Posts by tag: V4

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
Honda December 19, 2018 posted by

Sponsored listing: Super clean 1995 Honda RVF400

Update 1.14.2019: This bike has SOLD! Congratulations to buyer and seller! -dc

Are you tired of your driver's license taking up room in your wallet? Allow us to present you with an elegant, if not exactly inexpensive, solution. Our friends at Speedwerks are offering up this fabulously clean 1995 Honda RVF400 on a clean U.S. title to those who appreciate revs and razor sharp handling and have no interest in a plodding Sunday cruise. The bikes kicked out about 60 horsepower from the 400cc V4, which isn't enough to scare even the likes of a mid-80s Yamaha Radian, but is more than enough to get you to and beyond seriously extra-legal velocities.

Getting that power requires revving the mini RC to the moon, but the engines are known to respond well to a little neck wringing. Where the bike shines brightest is where the road gets windy, with a scant 365 pounds to pull around, the stiff chassis and its then-state of the art suspension will help you approach riding nirvana. Or at least, they'll do a damn sight better job making your commute interesting than NPR does. The sacrifice, as with anything of this nature, is comfort, though the RVFs don't have the torture rack reputation some of their peers do.

Speedwerks says this thing wears its stock bodywork and is more or less unmodified from how it left the dealer. It wears sticky new tires on its 17-inch rims, and has refreshed fluids, brakes, a fork rebuild and new hardware. From the seller:

1995 Honda NC35 RVF400

Clean US Title, has been in the states for sometime now, we acquired it from a client in some legal trouble with ICE and a hot Asian chick.(long story)

In stock condition with stock bodywork. 16k miles.

Stripped down and cleaned/lubed. Liqui Moly Synthetic oil, antifreeze flushed, new NGK plugs.

Brakes bled,rotors surfaced, new pads, RK chain. Coated wheels, new bearings in front and new Bridgestone S20 evo's.

Forks rebuilt with new seals,bushings and liqui moly oil. fresh hardware throughout chassis.

Carbs and fuel system rebuilt, Derestricted, detailed and dyno'd.

Everything works,runs as new. $10,500

We'd love to hear the long version of what sounds like a sordid tale surrounding Speedwerks' acquisition of the bike. At $10,500, it's priced to chase away tire kickers, but it also much cleaner than your average eBay example, and way cooler than a used 600, which would be the nearest modern equivalent. Hit up Speedwerks at www.speedwerks.com or give them a ring at (302)672-RACE if you're intrigued.

 

Sponsored listing: Super clean 1995 Honda RVF400
Featured Listing December 17, 2018 posted by

Featured Listing: 2017 Suter MMX500 for Sale

So, I'm going to have to try not to gush uncontrollably here, because this is one of the coolest bikes we've featured recently. A real, live Suter MMX500, a "what if" race-replica from a parallel universe where MotoGP racing never made the switch from two-stroke to four-stroke power. A labor of love built by Eskil Suter of Suter Racing and a bunch of guys who never got over their addition to premix fumes.

Forget all of your shed-built Grand Prix homages with RZ500 engines stuffed into R6 chassis and painted up in Marlboro racing colors. No disrespect intended, but this is what you're looking for, the ultimate paean to the snarling, lethal machines that carried Rainey and Schwantz and Mamola to greatness.

The looks may be stealth-fighter modern, especially in this example's matte carbon finish, but the spirit of those older machines is still there, married to absolutely state-of-the-art racing technology. It's powered by a compact, fuel-injected two-stroke V4 with a pair of counter-rotating cranks based on the Swissauto/MuZ500 raced by Suter in 1998 and 1999. Apparently Suter "had a few crankcases kicking around from the 500cc V4 design," and frames are, obviously, their specialty.

I'm always fascinated by how two-strokes can be mounted in the frame: a lack of cams, cam-drives, or valve gear means they're ludicrously compact, and often oriented in ways not at all intuitive for someone weaned on four-strokes. In this case, the engine is laid over on its side, rotated 90 degrees from what you'd expect, facing forward. So more like a >4 really, at least if you're looking at it from the left-hand side...

The bike may be tagged as a 500, but it actually displaces 576cc, with an undersquare 56 x 58.5mm bore and stroke in an effort to deliver a bit more midrange and help the bike avoid racebike service intervals. Suter acknowledges that most of its customers are skilled enthusiasts, not win-or-crash racers, and the changes to the formula make for a more manageable ride that still captures the feeling of a two-stroke MotoGP machine, but is less likely to spit a rider off in an evil highside when they get in a bit over their head...

