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to VFR, or not to VFR

Discussion in 'General Motorcycling Discussion' at netrider.net.au started by XLAR8, Mar 24, 2011.

  1. so this is for all the VFR riders out there...

    iam starting to look at what bike iam going to upgrade to and ive been thinking about this a wee bit... I want to start touring taking in the roads and sights this country has to offer, having said that iam not a cruzer man. i like to ride every where every day (yes i even rode to get the mail out of the letter box yesterday, 3 meter round trip =D>).

    so iam going for a brand new sports tourer and the VFR 800/1200 looks and feels ok (haven't test ridden one yet).

    now where this post comes in is while researching the 2011 VFR's my google foo come up with is they are very expensive on their major services because of the VTEC engine.

    so what are people experiences with service cost on the VTEC engines, is it as earth shattering as they say or is it bearable?

    i should ask about general mileage too... like fuel per tank and how long does the rear tyre last under load.

    Cheers X
  2. For some first hand info, have a look at posts 39 and 41 here:


    I, like you, had a look at the major service costs and found them to be expensive, no doubt due to two cylinder heads including VTEC and the combined braking system plus optional ABS.

    Also, for a 246 kg (wet) motorcycle, 107 hp is a little soft, especially considering the 2011 Triumph Sprint is now up to 128 hp and the new Kawasaki Z1000SX delivers 136 hp. Not that you'll ever use that power around town, but in the middle of nowhere ...

    The final killer for me was that aesthetically, I most preferred the 2001 VFR800 in blue, but they seem to command a price premium on the second hand market because they're pre-VTEC and have bullet-proof gear-driven cams.
  3. Expensive to service because they run 4(?) vales per cylinder. So 16 valves to check clearances of. Thats if the mechanic actually does the valves instead of just charging you for it, as many dont think its necessary every 24k (as scheduled) / can't be bothered.
  4. I read a LOT on these as im also considering the VFR800 as my upgrade bike... there is a LOT of negative press about the VFR1200 so research lots there before you commit to the huge $ involved.
    VFR800 sounds like a good middle ground... but as above, the other bikes im looking at are a Triumph Sprint GT, Kwaka Z1000SX, and the old but gold ZZR1100 (if i go the cheap route for now).
  5. Some of the negative press about the 1200 was mouthed on the spec sheet alone, before the bike was ridden. A few reviewers have backflipped once they rode it. No V-Tec either, but it's an expensive bike.

    On the other hand, it's hard to find a review that doesn't pan the Sprint GT for its handling. Most suggest the ST is a far better bike, and so is the Tiger 1050. SX does look like a contender.
  6. I have an 07 :(
    Anywho they are a great bike. 107ps is exaggerating. Honda not you. Try about 85rwps on a dyno. So I am thinking around 96 at the crank.
    But it does it in a good way. It never feels that underpowered on the road if your sensible. And if your brave enough to hold it open, it will still snap at the heels of your mates sports bikes.
    It is heavy and feels it. Not too badly but it is slow to change direction and settle into a corner compared to a sporty. But then again it was going quick and starting to get to the edge of the basic suspensions limits. I think stiffer springs would go along way to making the bike feel and react lighter. A decent rear is a must. I am just going to re-spring and shim the forks.
    As for the valves. They are meant to be serviced every 25,000km. Known a few to go fifty. (read majority) And would bet my left nut there are still more than a few that have never had the head off. So yeah one service will beat you up. They are so easy to do the minors on yourself. They are very popular world wide. There is dedicated web sites to them. Everything you need to know is on them.
    You can ride them all day because they don't beat you up. They are so predictable. Which makes them so easy and a pleasure to ride.
    06 onwards the 800's did not change. So why buy new ??? 07's are like ten grand or less now. Maybe try and get one that just had the valves serviced.
    They need cans PC5 and a filter. Then they look, sound and well go ok.
    Put a grand into the suspension and whoa. Nice bike.
  7. I think you're underestimating a little. Or I've got a pretty strong 750. I have a dyno sheet from my '95 kicking around somewhere that reads about 97hp at the tread. One of my mates was pissed 'cause my bike made more than his mildly ported and chambered 750 kettle on the same dyno. Ha ha ha.

