Comparison between the Honda XLV 750 R and the Varadero 1000
Weighing 220 kilograms, as massive as a tank? The XLV 750 R caused a lot of dust in 1983. A look back with later insight.
No doubt if Honda is one
Motorbike in red-blue-white off-
road battle paint in the race,
the job is meant seriously. Only: The XLV 750 R was no longer taken seriously after the first driving reports.
Too powerful, too cumbersome, plus the cardan: nothing for real knights in the tunnel. The reference to BMW, which successfully pushed through the trend towards the two-cylinder travel enduro as early as 1981 with their R 80 G / S, does not count. Well what
was there left for the people of Munich? Who had
yes, nothing more than your flat twin in the drawer.
Honda goal? Here you go, Honda
catapulted a new motorcycle into orbit every three months in the early 1980s, developing a suitable engine for every model, no matter how short-lived. If you had painted the whole thing over with silver gray and hidden the 45-degree V2 engine under black paint, okay, then the enduro pack would not have fallen over it immediately. But so dressed up, plus the red one
Two-cylinder, which so far graced the CR-Crosser and XR-Renner, the purest Provo-
cation. Quote from MOTORRAD, issue 14/1983: "A cafe racer in an off-road coat, built as a pure show object." Editor Michael Griep from the Hard-
core fraction complained in the comparison test with the established single-cylinder-
Enduros therefore lack terrain qualities, they are overweight, too unwieldy, too softly sprung. In short: useless off road. In addition, during rough earthworks there were overheating problems with the three-valve engine despite the cooling air scoop.
MOTORRAD tester Griep was not the only one who talked about scorn
the Honda made. Back then, the author of this story immediately rattled the test Honda onto a furrowed cross track, only to discover after ten minutes that the load hit deep in the ground with the engine guard during the mandatory jump photo. And the cocky rider in the rim swing, whoops, sailed over the handlebars. With which the chapter XLV 750 R was done for him, so to speak, suddenly.
Back to the present. XLV research leads to Opfertshofen, Switzerland, one step behind the German border. "XLV-Workshop", greets us a workshop sign, adorned with the coat of arms of a halved V2-
Engine. “Which one would you like? The black or rather the original? “Rolf Steinemann and specialist Christian Fuchs (www.xlv.ch) have met during the
A whole collection of XLV-750-R models has grown over the years. As a replacement part-
warehouse, second machine or just plain
so. The XLV fans from the very beginning
circled half the world with the
Two cylinders, know every screw, every seal and every O-ring by first name. And the qualities of the XLV.
We decide, logically, for the Honda in the colorful combat suit, just right as a counterpoint to the subtle paintwork of the Varadero 1000, which, born in 1998, revised and injected in 2003, accompaniments our journey through time as a representative of the present. This begins on tricky gravel paths, narrow, angular, uphill, downhill that it is just so dusty. Where is she?
Varadero? Wedged itself between the ditch and the potato field when turning. Three men lift and heave 277 kilograms in the desired direction. Thank you, it goes on. And the old XLV 750 R? Twirl the tightest turning maneuvers on the dusty parquet at the generously dimensioned steering stop, whiz around corners in a remarkable drift, almost scurry with one
trial-like ease through vegetables. Sitting position, handlebar width, center of gravity
?? it fits fine. While the troubled colleague with the Varadero sweats a lot. Too high, too, clumsy, too obese, with stiff steering and a meter-high center of gravity. A life on the brink, the purest ox tour.
So, out of the vegetables, into the asphalt pleasure. In southern Hegau, motorcycle routes wind their way through the volcanic landscape in their most beautiful form. What the Varadero was all about-
has tet. Understandable: Grippy road tires, brakes with bite and a 94 HP V2 engine with pressure, nothing can go wrong. The big enduro even hides the lush pounds with acceptable handling, and the old XLV 750 simply whips away, although the 57 kilograms are lighter. Casual in the wide seat cushion, huge pane as wind protection, high
The engine is cultivated, a nice mix of ICE and Golf Cabriolet.
What the enduro rider on the old one
Iron leaves you pretty cold. Because he’s just rediscovering the old world. With an agile 61-PS-V2 that runs smoothly from 4000 rpm and marches unrestrainedly over the maximum speed scale. Turns dizzy, silky smooth and with a throaty sound. The only spoilsport in the humorous sprint: the five-speed gearbox, which reminds you to be patient and calm when pedaling hectically with loud cracking claws. Slow down, mate, otherwise it won’t be anything with the two of us. If you don’t stick to it, you have bad cards. "There is hardly an XLV 750 R in which the fourth gear has not broken," says Rolf Steinemann.
In return, the cardan drive cranks quietly and quietly, hardly noticeable the slight up and down when the load changes. Great, there is no need for complicated momentary support. Speaking of load changes: As soft as butter, supple and yet without hesitation, like the two 36 mm Keihin carburettors of the XLV hanging on the gas cord, that’s a real number even without injection. It is not surprising, however, that the original shock absorber looks more like an air pump after thousands of kilometers. Even when new, the XLV 750 R sways happily from the bump
to bump. In addition, the relatively roughly carved Metzeler Enduro 2 tires bring a lot of movement into play.