Modern electronics and fuel injection help there as well, while offering improved rideability and a better spread of power. Of course, the delivery is still two-stroke abrupt and, with 195hp at 13,000rpm pushing just 280lbs, power-to-weight is still fairly astonishing, so the two-stroke GP character is intact, just slightly more refined.

Head on over to the original listing for the bike, as there are plenty of additional photos for you to drool over.

From the Seller: 2017 Suter MMX500 for Sale

SUMMARY

Model: Suter MMX 500

Origin: Switzerland

Engine: Suter

Last Service: 490 km

Colour: Carbon

Suspension: Ohlins

Brakes: Brembo

OZ 17" wheels

Availability: Immediately in our store of USA

MODEL INFORMATION
Bike in good condition and ready to race. Extra parts included with the bike: rear stand, pistons, rings, reeds gaskets, fiber+steel clutch plates, plugs + caps, filters, front stand, windscreen, seat, engine stand, service manual, owner manual, cover.

Spares list:

Pistons, rings, carbon reeds, gaskets, and o-rings; enough for 2 complete rebuilds

fiber/steel clutch plates

plugs & caps

Spare seat #5 of 99

Engine stand, front & rear service stands

Parts, service & dash manuals

bike cover

This is the very first Suter MMX500 I've seen for sale. With just 99 made, I'm assuming they were all snapped up before they were even finished by well-heeled track day and racing fans. If you've got $115,000 lying around and decide to buy this, please let me know what track days you'll be attending, because I need to see an MMX500 in action. The craftsmanship and passion that went into its creation are impressive, as you can see from the images. Of course, the price is shocking, but this is a very rare opportunity to purchase one at any price, so refinance your home, sell that sailboat, or sell that kidney, and pounce before someone else does.

-tad

Featured Listing: 2017 Suter MMX500 for Sale
Yamaha November 15, 2018 posted by

Signed by the King: 1985 Yamaha RZ500 RN

This 1985 Yamaha RZ500RN is a bread-and-butter bike for us here at RSBFS. It's an old, rare, iconic Japanese sportbike in excellent shape topped off with a few unique touches to separate it from the rest of its thin herd. What's not to like? It has covered fewer than 5,000 miles (just over 7,000 kilometers) in its 33 years, and sports a raft of recent, but period-correct, mods. Oh, yeah, and a front fender signed by 500cc Grand Prix World Champion Kenny Roberts.

1985 Yamaha RZ500RN for sale on eBay

In addition to a recent .030-over rebuild and those lovely JL pipes, the bike wears immaculate paint, and all the plastic, rubber and vinyl surfaces show evidence that the machine was stored indoors and extremely well looked after. Aside from the pipes, the mechanical rebuild featured a carb rejetting, which should work with the exhaust to wake the bike up from its corked stock specifications.

Despite their winning lineage, wild engines and potential for pace, these bikes weren't bought at the same fever pitch as their four-stroke stablemates, so finding them these days, especially ones this nice, is a feat. Prices have been a little across the map, but none can be had for cheap.

From the eBay listing:

FROM MY PRIVATE COLLECTION A PRISTINE HARD TO FIND 1985 YAMAHA RZ 500RN WITH A CLEAR FLORIDA TITLE.

I HAVE OWNED SEVERAL RZ'S/RZV"s AND THIS IS THE ONE THAT I KEPT FOR MYSELF.

RUNNING OUT OF SPACE FORCES ME TO PART WITH AND SHARE THE ENJOYMENT OF A FEW OF MY PRIZED COLLECTABLES.

THIS PIECE OF YAMAHA HISTORY THAT (NOT SOLD/OFFERED IN THE UNITED STATES) FEATURES LOW MILAGE 7423 KILOMETERS/4612 MILES (MILAGE IS IN KILOMETERS) IN IMMACULATE, PRISTINE CONDITION MY RZ 500RN HAS WORLD CHAMPION KENNY ROBERTS SR AUTOGRAPH ON THE FRONT FENDER, A PERFECT NOS FUEL TANK (THE BEST PAINT THAT I HAVE EVER SEEN), AND THE REST OF THE PAINT IS MUSEUM QUALITY.

