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2010 Honda Shadow RS First Look

Thursday, November 12, 2009
2010 Honda Shadow RS
2010 Honda Shadow RS
The 2010 Honda Shadow RS increases the Japanese marque's entry-level Shadow line-up to four models. The Shadow RS is the sportiest of the quartet of low-slung beginner bikes, all of which are powered by the same liquid-cooled 745cc V-Twin. Like the new-for-2010 Shadow Phantom, the RS is fuel-injected while the less expensive Aero and Spirit retain their 34mm CV carburetors.

The Shadow RS clearly takes styling cues from the Sportster. It’s reported to have a more-upright riding position, higher pegs and a low seat height which Honda hopes will appeal to more new riders.


Honda Dealer Locator
With an MSRP of $7799 the Shadow RS is $200 less than the new Shadow Phantom and will be available by March 2010 in either Pearl White or Metallic Grey. Final specifications have not been released at this time.

While the RS is intended to fill the gap for consumers looking for something more than just a cruiser, the $7999 Shadow Phantom is aimed directly at people in the market for a smaller bike with a much more custom look. The Phantom features bobbed fenders, blacked out engine cases, frame, wheels and all around retro-looking appearance.

Other new bikes in the Honda cruiser range (though not yet confirmed for the US) include the VTX1300 motorcycles revealed at the Tokyo Motor Show.

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Comments
johnrjHD   February 1, 2013 03:12 PM
Had a shadow...car pulled in front of me at 25mph...$3500. damage because it is all plastic. Had several Harleys...one, 1956; went down at 55mph...picked it up, kick started and drove off...no damage...I ride Harleys now...Softail...much cheaper to run
tomk -shadow 750 rs  August 22, 2010 01:56 PM
lots of raging on the new shadow rs- well for what its worth, i have owned several harleys over the years, big, little over 65 bikes of all makes to date, and my latest is a 10 shadow rs- and i love it- its fun as heck to bomb around on and comfortable- it cost more than a sportster so dont give me the wanabe crap, i bought the honda mainly because its a honda, that means dependable in bike land- and i dont miss the 2010 bmw i dumped because the dealer couldnt fix a stalling issue- bottom line- ride what ever the heck you want to and more power to you- if you got time to piss and moan about everyone elses ride you cant be to happy with yours.
Think_First -Even Harley Riders make fun at Sportsters  May 16, 2010 05:51 AM
Why would anyone ever want to own a Harley? They are nothing more than an illegal immigrant trying to hide an American bike. A stack of foreign parts assembled in the US. Not ever Harley themselves will tell you what percentage of the bike is American made. Not Assembled but Made. Harley had to go to Porsche to design a new bike. I don't understand why any military person would own a Harley. Harley is about the last thing that symbolizes American. When America ever gets kicked we come back and build a bigger warship, faster Jet, Faster Tank, Better weapons, and say wait til next time and we will show you what America is made of. Harley used to be the best bike until about the 60's when the Metric's come over here and kicked Harleys ass in the races. What did Harley do, they tucked their tail between their legs and quit racing. Yea, you can't compare a cruiser to a racer but that is where the best of the technology comes from. So Harley is stuck back in the 60's. Why is it that Harley Owners have to invest an additional several thousand dollars for performance parts just to come close to a stock metric cruiser? Or run to Porsche to try to get a Harley to perform. At one point Harley couldn't sell a bike so they ran to Congress to get a ban on imported bikes. Why didn't they just build a bike ppl wanted instead of whining. Harley keeps reusing old parts, mix and match them and call it a new series. They even had Ducati build them for a while. Now a Porsche design. Yea, That's what America stands for. Harley is a public company, who owns the stock? So can't say it is American owned either. Just the Harley Lemmings who way over pay for a stack of foreign parts assemblies in the USA, spend thousands to upgrade performance to try to come close to a Metric performance, buy chrome to hide it, pay way too much for clothes with a Harley emblem so they can think they are bad ass. The only think that makes Harley hold their value is finding someone dumb enough to pay for it.
Rob -American Biker  April 16, 2010 04:02 PM
Hondas are OK. My first bike was an old CB175 twin. I'll never forget that first ride. I don't think Honda makes any bad bikes. Neither do any of the other Jap companies. They make great copies. Forget China. LOL. But I LOVE Harleys. It is the best road bike hands down, for every reason. Don't think so? I don't care. I'll still love 'em till I die. Nothing rides or feels like one. And they are made by Americans. Our neighbors, relatives and friends. I came before politicians and big business sold out the American working man. When people worked hard and took pride in their work and their country. The motorcycle / biker lifestyle is purely an American phenomenon, like it or not. I hate scooters and crotch rockets and would never own either. I'm in no hurry to get anywhere faster or cheaper than the next person. I have an old Ford pick up. I would never own a Prius either. I think all that save the planet stuff is retarded. I think Obama is a fraud and a traitor. I don't want a handout or free anything. I can take care of myself. I don't care what you think. This is my blog. I like beating up liberals just because they are so damn stupid. I like my Harley, large caliber weapons, steak and American freedom. Nothing like it in the world. Don't like it? Screw you.
Twinstar -All those small bikes sold in Europe.  March 13, 2010 07:30 PM
The reason that the Big Four sell so many 125's in Europe is that European countries have very strict graduated rider licensing, and for the first few years riders are generally limited to 125cc, and only later graduating to unlimited size. These restrictions do not exist in North America. Furthermore, motorcycles are used more as transport than recreation, so standards and enduros dominate, whereas in North America cruisers and sportbikes are about all there is, though lately that has started to change, led by Honda, Suzuki and Kawasaki (who have done pretty well for a long time by clothing a couple of small standards in sportbike attire).
Camilo -interesting evolution  January 26, 2010 01:37 PM
I think, the RS is a mix between the VLX and the Honda VRX (search it at Google) which is an unknown bike in America, it has a 400cc v-twin based on the same engine of the VLX, definitely with the looks of a Sportster, I think it´s going to be closer when riders start to costimize it with stuff such as Forward Controls, Lowered rear suspenssion and aftermarket pipes. It's going to be hard to tell if it´s a Sportster or an RS when one passes by. This can be either good or bad for Honda.
The price is definitely high for the features, most riders don't care if a bike is carburatted or Fuel Injected (additional cost). If you see other things like rear Drum Brakes and Chain Drive, the least you can expect is a lower price for the market. This bike should have replaced the venerable VLX not only in terms of the segment (begginers bike) but also in price.
NatefromOgden -Shadow RS thoughts  December 25, 2009 03:09 PM
Hey guys, I wandered in here late to the party because I just saw pictures of the RS in a magazine this weekend, then went and looked at the Honda website then discovered this conversation. Can I add my opinion?
First the facts- I'm 53, ride a Morphous scooter that I love and began riding in 1974 when I first got my license. I have money to spend if I want to buy a motorcycle.

