Honda unveils new road bikes

The first of three Japanese-based powersports manufacturers to hold its annual dealer show in Las Vegas in the month of September, American Honda Motor Co. Inc. unveiled a bevy of new and updated models at the Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino on Sept. 10.
Joining such previously-released models as the 2004 Valkyrie Rune and VTX1300C, Honda’s other new road bikes for 2004 include a choice of custom-designed VTX1800; the Shadow Aero; CBR1000RR; 599; NSR50R and Dream 50R; ST1100P; and the returning Helix scooter.
The introduction of these new vehicles brings Honda’s product lineup to more than 75 motorcycle, scooter, ATV and personal watercraft models — 30 of which have been launched during the past three years, resulting in a corresponding sales increase of 67%.
VTX1800 R, N &S
(MSRP: $12,599-$14,949)

Honda’s VTX1800 receives a new custom-building program that lets consumers
personalize their machine with all-new, factory-assembled options.
Shadow Aero ($6,199-$6,499)
Another of the many 2004 cruisers that can be completely customized using factory-made parts, the 750cc shaft drive Aero is available in a variety of colors and has options including a windshield and saddlebag mounting brackets for touring, chrome accessories and leather accessories.
Honda says its all-new CBR1000RR was built for the Superbike wars. Sporting an all-new frame wrapped around a new 998cc liquid-cooled inline four, the 1000RR takes the place of the CBR 954RR as Big Red’s race and road rocket.
Honda’s other big racer, the V-twin RC51, will arrive as a Nicky Hayden Replica, with Hayden’s signature on the tank and a full sticker kit to replicate the American Honda/HRC race bike.
599 ($7,099)
Not all good things come in large sizes, however, as downsizing former models appears to be another manufacturer trend for ’04, with Yamaha revealing the FZ6, Suzuki introducing the V-strom 650, Kawasaki delivering the Z750 and Honda shrinking its 919 to create the 599 — which runs off of an inline four derived from the CBR 600F3.
NSR50R & Dream 50R
($3,599 & $5,499)

Honda enjoyed skyrocketing demand for its XR50 during the past couple of years, and now seems to be attempting to bring that sales success to the asphalt with the introduction of the NSR50R and Dream 50R, two competition-only bikes styled to replicate real-world racers.
The six-speed NSR50R features a 49cc liquid-cooled reed-valve two-stroke engine delivering 7.2 bhp at 10,000rpm. Track-ready and weighing only 161 pounds dry, the bike’s equipped with 12-inch alloy wheels running a 100/90-12 tire in the front and a 120/80-12 tire in the rear.
Stunning in design, the six-speed Dream 50R, a commemoration of Honda’s early racing bikes, delivers 7 bhp at 13,500 rpm. Weighing 156.5 pounds dry, the little Dream runs on a 2.50 x 18 tire in the front and rear.
ST1100P ($11,899)
A police-issue version of the ST1100 sport tourer, the five-speed shaft-driven ST1100P receives additional standard features specifically designed for police use — most noticeably, emergency lighting, a solo seat and rear component cover.
Helix ($4,999)
Finally, Honda plans to expand its scooter line yet again with the return of the Helix. Available in 11 colors, the Helix features a 250cc four-stroke engine, automatic transmission, and large lockable storage compartment.

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