The Honda VFR1200F - Tested


The Honda VFR1200F shines when it comes to performance. The awkward-to-begin-with riding position makes complete sense when you get the chance to have some fun. It steers and responds to your inputs like a sportsbike, holds a line better than any other sports-tourer available, and has more instantly-available power on tap too. The power delivery is a little abrupt – I feared spinning the rear wheel when exiting wet corners. It would be nice if Honda fitted traction-control into the VFR1200F. It already weighs around 300 kilograms, so what difference is a few more kilos going to make?

If the counter argument is that the Honda VFR1200F is built with cost in mind, then why does it cost so much? Bear in mind, it appears to be fitted with so little. Anyway, it handled all of the high-speed tests we could throw at it, with the same ease it handled the hard-cornering stuff. It's particularly impressive through town, considering the bulk and the dimensions. I never expected that I would wanted to try the Honda VFR1200F on a race track.

The riding position may feel odd at first, your arms not quite in tune with your legs, but the more time you spend on the VFR1200F the more it makes sense.
For fuel efficiency lots has been said of the tank range of the Honda VFR1200F. In the touring sector, it's reasonable to expect a motorcycle to be able to do 320 kilometers between petrol station stops, the VFR1200F doesn't manage that. But it will do 274 kilometers, by which time you'll probably be looking for a rest anyway.

The key appealing factor for the Honda VFR1200F is the accessibility of the performance. Instant drive in pretty much any gear will make overtaking time of traffic a doddle. It only really starts to run out of power at an indicated 234 km/h, but if you rode this fast all day you'd probably spend as much time at the petrol station as you would on the motorcycle.

As the Honda VFR1200F is a sports-tourer, where's the center-stand, the traction-control and the multi-map fueling? It's not fair to say that, in this sector, motorcycles don't need this kind of stuff, as others sports-tourers in the same price class already have it as standard. It's not a cheap motorcycle and the quality of what's there reflects this, though we do feel that potential owners might have second thoughts at the idea of spending over 900,000 THB on the motorcycle, then having to dig a little deeper to pay for the good stuff.
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