Posts by tag: Interceptor

Honda November 23, 2017 posted by

Chickenhawk – 1989 Honda VTR250 Interceptor with 1,147 miles !

This auction ended as the post was being edited, but the pictures of this super example are still available.  Happy Thanksgiving !

In a rare maneuver, Honda sent the dainty VTR250 Interceptor to the U.S. - only and first - in part to keep Kawasaki's 250cc plans in check.  From 1988-1990 it was only here, a lightweight and fun way to embarrass bigger bikes around town or in tight quarters.  The 249cc V-twin cranked 25 hp via 14,000 rpm, with an Interceptor fairing and kooky inboard disk brake.

1989 Honda VTR250 Interceptor for sale on eBay


Specs for the early years can be hard to verify since the 2nd generation model was much improved, but the VTR250 did cage the V-twin in a light twin-beam frame, with conventional forks and Pro-Link rear.  The inboard front disk was a bit of a solution in search of a problem, but arguably better than the drum brake rear.  Integrated fairing looked the Interceptor part, though the usual white/teal/magenta livery with blue seat is a moment in time.


Still on its original tires, this VTR is a nice barn find.  From the eBay auction:

  • It is a one-owner, never abused, barely used example of these great little 250s which were introduced to compete with the Kawasaki Ninja 250s in production racing. It comes with the original tool kit and also the owner’s manual still in its vinyl “document bag”. The mileage is 1147 miles – all of them careful adult miles. It has never been to a track day or been raced and has never spent a night outside my attached, smoke free garage nor been ridden in the rain. The bike is very clean. The battery is only about a year old and is always on one of my battery minders.
  • Although all the lights, horn, etc. work fine, the turn signals are slow to begin working. I suspect the inside of the switch could use a cleaning although once they begin to work they work fine. I’m sure this would sort itself out if the bike was used regularly.
  • The bike is all original (except for the added fuel filter) which means the tires are as well. They look great – surprising for their age – and could be used to gently putter around now and then. But, if you intend to really RIDE the bike, you need to fit new rubber before then.


The second generation VTR250 was not sold in the U.S. and transformed into a naked Monster-esque lightweight, with trellis frame.  But the Interceptor bodywork has its appeal, and the largely maintenance-free drivetrain is easy on the budget.  With only 330 lbs. to push around, the smallish sport can be a joy everywhere but the wide-open road.  Not likely another example with this little wear will come up again soon...


Chickenhawk – 1989 Honda VTR250 Interceptor with 1,147 miles !
Honda November 9, 2017 posted by

White Tornado – 1986 Honda VFR700F

From sunny Nevada comes this color-matched V-4 sportbike. Not unmarked but nicely neatened up, this 700 might be an economical path to the sportbike hobby.

1986 Honda VFR700F for sale on eBay

Honda went down an unusual path in the early 1980's developing a mid-size V-4 for road and race use.  After some cam reliability issues, the bikes were re-introduced with gear driven cams and other changes which bulletproofed the engines.  In the square-tube cradle, the 699cc four generates 81 hp up at 10,000 rpm, quietly with water cooling.  Showa dampers front and rear. the forks incorporating Honda's TRAC anti-dive.  Staggered tire sizes are 16" front and 18" rear, to help quicken handling.


From the looks of the clutch cover, this VFR700 had a close shave at some point, but survived.  The sunbelt gold and pearl white have been preserved and touched up as necessary.  Gray solo seat and re-covered white pillion somehow look better than the factory black vinyl.  From the eBay auction:

It's a 2 owner bike, super clean and very well looked after.
28000 original miles, seat has been recovered in silver and white and looks good.
Everything works on the bike, I have the original blinkers and licence plate holder, nothing has been cut.
Just put new tire and brake pads on the back, 
Battery is new.
Needs new grips and front tire soon.
Super fun bike to ride, handles great, sounds awesome.
This bike was way ahead of its time, would suit collector. Very hard to find in this condition.
Real head turner, people can't believe its 31 years old.


To re-affirm their engineering leadership, Honda over-engineered and built the second generation of V-4's, and though hefty, they run like the Energizer bunny. Smooth power and steady handling, the VFR700F was an early combatant in the tariff wars, and kept the VFR dynasty alive through the mid-eighties.  Looking for a great starter, or maybe hack-around bike ?  Even in the desert southwest the riding season's drawing to a close, and this one's liable to go for a low price...


White Tornado – 1986 Honda VFR700F
Honda May 5, 2017 posted by

Polished V4 – 1987 Honda VFR700F Interceptor

Honda took some lumps over the cam metallurgy on the early 1980's V4 engines, and re-introduced the engine in 1985 with gear-driven cams and impeccable quality control.  Almost a unicorn in its own right, the VFR700F was a de-stroked 750 staying out of a tariff scuffle.  This example has been refurbished to a level that will please the pickiest concours judge and make the rider happy on the way home.

