Practical Sportsbikes (UK) : 2021-02-01

PS SELECTOR : 42 : 42


£500-£900: £1200-£1800: £2000-£3000: Practical Sportsbike­s 42 I t’s a mystery whyvfr750f­s are still so affordable.arguably the best-built bike of the 1980s, and a mighty capable all-rounder to boot. It had to be brilliant after the disastrous­vf750s/f sullied the reputation of Hondav4s. But the VFR – strangely – has yet to enjoy anything like the reverence it surely deserves. I’ve had two of the things, an ’86 FG (briefly) and a 1990 FL that did me proud as a daily commuter, weekend scratcher and long-haul tourer for almost two years. Both behaved flawlessly. Neither ever let me down nor complained, regardless of how fast or loose I got with servicing. Of the two, the earlier FG was lighter, sportier and perhaps more fun, and yet still just as capable of brushing off a 250-mile trip as if it were a half-hour commute.these formativev­frs, or RC24S if you insist on code, represente­d the apex of Honda’s abilities as a manufactur­er back in the mid-’80s; the company literally threw everything they had at this 750 in a bid to show the world that itsv4s weren’t in fact crap after all. It got gear-driven cams, an aluminium beam chassis that would have done HRC proud, plus a level of finish, equipment and sophistica­tion that made its rivals look tatty. The motor has a character all its own.a deceptivel­y rapid unit that, once past the low rpm whirr of its cam gears, thrums its way purposeful­ly to a peak of 10,500rpm without the shrieking “look at me” shrill of an inline four, but yet with similar pace. Unsurprisi­ngly it’s like av-twin and a convention­al four rolled into one. Early RC24 chassis will be showing their age by now.the then up-to-the-minute but now hopelessly out of date 16/18-inch PRICE GUIDE Expect something grotty – broken plastics, non-stock paint, needing major work to get back on the road. A good source of spares or base as a special/project. Engines are worth pennies – they’re so reliable, no one buys them. A presentabl­e rider.. Expect a deviation from standard with exhaust, seat, screen, brakes and, if you’re lucky, a suspension upgrade. Mot’d and ready to run. Complete, original (an aftermarke­t exhaust is probable), Honda plastics throughout with a good record of receipts and service history. Comfy, dependable, and a VFR can boogie with the best of them HOUND TIDY MINT