Posts by tag: turbo

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We have 15 years of archives. Please note that posts over a year old may have been updated to point to similar bikes available to bid on eBay.
Suzuki October 15, 2022 posted by

Force Fed Frenzy – 1983 Suzuki XN85 TURBO

Hey Buck Rogers: your bike is ready. At least it was back in 1983, in the form of the Suzuki XN85. What is the XN85? It is 85 horsepower (at the crank, at least) of 650cc fuel injected and turbocharged goodness, and is arguably the very rarest of the factory boosted bikes on offer. It also looks like a mutated Katana, and is one of the sweetest handling sport bikes from the era.

1983 Suzuki XN85 Turbo for sale on eBay

Unlike the more popular Honda CX500 or CX650 liquid-cooled twins, the Suzuki XN85 was based on an air-cooled 650cc inline four. More similar to the Honda was electronic fuel injection technology, ensuring the engine always has an adequate supply of fuel for the specific atmospheric conditions. Force-fed motors are very sensitive to lean fueling conditions, and the specifically calibrated injection allows for proper compensation regardless of the level of boost. And while Honda went with liquid cooling, Suzuki opted for air cooling with oil cooling enhancements (including oil squirters to cool the back side of the piston). This concept was, in fact, the first step in the air/oil cooling journey that enabled the mighty GSX-R just a few years later. And while the bike screamed TURBO from every angle (including OBRUT from the front), the reality of performance was not *quite* up to the hype.

From the seller:
This is a NO RESERVE auction fora 1983 Suzuki XN85 Turbo.
The odometer reads 15,570 kilometers which is just shy of 9,675 miles on this perfect XN85.
This is a very rare bike with less than 1,153 XN85 motorcycles produced from 1983-1985.
I purchased this bike out of Canada about 2 years ago. This bike will be sold on a Bill of sale.

The previous owner ran the bike over 30km before I took delivery of it. They stated that the bike ran, and everything worked properly. When I purchased the bike, I put it directly in to my collection and it has been kept in air-conditioned storage.

The silver paint with the blue and red graphics looks flawless on this beautiful motorcycle.

The only apparent modification is a set of stainless steel braided front brake lines. Everything else appears to be OEM.

More from the seller:
This bike is in immaculate condition, there are very small imperfections on this motorcycle I will list below:

-The plastic surround panels around the cockpit show surface scuffs.

-The front master cylinder and clutch perch show some paint flaking.

-The top triple clamp shows some minor scratches from a key chain.

Otherwise, this very rare bike is in beautiful original condition.
This XN85 Turbo will be a fantastic addition to any high caliber motorcycle collection.

If you have any questions, or would like some pictures of something particular, feel free to reach out to me.

Unlike the Honda and the Yamaha Turbo bikes, the XN85 was an unabashed sport bike (albeit one that weighed 550-ish pounds when fueled up and ready to ride). The conventional fork was preload adjustable, and incorporated an anti-dive mechanism as well as a GP-inspired 16″ front wheel. The latter is not ideal in terms of tire choice today, but the combination worked well to provide both higher speed stability as well as directional change agility. Out back was Suzuki’s Full Floater single shock, also adjustable for preload. The riding position is sporty (but not too extreme), and aside from the question of turbo lag (i.e. when will the boost build), the Suzuki is a very sporting package that inspires confidence.

Perhaps the most unloved of the Turbo bikes, the XN85 was imported to the United States in few numbers by Suzuki, and who sold even fewer than expected. This makes it rare. And pricing, as a result, has slowly grown in value. This is not on the order of a homologation machine or even a small-bore smoker when it comes to valuation and future prospects, but over time we have definitely seen a gain. Today’s example is a Canadian bike that has been imported into the US by an individual. It has apparently not been ridden since importing, and there is no mention of registration. Still, it looks to be very clean apart from a few issues noted by the seller. Interest is quite high on this one – the auction started in the basement and is nearing $7k at time of writing, so it will be very interesting to see where this one ends up. You can check out all of the details here, and Good Luck!!

