Posts by tag: Japanese

Featured Listing October 18, 2020 posted by

Featured Listing: 1989 Honda VTR250

If you spend your free time scurrilously poring over our pages, chances are you are intimately familiar with Honda’s three-years-only VTR250 Interceptor. But in case you aren’t: The 1989 Honda VTR250 Interceptor was Honda flexing its manufacturing might on an entry-level bike just because it could.

The littlest Interceptor was approachable, but packed enough punch to interest more seasoned riders, and enough weird details to keep collectors entertained 31 years later. The most striking oddity is its inboard front disc brake, an experiment that didn’t pan out for Big Red, but one that helps further separate the VTR250 from other small bikes. Couple that with a 90-degree liquid-cooled v-twin that made about 30 horsepower, deft handling from a featherweight chassis and a top speed approaching The Ton, and you have the makings of a cult classic.

This one wears a livery so garish and awesome that it could only have been produced in the decade of excess, and is in very nice preserved shape. The odometer, set into a very period set of square dials next to a 13,500 rpm redline tach, shows just over 13,000 miles.

From the seller:

This is a 1989 Honda VTR250 – Honda’s high tech pocket rocket. Released to the learner market, the VTR250 was way more advanced than most other 250cc bikes at the time – a liquid cooled 90 degree V Twin, with twin cam 4 valve heads and twin downdraught carbs, with a 6 speed transmission. It’s light, nimble and fast, and is a cult classic for lovers of small sport bikes. Producing a touch under 30 bhp, and coupled with light weight and a beam frame it matches bigger bikes in the corners, and revs out to 13,500rpm with useable power all the way off idle. To add to the fun, there is a second power band around 9000rpm and when you get there it takes off again. I’ve had plenty of riders on bigger bikes stop me after I have tailed them relentlessly on twisty roads and ask just what the heck the bike is that I am riding.

This example is very close to stock and has been lovingly maintained by the owner. It has a Goodridge front brake line and just had an oil and filter change in September. Coolant was exchanged last year. The reg/rectifiers on these are famous for failing, so this one has an upgraded one from a Honda VF500. Tires and brakes are in good shape with plenty of life left, and the inboard ventilated disc was serviced last year. Engine inlet rubbers were replaced in September with new ones from Japan, where the VT250 is still in production and spares are plentiful there.

It comes with the official Honda workshop manual, the owners manual, and spare front/rear brake pads/shoes.

Mileage is now 13,325, and I had the local Honda dealer supply and fit the optional genuine center stand.

For just $1,800, this awesome little 250 is begging to join a stable of bigger bikes and watch them turn green with envy as they get passed over for weekend jaunts and blasts around town. Contact Simon with your interest.

Featured Listing: 1989 Honda VTR250
Featured Listing September 18, 2020 posted by

Featured Listing: 1981 Kawasaki GPz550

The early 1980s were a bad time for speed. With a very few exceptions, cars had spent the previous decade becoming wheezy, lumbering and compromised. Motorcycles were yet to fully cross the Rubicon from being either quirky runabouts or the steeds of tattooed heathens to the mounts of true enthusiasts. And then in 1981, Kawasaki decided they had had enough, and unleashed the GPz550 on the public.

Just in time for Eddie Lawson to take home his first AMA Superbike title and second AMA 250cc road racing title, the GPz550 carried on the fine tradition of Kawi’s two-stroke triples with staggering speed, but added what at the time was laser-precise handling. Imagine crawling to your office job in some horrible, oversprung, Naugahyde-upholstered slug only to have one of these come screaming past.

The little air-cooled four-pot produced a stout 55-ish horsepower, and exhaled through an evil-looking set of blacked-out pipes. The bikini fairing was enough to set the thing apart from the sea of CB750s, but Kawi made sure the message landed with scarlet paint set off by a pair of navy and silver stripes.

The power meant 12-second quarter mile runs and a top end damn near 120 mph. To give you some context: It would be another nine (9) years before a stock Chevrolet Corvette would drop back into the 12s.

This 1981 Kawasaki GPz550 shows well, but carries some signs of its age and use. There are spots of corrosion here and there, some paint chips and the fork seals reportedly leak. The carburetors apparently were recently cleaned and the clutch adjusted, so with some minor fettling it should be ready to go.

For the full litany, check out the auction on BringATrailer.  The auction is no-reserve, which means the high bidder goes home with this piece of sportbike history. Get in line while you still can.

