Peter Fonda and the late Dennis Hopper of Easy Rider movie fame, would have loved this bike. It’s a chopper that goes, stops, handles and is comfortable. Well of course it does, it’s a Honda.
The VT1300CX Fury is their first production chopper and with a long slim tank, raked-out forks, simple old fashioned controls, a very low seat and even lower rear end, it should have “American Chopper” fans rushing in to the bike shops for a look and a test ride.
In standard form you have a blank canvas to which you add items from the extensive accessory catalogue and even if you add little or nothing the Fury certainly attracts attention whenever you stop. The raked out 45 mm front forks with the 21” nine-spoke silver mag front wheel catch your attention immediately and whilst the forks are the expected high quality items from Honda they do flex almost as much as compress. Steering at low speeds is a bit of a chore and you definitely have to muscle it into slow corners. Rear suspension is nowhere to be seen (it’s hidden) but it does its job admirably and presented a very acceptable ride. You are certainly not limited to smooth motorways either, in fact I enjoyed this bike just as much on the back roads as the freeways.
Clearance is always going to be an issue on these super low bikes and this is no exception with the “hero knobs” on the footrests touching very easily, so much so that they will easily be ground away all-together pretty damn quick. You may need to replace them with something made of stronger stuff to avoid cornering on the mufflers and frame instead of the tyres when getting into it on the twisty bits.
The VT1300CX is pretty plain in standard form with very minimal Honda identification on it, just the basis I guess for adding lots of chrome things and airbrush art work on the glossy black tank - a tank which will struggle to allow you to achieve any more than about 200 kilometres from its 12 litre capacity. It’s also very quiet so I have no doubt a range of accessory mufflers will appear in the market place in no time at all. Honda went to great lengths to disguise the water cooling, to keep the traditional big air-cooled V-twin look. The radiator is neatly tucked away between the front frame tubes and just about disappears from view from most angles.
The engine is more than strong enough and very smooth with special attention being made to the balancing, the brakes are excellent with ABS standard, the five speed gearbox, faultless as always, and the shaft drive, whilst sometimes a little snatchy, keeps the rear end uncluttered and very clean. A fairly uncomplicated unit, the SOHC 3-valve engine has its origins in the well-established VTX1300, fitted with an all-new fuel injection system and camshafts, and it performs its duties very well, if unspectacularly. Given that the rest of the bike has been so well thought out and executed, it wouldn’t surprise if Honda come out with a larger capacity version of the long stroke engine in the future. For now, though, this one will do just fine.
Something to ride everyday? I don’t think so. However if you don’t mind being the centre of attention when you do go for a ride on the weekend (especially after you have added masses of chrome, plenty of bling, braided hoses and fancy cables), and enjoy a machine with acceptable vee twin noise, you’ll have a really great day.
Engine: Liquid-cooled, 8 valve, 52-degree V-twin single pin crank with dual balancer
Capacity: 1312 cc. Bore & Stroke: 89.5 x 104.3 mm
Maximum Power: 42.5kW @ 4,250 rpm
Maximum Torque: 107 Nm @2,250 rpm
Fuel system: PGM-FI with 3-dimensional enricher circuit, single 38 mm throttle body.
Transmission: 5 speed, shaft final drive.
Chassis: Tubular steel cradle
Brakes: Front: Single 336 mm disc 3 piston caliper with ABS, Rear: Single 296 mm disc with 2 piston caliper and ABS.
Wheels/Tyres: Cast aluminium alloy. Front: 90/90 x 21, rear: 200/50 x 18
Suspension: Front: 45 mm with 101.6 mm travel. Rear: Single shock with adjustable rebound daming and 5-position spring preload adjustability; 94 mm travel.
Wheelbase: 1809.5 mm
Kerb Weight: 309 kg with all fluids.
Tank capacity: 12.87 litres
Colours: Black, blue
Price: (2010) $19,990 + ORC