'94-97 VFR750 vs. '98-'01 VFR800 - Speedzilla Motorcycle Message Forums
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post #1 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-27-2012, 06:25 PM Thread Starter
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'94-97 VFR750 vs. '98-'01 VFR800

On the fence about these two bikes. It seems the 800 functionally would be superior (more power, fuel injection). But the 750 just looks so darn cool, like a poor man's NR750. 800 can also be had in tasty yellow.

Both are about $3000 today. The older bike maybe a little less but not enough to make a difference.

Anyway, for those that have owned/ridden both, opinions?

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post #2 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-27-2012, 07:03 PM
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I had a 94 and LOVED it until I had to have the carbs done. Some shops hate to work on the V4 carbs and will up charge you on labor.

I would go with the fuel injected model if I were to buy another. :twocents
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post #3 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-27-2012, 11:25 PM
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I've owned them both. I like the VFR750s much more, they will be classics, the VFR800 are nice but a bit too boring and heavy.

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post #4 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-28-2012, 05:36 AM
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personally I think the 94 to 97 ilk was the finest vfr hands down. it was the lightest and most sporty of them, but is still all day comfortable. the first generation of 800s is my second favorite. I like the fuelie engine before the vtech models, but either way they all seem to be more fuel thirsty than a 750 with a proper tune. more so than the 50cc difference would suggest. so fuel mileage and range were better on the 750. suspension is quite soft on them, but they actually handle very well even two up. the little lady actually drug knee off the back of mine. no bs. if you put the first 800 fuelie in the 94/97 frame you'd have a mighty sweet machine. 10 years and who know how many miles (over 60k at this point) it was every day reliable. never had any issues with the carbs and quite frankly if somebody charges more to work on vfr carbs then find a new mechanic. because they come off as a unit easy peasy and you can rebuild them completely without unbolting them from each other.

if there is anything else you wanna know you can PM me Or I'll try to make an effort to check back here.

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post #5 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-29-2012, 05:25 PM
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I put 30k miles on a 2000 (yellow) 800 and loved it. Yea it's a bit heavy, but that weight leaves as soon as you're moving. I think it's more sport touring than the 4th gen. Probably a little more comfy, more refined dash and controls. The 5th gen still had a centerstand. I wish I still had it. The 4th and 5th gen VFRs won BOTY about 8 out of 10 years!!!
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post #6 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-29-2012, 05:38 PM
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750 IMO a much better bike overall


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post #7 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-30-2012, 01:08 AM
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I like the yellow one!!!
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post #8 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-18-2012, 12:33 AM
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I haven't ridden both, but of all the bikes I've bought and sold I've kept my '95 750 around. There's no way I'd let someone have her for $3k.

Sporty enough for real-world roads, comfortable enough to ride for hours. I've owned most of the motor configurations available and the V-4 is my favorite.
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post #9 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-18-2012, 01:41 AM
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Cam chains versus gear drive hmmmm??...
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post #10 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-18-2012, 02:31 AM
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so for someone who doesent know anything. was pre 94 not good years?
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post #11 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-18-2012, 04:10 AM
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Honda VF and VFR - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

2004 RC-51 (SOLD)
2007 BMW GSA..in rebuild thanks to a deer
2012 BMW GSA
2008 WR250R
2009 CRF230L
2011 CAN-AM SPYDER
19995 VFR 750
2008 NINJA 250
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post #12 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-18-2012, 07:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phoenixr2 View Post
so for someone who doesent know anything. was pre 94 not good years?
I maybe be little biased as I have an absolutely pristine 1986 VFR 750...she is a beauty with 2 sets of body work stock with 0 miles on them and a set of Rothmans colours.

I even have the stock red, white and blue solo cowl : )
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post #13 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-18-2012, 03:05 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phoenixr2 View Post
so for someone who doesent know anything. was pre 94 not good years?
The first years for the 750 ('86 & '87), the Interceptor was considered a real front-line sportbike and actually won AMA championships over the Yamaha FZ and Suzuki GSXR.

For the next few years the bike was progressively softened in focus as the CBR line became Honda's sportier option.

1994 was the first year for the gorgeous red bike shown above whose styling reminded one of the unobtainable NR750. In 1998 the VFR800 was introduced with fuel injection.

2002 saw the model most new riders would know that was made until 2009. It uses variable valve timing which makes servicing Ducati-esque expensive at the dealer. At the same time it didn't really have a noticable increase in overall power for the trouble.

Therefore many consider the '94-97 (carbs), and '98-01 (FI) the "sweet spot" for the line as whole if you want a do-it-all bike.

In my mind, if I were to fill a garage with V4 Hondas that were not the super-expensive RC30 or RC45, this would be the order I would search them out:
1) 1994-97 VFR750
2) '85-86 VF1000R
3) '86-87 VF750R
4) '98-01 VFR800 Interceptor
5) '07 VFR800 Interceptor Anniversary colors (r/w/b)
6) '10 VF1200 DCT

1985 Honda VF1000R, 1990 Ducati 851, 2008 YZ450F
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post #14 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-18-2012, 04:23 PM
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Nice summary sburns

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Originally Posted by sburns2421 View Post
1994 was the first year for the gorgeous red bike shown above whose styling reminded one of the unobtainable NR750.
If you haven't seen one in person, there's something else about them that doesn't show in the pics.

The red paint actually has a metallic flake that gives the bike an awesome bluish sheen out in the sun.

The detail goes all the way down to the Honda emblems on the tank as well...the black emblems also have a light gold flake.

