2008 Honda VTX1800

Posted on by

Past perfect? Future perfect? Forget the grammar lesson and just check out how stylishly trend-setting a VTX can be. The variety offered by the VTX1800 is nowhere else found but we expected that from the machine which leaded its class when first introduced. So let’s see what 2008 has to bring.

 

Introduction

Honda introduced the VTX1800 as a custom built machine for show and ready to go right off the showroom floor. Its clear destination was to establish the point between big engine displacement and traditional styling cues, everything merging together to create a bold and innovative cruiser.

History

Honda VTX1800

The Zodia concept presented at the 1995 Tokyo Motor Show inspired the development of the Honda VTX series, best represented by the VTX1800. When it was first introduced, in 2002, the bike’s engine featured the largest displacement production V-twin engine in the world. This was given by the largest pistons ever manufactured for a car or a motorcycle and Honda received many lauds for the courageous move.

Since the first year, customers could buy differently styled models which, although featured the same engine, chassis and general features, created their own means of attraction and customers didn’t stopped from entering Honda showrooms and buy the chosen version of the biggest, meanest cruiser around.

The VTX1800 kept its muscular looking body which is pretty long and low positioned to the ground featuring significant rake and trail while Honda updated its linked braking feature, instead of having the usual separate hand and foot brakes, the hand brake operates two-thirds of the front pistons while the foot operates the other third in front and all the rear via a proportioning valve.

The throttle is updated with Honda’s new Programmed Fuel Injection (PGM-FI) system, using a vacuum sensor within the first ten percent of opening to more precisely meter torque, until the standard throttle position sensor takes over. It develops 120 ft x lbf of torque at only 3500rpm and 106 bhp @ 5000 rpm, resulting into the most powerful production V-twin motorcycles of its time. Power is driven to the rear wheel through a shaft drive.

Having the recipe clear and sorted out, Honda continued to produce their biggest cruiser in order to satisfy the market but it now had to face the other manufacturers trying to steal its crown.

Competition

Honda VTX1800

Highly decorated with Raven paint and blacked-out components straight from the factory and highly acclaimed by the motorcycle press, Yamaha Yamaha ’s big-bore Roadliner Midnight tends to reshape the face and performance of cruisers altogether, and this way, to beat the Honda VTX1800.

Suzuki presents the award winning Boulevard M109R – an incredible combination of cruiser styling and renowned Suzuki Suzuki power and handling. By injecting the Boulevard M109R with a potent shot of race-proven technology developed for the championship-winning GSX-R sport bikes, Suzuki literally redefines the concept of cruising but we will see what effect has that on the VTX1800.

Kawasaki Vulcan 2000 Classic is the traditional cruiser panache plus modern muscle. If the awesome size, power and performance of the Kawasaki Vulcan 2000 are appealing, but a more traditional “cruiser” look is your style, the Vulcan 2000 Classic is the motorcycle you seek. A traditional-style headlight, “buckhorn” handlebar bend, a plush passenger seat for increased comfort and other special details adorn the same brawny chassis and engine found on the Vulcan 2000, in my opinion, a bike that beats the Yamaha and tries to sort things out with Suzuki while the VTX1800 keeps the pace with the last two.

Honda VTX1800

Exterior

Honda VTX1800

One of the things through which the Honda VTX1800 stands out is style. Because of the bike’s dimensions and abilities, designers had a lot of space and beautifully shaped elements to play with in order to create on of the most attractive big class cruisers out on the highway.

Different versions of the motorcycle implement their own exterior characteristics but the essentials are pretty much the same. Chrome is the dominating element apart from the different paint schemes encountered on the different versions.

For 2008, the VTX1800F is offered with a drag-bike attitude and style that contrasts with the N version which is more classy back and it also prepares the ground for the accessorized version known as the VTX1800T.

The idea of different designs for different tastes is very successful and increases the sales numbers as customers can find everything they desire with virtually any clothes at their favorite producer.


Test Drive

Honda VTX1800

Who said that big machines are hard to deal with? The Honda VTX1800 is equipped with and electric starter and an electric fuel pump delivering fuel to a pair of twelve-orifice injectors in the big motor that valiantly fights against the pair of 101mm pistons acting through a 112mm of stroke. This doesn’t require for a retracted sidestand or grabbing the clutch so if you are willing to enjoy yourself on this machine, you must know that things have always been easy.

