Posts by Category: Honda

Bimota February 13, 2019 posted by

Mid-Winter Roundup of Featured Listings

Even though there are prodigious cold fronts trained on both coasts, planning ahead is always in season. Here’s a little review of RSBFS’ recent features:

Let’s start with a couple of smokin’ race machines –

Featured Listing: 2018 Honda NSF250R Moto 3 Race Bike For Sale

Featured Listing: 2017 Suter MMX500 for Sale

From the 1980’s we have two classic supersports, plus a unique Harley-Davidson –

Sponsored Listing: Zero-mile, 1-of-25 road-going 1994 Harley-Davidson VR1000!

Sponsored Listing: 1983 Honda CB1100F

Featured Listing – 1982 Honda CB750F Super Sport

These three are more along GT lines but very sporty –

Sponsored Listing: 1994 Suzuki GSXR-1100

Featured Listing – 1995 Yamaha GTS 1000 Euro Edition

Featured Listing: 1984 Honda CX650 Turbo!

If you are a skilled track rider there are four big-displacement racers, from classic to modern –

Featured Listing: 1991 Yamaha OW01 FZR750R Race Bike

Featured Listing: 2004 Moto Guzzi MGS-01 Corsa

Featured Listing: 2000 Ducati 748RS track bike

Featured Listing: Honest-to-God 2012 Suter BMW MotoGP bike

The 1990’s were a sweet sportbike spot, and we have four currently –

Sponsored Listing: 1990 Honda CBR400RR NC29 for Sale

Sponsored Listing: 1991 Bimota YB10 Dieci for Sale

Featured Listing: 1993 Moto Guzzi Daytona 1000

Featured Listing: 1990 Yamaha FZR750R OW01

The rest are a little of this and a little of that, or more accurately a lot of this and a lot of that –

Like a naked 2003 Yamaha R1 –

Featured Listing – 2003 Yamaha FZ1 with just 661 Miles !

Here’s Honda’s own winning V-twin, the 2005 RC51 SP2 –

Featured Listing: 2005 Honda RC51 SP2

Or this stealthily accessorized Monster –

Featured Listing: 2006 Ducati Monster S2R 1000 build!

This ’06 SportClassic is a custom using the factory Paul Smart fairing –

Featured Listing – 2006 SportClassic 1000 with Paul Smart Fairing

From just last year, here’s a Kawasaki H2R with road registration –

Featured Listing: Street-Titled 2018 Kawasaki H2R for Sale

Also looking very ready for the track, this 2004 999R is an homologation special –

Featured Listing: 2004 Ducati 999R FILA

We had two MH900E’s but one has sold.  This one has never been registered –

Featured Listing: 2001 Parking Space Odyssey – NEW 2001 Ducati MH900e

And our most recent feature is this ’08 1098S, fully decked out in carbon and billet aluminum –

Featured Listing: 2008 Ducati 1098S for Sale

When you’re not chipping the ice off something or throwing things at the weather broadcast, check the right column on RSBFS for our sponsors and friends’ latest features !  Spring is just around the corner…

Donn

Mid-Winter Roundup of Featured Listings
Honda February 13, 2019 posted by

Affordable Cult Classic: 1988 Honda Hawk GT for Sale

Styled like a Japanese Ducati Monster, Honda’s Hawk GT actually beat that bike to market by several years. It may have lacked a bit of sex appeal, but offered incredible versatility, reliability, and even some steering lock… The Hawk could scratch, commute, do some light-duty touring and, with a bit of work, made a great basis for a race bike. They’ve been extremely affordable for a while now, since they never really found an audience here in the US and are a bit too practical to be considered sexy, but fans love them, and low mileage examples like this one are pretty hard to find.

