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EazyRider

98-99 vs 00-01

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Is there any worthwhile difference between the early 5th generations and the later 5th generations ? 

 

I think I read something about the early bikes having a couple extra hp due to less emissions equipment ?

 

Is that true ? Any other advantages/disadvantages to consider ? 

 

I'm considering a 99 and an 01. Both have about the same mileage. 

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Afaik, there were no significant difference between 5th gen VFR800s from 1998 to 2001. Certainly none that affected handling or power.

 

But a few changes popped up, mostly starting with the 2000 model. They include eliminating the manual cold start lever, changing to sleeker mirrors, and changing to more stylish foot pegs for the rider.

 

Different colours were available during the run, but not every region had the same choices.

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The emissions equipment you're probably thinking of is that starting in 2000 5th gens had a catalytic converter and O2 sensor, absent on 98/99 models.  The non-cat models have mild steel headers vs stainless 2000 forward, so earlier models could be more prone to corrosion.   That can be rectified should another batch of custom "Wade brand" headers be made. 

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As said 00-01 models got a cat, narrower heads & O2 narrowband sensors for closed loop running for emissions control purposes. This lot added 2Kg of weight & Honda claims they adjusted things so it made the same power or more as the 98-99 models.

 

If any bike you look at has replacement exhaust headers, then they will have 98-99 model copies with no cat. If they still have stock headers, then the cat is probably dead now they are all 18-19years old ! 

 

Condition is better than year, I’d rather have a well cared for 98 model, than a poorly loved 01 !   YMMV

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Note the '98-'99 California spec bikes had different cam profiles and a few, 3-4, less hp, so check the VIN tag for 49-state or CA market. I'd still rather have a well cared for CA '99 bike than a poor condition '01, it really comes down to how they were treated.

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