The Honda NM4 Vultus, because Honda are big enough to be able to do this without it having to make any sense
In what seems to be a Mad Max-meets-Blade Runner moment, Honda have unveiled the NM4 Vultus. “An identity not bound by standard motorcycle design, with strong echoes of futuristic bikes seen in Japanese movies. Created by a young design team, the NM4 Vultus brings radical style to the streets, with function from the future for a new breed of rider,” says a press release from Honda.
Created by a bunch of Honda designers in their 20s and early-30s, the NM4 Vultus has apparently been built to attract a new kind of rider, who may or may not know or care about things like the engine and the chassis, but who might be captivated by the NM4’s styling and its sheer cool. “Honda is a big company. It’s great that sometimes we make a certain machine simply because we can and because we want to, not because we should,” says Keita Mikura, project leader for the Vultus.
So what’s unique about the Vultus? Well, apart from the styling, it’s probably the digital dashboard that changes colour according to the riding mode selected, LED lights, an adjustable, multi-position flip-up pillion seat that also acts as a backrest for the rider, and a six-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission (DCT) that can also be operated in fully automatic, sport, and manual modes.
The NM4 is fitted with a 745cc liquid-cooled, fuel-injected, 8-valve, SOHC twin-cylinder engine that produces 54 horsepower and 68Nm of torque, and delivers 28km/l in terms of fuel efficiency. The Vultus rides on 18-inch (front) and 17-inch (rear) wheels, with a 43mm telescopic fork up front and Honda’s Pro-Link monoshock setup at the back. The rear tyre is a 200-section item, and a 320mm brake disc (front) with twin-piston caliper handles stopping chores. ABS is standard, of course. With its kerb weight figure of 245 kilos, the Vultus is a bit porky, though you can have it in whatever colour you want, as long as it’s matt black.
Does the Vultus make any sense whatsoever? Well, it doesn't have to! Like Keita Mikura says, Honda are big enough to do whatever the hell they want to, and that they can build a bike just because they want to. And isn't that, cool?