The long awaited RC30 replacement, the RC45, unchanged from the
preproduction form that people had seen at the 1993 Suzuka 8 hour race, hits the showrooms and lays a big
egg in magazine tests. With a $27K (USD) price tag and performance only slightly better than a CBR600F2/3,
people are wondering what Honda is thinking. Honda's Propoganda said that the RC45's engine is capable of
"Over 150 hp, in HRC race kited form". They fail to mention that it berely makes 100hp out of the box. The
U.S. D.O.T./EPA legal "Black box" seems to be the main problem. Snip a wire and gain 8-10 hp is the rule of
the day. It will take a lot of time and money to run with the other Big dogs in both AMA and WSB competition.
They seem to be getting better in AMA but are still struggling in WSB (though Arron Slight has been doing
amazing things on his Castrol sponsored RC45). IMHO: Honda should have just hung lights on the 1992 RVF
and called it a day.
Wayne Gardner talked highly of the 1992 bike and said the '93 Factory RVF's and the RC45 went in the wrong
direction as far as engine placement in the frame and it's effect on turning/handling. Even though Honda claims
the engine sits 10mm further forward in the frame compared to the RC30, both Factory team racers Arron
Slight and Doug Polen, talked about chasing the front end as it pushes and has lack of feedback in the turns. In
the August 1995 Issue of Sport Rider Magazine Lance Holst mentions more than a couple of times the
unnerving lack of front-end feedback both on Arron Slight's Factory RVF and similar characteristics the RC45
Note: The markings on the bike are RVF not VFR. I asked a Castrol Honda/HRC guy on Arron Slights team
what's up with this. He said that the RC45 (street bike) & current HRC/RVF ("Factory" race bike) are the same
machine to comply with FIM- WSB & AMA Superbike rules. Like in AMA motocross, there are no true
"Works Bikes" anymore, you have to have production based frames and engines. The RC45 was designed by
HRC off the RVF lineage instead of the VFR family.