Saturday, February 07, 2009

The Times, They Are 'A Changing.

Went on about Honda's new DN-01 a few months ago, and I noticed that they finally put up the price for it: $17,499CAD. They've also got it listed as a touring bike, yet it doesn't have any luggage. Destined for failure? Maybe so. But I still admire Honda for at least having the vision to try something different. But they've been different for some time now... Anybody remember the Rune? How about the Pacific Coast? Both were interesting concepts that were put into production, but never really achieved any significant level of sales.

Maybe I'm just an optimist (or a dreamer), but I can't help but think that this time Honda got it right. Other odd-looking bikes have come out over the past few years that have turned out to sell quite nicely. How about the Victory Vision, or the BMW R1200RT, or even my beloved Suzuki V-Strom. All these models were met with mixed reactions when introduced, yet they still appeal to a certain market, since they're selling.

So maybe the DN-01 will find a niche market too. For what it's worth, I think it would make an excellent touring bike. Just throw on some nice sidecases and you're ready to go. Why does a touring bike have to be overweight with tons of torque anyhow? Remember when people would tour two-up with tent, sleeping bags, and all the fixin's on a Honda CX500 (with the all-important Vetter shield)? Never heard them complain. People still travel the roads and by-ways on Sportsters without any issues. So why not a DN-01?

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