How much for Honda's RCV road bike?

Does £38k sound about right?

Posted: 21 November 2012
by Visordown News

Could Honda's new RC cost over £100,000?

HONDA'S road-going MotoGP-inspired superbike could cost as little as £38,000 according to some Japanese reports – but others put the price as high as quarter of a million pounds!

The whole issue is confused because Honda is developing not one but two machines, both derived from the RC213V MotoGP bike and both set to be offered for sale. One will be the firm's rival to Aprilia's ART off-the-shelf MotoGP bike, the other a true road-going superbike.

It seems likely that the higher priced bike, placed at “more than” 30 million Yen in Japan (over £230,000), will be the racer. Effectively slightly down-spec'd RC213V it's no surprise to see it costing so much. The bigger question hangs over the price of the road bike, due to be made in larger numbers and to be the machine to drool over when it's launched in a couple of years' time.

While some reports put its price at 5 million Yen (around £38,000), others place it at nearer 15 million Yen (£114,000). And at the moment it's still way to early to know which end of that scale it's going to sit at.

But looking at Honda's history might give a few hints. Taking inflation into account, the old RC45 from 1994 (£18,000 then) would cost around £29,000 in today's money. Factor in the higher VAT we all pay now and you'd be looking at a £30,000-plus on-the-road price. But that was a very simple and relatively high-volume bike compared to the forthcoming MotoGP-derived V4.

For a closer comparison, it's perhaps more suitable to look at the firm's NR750 from 1992. Back then, it cost a terrifying £38,000. That's more than £64,000 in today's money, and would be more like £67,000 including today's 20% VAT instead of the 15% we used to pay.

At the moment, since Honda has only just given the project the green light, the final price is actually unlikely to have been decided yet, and although the engineers working on the project must have been given a target price, it's not a figure that Honda is ever likely to release, as it would be embarrassing if the firm failed to meet it. The fluctuations between the Yen and other currencies will also have a huge impact.

Can the market sustain a bike that's likely to cost in excess of £50k? In fact, it seems it probably can. Ducati's £40,000 Desmosedici RR flew out of showrooms, even when the production was pushed to its maximum of 1500 machines (making more would have meant re-tooling the production line at enormous cost).

When it comes to specification, the Japanese sources are all agreed that some form of seamless-shift transmission is likely to be used, along with high-spec datalogging and traction control. The exact type of gearbox may vary between the road and race versions – dual-clutch systems like Honda's DCT are more suitable for road bikes but are banned in MotoGP, where Honda has instead developed a single-clutch seamless-shift box at vast expense. This seems likely to be carried over to the firm's CRT machine providing it can be made cheaply enough (at the moment, each of the works Repsol bikes' gearboxes is thought to carry a six-figure price tag).

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Discuss this story

The good news is that surely will not have to make a lot of them at those figures flying around ... I cannot wait for all the posters to open their walltes, "Just make one already, and I will buy two ..." ... LOL

Posted: 21/11/2012 at 12:16

The Desmo's flew out the showroom and when I attended a GP it was obvious they were mostly bought by companies. I remember seeing one on almost every vendor booth at Laguna in 09. I think this will be similar. Some rich dudes in Hollywood will buy three each, one to ride, one to sit in the living room and one to be molested into a dirt tracker by Roland Sands. The rest will be show bikes for moto industry companies.

I just hope I get to hear one in person.

Posted: 21/11/2012 at 15:43

Don't be surprised if Honda choose to do something a little more real world and take on the 1199R, Aprilia carbon and BMW S1000rr HP4 both from a price and technology standpoint.

It seems to me the lack of development with the current Blade is a deliberate choice... both to keep the costs down and to leave a place in there range for a "premium" sport bike.

Posted: 21/11/2012 at 21:49

There's a new blade coming in 2014. This RCV will NOT, repeat NOT be a replacement for the Fireblade. This RCV will be a 50,000 quid exotica machine. Think NR750. Only MUCH better (I hope).

Posted: 22/11/2012 at 08:56

I realize that they will have no problem selling the produced allotment of the overpriced machine, what I am saying is that the people posting on the various cites are not the same people who are so excited buying them at the keyboard.

New Fireblade will be a new Fireblade, but will not be dramatically different from the old one. You will get TC and maybe a new exhaust. That's it .... You think they will release V4 based Fireblade for under 20k USD????

Posted: 22/11/2012 at 12:23

I don't get why everyone is saying it's going to be overpriced? It's going to be about as trick as a road bike gets. Do you see people whinging on because a Ferrari Enzo's expensive? No.

Essentially, people are just sore because they all want a V4 Blade and Honda are not making one, and they cannot afford this effort. In my opinion, if you want a proper race derived V4 1000cc Superbike, there's plenty of Aprilia dealers around the country that will be very happy to scratch that itch for you.

Posted: 23/11/2012 at 14:34

better be good for that sort of money!

Posted: 26/11/2012 at 10:23

Why? if its expensive it,ll probably sit in a lockup,or a day out with your Banker mates..posin and prattin around on a bike you cant ride!

Posted: 26/11/2012 at 10:49

Jealousy is a cruel cruel mistress..

Posted: 26/11/2012 at 11:15

Indeed but experience a better teacher....

Posted: 26/11/2012 at 13:56

im sure your an amazing rider and off that stuff but I quite like the idea there is still exotic bikes like this being made every now and then personally. This may go down in history and it would be nice to see it racing. we saw the RC30 race and do very well....

Posted: 27/11/2012 at 13:55

Remember the Yamaha RD 500 and Suzuki RG 500's? Honda bought out their NSR 400. When the Yamaha, Suzuki and Kawasaki did their buzzing 250cc 2 strokes Honda did the 250 4 stroke Superdream...A theme I wonder if Honda's RCV will be up against the new supercharged Ninja H2? Honda already has the CB 1000 FireBlade so would this RCV compete against a current model? Yamaha updated R1 will not be a supercharged bike and Suzuki have kept quiet about everything although it wouldn't surprise me if they now think twice about their GSXR 1000 makeover... Again will Mercedes make an MSC 1R?

Posted: 01/11/2014 at 14:51

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