Thread: Honda VTR SP2
Honda VTR SP2
Do we have any SP2 owners on here? I read very little about these bikes now, but have always had a desire to own one.
Honda’s SP1 (also known as the RC51) debuted in 2000 and HRC immediately launched it to the front of the World SuperBike pack.
Out on the roads, the SP-1 also received a warm reception. For 2002 Honda have taken a number of the lessons learned by HRC during competition in the past two years to bring in a new model, dubbed the SP2.
Fundamentally unchanged from the look of the SP-1, the SP-2’s striking bodywork features only two significant changes. First is a new windscreen that copies the shape of Colin Edwards’ championship World Superbike Works racer. Approximately 30mm taller than the SP-1’s shield, it provides a wider range of coverage at high (or racing) speeds, as well as an impressive high-performance look.
The next notable change is a new set of more compact and angular front and rear indicators, which now fall in line with the other high-performance Super Sports in the Honda stable to provide a uniform mark of sharp distinction.
A striking new white and black variation takes its cue from the distinctive look of the 2001 world champion Castrol-Honda World Superbike Works machines.
The new SP-2’s powerful 998cm3 DOHC 8-valve V-twin engine has received only minor upgrades from its high-performance SP-1 base model, as the main thrust of its 2nd Generation development concentrated on improvements to handling and frame rigidity in order to boost the credibility of the SP’s racing pedigree. Still, even though the engine underwent only minor modification, the resulting improvements in its performance and operating ease can be easily felt by anyone familiar with the SP-1. And its enhanced response and riding ease translate directly from road to track and back again.
The SP-1’s 54mm fuel injection throttle bodies have been upgraded with larger new 62mm stacks, the same units used on HRC’s championship Works racers. New 12-jet twin injectors also replace the 4-jet units used in the SP-1 to produce finer fuel atomisation that results in smoother, more responsive throttle performance and faster, more efficient combustion for stronger power output.
On the exhaust side, newly designed exhaust ports now feature a Works-derived shape for faster exhaust velocity and combustion chamber evacuation, which plays a major part in the new engine’s increased power output. The exhaust system was also modified with a new taper in the tubes feeding into the silencers to realise smoother, more enhanced drivability. The SP’s large, canister-style silencers have also been lightened with thinner-wall stainless steel plate, and even their mounting bands were replaced with lighter weight pieces.
Other detailed engine improvements include a new shot-peening process applied to the piston wrist pins, which results in a longer-wearing surface that’s more resistant to scoring.
All these modifications to the SP’s engine performance add up to a sizeable 4hp increase in maximum power output and a stronger surge of acceleration. Continued on page 2.
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