1980 Honda CM400 Custom from United States of America




Nothing... it rock and rolls... fires right up... scares all the neighbors... a great mid size bike...

General Comments:

Starts first time... responsive... for a 150 lb dude.. this is the bike for me..

Would you buy another motorcycle from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 24th February, 2011

16th May 2014, 18:15

I am a 4'8" 67 year old woman, who's been riding almost 40 years, including Short Track, Motocross, & TT Scrambles Racing.

Due to a 360 neck fusion, from C3-T2, I was ordered off of motorcycles in 2009.

With a compromise, my Neurosurgeon reluctantly agreed to a trike.

I now have a 1977 customized, 1000cc Gold Wing.

However, I have Rheumatoid Arthritis, and it's beginning to hurt my clutch hand, so I double clutch, to avoid using the clutch all the time.

My husband found a 1981 Honda CM 400 Automatic, but the words: "a great beginners' bike", aren't what I wanted to hear.

I'd LOVE a response, from someone, as to exactly how they feel, going from a larger, to a smaller bike (my Husband would switch over the trike kit).

Honesty, please! This, to me, is my status symbol, of all I've done on bikes, and my fighting through Brain Surgery, Spinal Fusions (L3-S1 & C3-T2), and now Scleroderma, with the RA. I'm still riding, and I'm darned proud of it!

It does matter to me, that people are amazed, and proud, of my accomplishments.

Frankly, I plan on riding, until they pry my hands off of the handle bars.

Thank you! Maggie.

16th Jun 2014, 01:03

Due to not having a left hand, I have a 1980 Honda CM400A Hondamatic. If you are looking to ride, it will accomplish that for you; it is reliable, trouble free, and inexpensive to operate. Some parts are getting tough to find though.

There are other options out there. I also ride a 2008 Yamaha FJR1300AE. It has a clutch that is controlled by a computer. When you shift, the computer actuates the clutch for you.

There are also other options; Honda put the Hondamatic in the 750 in the 1970's, Aprillia makes the Mana 850 that uses paddle shifters or a foot shifter with no clutch, Honda currently makes the CTX and NC700X that use no clutch and can either be ridden as an auto, or shifted with paddle shifters, Ridley (American made) has a bike with a CVT transmission like a snowmobile or ATV would have. There are others from the 70's and 80's by Honda, Suzuki, and Moto-Guzzi.

I hope this helps.


1981 Honda CM400 Custom from United States of America


Great older bike!


The headlight (high and low beam) / high beam indicator burnt out (at separate times). The head light had to be ordered from the dealer, because there was no generic part number.

It also leaks a little oil (not noticeably affecting the level). It seems that the oil spill is behind the engine/tranny.

Clutch seems to slip a little on hill when giving suddenly more throttle, for example when I go up a hill at 40mph, then give it throttle, the tachometer goes up, but the speed stays the same. But this is normal wear, and will probably be found on any bike over a period of usage.

General Comments:

This bike is good for most street riding. It has enough power for the highway, but still gets from 50-60+ mpg, depending on how I ride it.

The only things that have gone wrong with it, I would consider normal for the age.

One cool thing about this bike, is in 5th gear, the tachometer and speedometer match; for example, at 30mph, the rpm is 3,000, and at 60mph, 6,000rpm.

I have had this bike for several months, and have not had any big problems with it.

I have had a lot of people come up and tell me that they used to own a bike like this, and they say it is "indestructible".

This bike is almost 30 years old, but looks only 10. It rides like it is brand new. I would recommend anyone who can't afford a brand new bike, to get a bike like this one, or one as old, as long as they can find parts.

Would you buy another motorcycle from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 11th October, 2010

4th May 2011, 19:58

Had my '81 CM400E for 17 years, no major service issues. Have had 2 Harleys in that time, but keep the CM400 around, just because it just keeps going!!!