The Honda XL1000V thread

Discussion in 'Land of the Rising Sun: ADV Bikes from Japan' started by Two Plugs, Nov 30, 2007.

  1. NORTH RIDER

    NORTH RIDER Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2007
    Oddometer:
    764
    Location:
    THUNDER BAY,ONT CANADA
    just got an email from honda ,bikes will be in canada by may,no actual date given .canada will only get 360 VARADEROS THIS YEAR .

    NORTH RIDER
    #61
  2. RDJEff

    RDJEff Lost in Alaska

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2004
    Oddometer:
    1,000
    Location:
    Los Anchorage, Alaska
    Nice bike! FWIW, the rev limiter seems to work pretty well! I was at the MotoGP race in Jerez a few years back, and wound up in a looonnng line leaving the track. Wound up next to a Spanish fellow on a Veradero who loved to get the rest of the folks excited by holding the throttle pinned for 5 or 10 seconds at a time. After a while, other folks started handing him a beer every time, I don't know if it was to get him to stop or to go more, but he did that for about an hour before I was able to get away from the show.:lol3
    #62
  3. Two Plugs

    Two Plugs Long timer

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2007
    Oddometer:
    1,439
    Location:
    Groningen Province - Top of Holland
    Note: the full report with pictures can be viewed at:
    http://www.varadero-international.com
    Direct link:
    http://users.bart.nl/~stikfort/new_international_site/testrating2008.html

    Varadero 2008: My Testreport

    [​IMG]

    All good things come to those who wait... It took some time, but finally I did find the time to post the promissed test report of my 2008 Varadero test ride, last March.
    Well… after still feeling a little disappointed about the ‘all new’ 2007 Varadero – which came out to be no less and no more as an aesthetic update to the 2003 model – and a test ride on it, I hesitated when my Honda agent offered me to have a 3 days test ride on his brand new ’08 model. What in heavens name could this ’08 model add to the ‘04 I own and the ’07 which was that disappointing?

    Well… they say that you’ve only got one opportunity to make a first impression, but sometimes you will have a second chance.
    First things first. I still think that the glove compartment is rubbish – can only be operated by using the key and is located on the wrong side of the cockpit -, that the lock to unreleased the saddle is moved to the wrong place (rear side between the rear light and the licence plate – I still haven’t heard or read which bright light got to that idea… or what was wrong with the original place) and lets be honest, the Varadero gets a little dated in comparising with the new GS 1200, the LC8 or even the new Moto Guzzi Stelvio.

    But hey, it is still a Honda and since it is still too early to say anything about the reliability of the Guzzi, it is a fact that the Beemer and the KTM are really struggling against a rather bad image they have received on the reliability front… Where the Beemer GS forums and the KTM forums are posted with numerous complains and warranty issues, it is rather quiet here at our International Varadero Forum. OK, there are some problems, but let’s be honest – when did your Varadero has left you down the last time?

    [​IMG]

    OK, back on track with the ’08 model. And despite my critics to the new appearance (read about it here) I must admit that the new ’08 orange colour scheme fits the bike perfectly. Even more as a KTM… And I can tell, don’t blame me for being Dutch but Orange is after all our national colour…
    Riding of is just like any other Varadero. Everything feels all right, all switches and buttons are placed on the right spot and you can operate them blindfolded.

    Just to prepare myself on this 3 days test spin, I did do some reading on recent test reports in several Dutch, Belgium and German motorcycles in which the Varadero was compared with its nearest competitors. And I was amazed to read one report with the GS 1200 and the KTM on which this ‘ancient’ big trail bike did not come out last: The KTM did!

    I covered almost 1.000 km in 3 days and used the bike on a stretch which I also use for commuting with my own ’04 model. With a little detour every now and them; just to see how it handles in tight cornering at the TT racetrack, and how the suspension works on the longest cobblestone road in the Northern parts of The Netherlands, the ‘Valtherzandweg’ between the villages of Exloo and Valthe (Province of Drenthe). And the best way to test the straight-out stability at high speed? Well… visiting my Admin Colleague Ratman in the German city of Oldenburg: 150 km of (still) unlimited Autobahn starting at the Dutch-German border near Nieuweschans.

    [​IMG]

    I do not know what they did, but the ’08 model has been improved on some fronts. The engine, for example. Where my ’04 PFI starts to get really nervous (especially on cobblestones) the fuel injection on this ’08 model is really great. No nerve wrecking behaviour at low reffs, but gently and spreading its power output throughout the full range.

