HONDA SILVERWING (FSC600)
Sold from 2002 to 2013, the 600cc Silverwing (FSC600) was by far Honda’s largest scooter offering. Prior to the Silverwing, Honda’s largest scooter had been 250cc (Elite 250, Helix, Reflex). The Silverwing was the second full size maxi-scooter introduced in the USA (after Aprilia’s Atlantic 500), with Suzuki’s landmark Burgman scooter arriving a year later. Suzuki gets a lot of credit in the maxi-scooter scene as they were the first seller overseas, but Honda deserves kudos as well.
The Silverwing remained on sale through 2013. That’s an impressive 12 years on the USA market with virtually no changes. In Canada this scooter was dropped after 2009. Overseas Honda has developed a few other versions of this scooter, but none have made it to North America. Internationally, the Silverwing lineage does live on, so Honda may introduce a new generation to North America in the future.
Unsurprisingly, the Silverwing was Honda’s fastest scooter ever, with a 0-60 mph time of 8 seconds and a top speed of 105mph (170km/hr). To achieve this, Honda designed their impressive 582cc parallel twin cylinder ‘DACT’ engine. This compact workhorse put out 49.6 HP @ 7500 RPM and enjoyed an array of fancy technology. The Silverwing employed 4-valves per cylinder, liquid cooling and Honda’s PGM-Fi fuel injection. The Silverwing’s DACT motor also used dual counterweights to balance the engine and reduce vibrations.
The CVT found the Silverwing was also impressive in that it has 3 difference acceleration modes that it uses depending on how far the throttle is pressed. These modes eliminate wheelspin off the line and they improve fuel economy when power isn’t needed.
The downside to an engine this large is the serious fuel economy hit compared to smaller scooters. Honda’s 250cc scooters commonly achieve 60-65 mpg but the Silverwing can only attain a meagre (by scooter standards) 40-50 mpg. There are a few cars who can equal this milage, so Silverwing isn’t the best choice for someone looking to save gas money on their commute. A smaller 250cc or 400c scooter will do quite a bit better. Normally buyers of maxi-scooters aren’t buying for the same reasons as people often buy smaller scooters, so the Silverwing is likely purchased more for touring capabilities, than for fuel savings.
Design and Amenities
On the open road the Silverwing does quite well. It has great brakes with discs front and rear, ABS (standard as of 2011, optional before that) and CBS (essentially linked brakes so the left lever pulls both calipers).
The Silverwing also has an impressive 55L (15 gallon) storage area under the seat that is capable of swallowing two full face helmets. Additionally, Honda has provided dual lockable cubby holes in the dash for holding your wallet, insurance slips and Fisherman’s Friend lozenges.
One of the most important considerations for a maxi-scooter is rider comfort and the Silverwing does quite well in this regard. The seat is very comfortable for the driver and reasonably comfy for a passenger. The passenger seat doesn’t equal that of a Goldwing but it’s reasonable. The rear seat backrest is adjustable for the passenger and works well for its size. Once you are rolling, the Silverwing is generally viewed as a very stable and agile bike. At higher speeds, the FSC600 offers decent wind protection and a more comforting ride that most smaller scooters offer. This scooter also includes both a centerstand and a side stand.
It’s easy to see why the Silverwing was so successful as a maxi-scooter. It was sold for a total of 12 years with barely any changes. The styling remained fresh and it withstood the test of time better than its Suzuki competitors which have now been redesigned.
The Silverwing had several obvious competitors: Aprilia’s Atlantic 500, Suzuki’s Burgman 650, Kymco’s Xciting 500, Yamaha’s TMAX and Piaggio’s X9 500. All of these scooters share many of the same accolades (powerful, great storage, comfortable). Compared to this group, the Silverwing has the second largest motor which means great power but also lower fuel milage than most others. The price (around $9000) is also higher than average.
Due to its high price and healthy appetite for fuel, the Silverwing isn’t the most practical choice in this group, but it tends to be a popular choice amongst enthusiasts. The build quality, engine power, brakes and ride are all excellent so it’s a great all around performance-touring scooter. Budget minded buyers might want to look at the lower cost Piaggio’s X9 and Kymco’s Xciting 500, while fuel concerned individuals should look at all three 500cc competitors and a smaller maxis still like Yamaha’s 400cc Majesty, Kymco’s Downtown 300i and Honda’s new 279cc Forza.
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* Technologically advanced engine
* Serious storage
* Solid brakes
* Stiff rear suspension without passenger
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Honda USA 2011 Silverwing ABS Brochure (2 page pdf)
Silverwing Review - Great article! Have a read
Silverwing600 - great Silverwing Forum
* Engine Type: 582cc liquid-cooled four-stroke parallel-twin
* Engine Power: 49.6 hp @7500 RPM, 37 lbs-ft torque @ 5500 RPM
* Bore and Stroke: 72mm x 71.5mm
* Compression Ratio: 10.2:1
* Valve Train: DOHC; four valves per cylinder
* Induction: PGM-FI with automatic enricher circuit, four-hole injectors
* Ignition: Computer-controlled fully transistorized with electronic advance
* Transmission: Automatic V-Matic belt drive
* Front Suspension: 41mm hydraulic fork; 4.7 inches travel
* Rear Suspension: Swingarm with dual hydraulic shocks with five-position spring preload adjustability; 4.5 inches travel
* Front Brake: Single 276mm disc with CBS three-piston caliper
* Rear Brake: Single 240mm disc with CBS system twin-piston caliper; Optional ABS
* Front Tire 120/80-14
* Rear Tire 150/70-13
* Wheelbase 62.8“
* Seat Height: 29.7”
* Weight: 540 lbs wet
* Fuel Capacity: 4.2 gallons (16 litres)
2002: Candy Wineberry Red, Pure Black
2003: Candy Glory Red
2004: Candy Raspberry Red, Force Silver Metallic
2005: Black (non ABS), Titanium (non ABS), Black/Silver (ABS model), Titanium/Silver (ABS model)
2006: Delta Blue Metallic
2007: Cyber Silver Metallic
2008: Heavy Grey Metallic
2009: Candy Wineberry Red
2010: Candy Wineberry Red (USA Only)
2011: Black (USA Only)
2012: Black (USA Only)
2013: Black (USA Only)