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interceptor69

Cycle World article

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1 hour ago, interceptor69 said:

 

Good read.  This sentence

 

" The first 1,200 Interceptors were sucked out of dealerships so fast, it made our ears pop. "  

 

is sad commentary on how much times have changed.  Now, 4+ years after the last one was imported to the U.S., they can still be found new in dealer's showrooms. 

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Really enjoyed reading that - thanks for sharing, interceptor69. 

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Back in the 80's and 90's the VFR was a big deal ,I think what changed it was when they went more touring oriented with the 1200. That, and the fact that that there are so many more great bikes around today, multistrada, tuono, super duke gt, bmw. For a few grand more than Hondas asking price, you could get a much better bike.

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In the 80s, VFRs were revolutionary. They tore up the racing circuit, especially AMA. the RC30 in 1990 was all over it, wining Isle of Man and still competitive years later. That's when the 3rd gen came out and got a little more toury, more all arounder.

 

So, yeah, of course they were a big deal. They were cutting edge 30 years ago. They definitely weren't by the 6th gen.

 

And that was a time when motorcycles were booming in popularity. Harley Davidsons to sport bikes. Pre Evo HD was bankrupt and had to get congress to put taxes on imports just to compete, in the 90s you had to wait in line for delivery. Sport bikes were evolving rapidly, the new frames were making for lighter bikes so all the early 80s racers that weighed 500+lbs were traded in for ones 100lbs lighter, tires were getting better, suspensions were getting better (monoshocks, then UD forks)...  90s saw the GSXRs and the first modern Ducati, 00s saw the R6 and R1. Shit was changing fast and bikes were getting better fast, so when honda went away from the V4 for superbike the VFR was definitely done evolving as a cutting edge machine. But still, it was an exciting time for motorcycling and lots of people liked motorcycles. We used to have bike nights at a bar and a coffee shop in town and it was easy to have a dozen or more bikes parked along the curb out front.

 

Now most bikes are good. Damned good. But kids these days -- yeah, I said that phrase -- kids these days are more risk averse than ever before. Drivers are also more distracted than ever before, cell phones and in dash bullshit are a blight. I never used to have people lecture me about how dangerous my motorcycle was in the old days, but they all do it now. And almost entirely from a point of ignorance. I mean, bikes are more dangerous than other transportation, but decidedly not for the reasons I get lectured on. All the helicopter parenting caused a bunch of people to hit their 20s without driver's licenses and live at home until they are 30, and they have a different appreciation of things than 20 somethings in 1990.  I see far more people my age riding than 20 somethings. The opposite of what it was like 25 years ago.

 

And the economic downturn in 08-09 was the nail in the coffin.

 

The 1200 was different, but I don't think it was the change.  I just think the times changed underneath the VFR all the way back to the 5th gen, and Honda hadn't really seen reason to update the 800s for a few years before it came out. And they introduced it into the worst possible world climate for a more expensive bike.

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I think the real change was WSBK regs. When 750’s were the max size, most people still rode that size bike, and the 750/800 VFR’s were still relevant. Then the 1000’s got lighter fitter & faster than the 750’s, plus the 600’s got up 750 performance levels. Suzuki were the only manufacturer to stay true to the 750 class.  Everyone else either dropped them or made them naked or touring machines then dropped them as the emissions updates forced them out of production ☹️ RIP VFR, though it’s still for sale in Europe. Soon to be replaced by the EFR in the next generation !!

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