Honda VT750 S Review
By Trevor Hedge
Honda has released its latest version of the now long running and very successful VT750 line-up, the new VT750 S.
Honda’s bean-counters have sharpened their pencil on the new model and Big Red is introducing the VT750 S at a very reasonable $9990 ride awat. Considering the VT750 S is not made in one of Honda’s Chinese or Thai plants but is instead a genuine made in Japan product, the $9990 price point is surprising.
Motivating the 232kg VT750 S is a well proven 52-degree liquid-cooled V-twin producing a claimed 62Nm of torque from a low 3250rpm. Fuel injection ensures that starting is a breeze and the throttle response gives the engine a sportier feel than its carburetted predecessors.
On the road the 3-valve per cylinder engine revs surprisingly hard and if taken to extremes will hit 60km/h in first gear and break 100km/h in second thanks to quite tall gearing. Top gear is only good for around 140km/h but does bring the revs back to a more reasonable level for 110km/h highway cruising. Long uphill climbs or overtaking will require a downshift or two via the smooth five-speed gearbox.
With only a 10.7 litre fuel tank however this bike is aimed more at the city commute than highway riding. On the highway you rarely get more than 100km before the fuel light illuminates to indicate only a couple of litres remain.
The riding position is comfortable for short hops and sufficient for a trip out of the city and into the hills without getting painful. Helping that cause is quite reasonable suspension. Really big hits will still upset the VT750 S but overall the suspension proved quite compliant and more amenable than earlier models. The rider’s seat is fairly well padded but a pillion would not be comfortable for journeys any longer than a trip around the block. The optional pillion backrest and rack might help matters a little but there is little hope for a passenger’s butt.
I actually rode an earlier model VT 750 from Sydney to Phillip Island one day back in 2002. I took the coastal roads and copped plenty of serious kidney punches along the way. This new bike is easier on the rider, but that earlier model did have the luxury of a 14 litre fuel cell. On the other side of the coin however, back in 2002 the VT750 D cost $12,190. That didn’t stop the VT750 being the biggest selling cruiser in Australia during 2003. This latest bike costs only $9990 ride away and will likely prove an even bigger hit.
A single 296mm front disc rotor is clamped by a twin-piston caliper and assisted by a 180mm drum brake at the rear. This ensures the brakes are easy to control but I do feel more power and the assistance of ABS would increase safety. The low price unfortunately does mean that riders do miss out on some of the benefits that new technology can bring.
A very low 750mm seat height welcomes the vertically challenged and its easy natured low speed handling will prove confidence inspiring for inexperienced riders.
Due to its 745cc capacity the VT750S does fall outside the requirements for LAMS learner legal status but even with that unfortunate drawback for learners the VT750 S is assured of runaway success.
Specs – Honda VT750 S
Engine – 745cc, liquid-cooled 4-stroke UNICAM 76° V-4
Bore x Stroke – 79 x 76mm
Transmission – Five speed, chain drive
Seat Height – 750mm
Wet Weight – 232kg
Fuel Capacity – 10.7 Litres
Average Consumption on test – 6.5 litres per 100km
Range – 165km
Warranty – Two years
Price – Expect to pay $9,990 ride away
+ Good value for a proven product
+ Surprisingly nimble
– Small fuel tank
– No ABS
– Pegs touch down early
– Not learner legal
– Pictorial – Image Gallery featuring the Honda VT750