It was built around a simple, reliable 647cc 52° v-twin engine with liquid-cooling and three valves per cylinder. It was so reliable, in fact, it would go on to power thousands and thousands of Honda’s shaft-drive Revere and Deauville touring bikes. Hardly the most inspiring legacy, but it could push the little Hawk GT, also known as the NT650 in some markets and the Bros 650 in Japan, to a top speed of 107mph.

But the Hawk GT, aka NT650 aka Bros 650 had another designation: the RC31 and Honda’s competition legacy is visible if you look. Out back is the bike’s party piece, a Elf-Racing Pro-Arm single-sided swingarm. The front end had just one disc brake, but the bike’s relatively light 393lb dry weight meant stopping was adequate outside a race track, and a CBR600 front end with adjustable forks and an extra front disc and caliper is a popular swap.

From the original eBay listing: 1988 Honda Hawk GT for Sale

1988 Honda Hawk 650 Low miles in mint condition. The Honda Hawk is the perfect choice for a low cost, fun good looking and reliable motorcycle. Single sided swing arm like its more expensive brother (RC30) and an excellent reliable power plant that is sure to give you more than ample power for every day use. You will be hard pressed to find a cleaner example of a bike that is 30 plus years old. Please feel free to call with any questions or for more information on this great machine.  Call  215 630 5952

It’s unfortunate the seller doesn’t include more pictures, but they are at least of high quality. There’s plenty of time left on the auction, with no bids yet at the $3,500 starting bid. These can typically be had for that number or less, although condition and the mere 4,000 miles mean this might still get snapped up by Honda collectors, since that’s still peanuts to pay for such a fun, reliable bike.

-tad

Affordable Cult Classic: 1988 Honda Hawk GT for Sale
Honda January 30, 2019 posted by

Featured Listing: Pristine 1979 Honda CBX

Update: eBay shows sold at $15,500. Congratulations to buyer and seller! -dc

The 1979 Honda CBX, a six-cylinder behemoth dressed up as a buttoned-down commuter, was an exercise in weird, but impressive, flex from Honda. As the long run of the original CB750 was at its peak, Big Red decided it was time to show off the ultimate evolution of the CB line, but elected to bare its engineering fangs instead of building a taught, sinewed race bike on the CB platform. Honda brass at the time even admitted that, if they had been going for track records, they could have made it with a much lighter, more focused and faster four cylinder.

1979 Honda CBX for sale on eBay

But that wasn’t what the CBX was for, so they took the lessons from their tiny 250cc grand prix six cylinders of the 1960s and made a mill four times that size that put out 105 horses at 9,000 rpm. Honda stuck the accessory drives in the middle of the crank, as opposed to at the ends, to keep the crank short for cornering clearance. That also helped balance the big engine, which otherwise would have vibrated mercilessly. Though the technology and thought meant the CBX was a true feat of manufacturing and engineering, it was also heavy, flexy and intimidating. Reports from the time said the handling was more impressive than it had any right to be, but few people were buying it.

This 1979 Honda CBX has been mothballed since 1988, when it was placed on display in a family dealership. The carbs were drained as it was put in storage and the engine was turned over regularly to keep it free. It had a new tank at some point in the 1990s after the original was dented. The tires were last changed in 2001. The seller says he plans to leave it as-is and let the purchaser decide what to do with the bike. Between 1979 and 1988, it covered just 8,400 miles.

From the eBay listing:

This is an original 1979 Honda CBX. It has not been registered or on the road since 1988. It has been stored in a climate controlled garage in Northern Nevada until I purchased it from a friend a few years ago…it had been in their family and on in display in their dealership since the 80’s.

I received the original California small pink slip with 1988 registration ( I have photos of this when I took it to DMV ) I have since registered and titled this in Arizona, it has a clean and clear title in my name.

I bought the bike as it sits today. Carbs were drained and the bike has been in stored conditioned for over 15 years. The engine was turned over occasionally. The tires are from 2001 I believe which I think is when it was last freshened up a bit. I also was told that the original tank suffered a dent while on display in the early to mid 90s and the original tank was replaced with one of the last new oem ones available from Honda. The tank is perfect and like new inside and out as seen.

