Introduced in 2011, the Crossrunner motorcycle marked Honda's attempt to square the circle between grungy off-road machines and the exquisitely polished garage trophies of the urban market. The latest version of the premium adventure sports tourer has now been revealed at Intermot – and it warrants a closer look.
The latest version of the Crossover “X” range of multipurpose motorcycles based on a sports touring platform and an upright riding position, it takes cues from the 2014 VFR800F, but with a greater emphasis on the Crossrunner concept with a focus on performance. Honda also took the opportunity to tweak the styling with a more beaky front cowl contrasting with the short front mudguard. The livery includes light silver mechanical parts, matt black engine cover and wheels, and a choice of three color schemes.
At the heart of the VFR800X is its liquid-cooled, electric-start, four-stroke 16-valve, 782 cc, DOHC 90° V-4 engine with PGM-FI electronic fuel injection. It’s also tricked out with Honda’s HYPER VTEC system with a refined two to four valve transition, depending on engine rpms; a new 4-2-1-1 exhaust system; and smaller, denser dual radiator units set in front of the engine for a slimmer look. The takeaway from all this is 104 bhp (78 kW) and 55 ft-lb (75 Nm) of torque, with more of both available in the low-to midrange.
Behind the powerplant is a constant-mesh six-speed gearbox and Honda's Selectable Torque Control (HSTC) system that senses an imminent loss of rear wheel traction and reduces torque enough for the tire to retain its grip.
Holding all this in place is the diamond triple-box; aluminum twin-spar frame with a revised subframe that Honda says is stiffer and lighter, while retaining the visuals of the VFR800F. In addition, there’s a sump guard to protect the engine underside from road debris. Since comfort was one of the design specs, the seat is adjustable with two height options.
The 10-spoke die-cast aluminum wheels are backed in front by a 43-mm HMAS cartridge-type suspension using a telescopic fork with stepless preload. In the back is a pro-link suspension with gas-charged damper, 35-step preload, and stepless rebound damping adjustment. ABS brakes are standard.
Meanwhile, in front of the rider is a redesigned LCD instrument display including fuel meter, fuel consumption, water temperature, gear-position indicator, ambient temperature, and clock. In front of this is the X signature LED headlamp, and on either side are the five-stage heated grips. Automatic turn signal cancelling is also featured.
"For this development of the VFR800X Crossrunner we wanted to create a premium motorcycle with a ‘ready-for-action’ feeling, for customers to use with maximum enjoyment everyday," says Yoichi Inayama, Large Project Leader (LPL) VFR800X Crossrunner. "The styling demanded beautifully functional parts, and light proportions with minimal fairings. We wanted an upright position giving great visibility and agile handling so the rider can attack any corner with confidence. And refinements to the V4 engine had to deliver responsive and enjoyable power. Our new VFR800X Crossrunner has fulfilled these goals and follows the VFR tradition: it has an array of advanced technologies including LED headlights, our Honda Selectable Torque Control system and automatic turn signal canceller."
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