Honda wants owners of the iconic VFR750R to keep their bikes running. The Japanese motorcycle maker has announced that it will be reproducing genuine parts for arguably one of the most iconic motorcycles ever produced in history.
The Honda VFR750R with a model code RC30, was a fully-faired single-seater racing motorcycle created for homologation purposes for the (then new) World Superbike Championship (WSBK) by Honda Racing Corporation (HRC). It was first released to the Japanese market in 1987, 1988 in Europe, then the United States in 1990. There were only 3,000 VFR750R units ever made and were sold for US$15,000 each — which was quite expensive (roughly $30,000 or PhP1.530M in today's money) for a production bike at the time.
Officially announced last week, Honda's "VFR750R (RC30) Refresh Plan" is a program designed to keep the remaining VFR750Rs in prime condition.
As part of the Refresh Plan, Honda will establish a "Motorcycle Refresh Center" for the model, where a skilled mechanic will restore it to the best condition possible. In addition, genuine parts will be reproduced and sold to customers to aid in their maintenance.
To help customers more easily decide which service they'd prefer, Honda will create a refresh plan menu which includes a parts list, prices, and for those who wish to avail of the Refresh Center services, a timeline from application to delivery.
Honda will release the Refresh Plan as well as list of parts and services in June 2020. At the moment, these Honda genuine parts for the VFR750R are available for the Japanese Domestic Market only and Honda has yet to announce its availability for other markets.
Why the VFR750R?
This decision came about because some of the members of the development team of the new CBR1000RR-R also happen to be owners or collectors of the VFR750R. As you may have probably guessed, parts for such models are quite hard to procure these days. Some even turn to custom parts specialists (which are very expensive) just to fabricate their needed pieces.
That being said, the development team proposed a program to revive Honda genuine parts production for the RC30.
“Genuine parts to be remanufactured are carefully selected based on the requests from customers and dealers, in addition to parts that are expected to deteriorate over 30 years or regular replacement parts, etc. We have been considering manufacturing with the cooperation of related departments in the company,” said one of Honda's engineers.
Ahead of its time
For those not familiar, the VFR750R is considered by many to be advanced for its time. It is powered by a 90-degree V4 liquid-cooled 748cc engine, 16-valve DOHC that produces 120 Ps (118 hp) at 11,000 rpm. The RC30's engine is also equipped with titanium connecting rods (a first on a production bike), a wide-ratio gearbox, slipper clutch, and a whole lot more of racing-inspired engine components.
Honda VFR750R (RC30) racing on the Isle of Man in 1992.
The RC30's fully-adjustable suspension (made by Showa) was also considered as one of the best during its time. Perhaps, one of the more pronounced features of the RC30 was its use of the Proarm (single-sided swingarm) which is uncommon for Japanese bikes, even now. The engine and low position of the fuel in the fuel tank gave the RC30 a low center of gravity, which aided its handling prowess. It had a top speed of 246 km/h which was very fast for a middleweight bike at the time of its introduction.