I am selling the bike as is, I am going to leave it up to the new owner to display as is or make it a runner. I added a new battery and fresh avgas last week and the bike runs and the carbs do not leak, however it only ran on 5 cylinders and did not want to idle. So carbs will need a proper going over if you plan to bring it back to life.

Two other flaws on the bike. The tach was lazy when I started the bike, this might sort it self out with some run time. There is also some scratches on the gauges as shown in the photos.

I have not spent much time trying to detail the bike so it will clean up much better than what is shown in the photos if you dedicate a day or two, but as it sits it is very nice…it has basically been inside the last 30 years!!!

Original owners manual and tool kit in place and perfect. The original keys were lost, I had new ones made. I took photos with the tank, side covers and seat off so you can get an idea of the condition.

I will add a few more photos over the next few days, please email me with any questions or if you need specific photos, have questions etc.

I CAN SHIP ANYWHERE IN THE U.S. and help ASSIST with WORLDWIDE SHIPPING!!!

The asking price for this time capsule is $15,500, for which you are getting a pristine, absolutely unmolested example of a piece of Honda’s corporate history. They do not make them like this any more.

Featured Listing:  Pristine 1979 Honda CBX
Honda January 27, 2019 posted by

Legend: 1994 Honda NSR 250R SP MC28 Rothmans

A perennial mainstay on the pages of RSBFS, the Honda NSR250R should require no major introduction. Often considered the darling of the quarter liter smoking set, the 90 degree vee twin is named similarly to – and looks quite a bit like – Honda’s race-only NSR250. However the similarities are only imagined, as the two bikes share no parts in common. That being said, the NSR250R road going machine is a typically Honda-engineering wonder, sought after by riders and collectors, and a blast to ride. Today’s example, a 1994 MC28 model wearing original Rothmans livery, is a prime specimen.

1994 Honda NSR 250R SP MC28 Rothmans for sale on eBay

The original NSR was released as the MC16 back in 1987. Over the next (nearly) ten years, the model evolved in form and function. From a variety of swing arms and different suspensions to various states of tune, dry clutches and the PGM-I through PGM-IV ignition systems, the NSR changed with the times and what Honda believed the needs of the riding community to be. Not all changes were popular, although offering the bike in a variety of race-worthy livery was always a favorite. The Rothmans colors, emulating the tobacco-sponsored racers, remains among the most striking of the options. Often copied by way of knock-off body panels or re-spraying existing plastic, it is not easy to come by an original bike in these colors in this condition. Here is more from the seller:

From the seller:
1994 Honda NSR 250R SP MC28 Rothmans !
Original stock 1994 MC 28 SP U.S.title, plate, reg. very low original Km’s.

This is a original un-molested all stock 1994 Honda NSR250R MC28 SP. This is an *original* low Km Rothmans SP, NOT one that has been put together from parts.

The bike has the correct VIN, it has the correct R3R subframe sticker and even has the original rear fender decal with R3R code and matching VIN to the frame.

1,500 were made and not many survive in low Km’s original condition. Prices for 28 SP’s in Japan are already over a million yen for less than perfect examples. Not much is left.

More from the seller:
This bike has 6695 km or about 4100 miles. This bike has both original key cards and the code sticker. It also has the original tool kit.

Bike has all the original and correct SP parts including Magtek’s, forks, dry clutch engine. All original OEM Honda bodywork. The bike had a small dent on the tank, various scratches and scuffs and I had everything touched up, saving the original decals and clearing over some of them. You can still see some rash on right clip on, exhaust can etc from a light tip over. I still have all the original pictures of how the bike looked when it was in Japan.

As you can see there is some corrosion on the fork legs as is common with most of the bikes from Japan, but otherwise it is very corrosion free. Still has a small sticker from Red Baron on lower right frame (easily removed). The inner small white plastic piece in the right side tail cowl is in poor shape, but that is easy to remedy. I am leaving the bike as near original as possible and will leave it to a new owner to restore/clean it up as they see fit.

