1982 Honda VF750S This was the first bike to feature the all new V4 750. It had cruiser styling and shaft drive. The engine ran anti-clockwise.
1983 VF750F The same engine, but running forwards not backwards and this time in a decent, sporting chassis with looks to match. Early models had top end problems. They were sorted by 1984 but the stigma stuck and the model was discontinued in 1985.
1983 Honda VF400F Amazing little bike: it featured TRAC, air assisted suspension front and rear, and inboard ventilated discs (an answer to a problem that probably didn’t exist). Frame tubes were round rather than square.
1984 Honda VF500F Pocket size version released in 1984. Tester Jim Lindsay wrecked the bottom end of one on a Honda launch in South Africa while attempting to keep up with rapid UK journalist Roland Brown. Doh!
1984 Honda VF1000 The biggest variant of the original V4 also had a short production life, lasting just four years, ending in 1987. At the TT in 1985 Geoff Johnson (sadly now deceased), against all odds, took victory in the 751-1500cc Production race. Riding a VF1000F2 Bol d’or he won by 3.8 seconds from Kawasaki GPZ900R mounted Bill Simpson.
1984 Honda VF1000R Currently the only early V4 Honda with collectable status. It was a beauty to behold. It featured gear-driven cams in a heavily revised engine and was aimed at production racing. However, it was way too heavy to be competitive and also cost an eye-watering £5489 new (which is £17,252 in today’s money). It did not catch on at the time but prices are heading up – definitely a future classic.