2010 Honda VFR1200F - Full VFR1200 specs and pics

Get the official lowdown on Honda's new V4 sports-tourer

IF YOU'VE KEPT one eye on Visordown's news pages over the last few weeks you will have already seen Honda's new V4 in numerous leaked spy shots, but for those that want the official lowdown here's the first images of the company's long-awaited VFR1200F sports-tourer.

It's reported that from 2011 Honda will also offer a higher-spec version of the VFR1200F, which will be equipped with a sequential automatic gearbox and the much-hyped cylinder deactivation technology.

You can see the official Honda colour schemes for the VFR1200 here.

Visordown has taken the standard press image and created a gallery of colour options for the Honda VFR1200F, which you can see if you click that link.

Here's the highlights of the extensive media pack:

"To a larger degree, pure function determined the VFR1200F’s form. Mass centralisation, consummate rider control and aerodynamic efficiency provided the key underlying design criteria and from this starting point the machine’s form evolved. The remarkably narrow cylinder heads and clever cylinder spacing allowed a very narrow waist, effectively lowering the seat height thus making it easier for the rider to place both feet flat on the ground at rest. This wasp-like waist also gives the rider the feeling of being ‘in’ the bike rather than perched on top – crucial for feedback and control. The fuel tank’s elegant yet complicated contours have purpose as well as eye-pleasing aesthetics in mind. Its shape and form supports and assists the rider to add extra elements of control and heightened levels of feedback whatever the riding situation. The ergonomically styled fairing works in harmony with the fuel tank to provide extra support and efficient weather protection for the rider and pillion. Even the hand controls and switchgear with their revised button positioning are engineered to ergonomic advantage. The pillion’s comfort and security have not been overlooked, either. The supportive, vacuum-moulded dual-seat has a flat and expansive area for the pillion and strong, easy-reach grab handles and footrests positioned with comfort and security in mind.

Layered Fairing technology
The patented layered fairing design of the VFR1200F is a perfect match of form and function. Designers and engineers worked together to create a uniquely beautiful shape and, at the same time, optimal air flow and heat management. The fairing design incorporates two layers, which harnesses the benefits of flowing air to the machine’s dynamic and mechanical advantage. This has two functions; air entering between the layers and through two oval-shaped spaces in the front of the fairing is channelled in exactly the directions needed to enhance the bike’s stability at higher speeds. By effectively increasing the speed of the air by channelling it through smaller apertures before it reaches the radiators, engine cooling is optimised and the hot, exhausted air is channelled away from the rider and passenger for a cooler, more comfortable ride. The heat generated by the powerful, enclosed V4 engine is also channelled away to keep hot air away from the rider.

A balance of positive and negative surfaces gives the front of the motorcycle a light, open look while also creating a profile that slices through the wind with the least possible resistance. A strongly defined X-shape characterises the front of the machine. Concave surfaces direct the eye and air up towards the windscreen, which incorporates another air-directing aperture at its lower edge. Even the edges of the screen have been crafted to enhance stability at speed. The powerful single line-beam headlight is the same type used on the CBR1000RR Fireblade.  Its light streams into two tinted LED-look strips that frame the sides of the headlight, increasing the illusion of lightness and space.

Three colour options were selected to emphasise the highly-polished look, smooth texture and unique shapes and layers of the bodywork.

In 2010 the VFR1200F will make its debut in:

- Candy Prominence Red
- Seal Silver Metallic
- Pearl Sunbeam White

The VFR1200F engine was designed to provide its rider with high speed, quick acceleration and a strong, engaging feeling coming from the engine’s power characteristics. Honda also wanted to deliver the invigorating engine sound and feel that characterise V4 sports bikes, but with an additional focus on comfortable, responsive power delivery. The new V4 engine’s performance is delivered where it’s most useful and most enjoyable. Its linear torque curve is focused in the low and mid range, making it possible for the rider to simply roll on and off the throttle while powering through bends. The bike is capable of staying in top gear (in the same gear) between 130 and 195 km/hr, meaning that the rider only needs to concentrate on braking and steering allowing the rest of their focus to be channelled into reading the road and assessing the conditions. This effortless control makes the bike great fun to ride – this is a sports bike with real-world usable power.