The original rear fender is cracked, but repaired, you need to look under it or remove the tail cowl to see it. The right lower fairing stay that mounts inside the bodywork is cracked (where they all break) and could use a repair, but its all there and a minor nuisance.

The bikes starts, runs and rides as it should.

More from the seller:
100% stock, restricted, not modded in anyway. All electrical works, no error codes. Has a new battery installed and had a recent service, brake fluid, coolant, etc. Tires are quite older and should be changed if you plan to ride it.

Honda Fun Fact: The name “NSR” is based on the fact that these bikes utilized a then-new process known as nikasil-sulfur lining in the cylinder bores. This process provided a hardened cylinder for better longevity, without the weight of iron or steel liners. The technology was effective, but nikasil-sulfur makes for a terrible motorcycle name. Hence the “NS” part of the NSR was born.

This NSR is available now on eBay. It is a Buy It Now listing rather than an auction, and the seller is asking $17,500. That is big money for a NSR, although the low miles and original condition helps it along nicely. Check it out here for the details, including the opportunity to purchase a livery matching Honda Cub EZ90 to ride alongside! Good Luck!!

MI

Legend:  1994 Honda NSR 250R SP MC28 Rothmans
Featured Listing January 7, 2019 posted by

Featured Listing: 1985 Honda NS400R

While the world was off building 250cc and 500cc two strokes, Honda went their own way. Sure they built 250cc repli-racers (and even 125 and 150cc varietals). But when it came to the big two stroke, Honda took a cagey direction and built a mini hot rod. Emphasizing all the great points of a 250cc in terms of size and weight, Honda created a unique 400cc entry based on a V-3 configuration (just like their GP bike). The result was a bike not as powerful as the Gammas and RZs of the time, but more lithe and flickable than the bigger beasts. And although it was ultimately out-gunned on the top end, the NS400R could hold its own when the going got fun.

1985 Honda NS400R for sale on eBay

While a V-3 engine configuration might seem odd, it was actually a stroke (pun intended) of genius. Laying the two front cylinders forward and the single rear cylinder upright, the frontal area of the bike could be made as narrow as a parallel twin. And while both the Gamma square four and the RZ V-4 could boast similar stats, the NS single rear cylinder allowed the frame and bodywork to narrow considerably – a boon to both ergonomics as well as aerodynamics. The reed-valve triple also made due with a single crankshaft, which kept mass and rotational weight down when compared to rivals. The Honda power exhaust valve – dubbed ATAC – mellowed the power delivery of the bike, but like all two strokes nirvana is best discovered up near the top of the tach. With an aluminum chassis to maximize the benefits of the V-3 weight distribution, a front anti-dive fork holding a GP-inspired front wheel, and bodywork mimicking the race-only NS500 GP machine, the NS400 was considered the most polished of the large-bore two stroke set. Typical Honda fit, finish and reliability pervade the machine and the riding experience.

From the seller:
Reluctantly selling my 1985 Honda NS400R
Freddie Spencer inspired, 3 cylinders, 2-stroke, 72hp rocket
JDM spec, imported directly from Japan by me
Registered in California (current plate, registration and clear title)

More from the seller:
Complete frame-off restoration
Rare Rotthmans racing scheme
Only 10,700kms (6,700 miles)
Very rare and the US and even more with CA plate/title
Many parts powder coated, refurbished, too many details to list
All original fairings repainted to original specs
Looks and runs amazing

There is a LOT to like about this particular NS. First off, it has the rare Rothmans race livery, as opposed to the more common red/white/blue/yellow color scheme. It wears OE fairings, however they have been repainted. Thanks to what looks like a total refurb this bike is clean, clean, clean (just look at those pics!). For even more pics the seller has posted before, during and after images here. And while the rest of the world might not care, the California title is a nugget that is not to be missed. Here in Cali, two strokes are pretty much verboten – making this gem a bit of a unicorn. And chances are very, very good that a California title will enable reciprocity with nearly any other state of the Union. With importation and titling taken care of (a major headache for most), this restored NS400R is waiting for a new owner to ride off into the sunset.

