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Aller Ó la version franšaise

2010 Honda VFR1200FA DCTáTrack Test


by Pascal Bastien ,

What about the DCT?
At low speeds, you simply forget about it. In attack mode, riding in either of the two fully automatic modes does mean that you give up gear selection, as the ECU decides that for you. Going to manual mode does restore your decision power if you absolutely need it for specific circumstances, such as slower speeds or traffic. The excellent ECU programming makes for smooth shifts at all times, a sign of excellent ECU programming. Once your shifting reflex transfers from your foot to your left thumb and index, riding the VRF, even in manual mode, becomes almost too easy. The ECU also reduces engine braking by managing the release of the clutch on downshifts, which contributes to stability and makes riding even more fun.

Like other high-performance motorcycles featuring semi or fully automatic gearboxes (The Yamaha FJR1300A, for example), the 2010 Honda VFR1200FA DCT does require some getting used to.

Pascal having fun in corner 5 at Mosport, getting ready to gallop up the long straight. Photo: Bill Petro

I like it
When you are totally familiar with how the bike shifts and reacts, however, everything flows like butter in a hot pan. On the track, the manual mode made my life easier by allowing me to select the gear I needed and focus on my riding without suffering from a bad downshift. On the street, no more reaching for the clutch lever or blipping the throttle at stop lights, and remember to set the parking brake.

Once you are well acquainted with the automatic modes, riding the VFR becomes so simple that you almost lack some activity to keep you attentive. And if you enjoy mechanical things that work well, you can hear and feel all these mechanical bits working to perfection. Mechanical bliss!

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