Featured Listing: 1981 Kawasaki GPz550
Featured Listing September 2, 2020 posted by

Featured Listing: 1986 Honda NSR400R

Two stroke engine, sticky tires, loud pipes in the raw and a classic Honda paint scheme. What more are you looking for in a back road tiny terror? This 1986 Honda NSR400R was treated to a very under the radar restomod a couple years back, with the goal of making an already awesome bike more modern-day user friendly. It has period aftermarket capacitors and an awesome, raw finish JollyMoto exhaust to wake the engine up a touch.

1986 Honda NSR400R for sale on eBay

The chassis has been treated to a Fox shock and custom, 17-inch Comstar wheels, which means it will accept all manner of modern track day-friendly tires. The forks got custom emulators at the same time. Its age and DNA dictate that it won’t run or ride like a modern machine, but if you’re looking for that, go bark up another tree. This bike will instead give you the best possible experience a mid-80s sportbike can.

From the eBay listing:

Selling my 1986 Honda NS400R that I imported from Canada ~7 years ago. ~2.5 years ago it completed a full restoration/subtle restomod done by the excellent team at RestoCycle in Tucson, AZ (I can send a link to all the details of the build to anyone interested – just send me a message). The entire bike was gone over from stem to stern to ensure that it was in tip top running shape. The subtle restomod that I had done were all aimed at a better riding experience – custom 17″ Comstar wheels so that you can use more modern rubber, an adjustable Fox shock (freshly rebuilt) for the rear, and custom emulators for the front forks by Cogent Dynamics. The bike runs, ride, handles, and looks great. I did not have it done to a concours level restoration, it was meant to be ridden and enjoyed, so there are a few small nicks and dings here and there, but, overall, the bike looks fantastic. And the sound from the Jolly Moto pipes that the second owner put on are awesome (and, iirc, the bike even visited the Jolly Moto factory when it spent a few years riding around Europe). The only current niggle on the bike is that the low oil light sometimes comes on erroneously (there is plenty of oil in the premix tank) – other than that it is in great shape and ready to go. Currently showing 52654 KM (~32.7k miles) on the odometer – mileage might go up a little as I might take it out for a short spin or two. Lots of spare parts that I will be listing separately once the bike is sold (spare gas tanks, carbs, bodywork, original comstar wheels, gaskets, spare oil pump, some spare bodywork parts, swingarm, seat pan, stock rear stand, etc, etc), but would be willing to sell as a package deal to the buyer of the motorcycle.

This is one of the best, IMO, 2 stroke motorcycles ever made.

Please send me any questions you might have.

Pulling back from a closeup of the mods, the bike is near flawless cosmetically, which is increasingly rare in any bike this age, but especially one of this ilk. The original pieces and spare parts, including the stock Comstars, spare carbs, bodywork and a spare gas tank, can be had as a package deal with the bike, but otherwise will be sold separately. Reserve is set at $10k.

Featured Listing: 1986 Honda NSR400R
Honda August 27, 2020 posted by

Featured Listing: 2002 Honda RC51 SP2 in

Update 8.27.2020: SOLD IN JUST 3 DAYS to an RSBFS reader! Congratulations to buyer and seller! -dc

This 2002 Honda RC51 SP2 is a U.S.-market bike that was dressed up from new with European-market bodywork that sets it well apart from the red-black-silver and all-black bikes that were standard here. It also means the bike wears the non-U.S. “VTR” moniker, instead of the “RVT” decals we got on these shores. Confusingly, that means this bike — very much an RC51 SP2 — carries the same three-letter name as the U.S.-market Superhawk. Confusing, till you get below the skin.

2002 Honda RC51 SP2 for sale on eBay

No matter what the lovely white fairing says, this bike carries the same 133 horsepower, 996cc v-twin that made these bikes famous, coupled with the SP2’s revised wheels and lighter chassis. The big, torquey twin shuttled Colin Edwards to a pair of World Superbike championships and Nicky Hayden to an AMA Superbike crown, cementing the bike in amateur knee draggers’ dreams for a generation. Nice ones are starting to command the kind of money that only true cult classics can ask, and this one carries the bonus of being one of a precious few bearing a factory-sourced foreign livery. This is not eBay bodywork of dubious origin and odd proportions — it’s the real stuff, straight from the source.

