Honda’s part—if any at all. On the other hand, for a bike expected to go up against Royal Enfield, the Rebel lacks the former British marque’s old school charm that makes its products stand out so much.
The whole pompous, “Highness” marketing stunt is apparently more than just a jab at Royal Enfield. It looks like it will actually be the model’s branding. Indian site Gaadi Waadi cited a source who confirmed that, whether the cruiser is the Rebel itself or a derivative, it will indeed receive the “Highness” nameplate. How much tackier can you get at this point?
We sincerely hope that the Honda Highness won’t be a thing—Rebel is a perfectly good name and one that’s definitely more inspiring than Highness, at least in our opinion. We'll find out for sure in a few days, when the new bike is unveiled.