Looking at Honda's webpage today, it appears to me that the RS is the closest thing to a "standard" motorcycle in their lineup. I don't want to cross time zones and continents, pretend I'm a roadracer or a dirttracker or a wannabe Harley cruiser rider. I don't want forward controls- my legs are too short for most, I don't want 100+ horsepower with the requisite maintenance costs or something I can't throw my leg over. I want a "normal" bike that I can commute on, take a day trip with and that I can startup each time without putting on an attitude or appearances. This RS looks like it might fit the bill for me even at the still swirling suggested price. It's less money than the Bonneville- also on my possible list or a similar Moto Guzzi.

Sure the industry is in the toilet across the board, H-D and the imports and I submit that resale values on all will hold for a bit and all the dealers will struggle. That's just what happens when the economy takes a dive and the companies don't respond with reduced production quickly enough. So give the bike, and Honda a chance. Let's see what happens when it hits the showroom floors.
Bun Brown -2010 Honda Shadow RS 750  November 30, 2009 11:22 AM
Lets face is gang... Sportsters look and sound cool BUT have cramped uncomfortable ergos. Nobody over 5'5" can ride one. Until HD addresses that problem, the new Shadow will sell reasonably well against it.
Woodman West -Skip  November 23, 2009 07:35 PM
Skip, then who are the metrics marketing too as the first (and only) rule when they build a cruiser (one that sells well anyway) is "How can we make it look like a HD?" I have listed many examples in the last few weeks.

There is nothing wrong with being a biker, having tatoos and wearing leather. I am more offended by the rider who thinks he can be a biker by buying a fake HD and dressing the part. Than riding 2-3000 miles a year.

