The one bike to rule them all?
With MCN tipped to publish new details of the Honda RCV road bike this week it is definitely a hot topic of conversation. Where will Honda take their flagship model?
It’ll be a V4, there is little doubt about that. With an estimated price tag of £30k there will be some fancy metals in there too. That sort of money means that the engine will be uber high revving and uber responsive. The real experience for the road user will be the ride by wire throttle Honda will undoubtedly use. No other road bike will feel as responsive or instant as the RCV road bike. Expect some fancy valves but probably not the fully fledged pneumatic valves the RC213V has. It’ll be a loud engine too, if they really intend to make it derived from their GP bike then expect some really smart engineering to keep the volume down and some really really expensive Akrapovic exhaust pipes to send the volume sky rocketing again.
Honda has easily the smartest electronics package in MotoGP, we could shortly be saying the same thing of their road bikes. Expect near seamless shifting, back ends sliding and adaptive suspension. The mapping packages could mean that you can upload settings to your bike which will be really exciting for track nuts. Little is known as to how many sensors will be on board, gyros, inertia sensors and accelerometers could add up to quite the track day weapon if Honda are including them. Features like anti-wheelie would be very interesting to look out for.
At £30k Honda have a little wiggle room to add a dash of carbon fibre here and there and some nice light metals to improve the handling. Don’t expect carbon swing arms but the wheels should certainly be bespoke. Weight will be saved through not having the usual pillion comforts and other such niceties we take for granted on a road bike.
The Honda RCV road bikes competition
Well there isn’t much really is there. The Ducati Desmosedici was around the same price and at the time was lauded as the closest thing to a GP bike. The Desmo is 5 years old now though and really won’t keep up. The BMW s1000RR HP4 will have a go but probably won’t manage. The most interesting thing would be if it is actually a success. Let’s face it Ferrari, Lamborghini and Aston Martin aren’t doing to badly. Could we see a breed of high price hyperbikes from the big manufacturers? The rich and the famous have the choice between a Hellcat and a Desmosedici if they want to splash their cash, in this day an age it can pay to go big.
Image source: RC212V by Repsol Honda