FITTED WITH A PERIOD CORRECT J L EXHAUST, THE ENGINE WAS GONE THRU A FEW YEARS/250K AGO, WIESCO .030 PISTONS, NEW BEARINGS, SEALS AND GASKETS, CARBS RE-JETTED AND JUST THOROUGHLY CLEANED AND SYNCHRONIZED, NEW TIRES, A NEW LITHIUM BATTERY, THE HARD TO FIND OWNERS MANUAL, THE SOLO SEAT WITH EXACT MATCHING PAINT (THEY NEVER MATCH), NOS ROTORS AND PADS, REBUILT MASTER CYLINDERS, NOS TAIL LENS, NOS REAR TURN SIGNALS, NOS MORRORS

THE AUTOGRAPHED HELMET IS NOT INCLUDED IN THIS AUCTION, BUT IS ALSO AVAILABLE. THE HELMET WAS SIGNED BY KENNY ROBERTS, EDDIE LAWSON, WAYNE RAINEY, JORGE LORENZO, ANDREA DOVISIOSO, BEN SPIES, AND ALVARO BAUTISTA, AND WES COOLEY. THE BEST IN THE WORLD. ALSO AVAILABLE ARE 2 NOS STILL IN THE BOX MID SECTION FAIRINGS.

THE BIKE LOOKS, RUNS, AND RIDES BETTER THEN NEW! THIS IS A MULTIPLE SHOW WINNER AND A VERY FUN BIKE TO RIDE.

I HAVE BEEN RIDING, RACING, COLLECTING AND RESTORING BIKES SINCE GRADUATING FROM AMERICAN MOTORCYCLE INSTITUTE IN DAYTONA BEACH IN 1980. I TAKE MUCH PRIDE IN THE FEW BIKES THAT I OFFER FOR SALE. ONLY THE BEST WILL DO IN MY MINI MUSUEM. SO BID WITH CONFIDENCE. THIS BIKE STARTS UP ON 1 KICK IDLES BETTER THEN WHEN NEW AND RUNS/RIDES LIKE A DREAM.

SERIOUS BUYERS ONLY PLEASE. $500 IMMEDIATE DEPOSIT THRU PAY PAL. THE BALANCE DUE WITHIN 3 DAYS CASH OR A WIRE TRANSFER. I CAN HOLD THE BIKE UP TO 30 DAYS IN MY SECURE CLIMATE CONTROLLED FACILITY. I CAN ALSO ASSIST IN SHIPPING ARRANGEMENTS. THE CLEAR TITLE WILL BE SENT VIA FED EX ALONG WITH THE KEYS AFTER FULL PAYMENT.

ANY QUESTIONS PLEASE CALL OR TEXT 954-816-0806 BOB

HAPPY BIDDING:) BID HIGH SO YOU DON'T MISS OUT.

The buy-it-now for this machine is set pretty close to as high as you'll see them listed, but it does come with touches that similar machines can't offer, and is in really nice shape.

Signed by the King: 1985 Yamaha RZ500 RN
Sport Bikes For Sale November 4, 2018 posted by

Buzzsaw: 1985 Yamaha RZ500 on eBay

The seller of this 1985 Yamaha RZ500 keeps the details light in his eBay posting, but the details he does share are certainly intriguing. The iconic GP replica sports a set of very nice aftermarket Lomas pipes, upgraded forks and wheels from a four-stroke Yamaha FJ, and a top-end rebuild. You cannot really say fairer than that when it comes to an aged two-stroke sport bike. The weird tire sizes and anti-dive forks have gone the way of the Dodo and any questions about maintenance have been answered.

1985 Yamaha RZ500 for sale on eBay

In '85, the Yamaha RZ500 was used to making light work of the big, heavy four-stroke superbikes that comprised its competition, and was riding the wave of Kenny Roberts's Grand Prix successes upon a similar-on-paper machine. It lost a few horsepower and a few kilograms to the Suzuki RG500, but the Yamaha was still no slouch, and was to go down as the more refined and rideable of the two machines. Where the Suzuki shrieked, the Yamaha would bellow.

From the eBay listing:

1985 rz500. Great driver quality bike. Could use some touchups but mechanically very nice. Lomas pipes. 20,000 miles on chassis. 1200 miles on new gaskets, seals, and top end. Have receipts. Has FJ forks and wheels. Oil injection has been removed but comes with bike along with the proper throttle cable. Email any questions. Can send pics of anything you'd like. rd500 2 stroke street legal.

As mentioned, the details are few, but the ones we get are important. The pictures show a beautiful example of a legendary machine, and one that will be just as easy to ride as it will be to collect.

Buzzsaw: 1985 Yamaha RZ500 on eBay
Honda November 3, 2018 posted by

Collectible Classic: 1990 Honda VFR750R RC30 for Sale

For all the accolades it's received, the Honda VFR750 RC30 is a subtle machine. To the uninformed, it doesn't look all that special, especially now that single-sided swingarms have become fairly common. The proportions are good, it's very compact, and the colors are classy: it's a handsome bike, but doesn't appear to be much more than another Japanese sportbike, although one that just looks right. And the spec sheet doesn't really do much to give the game away either, although hints about that this is a very special machine...