I wear a leather jacket for protection if I crash. The bandana around my neck is in case I catch some rain. Heavy boots give better traction at slippery intersections. If your wallet flys out when riding, the chain and snaps sure come in handy. Sometimes I choose (Oh the humanity!) not to wear a helmet, the rag keeps the hair in place and cuts back on the sunburn. I ride everyday.

Personally, I can live without the drinking and bikini contest mentality of the events.

The metrics are dying hard and this goofy Sporty copy for more money is the best they could do?
Skip -HD Buyers  November 23, 2009 01:57 PM
The target buyer for Harley Davidson, if I read their ads correctly, are male overweight, middle aged, sexually repressed ex-cons with an abundance of tattoos, body and facial hair, and odious personal habits. They also tend to have a severe leather fetish with a passion for chains, tassels,metal studs and slow out of date motorcycles.
Frank -Honda VTX vs Harley  November 21, 2009 09:24 PM
Those claming that Harleys have more power than a Honda, have never been on a 1800cc VTX. A stock 1800 VTX will outrun anything that Harley puts out. Even if you put 10K extra on a Harley, you will still have trouble staying with a 1800 VTX. Harleys are crap. Yes, I had one and I will never buy another Harley.All the crap about being anti American because you don't buy a Harley is just crap. Harleys are just like the Dallas Cowboys. Both are a shamefull example of American Pride.
Buell Rider -HD Dealers  November 21, 2009 01:58 PM
I was in a harley dealership this spring asking about a Buell. The owner of the dealership approach me and asked me to come back at another time as his salesmen were busy with customers. Of course I did not have a pony tail, tattoos and I wasn't dressed up like a clown so they did not recognize me as a biker. It might interest you to know that dealer went tits up this summer as the bank foreclosed on him (eastern Iowa). The salesmen and dealer must have thought,why waste our time on him selling him a Buell when we can sell a harley and that buyer will buy a clown outfit, belt buckles and of course the Screaming Beagle crap.
Woodman West -Pantera  November 21, 2009 04:14 AM
You make a lot of good points. I would argue now that the "motorcycle craze" of the last 10 years is over things will get back to normal. All the dudes watching MC cable shows with huge home equity lines of credit that bought cruisers have gone back to TV and golf. Or are just plain broke. The amount of low mileage "must sell" bikes in the cycletrader and on craiglist is amazing!

Now the "real bikers" (or motorcyclist if you prefer) will get back to buying and riding what they want and love. Most folks buy new every 7-10 years.

Lots and lots of smoking deals out there.
Pantera -Woodman  November 20, 2009 07:45 PM
Woodman, the fact that Honda and the other big four sell so many little bikes is why they can weather the storm better than HD. This was my point when I said these OEMs have a broader line up and can tap multiple income brackets. You have already seen this in action by Honda and Yamaha dropping some of their heavy weight cruisers from their model line up and replacing them with smaller more affordable bikes; Harley can’t do this because they don’t make a variety of different models. Harley only has different flavors of big twins and sportsters.

For 2009 Harley says it will only produce 222,000-225,000 bikes, who is getting the other 477,000 bikes…the imports. Why would these figures make you think Harley is in a better position than the imports? Harley is not thriving now they are contracting.

Currently the import dealers are closing at a larger rate than Harley dealers but as time passes these deep pocketed Harley dealers will eventually start folding at a rapid rate if situations in our economy don’t improve. The typical import dealer will have to close his doors if they have one bad season because of their tight margins the same isn’t true for your average Harley dealer. Eventually it will catch up with HD dealers and Harley because HD can’t borrow $600,000,000 from Warren Buffet every year.

As far as the Shadow RS I don’t think the sportster offers any more features. Comparing the RS to the 883 there is only a 5 hp difference. I wouldn’t compare it to the 1200 because Harley does make an 883. The price on the RS is in my opinion too high but Harley sells lots of bikes that lots of people think are overpriced and that nobody will buy. For some people the fact that it is a Honda they will pay a little extra. Most Harley owners should understand this idea of paying a little bit more for a bike because it has a name or image that makes them feel better about their purchase and therefore will pay a little extra. This bike will probably sell well because some people like Harley’s styling but don’t want the other stuff that comes along with owning a Harley. If this wasn’t true then the imports would not sell a single cruiser bike in this country because we would all just buy Harleys.