After twenty winding kilometers that is no longer an issue? rock it, buddy. If only because the
olle Honda throws joyfully into the curves, the lean angle changes quickly. Sure, far from the stoic slipping of the
Varadero, but not less fun with the gas, the XLV 750 R tiles through the local cornering area. Volle Lotte, the rural idyll of lush meadows and pasture fences flies by. The wind storms over the small lamp mask
in the face, shaking the shield and jacket, upsets the Honda and gives it a hundred percent enduro feeling
over. This is exactly how an enduro drives and feels, regardless of whether it is a stubble hop or a travel box.
In the 80s, commuting was almost a good thing for tunnel machines. So from 130 km / h also winds
the XLV rhythmic, but without malice in the entablature. Bumps and potholes disappear under the soft one
Tuning like freshly ironed, comfort was very important back then. But oh, the brakes. Black painting from the rear wheel, the gears roughly threshed down in an emergency ?? aaanhaaaaalten. The pasture fence is in place. Uff, the Honda too. We were really that brave back then?
And disc brakes ?? a 280 mm disc is already in the front? so bad? The MOTORRAD archive provides facts: 51.8 meters of braking distance were made
Measured from 100 km / h for the XLV, today the five and one half hundredweight Varadeo is after about 39 meters. Any questions?
Yes. Why does Honda have this
Concept of the XLV 750 R inconsistent
optimized, but through the optically
how to replace the technically more travel-oriented Transalp, which was replaced by the fully faired Africa Twin in 1988? The slim two-cylinder with maintenance-free, hydraulic valve clearance compensation certainly still had reserves. And then the cardan drive, perfect for those big wanderlust, well armed against desert sand, mud and rain. Globetrotters can do without all the plastic stuff of the successor models anyway. In addition the ak-
tive seating position, a perfectly arranged compromise between sport and touring. Even on the massive tubular steel frame with the solid engine protection would have terrain-
Freaks their joy. Especially since the bad ones
Boys from back then would no longer attempt to double jump with the Honda today and dig themselves in disastrously. Because we have the Honda XLV
7th50 R, admittedly a bit late, now understood. Sorry old house.
Technical data: Honda XLV 750 R
Engine: air-cooled two-cylinder four-stroke 45-degree V-engine, transverse crankshaft, one overhead, chain-driven camshaft, three valves per cylinder, rocker arm, dry sump lubrication, constant pressure carburetor, Ø 36 mm, double ignition, electric starter. Bore x stroke 79.5 mm x 75.5 mm Displacement 749 cm3 Compression ratio 8.4: 1 Nominal output 45 kW (61 HP) at 7000 rpm Max. Torque 68 Nm (6.9 kpm) at 5500 rpm Power transmission: primary drive via gear wheels, mechanically operated multi-disc oil bath clutch, five-speed gearbox, gimbal. Chassis: double-loop tubular steel frame, telescopic fork, stanchion tube diameter 43 mm, two-arm swing arm made of aluminum profiles, central spring strut with lever system, single-disc brake at the front, Ø 280 mm, double-piston caliper, rear drum brake, Ø 140 mm. Spoked wheels 2.15 x 21; 3.00 x 17 tires 90 / 90-21; 130 / 80-17 Chassis data: wheelbase 1480 mm, steering head angle 61 degrees, caster 100 mm, suspension travel f / h 226/186 mm. Weight fully fueled * 220 kg Driving performance * Top speed 163 km / h Acceleration0 ?? 100 km / h 6.1 sec0 ?? 140 km / h 12.9 seconds Color red / blue / white Price (1984) incl. Additional costs 10,026 marks
Technical data: Honda Varadero 1000
Engine: water-cooled two-cylinder four-stroke 90-degree V-engine, transverse crankshaft, two overhead, chain-driven camshafts, four valves per cylinder, cup tappets, wet sump lubrication, electronic intake manifold injection, Ø 42 mm, engine management, regulated catalytic converter with Secondary air system, electric starter. Bore x stroke 98.0 x 66.0 mm, displacement 996 cm³, compression ratio 9.8: 1, rated output 69 kW (94 PS) at 8000 rpm, max. Torque 98 Nm (10.0 kpm) at 6000 rpm Power transmission: primary drive via gear wheels, mechanically operated multi-disc oil bath clutch, six-speed gearbox, O-ring chain. Chassis: bridge frame made of steel profiles, load-bearing motor, telescopic fork, standpipe diameter 43 mm, two-arm swing arm made of aluminum profiles, Central spring strut with lever system, adjustable spring base and rebound damping, double disc brake at the front, floating brake discs, Ø 296 mm, three-piston calipers, rear disc brake, Ø 256 mm, three-piston caliper, composite brake system. Cast aluminum wheels 2.50 x 19; 4.00 x 17 tires 110/80 R 19; 150/70 R 17 Chassis data: wheelbase 1560 mm, steering head angle 62.5 degrees, caster 110 mm, spring travel f / h 155/145 mm. Weight fully fueled * 277 kg Driving performance * Top speed1 200 km / h Acceleration0 100 km / h 3.6 sec0 140 km / h 6.7 sec colors silver metallic, blue, red price 10 190 euros ancillary costs around 170 euros
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