    Oh yeah -great bikes. Just drop some heavier springs in the forks. I have 0.9kgs (I think from memory) in mine and it makes a world of difference. Depending on the model, raising the rear ride hide and/or dropping the front sharpens them up nicely. They are a bit fat though. Every single one of them.
  8. I have read a lot of comparisons between the Bird and the VFR 1200, one bloke even sold his Bird and bought the VFR1200, then wished he hadnt,
    The Blackbird is a far better bike all round,
    The VFR 1200 was supposed to replace the Blackbird, it failed miserably,
  9. My 98 VFR has 101hp at the rear still
  10. my 06 Bird has 164 HP at the crank,
  11. I'm going off what I have seen from posts on VFR world. like posting a pic of their graph. And most were in the high eighties.
    The best I have seen is 106rwhp. And that was with cans, pc, filter and three runs on a dyno. This is 06 onwards.
    Well there is a supercharged one with high 160's.
    I think the 2000 models had more power. Or were easier to extract more.
    With the 06 onwards they smoothed out the surge when the valves cut in. It still pulls down low the same as the 05's. So basically they had taken a bit out of the top. Or made it more linear.
    I liked the earlier models shunt as the valves came on. It felt like a two stroke coming on pipe. Good fun :)
    Dunno but I think there are better bikes than the 1200. Aimed fair and square at the American market. And for the price .... nah. Looks like Mr droopy draws.
  12. Mmm supercharged VFR 800


    Source here
  13. Whilst I agree they aren't the most powerful bikes out there, you really don't need any more.

    I've got an aftermarket can on mine, but stock computer and intake (so would barely affect power at all) and it can still power wheelie in 2nd without any provoking/bouncing involved.

    Very comfortable, very fun, tis a little hard to throw viciously into corners due to the weight but still more manageable than you'd expect considering..

    As a weekender or track bike I would certainly look elsewhere but for an everyday reliable machine you can't go wrong.

    +1 for the blue 5th gen paint too :p
  14. I have an '08 VFR800, and I highly recommend it. I haven't reached the 24k service yet, but I understood from the start that it was expensive. As far as fuel goes, around town I'm starting to look for fuel at around 250k, but on a run it can easily do more than 300. Using Ultimate, it costs around $20 to fill at present. No big deal compared to a car, but I'm sure there are plenty of bikes that are more economical. For me that $20 is a weeks commuting and would be $80-90 in my car.

    I like it the way it is, but if I was to change anything I'd go for heli-bars or similar to make the seating position a bit easier for touring. The power is plenty, but you need to change gears a fair bit to get it.

    I got a puncture in my back tyre at around 5000 km and replaced both tyres soon after. The web opinion seems to be that the tyres it comes with are not that great. I got Dunlop Roadsmart and they seem to be good for what I do with it and are still OK after about 5,000 km.

    The VFR1200 doesn't do it for me, and if there was an updated Blackbird I'd probably be looking at that as an upgrade. As it is, I'm thinking BMW. One of the best features (so far) is that the VFR has been completely reliable, and I put that down a lot to that it is not modified. I found out from cars at an early age that the more money you spend on mods, the less reliable it becomes, so I have kept it stock.
  15. Seriously...90 or 196hp...does it really matter?
    Its just a number, and none of you will ever use all of anything over 100hp unless your on a track or you ride like an idiot. Torque is far more important in the real world anyway, unless as I just said, you drive like an idiot or you want to loose your license/life.

    Australians are fast becoming the worst of the world in terms of spec sheet snobbery. What happened to choosing bikes for their 'character', their feel, even their aesthetics. What happened to the popularity of tuning/designing engines to have less horsepower but a broader more usable power curve?

    Anyway I've heard a lot of grumbles about the new VFR 1200's but everyone that I've met that owns one loves it to bits. Good on Honda for stepping up to the plate and trying to move the industry forward, they took the bullet that someone had to take.
    My 2cents :)
  16. I just completed a 3000 km trip up to the Snowies with 2 mates. One was on a thou & the other on a 1200. I felt the 800 did everything just as well & comfortably. I guess it comes down to what you want out of a bike. For me the 800 is more than enough as far as power goes but I can understand some want more power & a lighter bike to boot. Lots of good sports tourers out there but I love the V4. Good luck with the search.
  17. VFR 1200 is the evolution of the VFR 800,
  18. Too true. I far prefer to ride my 50-60 hp bikes. But I take offence to your statement that you need 100 hp + to ride like an idiot. I can do that quite successfully with only 50.
  19. lol :), yeah but you know what I mean, reaching the peak output/speeds on a 100+hp machine on a public road is a little mental.

    Hell I can ride like an idiot on my 250 :p
  20. 1500 Blackbird would be nice,
    And yes, I am Mental.