Harley doesn’t copy the import bikes because they only make cruisers. There is only so much you can do with a cruiser other than paint chrome and other styling cues. They all have v-twins, are long and low, have chrome, are heavy and etc. So any time an import OEM brings out a new cruiser which will by default have all of these attributes Harley owners will call it a copy. The RS is a blatant copy but so what manufacturers in almost every industry copy each other as long as they are not breaking any laws so why is it any different when it happens with Harley and imports? Are Harley owners afraid Honda might do a better job?
Woodman -Pantera  November 20, 2009 04:31 PM
You are comparing apples to oranges. The best selling street bikes in Europe are 125s. Asia will always own that market. Small disposable bikes.

This does not help the local import dealer with left 07s on the floor heavliy discounted. HD did hit hard times, but they are doing what needs to be done to thrive and survive. 2009 will see about 700,000 new bikes sold in the USA total, all brands. Half will be cruiser, 50%+ of these will be HD. A small number of HD dealers will close, some will struggle. But a much larger percentage of other brand shops will close.

This article was about this goofy little Honda no one will buy. It looks just like a Sporty for more money with less features. I don't see HD building bikes to look like imports to try to get someone to buy them.
Pantera -Woodman  November 20, 2009 03:57 PM
Yeah Okay, Harley may be the only factory standing…paalease!!! Woodman are you even aware of the fact Honda sells something like 13,000,000 bikes every year and Harley is going to sell maybe 225,000 this year? Are even aware that Harley dealers are ALSO closing their doors? Sure more import dealers are closing their doors but that is because you are comparing over a half dozen different OEMs to just one OEM Harley. Import dealers close their doors even in good economic times because they have very small margins because their bikes have to compete on substance and not just image and folk lore.

Did you know that nearly 90% of all new restaurants go bankrupt in the first year; this is why you can’t get a business lone from banks if you want to open a restaurant. Is it because nobody likes to eat out…no. It is because it is a fierce and competitive business just like selling motorcycles. Motorcycles of which some people actually use critical thinking, comparisons, and clear judgment before making the buying decision. These people don’t just buy a bike because it’s American or is allegedly “bad a$$” or because it is a “real bike” or that a shallow ‘brotherhood” and phony “lifestyle” will come along with it. They buy the bike based on how well it stacks up to the competition. Harley does not stack up, it is a poor value no matter how you cut it, but if their bikes make you happy then that is all that matters and just because the Harley makes you happy does not mean they make the best cruiser bike or that they will out last other OEMs that sell millions more bikes every year.

The steps that you outlined that Harley took were not taken to improve the company or to grow the company but to simply keep them from becoming insolvent. Harley put a tourniquet on to stop the bleeding and the bleeding has not ended because the $600,000,000 Harley got from Warren Buffet and one of his business partners is a drop in the bucket and will only take care or the massive liquidity and cash flow problems they were facing earlier this year; this is why they are selling MV and ending Buell in order to raise some capital for next year. Let’s also not forget that Enron’s stock was doing great too just before they went under. Judging the soundness of a corporations financial standing by just the current stock price is unwise and dangerous. Harley is in trouble and so are the other OEMs but some of the other OEMs have billions of dollars and very diverse model line ups that appeal to many different riders and income brackets. Harley only appeals to one or two demographics and most of their bikes are sold at a premium price.
Woodman West -Buying a HD  November 20, 2009 01:37 PM
It may soon be your only choice. Most other dealers are dropping like flys. Victory sales are down %59. Industry wide most folks are down %50+.

HD just settled with the union to bring down costs. Warren Buffet lent them a couple hundred million bucks for financing, there stock is way up and they are past a rough year (only sold 250,000 bikes!). They have cleared the books, fired those who made bad decisions and have some great looking new models.

