Honda VFR750R

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Honda vfr750r.jpg
Honda VFR750R
Also called (RC30)
Production 90
Class Sportbike
Top Speed 144.6 mph
Spark Plug NGK CR9EH-9 '90
Battery YUASA YTX9-BS '90
Final Drive Chain: 525x106
Front Sprocket 16T
Rear Sprocket 40T
Front Tire 120/70VR-17 '90
Rear Tire 170/60VR-17 '90
Oil Filter K&N KN-303[1]
Recommended Oil Honda GN4 10W-40
Manuals Service Manual

Brochures ·

1989 Honda RC30

The Honda RC30 is a race ready motorcycle produced by Honda. It was first released to the Japanese market in the late 1980s, American enthusiasts had to wait until 1990 to get their hands on an RC30. Even then, a lofty price and limited availability made them a rare sight on public roads. They were limited the the bare minimum of 300 units required for homologation in the USA.

They contained race-inspired components such as titanium connecting rods that reduced reciprocating weight and wheel and brake pads that had quick-release mountings. Likewise the rear wheel, which carried a brake disc to the inside and a chain sprocket to the outside of a single-sided swingarm (later known as the Honda Pro Arm, and attached with a single lug nut. Its engine was based on a tuned and lightened version of the VFR750F's 748cc Liquid cooled 90-degree V4 engine, modified with an RVF-style 360 degree crankshaft instead of the 750F's 180 degree set-up. It produced a peak output of 112bhp.

It redlined at 12,500 rpm and weighed a relatively heavy 216 kg (475 pounds).

The RC30 was superseded by the RVF750 RC45 in 1994.

Racing Success[edit | edit source]

With World Superbike (WSB) four years in the planning, Honda knew what kind of bike it would need to win the championship. Fortunately the company already had such a bike in the shape of the awesome V4-powered RVF750 race bike. Trouble was, the RVF was costly to produce and certainly wouldn't have been cost effective to replicate in road bike form. So enter stage right the toned down version, the legendary Honda RC30.

True to plan, Honda won the first ever WSB championship in 1988, with hard-chargin Fred Merkel riding the wheels off it. However, even Honda doesn't always get it right straight out of the box and the RC30 experienced crankshaft and valve problems, on the track. But Honda has always learnt from its mistakes quickly and the RC30 soon became the dominant force in WSB, taking the championship title again in 1989 and 1990.

That first WSB success stirred the minds and the loose change in privateers racers pockets worldwide. Soon the RC30 was everywhere and, more importantly, winning everything.

In the senior level of World TT Formula One, men like Roger Burnett and Joey Dunlop were battling head-to-head on their RC30s, but to no avail. A young, 23-year-old Blackburn lad called Carl Fogarty weed on their fires when he won the 1988 F1 Championship, also on a RC30, the bike occupying all three positions on the podium. Joey Dunlop tasted success at the IoM TT the same year when he rode a race kitted, road-going RC30 to a new lap record in the Formula 1 TT.

Meanwhile, the RC30 was starting to set fire to the underpants of World Endurance racers, especially privateers who couldn't get near an RVF. By the time the 1989 championship was underway the Honda was occupying the starting positions previously held by Suzuki and Kawasaki machinery.

Demand for race RC30s meant few examples of the hand-built Honda made it onto the open road. At the time the official list price for the Honda was £8499, although stories of £10k or more being exchanged to secure one is believable.

Carl Fogarty said: It was ahead of its time like the Ducati 916 a few years later. On road circuits it worked well and I didn't have any problems but on short circuits I had a problem with the front end. It has the fastest engine out there, but the front end stopped me winning so many races. At a long fast corner like Gerrards at Malory as you wound on the gas the front tried to tuck then the next minute it would be bucking and weaving. The only way to stop it was to back off, something Inever wanted to do.

The RC-30 won countless National and International races, including the 1988 and 1989 World Superbike championships with American Fred Merkel in the saddle.

1987 VFR750R[edit | edit source]

1987 Honda VRF750R RC30

1989 VFR750RJ[edit | edit source]

1989 VFR750 RJ

1990 VFR750R[edit | edit source]

The VFR750R'90 RC30 was sold in 1990 and was available in one color scheme: Ross White with Wistaria Blue, Seychell Blue, and Red. The bike had twin round headlights. There was a single-sided swingarm. The exhaust system was stainless steel. The engine had titanium connecting rods. The engine was a 748cc DOHC 16 valve liquid-cooled V-4 linked to a 6-speed transmission. The serial number began JH2RC300*LM200001.

1991[edit | edit source]

1991 Honda RC30

This Honda RC30 motorcycle was prepared by Two Brothers Racing for Freddie Spencer to contest the 1991 AMA Superbike series. Spencer rode it to victory at the Streets of Miami event. In 1992, this same motorcycle was used as Spencer's backup bike, and he rode it to victory at Texas World Speedway. Some of the Special Honda Racing Corporation components on this machine are: frame, brakes, cartridge forks, wheels, exhaust system, 41mm carburetors, pistons, titanium valves, and connecting rods, transmission, ignition, radiator, handlebars, wiring harness, tachometer, water temperature gauge, rear shock absorber, deep sump oil pan, cylinder heads and cam shafts.