honda rc30 marked a huge leap forward in japanese motorcycle design. it was the first japanese bike to rival the beauty and build quality previously the domain of exotic specialists like bimota. when it hit the market in 1988 the press were in danger of running out of superlatives. dealers soon ran out of bikes to sell to the well-heeled enthusiasts who queued up to spend twice the price of a suzuki gsx-r on the most talked-about bike for years. and the talk was certainly no exaggeration. the rc30 combined the light weight, quick steering and fantastic rider feedback of a race bike with excellent ride quality, reliability and perfectly stable behaviour on even the most indifferent road surface.
1987 honda rc30
the rc30 - also called the vfr750r, but everyone referred to it by its factory code name -was based on the all-conquering full-factory rvf750 endurance and f1 bike. when f1 gave way to world superbikes, one-off bikes like the rvf were no longer eligible, so the rc was designed from the start as a limited edition road bike, intended to sell just enough to qualify for world superbikes. crucial parts - such as chassis, engine casings and carbs can't be changed under wsb rules, so they needed to be ready to race. in other areas, honda were free to concentrate on making the rc30 reliable and user-friendly for the road, knowing that those parts could be changed for racing if necessary. the rc's v-four is a superb road engine. it's smooth, extremely powerful and very reliable. it's also instantly recognisable - you can't mistake the sound or feel of a honda v-four, whether you're sitting on a standard rc30 blipping the throttle, or sitting by the side of the tt course listening to a tuned example on full throttle. on the road, even first gear on the rc's close-ratio box is enough to take you to 80mph, so full load in top gear isn't something the rc has to put up with very often.
1988 honda vfr 750f-j
1988 honda vfr 750r rc30 rothmans replica
1989 honda vfr 750f-j
changes in '88-89 european models were mostly bodywork. plastic from an '86-87 (two-part fairing) will not fit on an '88-89 (three-part fairing). the intsrument panel is different and so are the controls on the handlebars. windshield was changes as well (the '88-89 has an adjustable windshield; two fixed positions - not motorized). the turnsignals are different. mufflers are polished instead of black. 17 wheels front and rear. no major change in the engine or chassis.
1990 honda rc30
ex-carl fogarty f1 tt & senior tt winner. image kindly provided by www.classic-auctions.co.uk.
1990 honda rc30
ex-joey dunlop. image kindly provided by www.classic-auctions.co.uk.
1990 honda vfr 750f rc36
liquid cooled, four stroke, 90°v-four cylinder, dohc, 4 valve per cylinder. 102bhp @ 9800rpm 6 speed 216kg disc brakes
1990 honda vfr 750r rc30
1991 honda vfr 750f rc36
1992 honda vfr 750f rc36
1993 honda vfr 750f rc36
1994 honda vfr 750f
1995 honda vfr 750f
honda claims to have made some 300 changes to our beloved vfr. the new bodywork is styled after the nr750 (honda's oval piston wonder bike) u.s. d.o.t. has seen the light and mounted the rear turn signals are where god (or at least honda) intended them to be (in the bodywork).
1996 honda vfr 750f
1997 honda vfr 750f