Bottmline line is, they make a great cruiser that folks want and buy!
Harley is a Joke -Real Fast HD  November 20, 2009 09:46 AM
Wu Hu I sure have harley envy too. Yea, I want one of those 12 second 1/4 mile sportsters. 0 to 60 in 4 seconds yea and I am sure you used your official HD stopwatch for all of this fantasy too. Be care full as you might blow off your offical HD do rag going that fast. I love to pass harleys on the road. They see me comming and when I get along side they give it the gas. All that happens is they make more noise - LOL. I love to get a bunch of harleys on the road. You have to pass them as the buring oil smell behind them is terrible. Man is that funny. A whole pack of guys dressed up like the Village Poeple. Leather tassles hanging from there saddle bags and bar ends. Handle bars that are 3 feet tall. Loud exhaust that they think is cool blowing smoke all over the countryside. Yea, I sure wish I had a harley so I could play dress up like a pirate and make an ass out of myself trying to impress everybody. Just think, I could go on Poker Runs and I wouldn't have to wear a helmet because I would have my HD do-rag on and besides I would only be going from bar to bar anyhow. Oh I wish summer was here so I could rush out and buy a hardley.
Tapioca -Hans  November 19, 2009 08:07 PM
“In multiple tests,CW has the 0-60mph at 4.0 seconds and the 1/4 mile at 12.13 seconds” Really, why don’t you post which issue published these results because I have never seen a sportster in any test on any publication get better than ¼ @ 13.0. Your 12.13 number puts the sportster only a few tenths of a second off of where the V-Rod runs. Oh and also include the trap speed because in order for any bike or car to get into the low 12s in the ¼ the trap speed would have to be near 120 mph and a stock sportster falls on its face at about 108-110 for a top speed let alone a trap in the ¼.
Laughing At You -HD Truth  November 19, 2009 08:02 AM
http://www.goingfaster.com/angst/noharley2.html
Hans -Watcher  November 18, 2009 08:17 PM
Don't be stupid. I have a 1994 1200 Sportster with MAC Stakkers exhaust, K&N breather kit, and jetted 44mm CV carb. It will do 130 with a little throttle to spare. I love my bike and have collected tests and articles about the 94 Sportster 1200. In multiple tests,CW has the 0-60mph at 4.0 seconds and the 1/4 mile at 12.13 seconds. I don't know first hand, but I can't imagine a Burgman 650 coming close to keeping up with my XLH. It seems like you are another guy that has never ridden or owned a Harley, but is jealous and envious of people that do. I'm fine with you riding a Burgman 650, and I would still wave to you. It's all good if your knees are in the breeze! By the way, the Harley XR750 dominates the AMA flat track circuit to this day, and most of them are 1972 & 1973 bikes. Take care and keep it verticle!
Jim -Cool  November 18, 2009 01:57 PM
@woodman: chill pill! @Watcher: LOL ROFL LMAO
Watcher -HD Sportster  November 18, 2009 09:23 AM
Mr. Mountain Biker I don't know what kind of sportster you ride but every sportster Ive ever seen can hardley get out of its own way. My neighbor has a Burgman 650 scooter that will blow every sportster off the road. The sportster is an antique just like every other HD product. Any 250cc bike will outrun a sportster or any other harley. Another poster mentioned that harleys have great resale. Where in the hell does he live? Our newspaper is full of used harleys for less than half what they are new. People buy these things then realize what a piece of outdated shit they bought and then try and get rid of it. Trouble is everybody else is trying to do the same thing. They suckered for the harley lifestyle BS and bought the bike and the Screaming Beagle crap to get the HP up to at least 70 so they can keep up with the scooters. Maybe is they included there pirate costume with the used bike that would help sell it.
Woodman -Jim  November 18, 2009 03:45 AM
It makes no sense! There is no reason ever to go over 75-80 mph or rev your motor past 5500 RPM. Now just lean back or your rider backrest, turn up the radio, put you feet on the floorboards and grab your drink. (cup holder optional, but highly recommended)

Hey guy, just bustin on ya. Ride what you love and be safe.
Jim -WoodenMan can't handle a sportbike!!  November 18, 2009 01:08 AM
Yeah, woodman, sportbikes don't make sense to you probably because you just can't handle the power they produce, yeah, may be you are one of those guys who feel or have felt their arms ripping away from the shoulders when the throttle is wringed on a sportbike. And for this reason the speedo appears further away to your eyes, damn right!!! Hell ya...lazying around on a cruiser is not such a bad idea i would agree. But let me guess, u just took this discussion on a whole different platform...a [sport]bike, which handles muuuuch better, is lighter doesn't make sense to yaa...forget it!!
Mountain Biker -TechMech - Shadow/Sportster  November 17, 2009 09:31 AM
you kidding right these Sportsters are not of the AMF Days Honda is trying to hold on but the bike is over priced and under powered I had a couple shadows and they just can't keep up and a properly Tuned Sportster will out run A Big twin unless you spend A Lot of money to make the big Couch Run Sportys Rule
mr. obvious -harley high resale  November 17, 2009 09:10 AM
the main reason harleys have high resale is because a new harley isn't all that different(to the casual observer) than a used one, and harley knows this. if they put out a bike with completely redesigned bodywork/suspension/brakes/frames/engines every 2-5 years, the old models would lose value just like other company's bikes do.