The bigger two strokes continue to rise in value over the years. The Honda NS400R is a very unique offering in this segment, and not as popular in numbers as the big RZ/RZV, nor as popular with collectors as the Gamma. And while some of this can be attributed to the more diminutive stature of the 400 (think Dani Pedrosa instead of Cal Crutchlow), the limited years of production (1985-1987) likely have much to do with it. It you are in the market for a classic two stroke from this era, do not discount the magnificent NS400R. And when it comes to specimens, today’s example is one of the best we have seen in a long time. Check it out here, as this auction is going quickly – as is the bidding. Get your hand in today, before this one is gone. Good Luck!!

MI

Featured Listing: 1985 Honda NS400R
Honda January 6, 2019 posted by

Terra Racing Replica: 1989 Honda NSR250R SP for Sale

When you mention “race replicas” the phrase tends to conjure up images of lurid colors and graphics freed from any need for subtlety or adherence to an aesthetically-pleasing color palette. Or is that just me? Maybe just me. Anyway, as much as I personally don’t tend to be a huge fan of them, there are obviously exceptions: I love the Rothmans and Repsol designs, in spite of their unsubtle styles, and MV’s Reparto Corse graphics are pretty cool as well. Of course, the vivid colors and striking graphics obviously serve an important purpose: to help draw attention to what are essentially rolling billboards for the sponsors who pay big money to have their names and logos slapped on these speedy machines. This Honda NSR250R SP Terra Racing Replica is surprisingly subtle, however.

The NSR250R was Honda’s standard bearer in the two-stroke sportbike class that was hotly contested pretty much everywhere but the US, where vast distances, straight roads, emissions legislation, and licensing requirements [or lack thereof] meant that the class is virtually unknown to the mainstream biking community these days. The original MC16 version introduced in 1987 set the tone for the series, with a 90° v-twin, alloy twin-spar frame, RC powervalve, PGM electronic ignition, and giant-killing performance.

Of course, competition from Suzuki, Yamaha, and later Kawasaki were pretty killy as well, and the intense competition saw the bike quickly evolve into the MC18 in 1988 and the MC21 in late 1989, followed by the final MC28 that came along in 1993. This appears to be a late MC18 R6K, the middle-child version of the bike, since it lacks the larger headlight and distinctive “gull-arm” swingarm of the MC21, and the SP denotes the “Sport Production” version that came with a trick dry clutch and Magtek magnesium wheels, along with fully-adjustable suspension.

Power from the 249cc engine would have been rated at 45hp for Japanese-market bikes, but bikes intended for foreign markets and de-restricted versions can make much more. Even in restricted form, the NSR is pretty quick, with less than 320lbs wet to push around, although two-strokes require quite a bit of work to extract the available performance. If you’re interested, top speed is around 130mph, but that’s not the point of the bike. Find a tight racetrack or a set of canyon curves that would tie even a modern literbike in knots, make sure you eat a light breakfast to save a couple pounds, and spend a Sunday morning worshiping at the Temple of Lean.

From the original eBay listing: 1989 Honda NSR250R SP Terra Racing Replica for Sale

Up for your consideration is a 1989 Honda NSR250 SP TERRA RACING. This bike is all original minus the full Jha exhaust system, and stainless steel brake lines. From the factory the bike is equipped with a HRC dry clutch, magnesium wheels, and a fully adjustable suspension. The bike sounds amazing and starts first kick every time. The bike  has been fully deregulated and runs absolutely great and is extremely quick despite the cc size. All fluids have recently been serviced as well as two new spark plugs.  Please view all images as this is a 30-year-old original bike with minor imperfections.The bike was legally imported into the United States and I do have a clean and clear Arizona title as well as a full set of aftermarket stock plastics still in the bubble wrap. I do encourage all bidders to please come and view the bike in person, or send someone on your behalf to inspect and view the bike. Please don’t hesitate to email for more information as well as pictures videos of the bike running if needed. 

