Honda announced some of their 2009 new models at the end of last week. We’ve heard from Honda Canada and have added some additional Canadian information – shown in bold (though there’s still more to come).
First shown as a concept bike at the 2007 Tokyo show, the DN-01 blurs the line between scooter and motorcycle with a motorcycle chassis, a 680cc liquid-cooled V-twin (with a claimed 61 hp), but with an automatic transmission.
The transmission is a Constant Variable type as found on most scooters, but unlike the scooter system which uses belts and pulleys, the DN-01 coverts power into hydraulic pressure, which it uses to alter gearing. This can be used in two modes – automatic or a six-speed manual, which uses 6 pre-selected ratios to offer the same effect as a standard motorcycle gearbox.
Twin 296 mm discs up front use a pair of 3-piston calipers, which are linked to the rear using Honda’s combined brakes technology and ABS makes sure that you won’t mess it all up with a ham-fisted grab.
Suspension is pretty standard with 41 mm conventional forks and a standard shock working on a single sided swingarm at the rear that also hosts the shaft drive. 17 inch wheels use sportbike radial tires.
Seat height is a relatively low 691 mm (27.2") and the claimed curb weight is 270 kg (595 lbs). The DN-01 is available in red or black in the US, but will only be available in black in Canada. It will be available in limited numbers (at Honda Powerhouse dealers only) sometime in the spring of 2009. MSRP has not been set, but will be by the end of October.
It seems like everyone is putting a 250 supermoto into their range these days, and Honda join in with a supermoto version of their CRF230L dual sport machine, which was new in 2007.
Of course, the CR250M comes with 17 inch wheels and sporty tires but the rest is relatively low tech when compared to the new Yamaha WR250X and Kawasaki 250 KLX250SF.
Conventional forks are used instead of USDs, braking is supplied by a relatively small 240 mm disc up front, and the 232 cc motor is air-cooled, with SOHC, two valves and fed by a carb, but then this should be reflected in the price.
Seat height is a relatively low (for this type of machine) 805 mm (31.9"). It looks like the CRF230M will be coming to Canada but details cannot be confirmed until mid-November.
THE OTHER BITS
CBR1000RR/CBR600RR – come with electronically controlled combined braking with ABS although we’re not sure if this is optional or not. We do now – the ABS will be standard on the CBR1000RR but the CBR600RR will be available with or without it. MSRPs for the ABS versions have yet to announced (again, expect them by the end of October), but the non-ABS 600 is $12,499.00.
Goldwing 1800 – Gets a tire pressure monitor for 2009 that flashes when
they drop by 10% and stays on when either tire posses 20% or more.
There’s also XM radio with GPS fitted models although that comes with
the requirement of a monthly subscription fee. No XM radio for Canada, but the tire pressure monitor will be standard on both GL1800 models.
Honda Canada also told us that there will be additional 2009 new model releases in November, but no details on what they might be. V5 Blackbird …?