Around and underneath that bodywork is a raft of special parts. There is Ohlins suspension front and rear to keep movements calm and collected, and a titanium Jardine exhaust, to drop a few pounds, add a couple horses and make the proceedings a bit more sonorous.

From the eBay listing:

Absolutely beautiful 2002 RC51 (SP-2) in Factory OEM Colin Edwards livery. Paint is stunning, and so many great options on this bike. Lusted-for Ohlins FG322 front suspension, Ohlins rear suspension, Jardine titanium 2 into 1 exhaust (sounds awesome and light weight), carbon fiber front wheel, Scott’s damper.

Honestly I hate to sell this bike, I truly love owning it. Every time I start it it makes me happy to own it…but too many things going on in life to keep it right now. This bike is not a beater, it is one for someone who loves this bike. So beautiful so fun to ride, so well taken care of. All seals appear to be excellent, not a single leak, new battery, starts immediately every time. Never overheats, just runs perfectly. This bike looks as showroom new as a bike could given it’s 18 years on earth. Obviously no test rides until total price in-hand. This bike is lovingly cared for and has always been.

If you are on the hunt for an RC51, you’ll be hard pressed to find one that sets itself apart so nicely without giving up any originality. This bike achieves that feat deftly.

Featured Listing: 2002 Honda RC51 SP2 in
Featured Listing August 25, 2020 posted by

Featured Listing: 1999 Suzuki TL1000R

Update 8.24.2020: Tim is dropping the price to $6,000. Good luck to buyers and seller! -dc

Craigslist and Facebook Marketplace will cough up examples of Suzuki’s thundering, hairy-chested v-twin superbike bruiser if you really look, but they’re almost never worth a second glance. Generally, they’re wrecked, stretched, rattle canned or all three, and more often than not have been without a title since the Bush administration. The 1999 Suzuki TL1000R you see here is none of those things. In fact, if you’re looking for one, this might be your stop.

It’s a two-owner bike that has been ridden enough to show it was maintained and the bugs were duly dealt with. It looks clean enough to eat off of, and has been treated to an Ohlins rear damper, in place of the notorious factory piece. The seller says it has Penske springs front and rear. It also has Jardine exhaust cans, switched cooling fans, a Power Commander and a toggle switch for diagnostics. The paperwork for the suspension work is present, and the bike comes with a shop manual.

The TL1000R’s history as a race bike is, excuse the pun, checkered, as it didn’t quite measure up to contemporary Ducatis and Honda’s RC51 when it came time to put up or shut up. But the bikes don’t look like anything else on the road at the time, and are known as wonderful, brawny streetbikes and track toys. There’s more than enough power to get yourself into serious trouble, but none of the peakiness of an inline four.

From the seller:

I have 1999 Suzuki TL1000R I am looking to sell. I am only second owner and previous owner was a Suzuki mechanic so it has been adult owned it’s whole life. I have Ohlin’s dampener with Penske spring in back, and Penske racing springs up front. Jardine pipes, upgraded grips, a toggle switch in back that will read the problem codes as well as an auxiliary switch to keep the fans on while bike is turned off to cool oil. I recently rebuilt the original clutch so that is new. I also installed a new drive shaft seal as well as the pushrod seal (the pushrod seal is from an SV1000 and installed backwards…much better fit than the original part as this was a known oil leak issue). Also included are 2 head gaskets, 2 fuel pumps, a crank case gasket, full additional wiring harness and CPU’s, and a full set of shims for the bike. (not cheap stuff). It has just shy of 29k miles. I also have all original parts for it including the rotary dampener and springs, original muffler and additional items for maintenance. It will come with the full mechanic book as well as paperwork for suspension upgrades. It has been very well taken care of and runs perfectly with the power commander.

Seller Tim is asking $8,000 $6,000 for this beast, which is [was] the upper end of what TLs are fetching these days. But this is an immaculate, two-owner machine that represents the pinnacle of the nameplate. Tim can be reached at tim.morse33@gmail.com.