as for this bike: i agree with what's being said here about the price, but i feel that way about most honda bikes(nt700v for $10000?!?).
RideSafer -Sleeper - Where do you live???  November 17, 2009 08:43 AM
I'm not sure exactly where you got the ideas for your post. The Sportster is the ONLY vehicle in production that has basically the same product design for over 50 years. And it's not because they just don't want to change it or it's not selling anyway, they must be doing something right. Last I checked you can buy a 2 -r 3 year old Shadow for under $3,000. And there is a glut of them around here. Sportsters hold value a bit better then a Shadow, you can't touch even a 10 year old Sportster for under $2,700. Hey, some people are attached to their and will only sell it if they get "their" price and many of them do buy their bike with HD's ridiculous financing terms putting them upside down in the first 2 years which requires them to ask stupid high prices for them when they are selling them but for the most part a Sportster in good working condition will never sell for under $2,500. Every company makes a lemon, all factories are open on Mondays and Fridays, so one guy that you know with a lemon doesn't speak for the literally tens of thousands of bike out there that are trouble free. I suppose the HONDA dealer laughed when you asked about trading in the HD because he knew that if he DID take that HD in trade it would kill all the sales on the HONDAs he's trying to sell!!! :) :) :) Don't hate the player, hate the game. there is a reason why Honda is taking a hint from Harley with the Sportster, because it's tried and true and will outlast ANY bike they come out with....and if you can't beat them, join them!!! Accept it!
RideSafer -Harley Fakerson  November 17, 2009 08:25 AM
Sheesh! This is a sheer attempt to capture the Sportster buyer. But I have to say that I, owning a sportster, would not have considered a Honda when I was considering buying a bike. I went into the Honda shop and sat on a Shadow, but for the $$ the Sportster felt like more bike to me. and 883 as opposed to a 750, American Iron as opposed to import? I bought my 2 year old Sporty for a hair over $6000, with an existing warranty from the dealer. Can't beat that price and it will hold the bulk of its value having the original owner already taken the biggest hit. I won't knock this bike and the Phantom too. They are nice looking bikes and from the history of the brand, they should be reliable. But for this $$ I wouldn't consider them, I would definitely look at my HD dealer again for another deal. Hell, for a few G's more, I would get in on a 2008 or so Dyna. They're out there; dealers have deals!!!
FC -...  November 17, 2009 07:15 AM
not sure bragging on harley's financial situation is the best way to criticize this bike. after all, HD stock has lost about 62% of it's value since its peak in late 2006. not to mention the whole buell/mv thing... the company is ailing. there's no way to hide it. as for honda, it's kind of frustrating to watch them essentially peddle budget bikes for way too much money.
Woodman West -HD sales and style leader  November 17, 2009 04:10 AM
magna 45/eliminator 750/Virago 900, yea, great bikes. They sold so well they had to stop making them. Could not keep up with demand. The Sporty has only been around since 1957.

Bottom line is, there are 2 types of V twin cruisrs. HD and bikes that look like HD. HD outsells all 4 large displacement Japanese cruisers combined.
shao -HD  November 16, 2009 11:32 PM
"HD led the way on belt drive, 6 speed, FI across the board, throttle by wire, ABS, air assist suspension and updated touring chasis. not to mention being the style leader" well, 'i don't disagree that HD has being the style leader of the cruiser types. But beside the belt drive, technique stuffs listed above have been equipped on other types of Japanese and European bikes for many years; those really aren't something for HD to be proud of. The reason some JP cruisers do not have advanced technology is they figured most typical HD/ cruiser riders only care about chrome deco and pirate costumes....otherwise, any old magna 45/eliminator 750/Virago 900 would blow a HD away.
Woodman -Back at ya JIm  November 16, 2009 07:16 PM
My comments were based on the fact that everyonec copies HD style. Come on, look at this bike, it is a fake Sporty, nothing more or less. Look at the new Stratoliner Deluxe or the Vulcan 1700 Voyager. Very good copies of HD models that have been great sellers for 5+ years.

