Presentation of the Honda F6 C
As a shiny chrome custom bike with the six-cylinder boxer from the Gold Wing, the Honda F 6 C wants to take over the rule in the realm of Royal Star and VN 15 Classic.
VMuch of what we know from America is bigger than usual, huge, oversized. Not just the Big Mac.
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Presentation of the Honda F6 C
In addition to the small, increasingly powerful choppers and cruisers emerged, which soon surpassed the Harley in size – i.e. displacement. Recent examples: the Kawasaki VN 15 Classic and the Yamaha Royal Star.
Honda had to follow suit as quickly as possible. Because with the beautiful VT 1100 C2 one fell behind overnight in the battle for dominance in the custom bike business. An even larger V-twin cylinder was out of the question. The competition now had more than enough of them. It should be an engine that is unique and typical for Honda. If you didn’t want to develop a new engine for a lot of money, it made sense to take over the six-cylinder boxer from the Gold Wing. This is how the Flat Six Custom, also simply called the F6 C, was born.
However, Honda did not limit itself to transplanting the six-cylinder into a new chassis, completely unchanged. Instead of the two 36 mm carburettors for the two cylinder banks, six individual 28 mm constant pressure carburettors, camshafts with sharper control times and the six-in-six exhaust system ensure more power and torque over the entire speed range than in the Gold Wing. The maximum is cautiously called 102 hp. “But there can be a little more,” said Martin Manchester, Director of Honda Research of America, on the occasion of the world presentation of the F6 C at the Chicago Motor Show. We Germans will officially have to be content with a 98 hp variant. The transmission with a long fifth gear as overdrive and the low-maintenance cardan were taken over unchanged from the Gold Wing.
The most difficult task, so Honda, was to get the look of the six-cylinder benevolently. As rugged as a car engine, this part of the disguised Gold Wing could be neglected. With the open construction of a custom bike, however, the designers had their hands full to make the Flat Six attractive.
They succeeded. The chrome-plated valve covers and toothed belt covers with tightly enclosed crash bars form a massive but closed unit. Chrome-plated intake pipes, carburetor covers and exhaust manifolds underline the six-cylinder majesty of each cylinder.
You weren’t allowed to drive the F6 C yet, but you could test-sit. Comfortable, upright and at a modest seat height. If the Honda data is to be believed, the positioning of the footrest, handlebar and seat height is hardly any different from that of the Gold Wing. Only the handlebar width is more expansive on the Flat Six.
The nostalgic look of the F6 C hardly differs from that of a Royal Star or VN 15 Classic. Heavy, curved sheet metal fenders at the front and rear, a beefy, 20 liter tank, a huge, chrome-plated headlight, but with a bold little umbrella like in the thirties. On the other hand, the cruiser-typical speedometer on the front of the tank has been dispensed with as well as the running boards. As on any modern bike, the speedometer and rev counter are attached directly in front of the fork bridge.
The cast wheels for the thick rollers are just as modern as the Showa upside-down fork with a 45-millimeter standpipe diameter. However, there is nothing to be adjusted. Only the two gas pressure shock absorbers at the rear are adjustable in the spring base. The two disc brakes with four-piston calipers from Nissin are certainly a good standard for safely decelerating the 350-kilogram chunk. The fact that the F6 C is not equipped with the CBS composite brake system like the CBR 1000 or ST 1100 is a purely American decision. The acceptance of the “integral braking system” is almost zero among American buyers.
What matters here is the price. And that is impressive: The F6 C will cost 12,499 dollars, two-tone 12,799 dollars. An absolute challenge to the competition. The Royal Star costs $ 700 more in the US.
At Honda Germany, the low price is not an issue. The F6 C will be significantly more expensive than the Royal Star. When it comes to the dealerships at the beginning of October after IFMA, with a little luck it will be available for 30,000 marks. The topic in this country is the naming. The nickname Valkyrie (Valkyrie), which the American model bears on the tank emblem, is not wanted. It is not yet clear whether it will have a sonorous name other than the sober name F6 C..
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