Featured Listing: 1999 Suzuki TL1000R
Honda August 22, 2020 posted by

Featured Listing: Immaculate 2002 Honda RC51 SP2

Update 8.22.2020: This bike has SOLD to an RSBFS reader! Congratulations to buyer and seller! -dc

The 2002 Honda RC51 SP2 was the first year of the ultimate evolution of Honda’s gorgeous World Superbike conqueror. Built to play on Ducati’s v-twin field and engineered to within a millimeter of its life thanks to Big Red’s engineering might and racing experience, the SP2 gained four horsepower and dropped 11 pounds over the SP1 version. In 2002, Nicky Hayden won the AMA Superbike title aboard the SP2. That coincided with Colin Edwards’ second World Superbike championship aboard a Castrol-liveried RC51 SP2.

The racing success and Honda’s beautiful, 999cc v-twin made the RC51 a cult icon in its day. With the benefit of years, the bike has become a no-concession classic, as Honda has moved firmly toward a safer, more stolid lineup. Coincidentally, the World Superbike wins have dried up.

This 2002 RC51 SP2 shows a shade over 20,000 miles, but you wouldn’t know it to look at it. It’s hard to claim anything this old is flawless, but this machine comes close. It is also loaded with a stable of tasteful, reversible aftermarket parts. The list includes Stomp Grips, CRG levers, Yoshimura exhaust and flapper valve mod. The rest of the list is in the seller’s description below.

From the seller:

Here is an excellent example of a 2002 Honda RC51 with 20,813 original miles. The bike is in nearly flawless condition, mechanically sound, never dropped or crashed. Simple modifications include CRG RC2 levers, Carbon Fiber gauge cover, Zero Gravity dark smoked windscreen, HRC tank protector, Stomp Grip traction pads, Lamin-x headlight lens covers, Proton LED turn signals, HotBodies Superbike under-tail, Pyramid hugger, 520 chain and sprocket conversion (15/41) gearing and Yoshimura slip-on exhaust. Flapper valve mod has been done. There is no fuel injection module on the bike such as Power Commander etc. Battery is two years old. Starts first crank and runs like the true Champion that She is. Clean title in hand, California registration paid until 8/2021.

Asking price is $8,000 $7,500

It’s not too hard to find a nice RC51 even today, but it’s a Herculean task to find one this nice. It’s priced according to its condition, but if your next bike must be an RC51, this is the one you want.

Featured Listing: Immaculate 2002 Honda RC51 SP2
Featured Listing August 14, 2020 posted by

Featured Listing: 1988 Honda Hawk NT650

Update 8.14.2020: Price reduced to $3,400. Good luck buyers! -dc

It’s a shame the 1988 Honda Hawk NT650 didn’t see more than a three-year production run in this country, because they’re really incredible machines. Packing just a 60-horsepower 650cc v-twin, on paper they don’t make a big impression, but lift your eyes off the spec sheet and the little ripper might draw you up short. Designated RC31 from the factory, they claim the VFR lineage of the venerated RC30, RC45 and VFR750. That means they were bedecked with top-shelf parts from Honda, including a single-sided swingarm that outclasses their humble power figures.

With a torquey power delivery and a wet weight under 420 pounds, Hawks have gained a cult following as one of Honda’s hidden gems. Think Suzuki SV650 in its Sunday best. Speaking of the SV, the Hawk beat the Zook and the Massimo Tamburini-penned Ducati Monster to the market by a few years, which may have been its downfall. Who knows what might have passed had it launched just a little later.

This example is resplendent in Navy blue, and has clearly been babied over its life. Blemishes are limited to a cracked rear fairing; the rest of the machine presents really well. It has been treated to a rare Two Brothers exhaust system, tail tidy and some bar-end mirrors, but comes with most of the stock parts except exhaust.

From the seller:

This Hawk GT is in excellent condition for its age. Starts, runs, and rides great. Paint and bodywork are very good, except for a 1″ crack on one side of the seat cowl (pictured), and a 1.5″ scuff on the other side. The bike has never been down or dropped. Still has the original owner’s manual and tool kit. Currently the bike has an aftermarket tail tidy, turn signals, and bar end mirrors (removed stock parts also included). A full Two-Brothers exhaust is installed; sounds great. I’ve read this particular exhaust is no longer made and is sought-after.

I rebuilt the forks last winter using CBR 600F2 internals – great upgrade that also adds adjustable preload and compression damping. I also replaced the air filter (OEM Honda), spark plugs (NGK Iridium), and changed the brake fluid (Honda DOT4).

The tires have plenty of tread on them, although they are getting old – the rear tire has a 2003 date code (Dunlop Sportmax D208), front is 2013 (Dunlop Sportmax D207F).