2004 RC-51 (SOLD)
2007 BMW GSA..in rebuild thanks to a deer
2012 BMW GSA
2008 WR250R
2009 CRF230L
2011 CAN-AM SPYDER
19995 VFR 750
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post #15 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-29-2012, 03:34 AM
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The 5gen is a great bike but I could never get past the bland (IMO) styling. I stuck with the 4gen and skipped the 5gen while waiting for the 6gen. In fact, I've owned two of each of those generations over the years. Here's a pic of the one time I actually owned a "stable". OK, it was only for about a month but....





The 4gen is a much easier bike to work on; no FI or linked brakes. Carbs aren't THAT hard to service if you know the tips. The 4gen also responds very well and very easily to cheap, yet effective mods. A $250 F4i front end will transform the handling. Tons of mods to my second one (96):




But my first one (94), stayed true to the cause.





Both generations were great day long warriors as I'm very sure the 5gen is too.

Doug

05 RC51 da' Black Beast
96 RCBVFR 750 Custom
02 VFR sold
98 VTR SuperBling sold
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post #16 of 23 (permalink) Old 04-22-2012, 02:11 AM
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I bought a 1990 FL model (1st of the single sided swing arm model) used with 3,000 miles in 1993. Rode it till 1998 having covered a further 62,000 miles on it.
Suspension was too soft, so I had forks revalved & resprung & a new shock built by Maxton (UK). It became a sharp handling and much quicker & more fun bike as a result. Brakes weren't the greatest - but some better (6 piston) front calipers and a CBR1000 master cylinder saw to that. Also fitted Dynojet kit & a better exhaust.
Mine took a lot of abuse. Toured UK & Europe on it, rode to work daily, commuted late nights for hours sat at 140 mph on the highway & went Superbike hunting on weekends. Although checked during servicing I never had to adjust valve clearances or carb balance & it never let me down. When I left the UK to work abroad I put it into storage, as it was worth more to me than it's market value. Have recently imported it to Japan and will shortly put it back into use alongside my RC51. Might even treat it to a respray and a new stainless exhaust - It'll go on for another 60,000 miles with ease and help keep the RC51 lower mileage & only for special fun.

The first 1986-1989 (FG-FK) models were very good bikes, although with 16" front wheels and tappet adjustable valve clearances as well as not having the single sided arm, the replacement model (1990-1993) was better.

The 1990-1993 offered better fairing protection, better headlights, foldable & very well positioned passenger handles on the rear and easier chain adjustment too.

The 1994-1997 model lost the "on the go" adjustable fuel tap and got slightly less fuel range (If I remember correctly) but had prettiest styling of all VFR's to date and is probably the best model of all, whilst keeping or improving most of the previous model's best features.

The 800cc models got linked brakes, lost the gear driven cams (& so the characteristic whine was lost too). The capacity increase was not for performance, but to keep performance levels similar to predecessors whilst having to meet ever increasingly stringent global emissions requirements now with cat converter & fuel injection (Cats don't work well with carbs because fuel still goes to exhaust when throttles are closed).
Not bad bikes, but the 750's are considered by most who have owned several VFR's to be the best of the breed.

Personally I'm not a fan of any of the 800 body styles and I think the 1200 looks like a glorified scooter, but there's no doubt they're all very good bikes.

In a way I think the VFR was ahead of it's time, not least with their V4 engines. Other brands have only just realised the V4 is the better configuration - Honda knew it in the 80's...

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post #17 of 23 (permalink) Old 04-22-2012, 12:40 PM
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It depends on what you need the bike for.
For commuting and long range touring the 800 FI is the best bet. Engine wise it's completely superior to the later VTEC: it's more reliable, better put together, less temperamental, less sensitive to fuel quality, gear driven train lasts forever etc. If you have the choice get a later bike: Honda addressed the two main weaknesses of the bike starting in 2000 by fitting stainless steel headers (previous mild steel unit rotted away pretty quickly) and Shingenden R/R (don't know what Honda used before but it was nicknamed "rectumfrier" for obvious reasons).

The 750 is a better bet if you want a jack of all trades, able to handle some commuting, some touring and some fun around the twisties. Also no fuel injection and simple electronics mean you can service it in your garage no problem.

Shame on me, my heart is black.
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post #18 of 23 (permalink) Old 06-05-2013, 05:03 AM
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Originally Posted by Newera View Post
The 800cc models got linked brakes, lost the gear driven cams (& so the characteristic whine was lost too).
Only partly true. From '98-'01, the VFR800 had gear-driven cams & no V-Tec. Reverse that starting in '02.

I prefer the classic good looks of the '90-'93 (3rd gen.)

With the new gas formulas, carburetors can gum up in weeks rather than months of inactivity/storage, so I hope to find a 5th gen for the benefits of FI. I'm tired of working on gummed-up carbs.

(I know this thread is old, but I wanted to correct the VFR800 info for "posterity".)
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post #19 of 23 (permalink) Old 06-05-2013, 05:18 PM Thread Starter
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Worth an update to this old thread as I added #2 on my hypothetical list (post #13 above) a few days ago. She needs love for sure.

Cannot believe how quiet the stock exhaust is though. Parts are possibly even more difficult to find than for my 851 or old Mille. But then I wouldn't know what to do if I had a 2011 GSXR1000 where every company made stuff for it....
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post #20 of 23 (permalink) Old 06-06-2013, 01:59 AM
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Viffer

I can say this, I have never ridden the models your asking about but I'm sure my 1992 VFR isn't far off from the ones mentioned. I have 60,000 on mine and it is a gem. With a garage full of street bikes my VFR is my favorite. Sure it's heavy, slow but does a lot of things very well.....and has that cool-ass single sided swing arm......and gear whine!
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