MI

Force Fed Frenzy – 1983 Suzuki XN85 TURBO
Kawasaki May 9, 2022 posted by

Fastest Production Motorcycle in the World: 1985 Kawasaki 750 Turbo

With the introduction of the Kawasaki 750 Turbo (also known as the ZX750E, and branded as GPz), hired gun Jay Gleason ripped off a 10.7 second quarter mile that proclaimed the Turbo not only the fastest production motorcycle in Kawasaki’s arsenal, but the fastest production motorcycle in the world, by any manufacturer, full stop. Puns intended, this boosted Kawasaki’s performance credibility immeasurably, and forced turbocharging onto the center stage of “next gen” motorcycle technologies.

1985 Kawasaki 750 Turbo for sale on eBay

While Honda started with a 500cc platform and Honda, Yamaha and Suzuki eventually settling in on 650cc designs, Kawasaki went for the jugular with a 750cc inline four configuration. The displacement alone was a significant factor in off-boost rideability, and on-boost the extra capacity provided for a 112 HP push out of the air-cooled, 2-valve mill with EFI fuel injection. This was old school meets high tech, and the confluence was as awesome as could be expected. Often considered “the best” of the factory turbocharged bikes – fastest in the quarter mile, highest top speed, most sporting, best real world power – the Kawasaki 750 Turbo was as rare as the rest of the puffers. Heavy at 500 lbs dry, expensive at nearly $5k in the showroom, and beyond the reach of most Kawasaki buyers in terms of price and performance, the blown GPz languished through a couple of years of mediocre sales. By 1985 all the partying had departed the turbo set, not to reappear for another 30+ years.

From the seller:
Very Rare 1985 Kawasaki 750 fuel injected turbocharged E2 model – Garage kept under cover for 30 years. Runs Excellent!!! 18,697 miles. Looks and Runs Excellent!! Collectors Bike! Serious Buyers Only!!

I’m the second owner of this beauty. No accidents. Title in hand.

It’s been driven every year and runs as it did in 1985.

I have the original exhaust and center stand too. 530 Chain Conversion, Front Fork Brace, Steering Damper.

Also, will include racing center stand, fitted flannel motorcycle cover and an assortment of OEM parts that I purchased as spares.

Today’s Kawasaki Turbo looks to be in fantastic condition with bright paintwork and nice black engine chrome. The condition belies the fact that this boosted beast has over 18,000 miles on the odometer. The factory 4:2 exhaust has been replaced by a 4:1 D&D unit, but the seller notes that the stock exhaust is included in the sale. That is a WIN for anyone looking at this as a collector. There is a 530 chain conversion, which is never a bad thing on something with explosive power. The rear sprocket appears slightly larger than stock as well, which should really wake up low speed launches.

The Turbo era bikes are slowly becoming recognized for the rare technology missiles they are. Since all Turbos were all born inside of a span of 2-3 years, there are not a lot of examples and they have definitely suffered in the “niche” category. But bright lights are starting to shine into this interesting corner of motorcycling history, and we are seeing rising prices as the result. This beauty is being listed in a Buy It Now format for $17,500. That is far more steep than we would have seen a decade ago, but also not too far out of line for where things are going. Check out all of the details here, and Good Luck!!

MI

Fastest Production Motorcycle in the World: 1985 Kawasaki 750 Turbo
Honda March 1, 2022 posted by

All The Torques: 1983 Honda CX650 Turbo

Straight out of Tron came an interesting offramp in the history of motorcycle performance development. The early 1980s were highlighted by many advances and technological achievements, but few were as glorious as the turbo. All four Japanese motorcycle manufacturers jumped on the boosted bandwagon, certain that this was the Next Big Thing. Marketing and graphics were all about the Turbo (or TURBO, or Turbo!, or even obruT in Suzuki’s case), with the race not necessarily being who could build the better or faster bike, but rather who could cram more Turbo badges on their vehicle. Honda, in their race to over-engineering everything, definitely won the battle of the badges. But this offramp turned out to be a mere cul-de-sac, and with a whoosh the Turbo era was over before most of the bikes were even sold.

1983 Honda CX650 Turbo for sale on eBay

Of the era, the 1983 Honda CX650 was perhaps the most refined of the Turbo machines. The only bike to enjoy a 2nd generation, the 1983 model differed substantially from the previous year’s CX500, and was overall more rideable and predictable. But the CX650 highlighted much of what was wrong with this direction in boosted power; it was big, heavy, complex and frightfully expensive in comparison to normally aspirated machines of similar (or better) performance. And while the CX650 Turbo is still known as the roll-on-king – showcasing its ability to produce substantial power at lower RPMs for highway-friendly acceleration – the market has yet to appreciate what these bikes are all about. They are rare because they did not sell. They did not sell because they were odd, and the tradeoff in oddity did not equate to performance. Despite the rarity in numbers, these bikes fizzle on the collector side. Market value is part rarity (supply), and a large part irrational lust. The heart wants what the heart wants, and at the moment the buying hearts want RC30s, OW-01s, Gammas, RZs and early Ducati superbikes. But not Turbos.