After the massive cylinders bring life to the engine and things get serious, you will be invited to jump abroad and accommodate yourself on the comfortable, low seat while reaching the close handlebars. The tank is broad, long so it presents itself as a muscled element capped with a chrome-plated set and fuel filter. Handlebars and instruments are carefully mounted in order to allow for an unperturbed sight ahead while still properly doing their purpose. I especially appreciated the way the rider is received on the bike but I was anxious to get going and the engine was now warm and ready to go.

Pulling the clutch and engaging first is an absolute pleasure on the new VTX1800 as Honda takes care that the plush ride is accompanied only by impressive controls. I gently-removed the clutch and gave it just a bit of gas as the engine develops 70 foot-pounds right from 1750rpm and at 3000rpm, the rear wheel handles more than 100 foot-pounds. Departures are smooth but I initially kept the bike in first gear in order to give you that data.

After running it up a bit in first I quickly started to appreciate the PGM-FI system which makes sure that the engine delivers great amounts of torque at gentle twists of the throttle. A vacuum sensor watches for minute changes in throttle position and fills in for the dozing throttle-position sensor (TPS). It’s effective for the first throttle movements, after which the TPS enters the scene.

Changing gears while heading to the highway is magical thanks to the reliable five-speed gearbox and smooth-operating clutch but what I most enjoyed on this motorcycle was the low seat position and how I felt no vibrations whatsoever when I widely opened the throttle. It would have been a disaster for Honda not to deal with the vibrations generated by such an engine but their systems seem to work best every time.

Once on the open road, the machine practically begs you to give it some gas and I have to admit that I was very responsive and I found myself changing gears in top end of the throttle without any problems (except the law). Fifth gear allows for fast passes and the engine still revs quietly underneath you.

The Honda receives an A plus for being excellent around town and on smooth streets but the limited suspension travel featuring mid-quality components conspire to make the VTX an average performer. The short-travel suspension is tuned with a highly progressive damping schedule and small bumps are normally smothered without any problems, but big ones forces the heavy machine to buck a little bit.

Honda VTX1800 features a revised version of the Linked Braking System that uses a pair of six-piston calipers up front and a single two-piston applied on a 316mm rear disc. The hand lever doesn’t involve front and rear braking. Instead, the foot pedal operates four pistons up front and everything out back through a proportioning valve.

I will use the efficient Linked Braking System to put an end to my test drive on the bike that left me with the best impressions and no back pain.

Price

2008 also brings the Honda VTX1800 at a low cost so you’re riding days can only get better. With an MSRP of $13,499, this machine will surely be seen on the wide open road and it will become the usual sight on the Boulevard.

Conclusion

On of the best cruiser out there, which initially leaded its class and now performs better than ever is an extraordinarily well balanced machine presenting some unique features like its muscular looking body that makes a real statement on the motor’s power and torque. Stopping is also special on this motorcycle as its Linked Braking System (LBS) is better than it has ever been.

With so many special features and positive characteristics, Honda left no room for error so this is one great product, worthy of the name Honda.


SPECIFICATIONS

 

Engine and Transmission

Displacement: 1795cc
Type: liquid-cooled 52-degree V-twin
Bore and Stroke: 101mm x 112mm
Compression Ratio: 9.0:1
Valve Train: SOHC; three valves per cylinder
Induction: PGM-FI with automatic choke
Ignition: Digital, two spark plugs per cylinder
Transmission: five-speed
Final Drive: Shaft

Chassis and Dimensions

Front Suspension: 45mm inverted fork; 5.1 inches travel (4.3 inches travel for the F version)
Rear Suspension: Dual shocks with five-position spring preload adjustability; 3.9 inches travel
Front Brakes: Dual 296mm disc with LBS three-piston calipers
Rear Brakes: Single 316mm disc with LBS twin-piston caliper
Front Tire: 150/80R-17 radial (130/70R-17 radial for the F version)
Rear Tire: 180/70R-16 radial (180/55R-18 radial for the F version)
Wheelbase: 67.5 inches
Rake (Caster Angle): 32.0 degrees
Trail: 163mm (6.4 inches); 144mm (5.7 inches) for the F version
Seat Height: 27.4 inches (27.6 inches for the F version)
Fuel Capacity: 5.3 gallons (4.8 gallons for the F version)
Curb Weight: 804 pounds (774 pounds)

Other

Colors: Black, Dark Orange Metallic, Black/Black Custom Art


Models Available

 

VTX1800F

For those who favor a cruiser with sporty high-performance styling, the VTX1800F blends custom looks with big V-twin power.

Features

 

New for 2008

- The VTX1800F is available in Black and Candy Red Tribal.

Unique Features

- The VTX1800 is available in two distinctive build variations: Spec1 and Spec2.


- Bold sport-custom performance-cruiser styling.


