Design and development of the CB400F model commenced in 1973 as a refinement of the CB350 with the aim of achieving better overall performance and creating a distinctive style for the smaller fours. The engine’s capacity was increased by enlarging the 350′s bore, a six-speed gearbox was used and a handsome chromed 4-into-1 exhaust system gave the 400 a striking and original look. The CB400F was an instant hit. It was a masterpiece of subtle styling that drew many enthusiastic riders to Honda when revealed in 1975. Leading a trend towards uncluttered European-style ‘cafe racer’ machines, the CB400F had the lean looks of a competition bike. For the first time on a Honda Four, low-set handlebars and rearset footrests were standard. Attractive and simple primary colour schemes were offered, with decals replacing badges on the tank. Despite its modest capacity, the sheer riding pleasure the four offered made it much a loved model very soon thereafter to be ranked as a classic.