Bidding is currently up to $5,900 with the reserve not met and very little time left on the auction. There are some minor chips in the decals and paint, and some aftermarket farkles like the steering damper, brake lines, and the front brake rotor buttons are obviously not original and are of questionable taste, but simple enough to change or remove. Although they are surprising, considering the claimed [and indicated] miles. Regardless, it is a clean-looking bike and worth a look if the reserve is set at a reasonable point.

-tad

Terra Racing Replica: 1989 Honda NSR250R SP for Sale
Honda January 5, 2019 posted by

Sponsored Listing: 1983 Honda CB1100F

This mint 1983 Honda CB1100F represents a slight departure from our usual fare, as it is older and closer to a UJM than the bikes we generally showcase. But there are two things that drove this one over the edge for us: First, it’s being offered by our buddies at Iconic Motorbikes, whose stable is jammed with perfect examples of some truly, well, iconic bikes. Second, the Honda CB1100F was designed to be a hairy-chested musclebound hooligan from day one. With bigger pistons and carburetors and hotter cams than the 900cc version, it pumped out 108 horsepower at a time when 80 was seen as pretty heady.

Those ponies were encased in a steel tube chassis, which means this thing’s handling will be an exercise in embracing flex and using horsepower to overcome limitations. Your buddies CBR600RR will lose you easily, but you’ll be having just as much fun at somewhat saner speeds. Because this bike was the pinnacle of the CB line, its suspension and brakes were top whack bits for the time. It rocked anti-dive forks, remote reservoir shocks, dual-disc front brakes and cast wheels, as opposed to the smaller CB’s Comstars.

This one is close to as nice as ridden 35-year-old bikes can be, with just a couple here-and-there blemishes to show for its years and 18,000 miles.

From the seller:

1983 Honda CB1100F – Fantastic condition – Low Miles!
This very cool and classic Honda is truly a gem of a find. Becoming harder and harder to find in this condition, don’t let this one get away!

This CBX1100F is in truly great shape for it’s age and that Maui Red is so damn beautiful it’s sure to get 2nd and 3rd looks wherever you go.

The CB’s have always been one of Honda’s most Iconic models and the 1100 was the big boy on the block. Smooth ride, nice linear acceleration and classic good looks. You’d be hard pressed to find one cleaner but as with any 35 year old bike, there are a few flaws, I did my best to point them out.

We added a bunch of pictures but nothing beats a “in person” visit so fly into LAX, we’re only 15 minutes away and ride her home, you’ll love this girl, that’s a promise!

Priced at $7,250, this CB is ready to grace a classic collection as the ultimate expression of the CB heritage, and hearkens back to a time when a sport bike was little more than a hot engine and stiff springs in a street-dwelling chassis. Swing over to Iconic Motorbikes to get your hands on this gem.

Sponsored Listing: 1983 Honda CB1100F
Honda January 5, 2019 posted by

Featured Listing – 1982 Honda CB750F Super Sport

Tens years after the ground-breaking CB750 was introduced, Honda responded to market pressures with a DOHC update, making a solid 100 hp per liter.  Honda’s Super Sport was aimed solidly at the market, and left HRC to tune and alter the CB’s for AMA racing.

1982 Honda CB750F Super Sport for sale at Seattle Used Bikes

Ultra-square with 62mm bore and stroke, the new engine willingly revved to 9,000 rpm, where 77 hp was found.  Honda had three engines in the pipeline, and chose the smallest bore since it made for the narrowest engine and had the best combustion characteristics.  A fairly traditional twin-downtube chassis was constructed, with a riding position just slightly more forward than the original CB750.  Brakes are big, all disks, and in a nod to the 500 lbs. dry weight, the rear disk is larger than the fronts.