From the seller:
WOW! NO RESERVE! Might consider an early strong offer for serious buyers (simply contac me), so this is your rare chance! Its the rarely seen for sale ever one year only 1983 Honda CX650 TURBO !. The holy grail here guys, not seen often for sale, known as arguably “the most collectable honda of all time”. Very nice cond, starts right up, everything works as it should, OEM mirrors included (see last pic) aprox 26K miles, always California. runs and rides amazing! Get it today,

I empathize with the seller here. Despite the hyperbole, the CX650 Turbo probably should be one of the holy grail bikes in terms of numbers. But numbers do not tell the whole story. And even though they *are* quite rare, we do see decent examples pop up for sale now and again. The market as a whole is moving upward, thanks to a combination of slowly emerging from the pandemic and emerging from winter. That means riding season is upon us, that that always drives the frenzy of bidding. But we do not often find such frenzy with this particular niche of bikes.

This particular CX650 looks to be in decent shape – but it is difficult to determine critical details with the low-res photography and video. By all counts the bike does look complete, which is a plus. Seller notes that the original OEM mirrors are included; it is possible they were changed out to allow the rider a view other than one’s own shoulders. Mileage is more than we usually expect to see, but these CX motors are robust, and the strengthening added to the bottom end means that these are not fragile, mechanical nightmares. The ask here is pretty big, somewhat commensurate with all of the rising market rates, but maybe too early to be this high for a Turbo? Can’t blame a seller for trying, but interested to see where this takes us for the model. Do you think the odd Turbo bikes will ever become valued for their rarity, or will these always lag the collector market? Check out all of the details here, and then jump to the comments and share your thought on Turbos. Good Luck!!

MI

All The Torques: 1983 Honda CX650 Turbo
Honda November 10, 2021 posted by

Turbo City Madman: 1983 Honda CX650 Turbo

Relisted with a whopping price drop from $18k opening ask in May down to $12k, this low miles school bike is reflecting the reality of the Turbo market. Links updated. -MI

This is a bike that really shouldn’t need any introduction to the pages of RSBFS. After all, being the self-proclaimed RSBFS turbo nerd I *know* that I’ve posted more than a few. Why? Because they are awesome in a mega-flawed sort of way that drives you to either love or hate them. And despite their totally unloved status when new, they have recently encountered a bit of a resurgence in interest – and price. Today’s 27 mile example is the poster child for the movement, although it also represents an interesting counter-point to the whole factory Turbo saga.

1983 Honda CX650 Turbo for sale on eBay

Honda was the fist to bring a turbocharged motorcycle to market as a full factory supported effort with the 1982 CX500TC (technically the Kawasaki Z1-R TC was first atmospherically enhanced motorbike, but that was not factory). That particular bike bristled with new technology that only Honda engineering could bring to the fore, including a sophisticated computerized fuel injection system to manage the complicated intake situation and ensure engine longevity. The CX650 Turbo built on that foundation by increasing displacement and compression ratio to help improve the off-boost rideability. This also greatly improved the transition from off-boost to boost (although you’ll never miss that event) and help minimize the dreaded turbo lag. In all, the CX650 was the most polished of the factory turbo entries, being the only boosted bike to benefit from a second generation of development. Sadly, that was not enough to overcome the price, the stigma, the weight and the stigma. By 1985 the turbo era was well and truly over, save for oddball collectors and enthusiasts (ahem).

From the seller:
Up for sale is a 1983 Honda CX650T motorcycle – Only 27 miles.
This was a school motorcycle – sticker shown in pictures. Because it was a school motorcycle there was never a title issued. Registration and a Bill of Sale will be the only documents provided.

We picked it up years ago – always garaged. A nice clean motorcycle. Please note some cosmetic damage to the fairing, fender, etc. I tried to take several pictures to show any imperfections. Also, I did replace the rear cowl, which is a repaint. The original cowl has a broken tab that is unseen. I am willing to include this with the sale of the motorcycle.