Smooth delivery
There were several challenges involved in tailoring the strong V4 power for use in an all-round machine that can be used for weekend enjoyment, commuting and long-distance touring. Key elements of the VFR1200F’s power characteristics are its unrivalled response and strong torque delivery. To allow full enjoyment of the engine’s power while still providing a high level of comfort, vibration needed to be carefully managed. A unique cylinder layout was developed for this purpose. Instead of the traditional V4 cylinder configuration, with the cylinders evenly spaced front-to-rear, the VFR1200F adopts an ingenious solution in order to centralise mass and at the same time achieve a compact, space-saving solution. The rear cylinders are placed side by side but close together, while the front cylinders are more widely spaced. This layout allows for a slim, compact ‘waist’ that fits comfortably between the rider’s legs. It also supports mass centralisation, thus contributing to the bike’s balanced feel and ease of control. With no right-left couple imbalance, the need for a balancer is eliminated and friction is reduced.

A new Symmetrically Coupled Phase-shift Crankshaft (S.C.P.C.) complements the advantages of the cylinder layout. Operating with a mere 28° throw, it effectively reduces primary vibration and noise, eliminating the need for a power-sapping balance shaft. The new V4 typically produces more than 80% of its maximum torque (115.3Nm/8,500 rpm) at 3,000rpm. To allow the rider to comfortably take full advantage of this torque, delivery is smoothed by four drivetrain dampers, which further eliminate uncomfortable vibration and backlash.

Off-road technology
The VFR1200F utilises the UNICAM single overhead camshaft cylinder head design from the world-class CRF motocrossers. The logic was straightforward: in an environment where space, performance and weight are at a premium this technology was perfect for a project where mass centralisation and ergonomics were prime design criteria. Also borrowed from the CRF range is the sealed crankcase system where mechanical pumping losses are eliminated by the use of a scavenge pump to vent the unwanted crankcase pressure waves to atmosphere. This system has never been used on a road machine before but the gains for the rider are identical - electrifying throttle response and improved fuel consumption.

New transmission layout and ground-breaking shaft drive system
A compact new transmission layout contributes to high-speed stability, better cornering and improved traction capability. In the new configuration the output shaft is placed in front of the counter shaft to enhance road-holding. Moving the output shaft forwards leaves room for a longer swing-arm without extending the wheelbase length thus improving stability and traction simultaneously.

The VFR1200F features a revolutionary shaft drive system that delivers all the characteristics of a chain drive in terms of its dynamic performance without the time-wasting maintenance issues associated with chain final drive. This highly developed shaft drive system features an offset pivot point that eliminates ‘rise’ and a sliding constant velocity joint that takes up any variations in length during the rear wheel’s arc of travel. At the output shaft a clutch damper absorbs any backlash. The results are astounding; regardless of how aggressive the rider is with the throttle, this shaft drive system always behaves like a conventional chain drive. 

Refined control
A throttle-by-wire system improves the rider’s connectivity with the VFR1200F. Providing light, precise fuel metering at all engine parameters this highly developed accuracy gives the rider increased levels of control, whatever the situation. It is another individual aspect that adds to the heightened feelings of response and control.

To aid control under intense deceleration a slipper clutch is fitted, similar to the system on the CBR1000RR Fireblade. Even under the most excessive downshifting the clutch is designed to slip, thus preventing the rear wheel from inadvertently locking up, allowing the rider to stay firmly in control.
The VFR1200F frame, suspension and drive components are brought together in a unique configuration that facilitates both sports bike power and smooth stability. Its strong aluminium twin-spar diamond configuration frame is both lightweight and rigid. The swingarm and driveshaft length are optimised without extending the overall length of the motorcycle. A short wheelbase keeps the bike compact for great handling around corners, while the driveshaft remains long for improved levels of traction. Meanwhile, the long swingarm contributes to balanced, confident manoeuvring and incredible high-speed stability.

The swingarm is complemented by a compliant Pro-Link rear shock absorber with adjustable rebound damping. At the front, sturdy 43mm telescopic forks with adjustable preload provide smooth and assured control. Together, these systems ensure a comfortable ride, even with a pillion and luggage on board, and add to the overall feeling of total control.

High-performance brakes

The VFR1200F is equipped with the most highly developed brake technology for all-round sports bike use. Powerful new six-piston calipers act on large discs (320mm at the front and 276mm at the rear). A Combined Braking System creates the optimal balance of front and rear braking forces. The addition of a standard-fit compact and lightweight ABS supports both the motorcycle’s sports riding potential and its touring proficiency.