- Bobbed-style front steel fender with straight-cut rear steel fender complement the drag-racing look.


- Low 27.6-inch two-piece gunfighter-style seat features a removable passenger section for an enhanced custom look.


- Handsome chromed two-into-two staggered exhaust system features five-bolt muffler tips and a deep exhaust note.


- Streamlined headlight features a smaller hooded lens for unique minimalist look.


- Aggressive 10-spoke racing-type cast wheels feature a low-profile 130/70R-18 radial front tire with an aggressive 180/55R-18 radial rear tire to put the engine’s awesome power to the ground and enhance the overall performance and custom look.


- Large, handsomely finished, flangeless 4.8-gallon gas tank features pinstripe-quality VTX decal badging.


- Custom-style recessed LED taillight and brakelight.


- Electronic control unit (ECU) closed-loop emission system utilizes and air-injection system and three-way exhaust catalyzer to simultaneously reduce emissions.

Spec 1 Custom-Building Options

- Crankcase, cylinder, starter motor: Satin-black finish with milled cylinder fin edges.


- Handlebar: Cast-aluminum risers and caps with hairline satin-brushed finish.


- Clutch and Brake Levers: Smooth, cast-aluminum finish.


- Fork Tubes: Inverted fork tubes with satin-brushed finish.


- Upper and lower triple clamps: Cast-aluminum with hairline satin-brushed finish.


- Switch Housings: Smooth, cast-aluminum finish.


- Radiator Cover: Color-matched painted finish.


- Footpegs: Chromed.


- Final-Drive Housing: Silver finish.


- Wheels: Satin-brushed cast-aluminum.

Spec 2 Custom-Build Options

- Crankcase, cylinder, starter motor: Satin black finish with milled cylinder fin edges.


- Handlebar: Chrome-plated cast-aluminum handlebar risers and caps.


- Clutch and Brake Levers: Highly polished aluminum finish.


- Fork Tubes: Chrome steel covers highlight detailed front end.


- Upper and lower triple clamps: Highly polished cast-aluminum.


- Switch Housings: Hairline satin-brushed finish.


- Radiator Cover: Color-matched painted finish.


- Footpegs: Oval-shaped chrome-plated cast-aluminum.


- Final Drive Housing: Hairline satin-brushed finish with chrome-plated axle cap and fasteners.


- Wheels: Highly polished cast-aluminum.

Engine/Drivetrain

- Engine is a 1795cc liquid-cooled 52-degree V-twin that hammers out immense power.


- V-twin engine features 4-inch cylinder bores and the largest connecting rods and cylinders Honda has ever made.


- Advanced technology Offset Dual-Pin Crankshaft.


- The 41.4-pound forged-steel crankshaft uses bolted weights, reducing crankcase width nearly 2 inches and reducing crankshaft weight 8.8 pounds compared to a conventional one-piece design.


- The engine mounting system uses carefully matched hangers and rubber mounts to eliminate unwanted vibration, while preserving the powerful character of the engine’s V-twin design.


- Three-Valve Dual Plug Cylinder Head.


- Two iridium-tip spark plugs per cylinder for efficient combustion at all engine speeds.


- Simple-to-service screw-and-locknut valve-clearance adjusters. -Programmed Fuel Injection (PGM-FI).


- ECU provides individual digital 3-D fuel-injection and ignition maps for each cylinders, creating ideal fuel mixture and spark advance settings for superb rideability.


- Unique dry-sump oiling system utilizes a closed crankcase design and places the oil tank inside the gearbox case. The result is a freer-revving engine for improved power and a lower engine height.


- Radiator with cooling fan maintains consistent engine temperature for optimum performance and long engine life.


- Five-speed transmission with carefully selected gear ratios for relaxed cruising and exciting roll-on performance.


- Shaft final-drive system provides smooth, low-maintenance operation.

Chassis/Suspension

- The engine’s power is harnessed by a massive tubular steel frame r and gives the VTX a long, low, muscular stance.


- Large 45mm inverted front fork provides 4.3 inches of plush yet responsive wheel travel.


- Dual chromed rear shocks have 3.9 inches of wheel travel and feature and advanced internal valve system for a comfortable ride.


- Linked Braking System (LBS).

Additional Features

- Distinctive chrome hooded-headlight housing features a powerful 55/60-watt halogen bulb with a computer-designed multireflector for superb lighting in all conditions.


- Tank-mounted digital LCD instrumentation include a speedometer, bar-graph tachometer, odometer, A/B tripmeters and a clock.


- Reliable, 300-watt alternator.


