Honda went to work in Fall 2022. After debuting the CB750 Hornet at Intermot in October, Big Red hit us with a one-two combo by dropping the XL750 Transalp at EICMA. Both models leveraged historic Honda nameplates but championed an all-new parallel-twin powerplant to meet today’s middleweight class demands.

According to Japanese media outlet Autoby, the brand may have one more trick up its sleeve in the form of a GB750. As of now, the publication attributes such speculation to “rumors” of European origin. Those thin prospects didn’t stop Autoby from mocking up a digital render of the potential modern-classic, though.

In true retro form, the concept forgoes the Hornet’s decidedly angular design language for a more timeless silhouette. That means adopting a vintage CB-styled fuel cell with a 70s-era paint job, a bench seat, and throwback side panels. Let’s not forget about the single round headlight, circular dash, high-rise handlebars, and fork boots either.

All of Autoby’s changes don’t come down to a simple part swap, unfortunately. The CB750 Hornet features a monoshock rear suspension while the rending springs for a dual-shock setup. Such an alteration would require extensive engineering and manufacturing. Still, if Team Red releases anything close to this mock-up, count us as the first in line. On the other hand, we have to analyze the practicality of such a model as well.

For several years, Yamaha and Kawasaki have already mined this nostalgic territory with the XSR700 and Z650RS, respectively. The bLU cRU based its neo-classic on its ever-popular MT-07 while the Green Team developed its retro roadster on the tried-and-true Z650. Honda could take the same route with a GB750 and the existing CB750 Hornet.

Regardless of its external competition, Honda has to assess the GB750’s potential to cannibalize other brand offerings. For instance, the CB650R already appeals to the vintage crowd with its neo-café aesthetics. However, an inline-four mill and its futuristic design cues may not attract the same demographic as a GB750.

Of course, Honda already offers a GB350 (Japan) and H’Ness CB350 (India), so a modern-classic middleweight would slot nicely into the company’s current range. In the end, a GB750 would still require additional investment from Big Red (patents, trademarks, etc.) and we need to see more before crediting these rumors.

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