    Then the suspension. Where I found the suspension on my ’04 model way to hard – giving me almost a hernia on speed bumps – Honda seems to (finally!) get it right. In fact, this ’08 Varadero is the very first Honda big trail bike (including the new XL700V Transalp!) where I found the suspension just the way it should be. And luckily for us Varadero Raiders: it is still easily adjustable with a handy turning knob. Where a Transalp 700 owner has to struggle with its toolbox… Please note: the suspension is not ‘to’ comfy. On the mentioned cobble stone road it just swallows every-thing and the only thing preventing me to go full throttle on this road are the Bridgestone Trailwings which are mounted under the Dero for standard.

    Tip if buying one: Don’t take it for granted with the Bridgestone’s. There are far more improved tyres on the marked these days and the Trailwing really spoils a lot of the fun you can have. I would settle for Michelin Anakee or even better: Continental Trail Attack. And nothing less.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    And what about fuel consumption? Well… I must admit that this was not the key factor during this test ride. But on average I managed to get 17 km on a litre (5,8 litre to 100 km) which is very much satisfying – looking at the fact that it includes the 150 km Autobahn at full-speed. Nice job, Honda. This does raise some questions about the fuel consumption of the new Transalp 700… which is way to thirsty compared with the figures of its big, 273 kg 1000cc brother…

    Wind and weather protection from the fearing (we had temperatures below 0 degrees Celsius during the test) are – like on any Varadero 1000 – best in its class. The new saddle cover is great; on my ’04 I slide from rear to front (and back) wearing rain gear or my thermo trousers; but on the new saddle cover you do not need to wear leathers (or a seat belt) any more to remain seated. The saddle feels a little harder as the old one, which is good on long distance riding.

    [​IMG]

    Where you can question some of the ‘modifications’ Honda did on this new ’08 Varadero, you have to put question marquee WHY Honda did not made modifications for which the whole Varadero community has been asking the last decade (Yes, decade, 10 years, Honda!).

    The top dashboard (including the indicator indicators, the clock, ODO, tripmasters and the temperature gage) is still covered by transparent plastics which does have the habit of reflecting (and blinding) you when riding with low sun in your back. And: FUEL GAGE, Honda, FUEL GAGE. It really p* me off that Honda still refuses to put a proper fuel gage on a bike mend to travel, where cheaper Honda’s (Transalp for example) are fitted with one since 2000! There is a change on the fuel gage front, however. The warning light still remains and switches on as soon as you are starting on the last 4 remaining litres of fuel.

    And here comes the biggest improvement: As soon as the fuel light switches on, the ODO starts to count back from an estimated range you can reach on the remaining fuel supply. OK, it is still not a proper fuel gage, but beggars can’t be choosers and it is a start. Taste is a personal thing but I think that the new dashboard layout as introduced on the ’07 is poor. Too much ‘plastic phantastic’.

    It reminds me to the dash of a Harley Davidson tourer (can’t recall the type, but it was half the Alphabet) but most definitely not an adventurous all-rounder like the Varadero is.

    Shortcut? Well… Difficult. The new Varadero is rated below € 14.000,- in The Netherlands these days which is a fair price. Especially looking at the bottom price for a Beemer GS or a KTM LC8 – and even then things as ABS brakes are not included. About brakes: the Varadero still is equipped with the best linked ABS brakes available which even allow riding on dirt without jamming the whole system.

    It is so balanced and perfectly worked out.

    I still think – looking at the fact that we are still talking about a MK2 – that the XL700V Transalp (fitted with proper suspension) is still the best buy. You can eat your hard out that Honda will replace the Varadero 1000 within a few years and to be honest (especially if you use the bike all day, all weather) the wind and weather protection of the Transalp is still best.

    [​IMG]

    Things which would vote in favour of the Varadero? Well… The Varadero will allow you to travel up to 400 km on a full fuel tank (where the Transalp has only an 18 litre fuel tank whilst the fuel consumption is similar to that of the bigger, more powerful and heavier Varadero) and with full luggage and pillion it is the more comfy bike.

    If I had to make a choice right here, right now? Well… Transalp 700. But if I had to share my bike with my wife as a pillion, and doing all the long road trips we are doing now? Most definitely the Varadero. The choice is yours.

    Special thnx to Mense for providing pictures and Koos Mulder from www.muldersmotoren.nl for providing the bike

    CU
    #63
  4. Paulvt1

    Paulvt1 Long timer

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2004
    Oddometer:
    3,621
    Location:
    Wolverhampton. England.
    Looks sweet in orange.
    #64
  5. stevh0

    stevh0 Super Retard.

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2007
    Oddometer:
    1,550
    Location:
    Cape Town, ZA
    nice report.

