The Honda VT 1100 (1985-2007). A kind of Harley

Honda VT 1100
A standard VT1100. You don't find that often
ER Classics Desktop 2022

Around the second half of the 80s, the Japanese customs were thoroughly reliable. Only in the first years Honda VT 1100, the four-speed models (1987-1996), the third gear broke. And in the meantime the parts are NO longer available.

The first generation Honda VT 1100 twins, the four-speed bar

That third gear with the four-speed gearbox was therefore a thing. And because quite a few customs have run almost no kilometers, there is a chance that you will come across a perfect-looking Honda VT 1100 four-speed gearbox. We would leave it. But some people are more lucky with gambling than we are.

In addition, the Honda VT1100 is one of the first Japanese customs that did not have that weird, stocky style of the early line of that family. He is more than inspired by HD. That is obvious. But you don't have to bother.

Of course a V twin

The Honda VT 1100 has a liquid-cooled, 1.099 cc V twin as its power source. Honda's three-valve technology is used in the heads for the best possible breathing and double spark plugs for optimum combustion. Each head has an overhead camshaft. The machine is very easy to maintain due to its electronic ignition, the hydraulic tappets and the cardan drive. And thick 65 horsepower at 5.500 rpm, the Honda VT 1100 is strong enough and nicely bully. The dosing of the hydraulic clutch is a bit awkward, which can sometimes result in a blocking rear wheel when switching back. The bin turns quite noisy and rude.

The Honda VT 1100 is not a nice thing at low speeds. It is then difficult to handle. Once on the road it goes better. Even on winding inland roads, the lazy Honda does well then. But let's face it: a Honda VT 1100 is simply not designed to set the fastest lap times at Imola. The single drive on the front does its job well. The rear brake is unobtrusive. So good enough. The fact that the rear suspension is kneiterhard is quite compensated by the well-positioned seat. The driver is not bad at that. The place for the passenger M / V is not much. Too little space and too little suspension travel, so too little comfort.


Beyond that third gear, a Honda VT 1100 hardly ever fails. A copy with less than 10D km could therefore be an option if you use the joker for the gearbox.

Fitting a low handlebar and a windshield makes driving long, fast journeys on motorways more pleasant. But: Why would you go on long, fast journeys on motorways with such a friendly, tough cruiser? Then buy a BMW RT, a Goldwing or a Guzzi.

Oh yes: When purchasing, consider prices between the 2000-5000 euro (for a five-speed model)

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