More from the seller:
The following has been done on the motorcycle…
The brake system has been cleaned/flushed
The master cylinder and the rear master cylinder have been cleaned and rebuilt
The fuel injection has been cleaned and checked
New plugs
New pump propeller
Oil Change
New after market fuel pump (original is still available if desired)
New windscreen

The motorcycle starts and runs. Here is a link to the youtube video – https://youtu.be/MTjRL9s4bkk

I am not a videographer…lol so I apologize in advance and hope no one gets dizzy. My intention was to show how nice the motorcycle sounds.

Not to mince words, the turbo motorcycle era was an utter commercial failure. Each of the Big Four played with the devil of boost, and every one of them was an atrocious and abysmal return on the considerable investment required. Suzuki used their experience to develop the original air/oil cooled GSX-R, Kawasaki used the opportunity to elevate the GPz to the top of the 1/4 mile time sheets, Yamaha phoned in an low-buck entry branded as a Seca, and Honda dumped a significant portion of their inventory on “technical schools” in an attempt to recoup their investment and train the next generation on Big Red products.

Todays example of the CX650 Turbo – a one year only model for 1983 – is one of those previously dreaded “school” bikes. These were examples meant to train future mechanics on the complex systems of the modern motorcycle, and were never intended for consumer consumption (check out the sticker on the tank). While each had a VIN number, none were released with a title, and each of these bikes were written off as crushed, destroyed or otherwise parted out. Very recently we have started to see an influx of these school bikes as more rare than the average CX650 Turbo, which may indeed be true. It is still early days to determine the impact this may have on the collector, as Turbos are still not really considered collector bikes (yet). However the price curve is on the rise and we have seen some high water marks eclipsed in the last year or so. This one has an opening bid of a relatively high $18k, so it will be interesting to see how the market responds. Check out all of the details here, and Good Luck!!

MI

Turbo City Madman: 1983 Honda CX650 Turbo
Honda June 29, 2021 posted by

Southern Belle – 1982 Honda CX500 Turbo

Hot on the heels of this 1985 Honda VFR1000R (eBay shows that it sold for $7,652), the same seller has just listed a 1982 Honda CX500 Turbo in a similar, no reserve auction. And this is the way that we like to see bikes represented – decent pictures showing a neat, clean, indoor storage facility. The bikes are clean and presentable, and not still dripping wet from a quick hose-down like some other auctions. Given, the bikes themselves might not be of the uber-rarity set (I haven’t spied a NR750 or Supermono in the pictures yet, but I’m still looking) – but they are relatively rare and special machines worthy of collecting. Which brings us to the world’s first full factory turbo offering, the 1982 Honda CX500 Turbo.

1982 Honda CX500 Turbo for sale on eBay

Built around the basis of the CX platform, the CX500 Turbo was a sort of Moto Guzzi replica in that the engine configuration was a vee mounted across the bike, but the crankshaft rotation was inline with the wheels. The vee angle was 80 degrees, and the cylinder head intake and exhaust tracts were rotated slightly to allow for better legroom for the rider. If you’ve ever barked your shins on a BMW airhead intake or banged your knees on Guzzi carbs you know the value of this subtle piece of engineering. The Turbo used larger main bearings in the strengthened cases, and Honda bolted up an IHI turbo capable of 200,000 RPM and 19 PSI and topped the whole thing off with their first incarnation of programmable fuel injection. A stronger crank, clutch and connecting rods held the rest of the bottom end together, along with a pair of forged pistons. Suspension, electronics and bodywork were all bespoke Turbo fittings, making for a fast, powerful and unique offering.

From the seller:
1982 Honda CX500 Turbo SELLING @ NO RESERVE

This is an amazing all original and very rare bike that is coming out of a private collection that is perfect for anyones collection or for anyone to enjoy. The bike runs and drives just like it should and needs nothing to my knowledge. The bike has been very well maintained and shows great for an original bike, the only thing that I can see on the entire bike is that their is a small chip/nick on one side, and I have a picture of that to show you. The only thing to my knowledge that has been changed on the bike is a aftermarket windshield has been added which is a little larger then stock. Still a great bike for anyones collection or for anyone to enjoy that is just beautiful to look at in person. And remember this is SELLING @ NO RESERVE so high bidder takes it home.