The Hawk no longer has its center stand, but I will include a Pit Bull rear stand.

Thanks for looking and please let me know if you have any questions.

The seller can be contacted through the Cycle Trader listing. At $3,900 $3,400, this little beast promises to leave a small enough dent in your bank account to leave enough to replace the aged tires. After that, you’re ready to welcome the fall riding season with open arms.

Featured Listing: 1988 Honda Hawk NT650
Featured Listing June 25, 2020 posted by

Featured Listing: 1979 Yamaha RD400F Daytona Special

Update 6.25.2020: 32 new images added to the gallery below and price reduced to $6,995 USD. Good luck to buyers and seller! -dc

Before race bikes had to have fairings, custom suspension, and forged rearsets, they looked a lot like streetbikes with number plates, and the 1979 Yamaha RD400F Daytona was among the best. Lighter by half than most of the 750cc and 1,000cc superbikes of the time, the RD could run inside outside and around just about any of its peers. Usually, that means you sacrifice something in acceleration or top speed, but the RD’s parallel-twin 400cc two-stroke mill damn near made up for that.

With ~43 horsepower to push around just 365 pounds, the little RDs were darlings on the street, too. Their modern equivalent is probably something like the Yamaha FZ07, practical, lithe, fast enough to scare you and still accessible enough for a commuter.

This 1979 RD400F Daytona is a beautiful example of the brand, in the classic red/white/gold livery. It’s not perfect, but it isn’t that far off. It’s easily nice enough to put on a stand in your basement and stare at, but I wouldn’t be scared to take it out for a few nice weekend rides, either.

From the seller:

Canadian model 1979 RD400 F Daytona Special sold for only 1 year.
Bike is all original stock.
Low 8100 Miles.
Starts, runs and rides amazing for a 40 year old bike, no issues.
Numbers matching. Low number #403
Matching locks for all 3 – tank, ignition, and seat.
Rust free gas tank, no liner, truly in great shape inside.
Bodywork and paint in very nice shape,
Side covers in great shape very clean no brakes.
All electrical working and no cuts or repairs to wiring loom.
All chrome in great shape including the forks are clean no pits or rust, and gas cap.
Has tool OEM kit.
Things to note the Canadian model received a different crank, electronic ignition, as well as separate carbs similar to the earlier model (that doesn’t have the goofy carb tops and rubber accordion boots that came with the mechanical synchronizing system. Other changes from US model is the exhaust pipes, and have larger diameter for the header and inlet to the exhaust cigar pipes. The Canadian exhaust system also don’t have the butterfly valve.
Huge list of work done including,
Full tune up,
Carburetors just meticulously overhauled.
All work done by red seal mechanic.
140 PSI compression left and right cylinders. Can’t get better than that!!
Many fresh 0km OEM parts.
New air filter.
New spark plugs.
New neutral switch seal.
New shift shaft seal.
New clutch push rod seal.
New seat cover.
New fuel tank rear mounting rubbers.
Petcock rebuilt with new parts.
New exhaust pipe rubber joint gasket.
New black rubber fuel lines.
Fresh Motul trans oil.
Rear brake caliper rebuilt
Fresh brake pads, front and rear.
Bike roles very freely when brakes release.
1 season old battery.
Low km chain and sprockets.
Low km tires.
Probably more just can’t think of it at the moment. many months of love, sweet and work has gone into freshening up this nice original Daytona Special
I would rate this bike as a solid 8.5 out of 10.
Small deficiencies;
1 handle bar mounting bolt is not a match.
Black paint on wheels is starting to fade. comes back nice and black with a little mag product and work.
Front brake is a bit spongy from 40 year old rubber line, looks great, no cracks or splits just flexes more than I like. Yes I’m that picky.
Small marks on fuel tank.
Headlight ears have the dreaded RD400 creases.
Scratches and small weld repair on right exhaust pipe near passenger peg.
Tail fairing underside around mounting bolts has a small piece missing, can not be seen from outside.

Asking price is $7,500$6,995 US
Location: Vancouver, Canada
Contact Eric: ericheemskerk31@hotmail.com or by phone 604 837 2967

This one is a Canadian model, which means it’s a little harder edged than the versions we got in the U.S. At $7,500 $6,995, it’s not exactly a bargain basement collector’s piece, but it’s definitely one you should want to own.

Featured Listing: 1979 Yamaha RD400F Daytona Special