- Durable, maintenance-free battery.


- Transferable one-year unlimited mileage limited warranty, extended coverage available with a Honda Protection Plan.


- Assemble in Marysville, Ohio.


- Purchase of a new, previously unregistered Honda USA-certified unit by an individual retail user in the United States qualifies the owner for a one-year complimentary membership in the Honda Rider’s Club of America.

VTX1800F 1and 2 Honda Genuine Accessories

- Backrest and Rear Carriers: Deluxe Chrome Backrest w/Pad, Deluxe Chrome Backrest Trim w/Emblem, Deluxe Chrome Rear Carrier, Deluxe Chrome Backrest/Rear Carrier Mount Brackets, Adjustable Chrome Backrest w/Pad (5-position), Chrome Backrest w/Pad (Tall, Studded Traditional), Chrome Backrest w/Pad (Tall, Plain Traditional), Chrome Backrest Trim (Tall, Traditional), Chrome Backrest w/Pad (Low, Studded Traditional), Chrome Backrest w/Pad (Low, Plain Traditional), Chrome Backrest Trim (Low, Traditional), Chrome Rear Carrier (Traditional), Chrome Backrest/Rear Carrier Mounting Brackets (Traditional), Chrome Backrest w/Pad (Tall, Sport-Custom), Chrome Backrest Trim (Tall, Sport-Custom), Chrome Backrest w/Pad (Low, Sport-Custom), Chrome Backrest Trim (Low, Sport-Custom), Chrome Rear Carrier (Sport-Custom), Chrome Backrest/Rear Carrier Mounting Brackets (Sport-Custom), Chrome Passenger Grab Rails (Fits all style brackets).

Windscreens: Custom Windscreen (Performance Style), Custom Windscreen (Sport-Custom Style), Adjustable Height Windscreen (2.56-inch Vertical Adjustment Range), Boulevard Screen (Clear), Boulevard Screen (Smoke), Boulevard Screen Mount Kit (Neo-Retro), Boulevard Screen Mount Kit (Smooth), Sport Screen, Lower Wind Deflectors.

Lightbar: Chrome Lightbar (Sport-Custom)

Leather: Leather Saddlebags (18 Plain), Leather Saddlebags (18 Studded), Leather Saddlebags (18 Fringed), Saddlebag Mounting Brackets, Leather Tank Belt (Plain), Leather Tank Belt (Studded), Leather Touring Bag (Studded), Leather Touring Bag (Plain), Leather Touring Bag (Fringed), Leather Front Pouch (Studded), Leather Front Pouch (Plain), Leather Front Pouch (Fringed).

Chrome Appearance: Chrome Driveshaft Cover, Chrome Master-Cylinder Cap, Chrome Allen Bolt inserts.

Chrome Billet: Chrome Billet Master-Cylinder Cap (Fluted), Chrome Billet Master-Cylinder Cap (Neo-Retro), Chrome Billet Master-Cylinder Cap (V Design), Chrome Billet Dipstick (Fluted), Chrome Billet Dipstick (Neo-Retro), Chrome Billet Clutch Cover (Fluted), Chrome Billet Clutch Cover (Neo-Retro), Chrome Billet Timing and Crankshaft Cover Set (Fluted), Chrome Billet Timing Cover (Neo-Retro), Chrome Billet Countershaft Cover Trim (Fluted), Chrome Cover Countershaft Cover Trim (Neo-Retro), Chrome Billet Upper Countershaft Cover Trim (Fluted), Chrome Billet Driveshaft Bolt Cover (Fluted), Chrome Billet Driveshaft Bolt Cover (Neo-Retro), Chrome Billet Driveshaft Bolt (V Design), Chrome Billet Upper Front Nut Covers, Chrome Billet Banjo Bolt Covers.

Additional Honda Genuine Accessories: Digital Audio System, Chrome Heated Grips, Cycle Cover.

VTX1800N

New and traditional styling cues merge together in the VTX1800N to create a bold and innovative custom cruiser.

Features

 

New for 2008

- The VTX1800N is available in these exciting colors: Black (Spec 1), Dark Orange Metallic (Spec 1 & 2), Black /Black Custom Art (Spec 2).

Unique Features

- VTX1800N is available in two distinctive build variations: Spec 1 and 2.


- Beautiful neo-retro styling with cast-aluminum wheels.


- Rear fender rails feature a unique slotted design.


- Flangeless 5.3-gallon fuel tank offers excellent cruising range.


- Fuel tank features a pinstripe quality VTX icon for a unique, custom look.


- Flush-mounted double-chevron LED brakelight and taillight.


