Honda VFR1200F and VFR1200FD

The Honda VFR1200F and VFR1200FD – Specifications and History: For 2010 Honda the biggest motorcycle manufacturer in the world has released an entirely new model, introducing the VFR1200. It is a tad weird in that Honda introduced another sports tourer because they have the ST or Pan-European which is arguably one of the best you can buy.

However the new VFR is unlike the ST since judging by the specifications the VFR is for riders who want something with a bit more up to date technology and handling than the ST and clearly to compete directly with any number of BMW models. Makes me wonder if this class of motorcycle is more popular than the Hayabusa or ZX14 class. The VFR1200 is definitely not a replacement for the Blackbird either which still leaves gap in the model lineup.

The VFR series has been around for decades now and has always been the series which introduced some kind of new motorcycle technology from Honda. The all new VFR1200 is no different and introduces a combination of new technologies to the mainstream production motorcycle class. Admittedly most of the technology is already separately other Honda motorcycles.

Two of the most important things include ‘fly-by-wire’ throttle and a HFT dual clutch automatic transmission. The wireless throttle system is pretty cool tech but a choice of manual or the HFT automatic transmission with multiple modes is probably the most important. Honda already has the HFT system introduced in the DN-01 but this is a first for a ‘big bore’ motorcycle. Needless to say they put in not one but two clutches which should make gear changes smoother and certainly faster.

The V-4 cylinder engines are another Honda trademark and a selling point. Apart from the technology because it sounds different to big V-twins and regular in-line 4’s. One day I might own a V4 but for now just a blogger on this motorcycle. The current VFR800 and the ST1300 are the only two other production with V4’s I can think of. Initial rumors said that the VFR1200 is replacing the VFR800 – but I can’t see the connection since the VFR1200 is significantly more expensive, bigger, and certainly styled differently from prior VFR’s. If anything it would be more suitable for the aging ST1300 Pan European although as I update this post in 2012 the ST1300 or Pan European is still available as a separate model.

In terms of design the VFR1200 reminds me of the original VFR of the 1980’s at the same time motorcycles from Japanese anime. I like lots of aspects of the design and others I’m not sure but that’s me you may think its the best thing ever!

If you are considering a VFR1200 you must also take into account the significantly updated 2010 Kawasaki GTR1400 Concours. The Kawasaki GTR is more ‘conservative’ in design but packs so much more touring focused technology as well.

Specifications for the Honda VFR1200F and VFR1200FD

Engine : 

V4 76 degrees Liquid-cooled 4-stroke Unicam®

Capacity :  1237cc
Fuel : PGM-EFI – 95 Octane – 18.5 litre tank 
Max power : 127Kw @ 10,000 RPM
129Nm @ 8750 RPM
Length x Width x Height :  2250mm x 740mm 1220mm
Kerb Weight :  277kg
Seat height :  815mm
Fuel consumption & emissions : 41.8mpg (manual) 45mpg (HFT)