1987 Honda VFR700F Interceptor for sale on eBay

Doubling down on the smooth and compact V4 engine, Honda did the heavy lifting that brought us the WSBK-winning RC30 and RC45, and transferred a great deal of the success to the carburetted 699 cc model.  The twin-spar frame is large section for the era, and the bike had adjustable Showa suspension, with Pro-Link rear.  Keeping with the times, there's a 16" front and 18" rear wheel, helping the slightly overweight bike turn in.  Very together Honda fairing design, and the angle of the frame is reflected in the seat console.


Seeming to have put the entire bike in a vibratory polisher, this VFR700F owner took things to a rare level, cosmetically and mechanically.  Keeping a basically stock look, the rear fender was cleaned up nicely.  Updates to the exhaust and front wheel size indicate a very knowledgeable owner.  Hard to believe it's an '87 with 22K miles.  The owner offers more high-res pictures - here - with comments and upgrades from the eBay auction:

Original bodywork restored and painted in matching original Pearl Crescent White, with black accents throughout the bike. Several desirable upgrades, 22,375 miles, mechanically and cosmetically inspected, cleaned, updated, replaced, repainted, repaired...anything needing attention was accomplished. This Interceptor is in excellent condition, no issues, no disappointments. The paint is new, the mechanics are correct, the tank is rust-free inside. The bike starts and runs perfectly hot or cold, runs straight and has a unique, modern vibe on a vintage bike.

- 17-inch front wheel from CBR600 (in place of OEM 16") with fresh Avon Road Rider
- Wheels finished in black (from original white) with white painted pinstripe
- Galfer stainless steel brake lines, front & rear
- OEM mufflers shortened 5 1/2 inches and painted black -- great sound, great look
- Carb jet kit
- Rear fender eliminator with original turn signal and seat lock mounts shaved from subframe
- LED rear turn signals
- Powdercoated engine covers in "Bronze Texture" -- clutch & alternator
- Seat recovered in marine grade vinyl
- Front fender reshaped for a lighter look
- NOS front turn signals mounted with shorter stalks to tuck the signals closer to the body
- Reproduction windscreen
- ODI hand grips
- New OEM fuel petcock
- Various rubber mounts, grommets, etc. replaced as needed
- Original owners manual
- Bike is completely cleaned and detailed


The quality and overall balance of the second generation V4's kept them on a lot of best bike lists through the late 1980's, though the 700 keeps a low profile.  Honda shortly returned to the inline four for their more sporting machines, but continued developing the V4 throughout the 90's.  With only a day to run, the bidding on this updated and beautified VFR is active but seems low.  There is still time to swoop in for this very rare Honda...


Polished V4 – 1987 Honda VFR700F Interceptor
Honda May 1, 2017 posted by

Race-Kitted: 1985 Honda VF750F Interceptor with Full-Factory HRC Engine Kit for Sale

Honda has been a believer in the V4 engine configuration for a long time, and it really started with bikes like this VF750F that includes a genuine HRC racing engine kit! Introduced in 1982 and available in a variety of displacements, including 400cc and 500cc versions, it was really the VF750F that really defined the breed, as it was the displacement eligible for AMA competition. V4 engines are complex and expensive to produce, but make flexible power, are very compact, and make some of the best noises in the motorcycling world. Unfortunately, some early VF750's suffered from the notorious "chocolate camshafts" where cam lobes crumbled and caused engines to fail. This was swiftly corrected and didn't affect all models, but Honda's reputation took a hit. The upside that is the bikes that followed, particularly the VFR750, were so massively overbuilt and lovingly bolted together that they helped to cement Honda's V4 machine in the public's mind as the ultimate sports-touring motorcycle.

By now, that shouldn't be a problem for a bike like this one that has already had 18,000 miles roll under the wheels. And if problems do appear, you can just swap in that HRC engine kit! That kit replaces the stock bike's timing chains with a set of precise gears as you can see in the photo below, just like on last week's VF1000R.

Part of what makes the 90° V4 so charismatic is that it's no high-strung screamer like an inline four. The 748cc engine put a claimed 86hp through a five speed gearbox and could push the 487lb dry machine on to 134mph. At nearly 550lbs wet, the bike wasn't exactly light, but it was agile, powerful, and even a little bit practical: the traits off the later jack-of-all-trades VFR are present even in this early incarnation.