    I rode an older 99 model with the ex VTR1000 motor and carbs.

    the fuel consumption was horrible .. 13km/l riding the speed limit (110-130kph)
    and 11km /l doing higher speeds ( 150-180kph)

    still a lovely bike for a big guy , im 1.94 / 120kg and it fits me like a glove.

    I believe the new bikes has had the fueling sorted out properly. I will see whether i can get a new 700 Alp or Varadero to test next week.
    #65
  6. twinrider

    twinrider pass the catnip

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2002
    Oddometer:
    9,618
    Location:
    日本
    Nice writeup. Personally, if I had to chose between the two I'd rather have the estimated range till empty gauge than a "proper" fuel gauge. The latter still leaves you guessing, but the former is very accurate. Of course, both -- like the Tiger has -- would be best.
    #66
  7. varaman

    varaman Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2008
    Oddometer:
    408
    Nice write-up. Thank you. I placed a deposit in early January for one of the Varaderos being introduced into the Canadian marketplace during the month of May.

    Can I ask you a question in regards to the bodywork? I understand the Canadian bikes will be identical, except for a few changes to satisfy Transport Canada, to the German model. Once my bike arrives I plan to order crash bars, Gobis, and an HB luggage rack. As the bikes are so new in North America these parts will need to be specifically ordered. To the best of my ability I can only find parts for the '07 and up models. To the best of your knowledge, is the bodywork and mounting points between the '07 and '08 interchangeable?

    Many thanks,
    Terry
    #67
  8. Two Plugs

    Two Plugs Long timer

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2007
    Oddometer:
    1,439
    Location:
    Groningen Province - Top of Holland
    You should not worry. To my knowledge the '07 crashbars can be fitted with no probs on a '08.

    But: make sure that you buy the right one! Do NOT purchase Givi. I would recommend the crashbars from either Hebco & Becker or SW MoTech (Both German manufactures), with a slight advantage towards the SW MoTech bars.

    @ Edit to the test report: the glove compartment can be opened without using the key.]

    We will be offline for the next 3 weeks. With both our Varadero's (my wife rides an '2000 with carbs, I will be riding my '04 ABS) we are going to do a tour through South-East Europe; starting here in the Northern Province in The Netherlands tommorow, towards the German Black forest near Switzerland, Italy, ferry from Ancona to Igoumenitsa in Greece, 4 days riding in Northern Greece and attending to the 16. www.itt2008.com transalp meeting, then ferry back to Venice, riding through Slovenia to Lake Balaton in Hungary to attend to the 10. www.vim10.com International Varadero Meeting, from there through the Czeck Republic, Austria and Germany back home.

    Estimated 4.000 km in 2,5 weeks riding.
    #68
  9. crocapo

    crocapo Adventurer

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2008
    Oddometer:
    45
    Location:
    Split/Croatia
    Nice report...I just buy Varadero 2008.Black one with full equipmet on it.
    P.S.For Two plugs read your pm...:clap
    #69
  10. capriccio

    capriccio Long timer

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2006
    Oddometer:
    2,929
    :nono check the Caponord on the Aprilia site, you'll find the Honda's twin. The bike was designed by the same pencil pusher.
    #70
  11. stevh0

    stevh0 Super Retard.

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2007
    Oddometer:
    1,550
    Location:
    Cape Town, ZA
    im almost sure the varadero was introduced before the strom? I could be mistaken.
    #71
  12. crocapo

    crocapo Adventurer

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2008
    Oddometer:
    45
    Location:
    Split/Croatia
    There is only one problem in your story...First vara is from 1998,and Capo is since 2001....:D
    #72
  13. capriccio

    capriccio Long timer

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2006
    Oddometer:
    2,929
    You found a problem that doesnt exist. I never mentioned who was first but that the Honda looks like the Aprilia because they were designed by the same designer. But like to add that we dont know if it was designed as Honda or Aprilia in mind, do we. You'll be surprised what has been designed and engineered in Torino, Italy.
    #73
  14. Ace_Cafe_Rat

    Ace_Cafe_Rat Rogue Adventurer

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2007
    Oddometer:
    343
    Location:
    Undisclosed Location in the Nuevo Mexico Desert
    My friendly local Honda dealer here in Albuquerque, (R&S Powersports) told me this afternoon that there will be Varaderos in US as "Early 2009" Models. He said "August at the earliest". He did NOT know the price and is not yet taking deposits, but the dealership IS taking names for a contact as soon as he knows more.
    :freaky
    #74
  15. Two Plugs

    Two Plugs Long timer

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2007
    Oddometer:
    1,439
    Location:
    Groningen Province - Top of Holland
    @ Capriccio, tnx for the intput, but... sorry to disappoint you...

