Development of Honda‘s new production racer is well underway, as the new (relatively) low-cost MotoGP racebike underwent testing at Japan’s Twin Ring Motegi circuit May 23-24. Conceived as a lower-cost option for race teams, the production racer project is running slightly behind schedule but Honda still expects it will available in time for the 2014 […]
Leaked Document Allegedly Reveals New Honda VFR800F, CTX1300, CBR650F, CB650F and CB250F
An allegedly leaked document posted on a Japanese blog lists several new Honda models names including the VFR800F, CTX1300, CBR650F, CB650F, CB250F and possibly an updated CBR250R. It’s not clear where the image originally posted on Baikuto originally sprang from, or whether the information it contains is accurate. But if the document is legitimate, then it reveals what we should expect from Honda in the months to come.
The document has a watermark; it’s partially obscured, but it appears to show the Japanese characters “事業計画” (which translates to “business plan”) beside the letters “REAM”, or possibly, “DREAM”, a commonly-used Honda corporate buzzword. Beyond that, there’s little evidence to prove the information is legitimate. Still, that hasn’t stopped the Japanese blogosphere from making some conjectures, and it’s not going to stop us either.
The document lists 20 models separated by displacement classes, with approximate Japanese pricing. A key distinction about the models listed is that they are almost all either new models or recently revised ones announced in the past year such as the CBR400R, CB400F and 400X (the 400cc Japanese versions of the 500cc models offered here in North America), the CTX700 and the SH 125 Mode, a new scooter announced for Europe and Japan last week.
Six of the models however have not yet been announced from Honda. These include the NCX50, CBR650F, CB600F, VFR800F and CB250F. Also listed, but without a price, is the CBR250R which is neither a new model nor a recently updated one. The CBR250R’s presence on this list may suggest that it is getting an update, its first since its introduction in 2011.
The document reveals little information about these new models apart from the pricing, but we can make some educated guesses based on the model names.
The CTX1300 is a logical extension of Honda’s Comfort Technology eXperience philosophy introduced in 2013 with 700cc models. Honda already confirmed it would introduce more models with the CTX brand in various engine displacements and configurations. Honda’s 1312cc V-Twin engine currently used in the Fury and Sabre is an obvious choice to power another CTX model. Another intriguing but far less-likely possibility is a variation of the 1261cc V-4 used in the ST1300. Either way, expect Honda to offer the CTX1300 with its second-generation Dual Clutch Transmission (DCT) and anti-lock brakes.
The CBR650F should sound familiar to consumers in Europe where Honda introduced the CBR600F in 2011. Powered by a previous-generation CBR600RR Inline-Four engine, the CBR600F was a fully-faired sportbike with a more comfortable, upright seating posture than the RR. It’s a safe bet the CBR650F is replacing the 600F to compete against competitors such as the Kawasaki Ninja 650. Likewise, the CB650F is likely a naked variant to compete against the Kawasaki ER-6n and Suzuki SFV650.
The VFR800F is a familiar name that has been absent from Honda’s offerings for several years. Expect the new VFR800F to be a sport-tourer with similar styling to the VFR1200F but powered by the V-4 engine currently powering the Honda Crossrunner. Incidentally, the Crossrunner also appears on the list as the VFR800X, suggesting it might be an adventure-styled machine that may be sold in Japan or that it received an update.
Perhaps the most intriguing names are the CBR250R and CB250R, neither of which have any pricing information. The CBR250R is facing renewed competition after Kawasaki replaced its Ninja 250 with the more powerful Ninja 300, so it makes sense for Honda to give the little CBR an update. A naked CBR250R has long been rumored, especially after Honda introduced the CB150R Streetfire for Indonesia last October.
Another new model name included on the list but the one least likely to make it to North America is the NCX50. Based on the pricing and position on the list, the NCX50 is likely a 50cc scooter, one of many Honda offers in Japan such as the Zoomer (which we may know better in North America as the Ruckus.)
Once again, we can’t prove this allegedly leaked document is legitimate, but we likely won’t find out until November at the 2013 EICMA show where Honda is expected to reveal its new 2014 models.