Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Honda - Answer for your crimes

For all their might and power, Honda sure know how to mess things up.

I have to admit a certain degree of personal animosity here, as my Honda CBR600rr sits in a shop awaiting a new engine, after the current 10,000 mile example inexplicably failed. So much for Big Red's bulletproof reliability...

Unsurprisingly in times such as this you start pondering all the other crimes committed by the perpetrator of your own misery, and for Americans there can be no greater crime than the absolute shambles the Honda MotoGP team made of their rider management at Estoril. I talked in depth on the subject here, and there's further insight on it at this blog.

So then my thoughts turned to how Honda runs its Superbike programs worldwide. Oh, that's right. THEY DON'T. In actual fact, the only factory Honda superbikes are those in the British Championship. Guess who won that this year? Yep, Honda. Not by a country mile, but there's no doubt that factory involvement won them that title.

Over here in the US, American Honda is very much on their own. Given the trick parts that the British team gets, there's little doubt that they would be on pace with the rocketship Suzukis. Alas the American team has had develop the bike from scratch and still don't have traction control.

In World Superbike, Honda, along with the other major manufacturers, still have an ongoing vendetta against the organizers. None of the top teams running Japanese bikes are factory teams, although they are supported by the European importers. Once again, the Honda teams have had to beg and grovel for the trick parts, and have only very recently gotten traction control.

What baffles me is that, given the time and investment required for the trick superbike parts that are supplied to the HM Plant team in England, why not make them available to top teams? Surely Honda want to see Hondas winning? (Actually, maybe that's not true given the kamikaze Pedrosa MotoGP disaster...)

If I sit here long enough I could probably come up with a whole host of other Honda crimes, but for now I'll stew in the juices of missed superbike opportunities, a mismanaged MotoGP program, and a supposedly reliable bike that's about to slash my life savings in two.


James - said...

You are funny. What kind of gas milage did your bad engine get? What broke on it?

Nicebloke said...

We don't know yet what broke. I got between 25-30mpg around town (which is where I do most of riding). On longer rides I'd hit 45mpg usually.