Make no mistake, the Turbo is a big bike. Ready to ride this is a nearly 600 pound motorcycle, and not for the inseam challenged. Much of the weight is carried up high, thanks to the longitudinal nature of the vee configuration, the large radiator to cool of the turbocharged madness, and a 5.2 gallon fuel tank perched way up on top of everything. Far from a lithe sport bike, the Turbo revels in sport touring, where the strong midrange rush can be used at will. The 280mm front disks are decent, and the air-assist anti dive fork does a reasonable job of keeping everything in line. But those 600 pounds are hard to hide when the road gets narrow and twisty.

As referenced earlier, we have seen this seller before. There are a lot of bikes in the background shots for his auctions, so we know this is quite the collector. This bike appears to be mostly stock, with the noted exception of the windscreen. For a rider, that may not be a bad thing as the stock windscreen tends to create significant noise and buffeting at highway speed (different shapes of helmets can offer some help). Like the previous auction, this one has started low and there is no reserve. There are a good number of bids, and a much larger number of watchers which is the way these auctions should run. Check out all of the details here, and Good Luck!!

MI

Southern Belle – 1982 Honda CX500 Turbo
Honda March 17, 2021 posted by

Future Optimism: 1983 Honda CX650 Turbo

During the early 1980s, the future was a bright and amazing place to be. The world was full of optimism that technology would solve all of our problems and provide us with transportation that eclipsed the cave man cars and bikes of just a few years ago. And during this time manufacturers pulled out all of the stops to try to deliver on the promised land, including the concept of 1 liter power in a package half the size. Enter the turbocharger; all of the Big Four dabbled in the concept of atmospherically-boosted intake for better power and smaller displacement. And while all the Big Four delivered turbocharged goods, the reality was not exactly the same as the promised vision.

1983 Honda CX650 Turbo for sale on eBay

Honda offered not one but two techno sleds during this time: the original CX500 Turbo, followed by the radically remade CX650 Turbo only one year later. One year after that, the wastegate opened up and the boost party was completely over. But for those few years, Honda raised the stakes at the technological poker table to a level unmet by any other manufacturer. Utilizing the existing CX platform with a beefed up bottom end, Honda engineering computerized fuel injection and a raft of sensors to ensure that reliability was as prominent as horsepower. The Buck Rogers bodywork and paint was specific to the model, as were the multiple “Turbo” badges that festooned the final package (including the large “obruT” decal on the front of the fairing). The CX650T delivered power – and most importantly gobs of torque – just as the prophets had promised. But with that performance came complexity, weight (more than 600 lbs of it) and a high price tag. Turns out the buying public was more interested in an affordable future – and a significant number of bikes were left unsold.

From the seller:
Up for sale is a 1983 Honda CX650 Turbo. This bike was never sold by the Honda Motorcycle Company so there is NO TITLE. EBay does not have an option for “no title” so it was listed as “clean” but just to be clear there is NO TITLE for this machine. EBay does not allow a decimal point in the stated mileage category so it was listed with “2” miles, in actuality it has 2.6 miles and we show this in the photos. This bike is NEW OLD STOCK with 2.6 miles on the odometer, it has never had fuel inside the tank and has never been started.

This bike is one of 500 bikes that was donated by Honda to the Vocational trade school donation program and still has the decal showing this on the tank. It was never sold and was intended to be destroyed therefore Honda never issued a title for the bike. This bike is a true survivor in stunning condition. The only flaw I see is a small scratch in the paint on the right side tail piece by the grab bar. Total production numbers for the 1983 CX650 Turbo was 1777 worldwide. Out of the 1777 about 1025 of them were imported into the USA and only 500 were part of the vocational program through Honda.

More from the seller:
This is one of the 500, a super rare piece of Honda History. You may likely never get an opportunity to purchase a machine of this rarity or significance again in your lifetime. We obtained this bike from a museum where it was on display since 1992 after being donated to the museum by the vocational school. Before this the bike was in storage since the early ’80’s at the college, it was never used in their training program, it is an unmolested time capsule. We have the provenance documentation from the museum showing this chain of ownership and it will be conveyed to the new owner.