    The CapoNord looks amazing like the MK1 Varadero (design of the Varadero XL1000V dates back to 1995 when the first drawings where made and the bikes intentional name was 'Honda Dolomite') but that is NOT because both bikes where designed in a Italian design studio.

    The Varadero XL1000V is a pure Japanese design, based on a Japanese paintbrush art which allows the artist to make 'faces'. I can't recall the name of this artwork, my Japanese is a bit rusty...

    And I am sure about this... because I have met the Japanese designer at the 8th Varadero International Meeting (VIM) on the isle of Sicily, in 2006.

    At this years 10th anniversary Varadero International Meeting near Lake Balaton in Hungary, the complete design team from Japan participated. I felt honoured and privileged to be part of the guiding team who hosted the Honda team (besides the Japanese delegation also from Honda Hungary, Honda Europe and the Spanish Honda Montesa factory where the Varadero - besides the XL700V and the Deauville - is build.
    #75
  16. Two Plugs

    Two Plugs Long timer

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2007
    Oddometer:
    1,439
    Location:
    Groningen Province - Top of Holland
    Dear readers,

    The 10th Varadero International Meeting in Hungary, at the shores of Lake Balaton, has become another grand succes! Almost 300 participants from 18 different nationalities (amongst them Turkey, Russia, Latvia, Sweden, Danmark, Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Poland, Chech Republic, Hungary, Slovenia, Slowakia, Romania, Greece, Austria, Italy and Israël) participated on their Honda XL1000V Varadero's.

    Before we participated to VIM, we joined another Honda bigtrail meeting: the 16. International Transalp Treffen in Parga, Greece. In 2,5 weeks both me and my wife covered 4.500 km and visited 9 different countries: Start in The Netherlands, Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Italy, Greece, Slovenia, Croatia and Hungary. The XL1000V Varadero is a real big tourer who is not scared away when the smooth paved roads are changed in to a dirtroad.

    We've got several pictures to share with you on these two albums, please enjoy them!

    [​IMG]
    In the Jerusalem area of Slovenia enjoying some off the excellent dirt roads

    [​IMG]
    My wife Karinda on her '2000 Mk1 (120.000 km and still counting... record holder at the Varadero Meeting was Bogdan from Poland on a early '99 Mk1 with 181.000 km done (110.000 miles).

    [​IMG]
    Leaving the EU into the republic of Croatia (Hrvatska)

    The pics are placed in random order...

    Serie 1:
    http://www.ringo.com/photos/album/photos.html?albumId=43092144

    Serie 2:
    http://www.ringo.com/photos/album/photos.html?albumId=43092173

    Enjoy them, and we are looking forward to meet the first Canadian participation to VIM in the near future... check out www.varadero-international.com for details; the next two editions will be held in Turkey (VIM11, 2009) and in the Austrian Alpes (VIM12, 2010).
    #76
  17. ozcan

    ozcan Been here awhile

    Joined:
    May 10, 2008
    Oddometer:
    269
    Location:
    Margarets: The Hole-in-the-Forest
    Finn at:

    http://www.oh8gej.org/varadero/

    claims to be using 3.8 - 4.0 litres per 100 km. Is that possible?

    Best I'm getting from my XRV750 and XLV750 is 6.0 litres per 100km.

    My XLV600 (TA) uses 5.6 litres per 100 km.

    Has the Dero's 1000cc engine really progressed to achieve that kind of economy? Anyone getting that kind of result? Important, as i'm shopping for one in Canada at present... .
    #77
  18. Two Plugs

    Two Plugs Long timer

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2007
    Oddometer:
    1,439
    Location:
    Groningen Province - Top of Holland
    Yes, fuel economy is surprisenly good... especially looking back at the 'old' carburettor fueled MK1 which performed rather poor in fuel economy. But: even on my 25 yrs old XLV750R I get 19 km on a litre, and on our 1987 Transalp it is even 22 km - We do ride safe; that does not mean slow! But both bikes performance is better on a minimum octane fuel of 98.
    #78
  19. ozcan

    ozcan Been here awhile

    Joined:
    May 10, 2008
    Oddometer:
    269
    Location:
    Margarets: The Hole-in-the-Forest
    You're doing well to get those figures... . Maybe I need to ease up a little...

    Really enjoyed northern Holland, particularly the canal ports. Check out my number plate...

    Paul

    Attached Files:

    #79
  20. crocapo

    crocapo Adventurer

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2008
    Oddometer:
    45
    Location:
    Split/Croatia
    You were in Croatia....I hope I will see you next time...:freaky
    #80