Roadking comes out in '96 and sells like crazy, Roadstar comes out in '99. And my personal favorite, Royalstar bolts fake cooling fins onto thier watercooled motor to make it look like an aircooled HD motor.

HD led the way on belt drive, 6 speed, FI across the board, throttle by wire, ABS, air assist suspension and updated touring chasis.
not to mention being the style leader.

By the way, all sport bikes look alike to me. These bikes make no sense. The speedo is not even in the tank, where they belong! I rode one once for 5 miles, I could not wait to get back on my cruiser. Real motorcycles have floorboards!

ryder -How much?!?!?  November 16, 2009 02:32 PM
Too much if you ask me. I don't doubt Honda qualitiy, but if the reviews I've read recently are to be believed there are too many other machines in this segment with vastly superior performance at similar prices. I'd be riding a Star 950, Vulcan 900, or Boulevard M50 long before this bike. At a price point $1,000 cheaper, honda could make a great case for this bike. Harleys? Other than the XR1200 they are all about primarily about image. Interesting styling exercises on largely outdated platforms. Performance and value are secondary concerns.
Jim -Harley will thrive and how???  November 16, 2009 01:56 PM
Hey woodman...whasssuppp! As you put it, "This company (Harley, right?) will survive and thrive long after the imitators are gone". Well woodman, Harley will thrive because this is ONLY what they know!! Cruisers are their bread and butter, they simply don't know what else to make, not that it is a bad thing though! it's their line! But u see, cruisers have a very typical style element and for this reason you will find imitators every-f*cking-where, agreed? No matter what any company does, some part of a cruiser motorcycle always manages to look like some other! Some how, sport bikes manage to look different from each other!! In a parking lot, u'll always have difficulty differentiating between two or more cruisers from a distance, especially from the back, but u'll certainly recognise a sportbike brand from a group of sportbikes! And believe me, if Harley can thrive, then thrive would be an understatement for someone like Honda, getting!!
Woodman West -Sleeper  November 16, 2009 11:18 AM
Yea, Sleeper your right no one buys HDs. I did go down to the local Honda shop to test ride a Shadow, but they went out of business. They only sold Honda, Suzuki, Triumph, Ducati and Victory. I guess this was not enough options to stay open like the 4 thriving local HD only dealers. Good thing they made the Sporty look like a Shadow so folks would buy it.

Then I went to the next closest Honda shop, but they are only open Tues-Sat, for now. I guess they sell so many Shadows in 5 days, they can close for 2 days a week. Word on the street is they are gone soon. Closed 7 days a week. 1 Honda and 1 Suzuki dealer in a city of 2 million people.


HD stock is up 300% in the last 6 months in this economy. This company will survive and thrive long after the imitators are gone.
Sleeper -HD  November 16, 2009 09:52 AM
Nice bike and far superior to the outdated harley crap. At least one could ride and not worry about something falling off like on a harley. Unlike a harley the Honda will have some resale. The market is flooded with used harley junk. My neighbor bought a new 09 Honda Shadow and he loves it. He has had his lemon harley sportster for sale for almost a year now with not even one offer. The Honda dealer just laughed when he asked if he would take his harley in on trade. I think if he would take some of the harley pirate crap off of it he might have a better chance of selling it. He has those stupid harley leather tassels hanging off the ends of his grips and crap like that.
Dusty Wind -Original?  November 14, 2009 06:48 PM
Can you really call the shadow rs a copy of an original? Maybe a copy of a copy because that is what the harley sportster is, a copy. The sportster came out in the late 1950s as an answer to the popular British bikes of the day; they were light weight bikes with strong motors. Harley copied the idea in order to steal some market share from the British motorcycle factories. Harley even went as far as to put the gear shifter on the right side just like the British bikes. The sportster just like all bikes had put the shifter back on the left side of the bike after it was mandated that all bikes have the shifter on the left side. To this day the sportster still has the rear belt pulley on the right side but all other Harleys have the drive pulley on the left side. Triumph’s classic retro bikes that are made today also have the drive sprocket on the left side still.