From the original eBay listing: 1985 Honda VF750F with Full-Factory HRC Engine Kit for Sale

Very rare piece of race history with the HRC engine kit.  Build your own HRC Spencer replica!

Starting with a 1985 VF750F.  This bike has been with the original owner up to 2015.  Bought new and lovingly maintained over the past 32 years.  Now in my possession, I have recently installed a NOS period correct (1983) Supertrapp exhaust.  The bike has 30,000 KM, ( 18,000 miles).  it looks new with no blemishes or flaws.  It is in incredible condition and runs flawlessly.  It is a perfect platform to start your replica build.  I have the original bill of sale too.

The bonus piece and the reasons for the price is the full factory HRC engine kit included with the bike.  There is a full engine supplied to make this a Freddie Spencer HRC VF750R replica, (Freddie Spencer decals included).  Race fairing and rear cowl is included as well.  All that is needed to complete is the exhaust and radiator/oil cooler combo, (or just use the NOS supertrapp currently on).

Specific on engine:  1983 HRC NC5 VF750 Gear Driven Superbike engine. This is one of about 25 HRC Kit engines which were imported from HRC to American Honda's Race Team, some were used in house and others were sold to priveteers.  (*Carbs in picture not included in sale*).

 This engine will need to be assembled. The rods/piston's are not in the motor. Most parts will be suppiled for the rebuild as in new rings, new pistons, Titanum rods. The HRC manual will be supplied for information, set up, complete list of all kit parts and part numbers.

These kits were about $9500 new in 1983 and included Magnesium valve covers, clutch, ignition and oil pan in Mag. The HRC parts included in these race motors included the following, Gear Driven Cams, Close Ratio Trans, Titanuim Rods, Titanium Valves, HRC Ported Heads with byrilum seats, HRC Crankshaft, oil pump, Dry Clutch and ignition. *Carbs in picture not included in sale*.

I am not sure where you will ever get another opportunity like this.  Act fast, my email is already loading up with messages!

The seller is asking an eye-watering $13,900 for the package, which seems pretty shocking until you consider that engine. Maybe it's best to think of it as a Honda race engine with a spare bike included, since VF750Fs currently aren't especially valuable at the moment, although prices appear to be on the rise. That being said, from the few photos of the actual bike that are included, this appears to be an exceptionally clean, if not 100% original example of this significant machine.


Race-Kitted: 1985 Honda VF750F Interceptor with Full-Factory HRC Engine Kit for Sale
Honda June 10, 2016 posted by

VFR=Very F’n Reliable: 1993 Honda VFR750 in white

The first generation VFR 750F was only offered with the uber-cool white bodywork in 1993 and it still looks quite good, especially in comparison to the other sportbike designs of the 1990's (cough-cough-I'm-looking-at-you-1993 Suzuki GSX-750R).  Fairly cheap just a few years ago, trying to find a 1993 VFR with the OEM white bodywork in good condition is now getting to be quite hard. Values have been increasing recently, as shown by this under 10,000 mile edition we listed last year went that for about $5,500 USD, well above its book value.

This one has a significantly higher number of miles than the one from last year but condition looks to be excellent and more importantly, mostly OEM.


1993 Honda VFR 750 on ebay

Back in the early 1990's the 600cc class really started to upset the previously dominant 750cc class both in terms of performance and in sales. New 600cc bikes like the Honda 600 F2 and Kawasaki ZX6R were suddenly close performance rivals to the previously dominant 750cc class and while some companies such as Kawasaki and Yamaha responded by making their 750cc offerings even more track tech oriented, Honda decided to go a different route.

Instead of a single pure track oriented 750cc offering like the Yamaha OW01 or Kawasaki ZX7RR, Honda instead took a two-pronged approach.  Honda put their considerable technological efforts towards what would become the mind bending oval piston equipped NR750 while at the same time allowing their 750 street effort to take a more balanced approach.  The result were two epic bikes; a technological tour de force in the NR750 and possibly the best all around sportbike of the 1990's, the VFR750.


When the VFR750 debuted Honda had just come through a debacle with the bikes predecessor, the VF700.  Flaws in the camshaft casting process had produced a reputation for "chocolate camshafts...they melt when they get hot!" and Honda was determined to restore their engineering reputation.  Rumor is that the focus on reliability was so intense that Honda lost money on the VFR750 for several years just to restore its reputation.

While reliability was a focus, the performance side of the VFR750 was nothing to sneeze at.  The VFR’s handling was on a par with the best superbikes of the day. A stock VFR finished eighth at the Suzuka 8-Hour race and another nearly stock version finished in 3rd place at the Donnington park Trophy race against competition that included the legenday Kevin Schwantz.    The Honda VFR 750 offerred bulletproof reliability and performance that measured up to all but the most performance-oriented bikes of the time.   It should come as no surprise that the VFR would in later years become a big sales success, win bike of year numerous times in the mid to late 1990's and was even crowned sportbike of the decade by numerous motorcycling publications.