The bike weighed in 458lbs with fuel, coolant, and oil, with power quoted at 118hp, good for a top speed just a shade north of 150mph.  It wasn't especially lightweight, even at the time, and the power-to-weight looks decidedly tame now. Of course, numbers don't tell the whole story. They never do. They're just a useful metric, a way to compare apples to apples. I'm not good enough to test an RC30 against its peers and come away with anything useful to say, other than "that was cool." And nearly thirty years later, I'm sure it'd be hard to understand the impact of a bike like this when it was introduced if you're used to riding modern motorcycles, bikes that all learned a trick or two [or ten] from this one.

The RC30 might represent peak Honda: everything is perfectly engineered, and reviewers have always gushed about just how easy it was to get the most out of. As Pirelli says, "Power is nothing without control" and the RC30 was, by all accounts, an easy bike to ride fast, a bike that flatters the rider. The proof is in the pudding, as it were, and the bike won innumerable victories in Superbike and endurance racing. For a racebike, it had a surprisingly long shelf life, and was popular with both factory teams and privateers.

From the original eBay listing: 1990 Honda VFR750 RC30 for Sale

  • VIN JH2RC3009LM200170, engine # RC30E-2200324 - matching numbers
  • only 642.8 street miles, never raced, one private owner from 1998
  • unmarked original paint, decals and finish
  • a 49-state ‘no smog’ L-model, one of approx. 316 to US-market spec.
  • climate controlled storage
  • clean, transferable Ohio title

118hp at 11,000rpm, red-line 12,500rpm, 51lbft torque at 7,600rpm, dry weight 400lb, over-square water cooled V4 DOHC, 6-speed, top speed quoted at 153mph

The RC30, a modern classic if ever there was one, was created solely to win the World Superbike Championship, a goal it met in the nascent series' first and second years, 1988 and 1989. And while American Fred Merkel aboard his Team Rumi-sponsored purple and black RC30 was bringing Honda its first two WSB crowns, Britain's Carl Fogarty used another RC30 to win the TT F1 World Championship in those same years, and the equivalent FIM Cup a year later in 1990. No mere short circuit scratcher or TT rocket ship, the RC30 proved strong lasting enough to win a bag-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 passing of 30 years the RC30 remains a match for the following generation of superbikes but possesses an exclusivity that precious few of them can approach. ‘No other bike from the late-Eighties is lusted after like the RC30’, reckoned Bike. ‘And then there's the exhaust note – loud, of course, but soulful enough to bring a pit crew to tears.’

This RC30 is a beautiful street example that is in stunning, as new, un-raced condition, showing 600-odd miles on the odometer. The original dealer was Cycle Sport Center, Inc. of Cridersville, Ohio. They sold it to Steve Bennett of Domi Racer Distributors, Inc. of Cincinnati, Ohio who rode the 600+ miles gently on the street, and then sold it, with a new set of tires, in late 1998 to the current seller, the first private owner. The bike has been meticulously stored unridden and maintained from then on. It comes with the original owners manual, unused tool kit, and the factory key.

A likely never-to-be-repeated opportunity to acquire an ‘as new’ RC30.

This bike, hidden away for 20 years, is in superb condition, so it can justify the label "museum quality." It re-defines 'as new.' Its VIN tag, shown here, illustrates just how clean this bike is.

To maintain the RC30's original finish, complicated by the use of several colors and many stick-on decals and stripes, it behooves the caretaker to take great care when moving it for photography and preparing it for sale. Remarkably, this bike has had the kid glove treatment from day one.

Foreign sales are invited. The buyer must pickup the bike from the seller. The seller can help with arranging third-party domestic and/or international transportation upon request, at the buyer's expense. Pickup must take place within 21 days of the payment clearing the bank. Thereafter, storage will be charged at $10 per day.

Contact the seller via email in the first instant. Questions are invited.

Well, I think it's always a good sign when the seller invites questions and the bike appears to be extremely clean, as you'd expect from a bike with just 600 indicated miles. Experts should feel free to chime in with opinions in the comments, and I'd love someone to fill me in on the signature that is visible on the tail section. I'm guessing it's Bubba Shobert, who raced 500GP bikes for Honda, but the seller doesn't seem to mention that little bit of trivia.

-tad

Collectible Classic: 1990 Honda VFR750R RC30 for Sale