The sad fact is that the Honda CX650 Turbos are extremely rare today primarily because there was little interest from the buying public. Honda invested untold amounts of money to engineer a solution that did not really solve a problem that people were willing to spend money on – not when there were plenty of adequate motorcycles for less than half the cost. With little demand, Honda shut down production after only one year – and struggled to get rid of the remaining bikes. A large portion were simply donated to automotive/technical trade schools to be used as learning tools. Honda received some brand recognition, likely a significant tax deduction, AND got rid of expensive leftover inventory. These bikes were donated without title as if they had been destroyed, and were never intended to hit the road. Most of them by now have been parted out.

The valuation of Honda Turbos has definitely been on the rise, but the ascension has been gradual (to say the least). Low mile Turbos in good to excellent condition seem to have maxed out in the $10k range as of late, which is definitely an improvement to past financial performance of the model. Today’s bike, a school donated machine with fewer than 3 miles has spent its life in a museum, and looks the part (as in a never started, never ridden “new” motorcycle). In fact, it looks better than it should given its age. However in the past these “school bikes” have been the less desirable of the Honda models due to the fact that they were not intended to be titled. Perhaps being the most rare of the one-year only model will make them more popular with collectors, but we have not seen that in the past. If you have a take on this subject, please hit up the comments and share your thoughts. Regardless, the Buy It Now price is significant for a Turbo. You can check out all of the details here. Good Luck!!

MI

Future Optimism: 1983 Honda CX650 Turbo
Kawasaki February 4, 2021 posted by

Turbo Time! 1984 Kawasaki GPz750 Turbo

When Honda launched the Turbo wars with the 1982 CX500T, the rest of the Big Four were not far behind. Before the very brief rise of the factory turbos came crashing down, Honda had produced both the CX500 and CX650 Turbos, Suzuki introduced the stunning XN85 Turbo Katana look-alike, Yamaha phoned in a warmed-over Seca 650T, and Kawasaki produced the fastest motorcycle money could buy in 1984: the GPz750 Turbo.

1984 Kawasaki GPz750 Turbo for sale on eBay

The recipe during this era of motorcycle innovation followed pretty similar routes; take an existing engine/platform, build up the bottom end to withstand additional power, bolt up a turbocharger and associated plumbing, and create an induction system to maximize both performance and longevity. In the case of Kawasaki the GPz unit was already fairly stout. By reducing compression via the use of special pistons, the real magic was in the oil delivery system. Oil is a cooling medium for air-cooled engines, and Turbos are notorious for creating heat quickly. Kawasaki beefed up the oil capacity, added a scavenge pump, and generally increased oil flow through the engine. But the secret to the boosted GPz was in the exhaust. By optimally placing the turbo in front of the engine – and thereby feeding the turbo hot exhaust gasses as directly from the combustion chamber as possible – Kawasaki managed to minimize turbo lag and really extract the most from their turbo setup. Electronic fuel injection fed the beast, and the remainder was an interesting mix of GPz750 and GPz1100 components.

From the seller:
Up for sale is my 1984 GPZ 750 Turbo with only 269 original miles. I bought this bike directly from Kawasaki Motor Corp two years ago. The new Kawasaki President sold off all of Kawasaki’s inventory in California that had been sitting there for years and this was one of them. I bought this bike just as you see it. As far as I can tell, the bike looks 100% original and has matching VIN with Engine VIN. Bike has been stored in my heated garage. The bike has been on display since I purchased it and never put fuel in it. This may be the lowest mileage turbo in existence, and it came straight from Kawasaki Motor Corp. I have all the paperwork needed to register the bike in all 50 states. You may never find another one like this, there are turbos out there but with this low of mileage would be near impossible to find. The only reason why I’m selling is because I am downsizing and moving south. Freight shipping will be coordinated and paid for by the purchaser. Thank you and happy bidding

While Honda and Yamaha produced sport touring rigs and Suzuki created something all new, Kawasaki extended their GPz lineup to include this Turbo model. That was smart from an advertising perspective, as even folks who couldn’t afford the Turbo might kick down for a normally aspirated GPz750 (or even a GPz550 or lowly 305). The fact that Jay Gleason ripped off a quarter mile time quicker than the company’s own GPz1100 earmarked the Turbo as something special – and fast. Available for only a few years with very minimal changes, the GPz750 Turbo is often (and rightfully) considered one of the best turbo bikes of the era.

