Sunday, 27 July 2014

Featured Bike - Honda NM4 Vultus

Today I made my biennial visit to Victor Devine Motorcycles - Glasgow's Honda Dealer - to buy a new helmet.  While I was there I saw the new NM4 Vultus - a kind of scooter/cruiser hybrid.

It's a striking motorcycle, more like a concept bike or prop from a science fiction movie, than something you can buy. The seat height is very low at 650mm (25") It is powered by the 750cc twin engine from the NC with Honda's DCT (dual clutch automatic transmission) Novel features are a passenger seat that folds up to become a backrest & storage areas on either side of the large fairing. A version of the bike has also been shown with rear panniers.

According to Honda the bike is inspired by manga cartoons and aimed at "The young social media-engaged urbanite living a digital existence in a fast moving world" So not me, then. Keita Mikura of the design team said: "Honda is a big company. We make every kind of motorcycle. It’s great that sometimes we make a certain machine simply because we can and because we want to, not because we should". It's a bold move especially since Honda have been here before with the DN-01 that sank without trace but Honda have the resources to do this and not worry about it being a commercial success.

Honda are making good use of the NC700 (now 750) platform producing the S - roadster, X - adventure sport, Integra - scooter, and in the US the CTX - cruiser/tourer.  

Vultus with panniers
CTX 700N

CTX 700


  1. An interesting bike, reminds me of Dan Guerney's 'Alligator' bikes...but not quite as low-down in the seating area. Interesting how Honda is using that new engine concept in a wide range of bikes.
    I too recently visited my local Honda shop to look at the new NC 750, only to be disappointed to hear that Honda isn't selling them in the US! Also not happy to hear that the salesman had no idea if and when they might. Have been considering an NC 700, and now that the 750 is out with even better gas mileage and a host of other new features...thought maybe this was the time. Oh well, just have to wait and see, and keep riding my old ones.

    1. The Honda NC700/750 engine is an odd story. It seems that, as you say, in the US they are sticking with the 700cc version while Europe gets the 750. Even the new NM4 may be 700cc over there. It was strange anyway that Honda would change the engine so early in its life. It's not just the bore, the 750 has an additional balance shaft. The change may be because there was criticism that riders were hitting the rev limiter on the low-revving engine in low gears and that the 750 allows steeper gearing. I'm sure the US will get the 750 eventually.