- Staggered dual exhaust with straight-cut five-bolt muffler tips.


- Fat 150/80 front tire on a 17-inch wheel gives the VTX a commanding profile.


- California model utilizes and electronic control unit (ECU) close-loop emissions system with two oxygen sensors to constantly deliver a precise air/fuel mixture while two exhaust catalyzers reduce emissions.

Spec 1 Custom-Building Options

- Crankcases, cylinder, starter motor: Satin-black finish with milled cylinder fin edges.


- Handlebar: Cast-aluminum risers and caps with hairline satin-brushed finish.


- Clutch and Brake Levers: Satin-brushed aluminum finish.

Fork Tubes: Inverted fork tubes with satin-brushed finish and caps.


- Upper and lower triple clamps: Cast-aluminum with hairline satin-brushed finish.


- Switch Housings: Smooth cast-aluminum finish.


- Radiator Cover: Gloss-black finish.


- Floor Boards: Hairline satin-brushed aluminum.


- Final-drive Housings: Silver finish.


- Wheels: Satin-brushed cast-aluminum


- Rear Shocks: Ribbed-design, chromed dual with hairline satin-brushed top mounts.

Spec 2 Custom-Building Options

- Crankcases, cylinder, starter motor: Satin-black finish with milled cylinder fin edges.


- Handlebar: Chrome-plated aluminum handlebar risers and caps.


- Clutch and Brake Levers: Highly polished aluminum finish.


- Fork Tubes: Chrome steel covers and chrome caps highlight fork tubes.


- Upper and lower triple clamps: Highly polished cast-aluminum.


- Switch Housings: Hairline satin-brushed finish.


- Radiator Cover: Chrome sidecovers.


- Floor Boards: Polished and chrome-plated aluminum.


- Final-Drive Housing: Hairline satin brushed finish with chrome-plated axle caps and fasteners.


- Wheels: Highly polished cast-aluminum.


- Rear Shocks: Ribbed-design, chromed dual with an A-shape top mounting eyelet.

VTX1800T

Honda VTX1800

The VTX1800T is a custom built for show and go right off showroom floor. Thanks to its full complement of touring accessories that come standard, this is one cruiser that’s ready to head from coast to coast.

Features

 

New for 2008

- Low, 27.4-inch seat trimmed with chrome-plated steel studs for a distinctive custom look and all-day comfort.


- The VTX1800T is available in these exciting colors: Black, Black/Candy Black Cherry and Black/Metallic Blue.

Unique Features

- VTX1800T is available in two distinctive build variations: Spec 1 and 2.


- Stylish custom windscreen for rider and passenger touring comfort.


- Leather saddlebags with 24-liter capacity provide ultimate touring convenience.


- Chrome backrest for passenger comfort.


- Exclusive Tourer badging on front fender.


- Full-flowing, deeply valanced retro-style front and rear steel fenders.


- Flangeless 5.3-gallon fuel tank offers excellent cruising range.


- Staggered dual exhaust with stylish slash-cut mako tips.


- Fat 150/80 front tire on a 17-inch wheel, gives the VTX a commanding profile.


- California model utilizes an electronic control unit (ECU), closed-loop emissions system with two oxygen sensors to constantly deliver a precise air/fuel mixture while two exhaust catalyzers reduce emissions.

Spec 1 Custom-Building Options

- Crankcases, cylinder, starter motor: Satin-black finish with milled cylinder fin edges.


- Handlebar: Cast-aluminum risers and caps with satin-brushed finish.


- Fork Tubes: Satin-brushed finish inverted fork tubes with satin-brushed caps.


- Upper and lower triple clamps: Cast-aluminum with hairline satin-brushed finish.


- Switch Housings: Smooth, cast-aluminum finish.


- Radiator Cover: Gloss-black finish.


- Floor Boards: Hairline satin-brushed aluminum.


- Final-Drive Housing: Silver finish.


- Wheels: Satin-brushed cast-aluminum.

Spec 2 Custom-Building Options

- Crankcase, cylinder, starter motor: Satin-black finish with milled cylinder fin edges.


- Handlebar: Chrome-plated aluminum handlebar mounts and VTX-logo cap.


- Clutch and Brake Levers: Highly polished aluminum finish.


- Fork Tubes: Chrome steel covers and chrome caps highlight fork tubes.


- Upper and lower triple clamps: Highly polished cast-aluminum.


- Switch Housings: Hairline satin-brushed aluminum.


- Final-Drive Housing: Silver finish.


- Wheels: Satin-brushed cast-aluminum.


*Registration is required to post in this forum

Back to top