 

Offered by Seattle Used Bikes, this Super Sport has logged just over 8,000 miles, and has been nicely restored.  The Comstar wheels aren’t the sportiest but have endured the test of time.  Though the  bar end mirrors are cool, K&N filters and black 4-into-1 exhaust will be the most noticeable mods after the engine’s started.  Notes from SUB‘s – website –

This very clean Honda Supersport brings back lots of memories of Honda’s HRC racing efforts with Freddie Spencer in the early 80’s… This particular bike has gone through a full restoration over the past 10 years, carbs are updated to the fabulous Keihin CR Specials, a Moriwaki hand made 4-1 exhaust was installed along with K&N filters, this Honda Supersport runs and sounds fantastic!

 

Have to applaud SUB‘s tuned-in business model – service, parts, accessories, and consignment – very neat.  Ten bikes currently ( three on RSBFS ! ), and the CB750F is right in the middle of their sporty / spendy continuum ( just as Honda always intended ).  The ask is $5,199, and the cherry condition might sway a rider who’s either not interested in financing someone else’s boat payment or who recalls the Freddie Spenser era and can no longer pretend an ergonomic challenge is that much fun.  Contact Dave at (206) 535-6812 or by email – here –.

-donn

Featured Listing – 1982 Honda CB750F Super Sport
Honda December 25, 2018 posted by

Christmas Bonus: 1989 Honda VFR750R RC30 for Sale

Long before “mass centralization” became a popular marketing buzzword for sportbikes, Honda was investing its bubble economy-inflated budget in a bike that took advantage of that very concept, the exquisitely-engineered VFR750R, otherwise known as the legendary RC30. Honda was so invested in sportbikes at the time that it actually sold an I4 and a V4 range of bikes concurrently, with their CBR and VFR filling slightly different niches. But when it came to their homologation bikes, Honda took their hard-won knowledge from the street-oriented V4 bikes and used it to develop the bike seen here, the VFR750R.

If you’re passingly familiar with Honda’s roadbikes, “VFR” probably evokes images of practical and engaging sport-touring bikes that lean on the sport end of the spectrum. This is not one of those bikes. The RC30 was developed to win production-based racing classes, specifically the then-new World Superbike Championship, although the ELF-designed single-sided swingarm hints at the bike’s endurance racing capabilities as well.

At the heart of the bike is obviously a compact V4 engine with a relatively narrow frontal area for good aerodynamics and very centralized mass, gear-driven cams for extremely precise valve control, and a 360°crankshaft that improved traction at the rear wheel, compared to a more traditional 180° unit. The concept of the 360° crank is that the combustion events are clustered close together, instead of spaced evenly throughout each engine revolution to allow the rear tire to “recover,” increasing traction and improving tire life. It also gives the bike a flatter powerband and a distinctive soundtrack that can be appreciated, even if your skills don’t extend to tire-spinning corner exits. The downside of a V4 is generally increased weight compared to an inline-four and tight packaging, especially with a 90° v-angle, as used here. Stripped of its fairing, the RC30 looks very dense and packed with mechanical bits, and V4s can be a bit of a bear to work on.

Reviews then and now describe it as an easy bike to take full advantage of, a bike that rewarded finesse, a bike that just did as it was told and allowed the rider to get on with winning. Power was unremarkable, weight was average, and nothing about the bike screamed “race winner.” But win it did, even against stiff opposition from Ducati, Bimota, Suzuki, Yamaha, and Kawasaki, and Honda only abandoned the V4 formula when it decided that rules in WSBK favoring v-twins were onerous and biased. So they built a v-twin and showed everyone they could win with those as well, but it was clear their hearts would always belong to the V4…

The RC30 is a handsome bike, with nearly perfect proportions and a wealth of amazing details, although it doesn’t have the easy wow-factor of something from Italy. It’s not often you can accuse Ducati of cribbing styling elements, but the 916’s taillights and distinctive single-sided swingarm look awfully similar to what you can see here. And unlike those Italian machines, every single component is carefully thought out to work as part of a complete package, and engineered to near-perfection.