This particular VFR has a good chunk of miles on it; the seller indicates over 45,000.  Even so condition of the bike looks to be truly excellent, with no blemishes on the triple tree or gauges.   The only items that seem of note are the tailpiece and exhaust which appear to be non stock, there seem to be extra/non-stock reflectors on the front forks and perhaps a bit of paint bubbling or road rash on the lower mid fairing.

Here is what the seller has to say:

  • New brakes, grips, oil & filter
  • Good tires
  • Good chain and sprockets
  • Perfect seat
  • No leaks or other issues, Everything works, starts on first push
  • Yoshimura Pipe - subtle but noticeable
  • Needs 1 fork seal, plastics not perfect.


So now the question - what is this lovely VFR in the cool white worth?  Well let me put it this way...when I saw that the Buy-It-Now price was only $2,350 USD I almost bought it myself.  The condition of this one looks to be very good, its the rare white bodywork scheme, maintenance history looks reasonable and while the mileage is kind of high, given the VFR's build quality reputation I don't think there will be major issues once any initial issues are resolved.

This may be one of those rare occasions when a seller has underestimated the value of his bike.    I expect this one to sell pretty quickly so if you missed out on the one from last year you might want to act fast.


VFR=Very F’n Reliable:  1993 Honda VFR750 in white
Triumph July 8, 2015 posted by

Silver Surfer: 2001 Triumph 955i in Silver

NOTE: This one sold while I was writing this post which isn't really surprising because among fans of the Triumph Daytona series, this is one of the most desired.   Even though it has already moved to a new owner I think its still worthy of a post.


I am a big fan of the early edition Triumph Daytona, I love the 1st gen bodywork style, the big 3-cylinder/triple engine and the trick single sided rear swingarm.   The Big Daytona was the first serious sport bike from the reborn Triumph motor company, but was oddly named the T595 in its first year.  The designation was meant to identify the engine series (T5) and then the displacement (955) but a lot of people though the Daytona was a 600cc bike.   In the 2nd year the bike was renamed as the 955i and offered with several limited edition boywork styles, including a luscious blue and the lovely solid silver seen on this bike.

Even though the 955i was their first serious sportbike, it wasn't ever intended to be directly competitive against hyperbikes like the Yamaha R1.  The 955i is more of the British version of the excellent Honda VFR; able to handle daily street duty, excell at weekend canyon corner carving and comfortable enough for medium level touring.  While not a hyperbike the 955 was no slacker in the grunt department; the Daytona moves along incredibly briskly due to a  955cc displacement three-cylinder engine designed in part by Lotus.


2001 Triumph 955i in rare silver on ebay

Seriously, I love the look of this edition of the bike, it looks much more organic, more shapely that the later versions.   The next generation also ditched the single sided rear swingarm for a standard setup and were more sharply focused, with less weight and sharper rake.

The only issue I see with this one is the aftermarket exhaust which looks odd and shows some evidence of being down.  The seller indicates the exhaust was an ebay aftermarket purchase so perhaps it came like this


Mileage is a lower 10,xxx miles and condition looks to excellent.   The seller indicates that they are an older rider which probably accoutns for the excellent condition of the bike.

Here is what the seller has to say:

  • Bought this bike in the most "stock" condition I could find at the time
  • Bike has never been dropped, shifts smoothly
  • Only slight mods like bar-risers for comfort and a smoked screen for looks.
  • Carbon Pipe is Ebay Buy with a grind, not related to handling of the bike, just sounds too good to switch out.
  • Took Mirrors off for storage, but they are in excellent shape, and available.
  • Bike has been stored indoors for it's life and it shows that way.
  • Comes with LSL rear sets which look trick.
  • Going on 51 years old, I don't trash my bikes.  I also never go near the red line, no need to for my enjoyment.
  • Still breaks my heart to sell her, she has so much soul and character.  I remember very vividly when these came out, and I was in Love at first Sight!


Normally at this point I would be asking whether this lovely 955i was worth the $4,000 USD asking price but since it sold in less than 24 hours I guess we know the answer to that question.   I know KBB prices show a value below the asking price but this 1st edition/955i badged version seems to be the hot/collectible style.  

To be honest, I was seriously considering making an offer myself but it sold before I could get my act together.  I would suggest that any collector act fast if they see one of these become available near them, especially the 955i version in silver or the even rarer, all blue.



Silver Surfer:  2001 Triumph 955i in Silver