Today’s example has a claimed 269 miles on the clock. That seems unreal today, but the entire bike looks to be pretty clean and well preserved. This came directly from Kawasaki very recently according to the current owner who has paperwork to match. If it all checks out, this is as new as new gets for a 37 year old bike. I suggest you check out all of the pics and details here, but be warned: this bike is breaking the price barrier for the Turbo set. Bidding is up to nearly $11,500 at time of writing, and there is still a reserve in place. It is uncommon for Turbos of any make to cross the $10k barrier, so this just might be one to watch. Stay safe, and good luck!!

MI

Turbo Time! 1984 Kawasaki GPz750 Turbo
Honda January 24, 2021 posted by

A Tale of Two Turbos: 1982 Honda CX500T (x2!)

With attribution (and apologies) to Charles Dickens, this was the best motorcycle, this was the worst motorcycle. This was an age where technology soared, yet this was an age where average triumphed. This was the time of lag, this was the time of boost. This was the Spring of hope, this was the Winter of despair. This was the early 1980s, and this was the Turbo era.

Forced induction has paved a long and storied road in the automotive world. For motorcycles, it represented more of a novelty cul-de-sac. And although started by Kawasaki farming out the Z1R TC model to a tuner and selling it in showroom without a warranty, the first fully-fledged, factory created and supported Turbo bike came from Honda: the 1982 CX500T. Utilizing the robust CX500 twin platform, Honda did some minor bottom end beef-up and some major electronics engineering on a computerized fuel injection and delivery control module to ensure engine longevity. The result is the space-ship resembling, very heavy, long turbo-lag inducing unicorn that you see here. Sadly, despite all of the technological innovations that Honda threw at the CX-T model, public interest in the beast never took off. And neither did values for these models, although that is definitely changing. Read on about these two bikes!


1982 Honda CX500T #1

From the seller:
CX500 Turbo Has Been On Display For 17 Years In My Climate Control Museum.
It’s Been Pulled Off The Display Floor And, Over Last Month, As Time Permitted I Have Had The Following Service Items Performed By My Master Mechanic –
-Storage Fuel removed and replaced with Non-Ethanol Premium Fuel.
-New AGM Battery Installed
-New Oil & Filter Change
-Both Front And Rear Brake Calipers Serviced – Disassembled Cleaned & Brake Fluids Flushed From The Long Time sitting Idle While On Display
-New front brake pads on both sides. The OEM ones were hard squeaked some and we have everything apart already.
-Both fuel Injectors Professionally cleaned by Mechanic
-Air filter check and was OK
-New OEM spark plugs installed

This bike looks absolutely awesome, and has been bid up to nearly $10k as of time of writing with the reserve still in place. There are a lot of bidders, and even more watchers. The activity is certainly pushing the envelope in terms of price point for these rare bikes (which should represent a *very* welcome trend for Turbo collectors), and this one may end up a new high-water mark for the model.


1982 Honda CX500T #2

From the seller:
1982 Honda. Condition is “Used”.
I’m Selling my CX500Turbo because I have to many bikes and someone needs to enjoy this one.
Bike is in immaculate condition for a 39 year old machine.
Only 3100 miles
All original paint
Original tires
Runs and drives perfect
Recent work completed includes all master cylinders and calipers rebuilt, injectors sent out and cleaned, new fuel pump, oil and filter changed.
I can take more photos if needed. Also have a video I can text of bike running with a walk around.
Chance to own a very rare motorcycle that has been climbing in value.

This particular example has very few miles for the age, and looks to be in good shape overall. There appears to be some paint cracking on the front fairing, and the original tires would make me nervous as a rider. This one has a bit longer to go at auction, with no reserve and the latest bid at over $7k at time of writing. Again, this is elevated territory for these techno-wonder machines, and we might see this one climb even higher before the auction ends.


Dickens closed out his famed novel (A Tale of Two Cities) with: “It is a far, far better thing I do than I have ever done…” Looking back at the monumental moment when Honda rolled out this amazing motorcycle, you can forgive the Engineers if they thought along the same lines. This was truly a remarkable undertaking, and endures as the most complex and technological effort of the Turbo era. To see not one but two great examples available at the same time – and being bid up to the current prices – bodes very well for these machines in the future. Check out the pics and videos for 1982 Honda CX500T example #1 here, and jump to 1982 Honda CX500T example #2 here. Enjoy, and Good Luck!


1982 Honda CX500T example #1 gallery

1982 Honda CX500T example #2 gallery

MI

A Tale of Two Turbos: 1982 Honda CX500T (x2!)