Honda VT1300CX Fury review, test ride
4th Jan 2012 3:36 pm
Our first impressions of the new Honda VT1300CX Fury
The Fury shows a wild side of the Japanese giant like no other model before it. Here’s a Honda where function follows form, for once. And what a form this is. The VT is a mega motorcycle by any stretch of the imagination. Styling is classic chopper, so you get a front wheel that extends into tomorrow, heavily raked front forks, a low-slung rider saddle and a equator-wide wheelbase.
A closer look is required to study the many interesting details that make up the Fury. The manner in which the front fender hugs the classy, nine-spoke, 21-inch wheel particularly. Further up the forks, the small, chrome-encased headlight looks just right, going well with the bike’s minimalist front-end. The Fury is no sportsbike, so you can excuse the lack of a tachometer. What you will find though is a smart analogue speedometer that reads up to 180kph and a small digital readout for the odometer and trip gauge.
The Fury stays true to the chopper template with its long handlebar extending far back to the rider. Switchgear includes an engine-kill switch, starter button, horn and also the headlight and turn signal controls. That said, the chrome-look plastic shrouds for the switches don’t look all that convincing. No reason for complaint, however, with the soft and palm-friendly grips or adjustable and comfy brake and clutch levers.
Cast an eye on the Fury’s voluptuous fuel tank and you’ll easily forgive its paltry 12.8-litre capacity. It’s just that beautiful. What’s also good is exposed portions of the motorcycle frame are finished in the same shade as the rest of its body, contrasting well with shiny bits on this bike, especially around the chrome-rich engine. Honda has also done well to conceal the Fury’s driveshaft behind its alloy swingarm and this allows clear viewing of the elegant seven-spoke rear wheel. The Fury’s uncluttered tail is dominated by a large fender that drops down to its slender LED brake light.
The Fury comes with a chrome-rich, long stroke, 1312cc, 52-degree V-twin powerplant that makes for quite a sight. Both pistons are driven by a single pin-crank and dual balancers keep vibrations in check. Honda’s PGM-FI fuel-injection system is standard as are two spark plugs per cylinder with three-dimensional mapping for perfectly timed ignition. Each cylinder features three valves – two inlet and one exhaust – with each set actuated by a single overhead camshaft. An interesting detail is the radiator which sits flush between twin frame downtubes.
Honda has opted for a low-maintenance shaft drive system on the Fury. Turn the ignition key located near the left side engine cover, thumb the starter and the engine awakens with a rather mild exhaust note. But that is only at idle. On the move, the silencers belt out an impressive soundtrack.
Throttle response is crisp and vibrations remain imperceptible at all times. The Fury remains smooth through a short rev band, feeling relaxed at all speeds. The Fury weighs in at a hefty 309kg, its engine outputting a rather modest 53bhp at 4250rpm. Performance is adequate although, and you won’t be left wanting more power as long as you ride unhurriedly as cruisers are meant to be ridden. The lack of power is somewhat compensated for by a healthy 10.5kgm of max torque made available at an easily accessible 2750rpm. There’s plenty of grunt through the gears, allowing the Fury to attain speeds of around 130kph without effort.
You don’t need to apply too much power to work the five-speed, one-down and four-up ’box and the clutch is well weighted too. The riding position is stretched-out. You sit low down on the saddle, arms and legs extending to the controls, but the riding position still feels natural. The protruding airbox cover that brushes against your right leg is the only flaw really. Riders will also enjoy a well-padded saddle, though the pillion seat is too small for comfort over even short distances.
Suspension on the Fury is a combination of 45mm front telescopic forks and a fully adjustable rear monoshock. Ride quality is plush, however the mile-long wheelbase coupled with the low ground clearance could pose a problem over rutted Indian roads. The Fury’s XXL dimensions mean this is quite a lazy handler. You don’t need much effort to change directions, but the Fury takes its own time shifting its considerable mass. Low-speed manoeuvrability is not too bad, and that’s despite the rear tyre’s fat 200/50 profile. U-turns on your daily route could prove to make this motorcycle a handful.
Braking is via a single 336mm front and 296mm rear disc. The Combined ABS provides ample stopping power but could do with better feel at the levers.
It’s not all style with no substance however, the Fury outputs adequate power, with reasonable comfort on offer. The good news is that Honda is likely to bring this bike to India and will be unveiling the VT1300CX at the 2012 Auto Expo in Delhi. The manufacturer aims to bring it in as a Completely Built Up (CBU) unit so expect pricing to be in the Rs 15-18 lakh range.
Checkout the detailed photo gallery here