From the original eBay listing: 1989 Honda VFR750R RC30 for Sale

  • Long term ownership and fewer than 5,000 miles
  • 1989 Honda VFR750R RC30
  • Frame Number: 2100129
  • Engine Number: 2100162
  • Legendary 16-valve gear-driven DOHC 90 degree V4 engine
  • Reportedly fewer than 3000 produced
  • Single owner since 1990
  • Fewer than 5,000 miles from new.

One of the modern era’s few immediately collectible classics, the Honda VFR750R – better known as the ‘RC30′ – was created for just one reason: to win the World Superbike Championship, a feat it achieved in the nascent series’ first two seasons of 1988 and 1989. And while American Fred Merkel was bringing Honda its first two WSB crowns, Britain’s Carl Fogarty used an RC30 to win the TT F1 World Championship in 1988 and 1989, and the equivalent FIM Cup in 1990. No mere short circuit scratcher, the RC30 and its derivatives proved durable enough to win a hat-full of Endurance Classics too. That this latter requirement was also part of the design brief may be determined from the fact that a quick-release front fork and single-sided swinging arm – essential for speedy wheel changes – were part of an unrivaled specification that included a twin-spar alloy beam frame, 16-valve V4 engine with gear-driven cams, close-ratio six-speed gearbox and four-pot front brake calipers.

All of which did not come cheap: at the time of its launch in 1988 an RC30 cost near double that of other super-sports 750s. Despite the passage of time and progress of motorcycle technology, the RC30 remains a match for the latest generation of sports bikes but possesses an exclusivity that none of them can approach. ‘No other bike from the late-Eighties is lusted after like the RC30’, reckoned Bike, and few would disagree. And then there’s the exhaust note – loud, of course, but soulful enough to bring a pit crew to tears.

This RC30 was only very recently liberated from its second and very long-term owner. Purchased in the UK in 1990, fewer than 5,000 miles have been put on the bike since it was new. Not long after acquisition, the superbike was taken to the Isle of Man where it was driven around the race track, but not actually raced. In 1991 the machine was brought stateside. Regularly maintained since new, the previous owner reports that the RC30 was taken to the local Honda dealer for a pre-sale service within the last couple of months.

Fresh from nearly three decades of single owner care, this legendary machine is offered in excellent condition throughout. The engine starts readily, idles smoothly and has an abundance of power. The clutch is silky-smooth and brakes and suspension are near perfect. I would opt for a new pair of tires before serious road use and am happy to negotiate your tire choice in to the price.

This is a rare opportunity to acquire a motorcycling icon of performance and provenance and a must-have for a discerning collection.

For additional information and photos go to ClassicAvenue.com

V4s are all the rage these days, but Honda really pioneered them for modern motorcycle applications. Because who the hell else would want to design around such a packaging headache? Obviously, Honda has a history of doing things just because they can, practicality be damned: their oval-pistoned racebikes grew out of a staunch refusal to adapt to the changing technology of the Grand Prix scene and simply build a competitive two-stroke. And although that particular experiment was a failure, it shows the lengths to which Honda will go when they believe in an engineering concept. Luckily, the V4 wasn’t quite so complex and was ultimately vindicated by both in-period success and by the legacy it left behind. This example has very low miles and appears to be in very nice, original condition with an asking price of $44,900 and just one more day on the listing, so if you didn’t get what you wanted for Christmas this year and happen to have a bit of your holiday bonus left lying around…

-tad

Christmas Bonus: 1989 Honda VFR750R RC30 for Sale