So really Honda is coping Triumph. Oh and the whole V-twin thing, harley just copied Indian because Indian produced a production V-twin bike before harley and harley scrambled to copy the idea and just grafted two of their single cylinder engines together; this is part of the reason why the harley 45deg. V-twin has such horrible primary balance because it was not a v-twin to begin with it was a couple of single cyl. engines thrown together.
Woodman -Honda  November 14, 2009 03:13 AM
At this point Honda can only hope thier bikes look enough like HD that folks buy them before the dealers go under.
spike -Honda shadow rs  November 13, 2009 01:33 PM
Nice attempt a building a Sportster. Even more expensive too! This should really flop............Build your own ideas and looks that's what buyers are looking for not duplicates.
George -What!!!  November 13, 2009 08:54 AM
"I see a flat tracker or cheap fun roadracer" A cheap flat track and roadracer are you serious? A bone stock Suzuki GSF500 or Kawasaki EX500 would stomp the shadow rs no matter how many upgrades you do to it and the other bikes cost over $2,000 less. Heck the GS and EX both would kill a sportster too… in a roadrace…not flat track.

Seems like Honda is not only copying Harley’s style but also Harley’s marketing idea of building basically one type of cruiser and then offering that cruiser in a dozen different flavors and then naming each bike with a different model name even though the only difference is just price and trim.
FLTrk -Engine donor  November 13, 2009 06:30 AM
Way over priced for what looks like a sportster. I agree with you guys this thing should be way cheaper. But heres something. Lets look past what it is and look at what it could become. I see a flat tracker or cheap fun roadracer. Of course it would take some work and some engine mods BUT,I still see it.
Woodman West -Honda "gimme a brake"  November 13, 2009 04:31 AM
Come on, a drum brake on a modern 750cc cruiser? The Sportster Low at $6999 has a bigger motor, better brakes, FI, belt drive and much better trade in value.

Buy any bike you like, but this bike should be $6000.
Woodman West -Honda sales  November 13, 2009 04:19 AM
Go to Honda website. There are still 2007-2009 MCs on "permanent price reduction" availible at your local Honda dealer. (if they haven't closed)

Throw this one on that pile. They should just start discounting these $2000 now and save the time.
JaimeB -Hello?  November 12, 2009 06:36 PM
Hi Honda, how are you today? What's that, slightly overwhelmed? Too much stuff on the table? Brain fog? Too many market segments? Yes, I understand - here, have another cup of cofee...relax, chill let's go back in time. Remember the good ol' days when you overtook the bike market like say the C70, or say the CB90??? Yes, I'm talking about the way you used to do things - AFFORDABLE entry level motorcycles that were affordable!!! Yeah, what a concept!

Hear me now bud (take another cup), this bike is to be priced at $5,999 because at $7799 you are in Harley's territory...and at such a price, it won't get too many new riders on it. Think about it.

wllrjstn -you're kidding, right?  November 12, 2009 04:17 PM
I don't know what, if anything, this bike could have on a Harley. I don't particularly like cruisers of any kind, I much prefer standards and dual sports. But if I were to get a cruiser, I'd get a Harley Sportster over the Honda. Harley doesn't put out a bad product, if you like cruisers. And, the Harley is an original, not some copy.
TechMech -Shadow/Sportster  November 12, 2009 03:36 PM
From my friends experiences with Harleys, I would stay clear, too many issues they're still working on.
Jo -mil mik  November 12, 2009 03:13 PM
Yeah but then you would have to make excuses for being a Harley owner which would really suck; both being the owner and explaining why you made such a tragic mistake on buying a Harley. Why would you spend $7800 on a new sportster when you could buy a 3 or 4 yr. old big twin with low miles for the same price off ebay or craigslist or any place else where they sell used bikes. Just wait a little while and Harleys will be 50% off just like the Buells are now.
milwaukee mike -$7799?  November 12, 2009 02:17 PM
$7799 sure sounds pretty expensive for a little beginners toy like that. You could buy a real 2010 Harley Sporster for $7800. Then you wouldn't have to be ashamed of, or make excuses for the motorcycle.