You’ve probably been keeping an eye
on Honda’s countdown like we have.
Well, the countdown’s up and Honda has just introduced the 2010
The bike is designed with the
sport-touring rider in mind, and from what we gather it will not disappoint.
Engineers have applied several
techniques to make the all-new 1,237 cc V-four as compact as possible. The
engine uses an unusual 76-degree V angle, but more importantly, the cylinders
are not evenly spaced like previous V-four designs.
The front cylinders are
splayed wider apart than the narrowly spaced rear cylinders. This allowed
chassis engineers to design a frame that’s narrow in the midsection for an
easier reach to the ground (seat height is 815 mm/32 in.).
This cylinder layout eliminates
left-to-right couple imbalance and combines with a phase-shift crankshaft that
uses a 28-degree throw that reduces primary vibration, thus negating the need
for a power-sapping and weighty counterbalancer.
The engine also uses Honda’s
compact Unicam cylinder heads, derived from the firm’s CRF motocrossers. A
feature Honda claims has never before been used in a road motorcycle (also
derived from CRFs, as well as the RC211V MotoGP bike) is a sealed crankcase
system that reduces pumping losses, while increasing power and improving
throttle response. And that throttle is now controlled electronically, as Honda
has applied fly-by-wire technology to the bike’s EFI system.
Now, here’s a bit about the engine
that sport-touring riders will really get a kick out of: the new V-four claims
170 horsepower, with torque peaking at 95 lb-ft. Of particular interest is
Honda’s claim that 90 percent of that torque is available at just 4,000 rpm
(peak arrives at 8,750 suggesting a very flat torque curve).
The engine is suspended in a
twin-spar, diamond-configuration aluminum frame.
A manual-shift VFR uses a hydraulically
operated slipper clutch to transmit power to a six-speed gearbox. Also
available will be a dual-clutch transmission, with a manual, paddle-shift mode
as well as a fully automatic mode.
Either transmission drives a newly developed
shaft drive system. And in VFR tradition, a single-sided swingarm is retained.
A preload-adjustable 43 mm fork and
a single, linkage-type shock adjustable for rebound damping and preload provide
Brakes are the
almost-Honda-standard combined ABS, with dual front six-piston calipers and a
two-piston rear pot.
Claimed wet weight is a reasonable 267 kg
Want some more sport-touring
fodder? Integrated into the bike are pannier mounts, onto which mount optional
35-litre bags. Also available is a 32-litre top case, as well as a 13-litre
And since we’re discussing
accessories, also available is a three-position add-on windscreen (the stock
screen is retained), a narrower and lower accessory seat, as well as other
The bike will be coming to Canada (likely late ’09 or early 2010) though it’s not confirmed as to whether we’ll be getting both the automatic and manual models. Canadian pricing has not yet
been set, but we’ll let you know as soon as we get the info.
|Liquid-cooled 4-stroke UNICAM 76° V-4|
Power (crank – claimed)
|170 hp at 10,000 rpm|
|95 lb-ft at 8,750 rpm|
|Six speed manual or automatic, shaft drive|
|120/70 ZR17M/C (58W)|
|190/55 ZR17M/C (75W)|
|320 mm dual floating hydraulic disc with two 6-piston calipers, ABS|
|276 mm hydraulic disc with 6-piston caliper, ABS|
Wet weight (claimed)
|Red, Silver Metallic, White|
Sorry I missed the center stand! Electric windshield, it sure comes in handy when you have to do 3 or 4 hours of interstate highway to get where you want to go.
Same old, same old, at least for Honda. BMW’s influence can be felt: More weight, more power, more engineering (because we can…), more money (think $20,000 in Canada). We are told it is better this way. Me, I’m not so sure. I’m a middle-aged bike aficionado and I like comfort but I just had a ball riding through eastern Oregon on a KTM 950 SM and my favourite thing to get on right now is a DRZ400. Light is right. Think I’ll bypass Honda’s schemes; modify a sport bike and come up with my own ‘sport tourer’.
Problem with the VFR750 – overly heavy, and a poor power to weight ratio because of that. Bumping up the displacement to a litre or so and keeping the weight the same would have addressed that issue. Intead they give us this, which would appear to be the answer to a question nobody asked – it’s getting awfully close to the ST1300’s market niche.
My mom rides a VFR 750 and I can attest to it being a phenominal bike-highly capable and comfortable all day.
Although the engine is versatile and always entertaining, my only gripe with it is the weight.
Having said that-my vote is with Honda having gone the wrong direction with this.
Although….drop that motor into a lightweight standard and now we’re talkin!
Looks cool kinda!And looks like some good workable gimmicks this time around unlike the useless vtech. I do want to see one for real though as this appears to be a huge thing like the st13 and fjr! Especially the pic with the bags! Hope not as I want a new VFR, but not a sit up and beg road ark! I also hope they haven’t screwed up the 800 ergos and wind management and turned it into the above. I would just buy the st13 if I wanted that! I also hate to think what this will cost as the old vfr was bad enough! Time will tell.
Look again…centre stand.
Electic windshield? Whatever for? My goodness…
Looking fwd to seeing it at the show…not sure on the Pink, I mean red…
And of course it looks like there’s no center stand, no electric windshield.
Bevel drive cams? You’re not an olde tyme Ducati lover, are you?
Love the dash, see that passenger seat? Ouch! Whats with the ax head shape? I don’t mind the looks, I think it will look better in real life. I hate seeing everything going big but that seems to be the trend, I guess not many people want a midsize machine anymore. Big sells. Too bad.
JM, Honda state that the shaft effect is dealt with via an offset linkage and sliding CV joint. Technically it looks to be a superior motorcycle and is the usual Honda V4 rolling technical showpiece. The styling and weight leave me cold. I would have preferred a lighter machine, rather than competition for the larger BMWs, Concourse, and Honda’s own ST.
Is that a BMW circle on the side?
I don’t mind the looks so much. It ‘s the 1200 cc engine I don’t want. 750 w/bevel drive cams please and thanks! This suckers going to be $14k plus plus I’m sure
I notice the shaft drive doesn’t appear to have any anti-jacking features, like the BMW, Guzzi or Kawi Concours. Either they haven’t been able to come up with a system that gets around those patented systems, or they feel that the shaft reaction will be minimal (with that much power and torque, I’d expect this thing to bounce around like a pogo stick)
Well, having owned and enjoyed several VFR’s over the years, my only real objections are a riding position that’s (still) heavily slanted toward the sport side of sport-touring and the gawdawful “look Ma, I’m a Transformer…!” styling. And while we’re at it, where’s the three year unlimited milage warranty (ala ST1300 and GL1800)?
You’re right, 170 hp is kinda low.
Looks kind of Logans Run like.
With todays laws, is 170hp really practical?
can’t any of these so called designers make a nice clean exhaust can
I like it and I am a VFR owner!
Lord, but that thing is gordawful ugly, and I’m a VFR owner!