Click above to view more pictures of the 2008 Honda CBR1000RR
Motorcycle design has been evolving over the years to the point that sportbikes of old look almost nothing like what's currently on showroom floors today. Full fairings add an aerodynamic look to the modern sportbike, although the basic mechanicals underneath remain the same. What's most interesting, though, are front end and headlight designs, which are what often differentiates one bike from another and gives a bike its character. It turns out that this unique look is sometimes designed to make people think of the bike as human. For instance, Honda's latest CBR1000RR has headlights designed to look like eyes with an abbreviated "nose" in between. By establishing a human connection, other drivers are more likely to notice the motorcycle, which is definitely a boon for safety, and it also gives the rider a connection to the machine making him or her feel that it is an extension of themselves.
Some motorcycles are purposely styled to look aggressive or mean, intimidating the rider and reminding them that their lives are on the line. It's not often that we think of motorcycle styling as a safety measure, but it's something we can appreciate. Still, there is a part of us that appreciates the elemental mechanical look of classic bikes that much of the industry has lost today. Fortunately, choices abound on the market, so there is surely a bike out there that will appeal to each individual rider.