Honda DN-01 Sports Cruiser
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March 3, 2008 - It's finally here! Honda
announced today the final production version of the unique
and innovative Honda DN-01 "Sports Cruiser"!
Honda Motor, Co., Ltd. announced that sales of the DN-01
large sports cruiser will begin in Japan on Friday, March
7. The price and delivery date for the UK has not been set,
and it is not known whether the bike will be sold in the
The unique, low-styling body features a liquid-cooled
four-stroke 680 cc OHC V-twin engine that resonates power
and a new automatic transmission, the Human-Friendly Transmission
(HFT), that delivers superior throttle response for comfort
even on long rides, and simple operation with no need for
clutch use, allowing sporty riding.
Featuring Honda's innovative lockup-equipped, infinitely
variable hydraulic mechanical transmission (see
our article "Honda
introduces the Human-Friendly Transmission"), the
HFT is claimed to deliver superb throttle response and a
direct drive feel.
"The DN-01 is the result of thoroughly pursuing
a style that is both luxurious and relaxing, easy and individualistic",
claims Honda. They said that the remarkable transmission
makes the DN-01 easy to operate, while providing the sporty
ride quality that is an intrinsic part of motorcycles.
In short, the DN-01 offers totally new sensations in
sports riding unheard of in conventional sports models.
The relatively low 690 mm seat height offers a relaxed riding
position, along with a comfortable passenger seat. Ownership
satisfaction comes from the elegant styling and the overall
high-quality fit and finish. The DN-01 is a sports cruiser
with new value aimed at the discriminating adult rider.
The DN-01 takes its name from the phrase "Discovery
of a New Concept," after Honda’s desire to develop
a new concept motorcycle. Since its exhibition as a concept
model at the 39th Tokyo Motor Show in 2005, Honda has been
working toward the market launch of the DN-01, efforts that
resulted in the machine being exhibited at the 40th Tokyo
Motor Show in 2007 as a model scheduled for release.
The DN-01 was developed as a large sports cruiser materializing
a new concept, equipped with distinctive HFT, which is based
on the automatic transmission in the 1962 Juno M85 and features
characteristics optimal for a production machine, thanks
to continuous development and advances in electronic control
Powertrain - The liquid-cooled
four-stroke 680 cc OHC V-twin engine featured in the DN-01
demonstrates powerful and flat torque characteristics in
the low-rpm range as well as high-rpm range, realizing smooth
and easy revving. A superb fit with the new HFT realizes
a comfortable ride feel.
A single-sided swingarm (Pro-Arm), acknowledged in the
Goldwing and VFR, and a maintenance-free shaft drive with
superior durability and quietness have been adopted for
The DN-01 design also takes vibration resistance into
account with a full rubber mount for the engine. For environmental
performance, the DN-01 conforms with the 2007 exhaust emissions
standards in Japan with an electronic fuel injection system
(PGM-FI*1) and a catalyst device (catalyzer).
An infinitely variable
hydraulic mechanical transmission, the HFT realizes the
lightweight and compact configuration required for motorcycles.
Compared with the V-belt automatic transmission used on
scooters, this automatic transmission unit can be stored
within the engine crankcase, increasing the level of design
freedom in the body layout.
The HFT responds to a wide variety of rider demands,
from easy-to-operate, comfortable riding to sporty and nimble
ride quality with a direct response to accelerator operation,
due to the hydraulics and computer control. In addition
to two fully automatic shifting modes -- D mode to cover
ordinary riding and S mode for a sportier riding experience
-- the HFT features a six-speed manual mode, which allows
riding with a manual transmission feel.
Moreover, the HFT equips the world's first lockup mechanism
(according to a Honda survey) for an infinitely variable
hydraulic mechanical transmission, contributing to improved
fuel economy during cruising.
From the "Low & Long + Modern
Organic Body" design concept comes a truly individualistic
style. The long-nosed front cowl incorporates dual projector
headlights with overall front face shaped in sharp image.
The integrated muffler bringing about a sense of unity
with the under-cowl, and the Pro-Arm swingarm supporting
the rear wheel on one side to give the rear a simple look,
as well as the ten-spoke 17-inch wheels, accent the machine's
functional beauty and unique sense of style. The instrument
panel design combines luxurious LCD and white LED to simultaneously
improve visibility and significantly enhance owner satisfaction.
The Combined ABS, which is a
combination of the Combined Brake System and the Anti-lock
Brake System (ABS), is equipped on the DN-01, delivering
powerful and dependable braking performance.
The three-pot calipers of the front brake provides strong
braking control, while rear brake is equipped as a foot
pedal type bringing a sense of motorcycle feel. And with
such features as a parking brake for convenient parking
on hilly roads, the DN-01 provides a full range of functionality
for a feeling of security.
Chassis and Bodywork
Centralization of mass
and a lower center of gravity, together with an ideal front
and rear weight distribution, ensure responsive handling
even with the long 1,610 mm wheelbase. Large foot step boards
that can be repositioned to meet rider preferences and a
low 690 mm seat height make for a spacious and comfortable
riding position, giving the rider the most freedom of movement
At the same time, taking tandem riding into consideration,
there is also plenty of room for a passenger on the wide
and long seating area. Moreover, passenger and rider seats
are close in distance to enjoy a conversation, and well-though
layout provides wide-open forward visibility. As rider is,
the passenger seat is also designed to deliver unity with
the machine and feel the exhilaration of riding.
To suit DN-01's unique styling, the
four colors of variations are set, exhibiting a sense of
luxury and complete satisfaction for its ownership: Pearl
Sunbeam White, Pearl Amethyst Purple, Candy Glory Red and
The DN-01 features the Honda
Ignition Security System (H.I.S.S.), Honda's unique anti-theft
system using an electronic interlock. The device is programmed
to start the engine when the IC chip built into the original
key and the ID in the ECU of motorcycle matches. Otherwise,
the system prevents the engine from being started, providing
Furthermore, an original system has been established
for the DN-01 to provide a higher quality service. This
new system functions with DN-01 dealer information network
to manage the service history of the customer’s machine.
To reference authentication data of the machine from
the network, the information is stored on a RF-ID which
is built into the main key of its machine called, Honda
Motorcycle Data (HMD) key. By showing this HMD key to the
DN-01 dealer, the machine's service history and information
are available instantly through this system, allowing Honda
to provide even higher level of service that will also lead
to a higher customer satisfaction.
Honda DN-01 Final Specifications
× 0.835m × 1.115m
(60km/h constant-speed test value) (km/l)
liquid-cooled four-stroke 4-valve OHC V-twin
/ 7,500 (kW[PS]/rpm)
/ 6,000 (N·m[kg·m]/rpm)
(programmed fuel injection)
regulator system in gearbox
mechanical system (HFT with electric manual
gear ratio (primary/secondary)
Angle (degrees) / Trail (mm)
Hydraulic double disc
October 2007 -
the Human-Friendly Transmission (HFT), which will be
used on the DN-01 when it reaches production.
UPDATE: Honda is expected to release the DN-01
for production at the 40th Tokyo Motor Show 2007, to be
held at Makuhari Messe in Chiba, Japan from Saturday, October
27 to Sunday, November 11, 2007.
October 19, 2005 - Honda Motor Co., Ltd. introduced the
radical new DN-01 sports motorcycle at the 39th Tokyo Motor
Show. Honda announced that the DN-01 will continue
to be developed and will be introduced to the market "in
the near future".
The motorcycle appears to be beyond the concept stage
and nearly ready for production.
The DN-01 concept is equipped with a continuously variable
automatic transmission and a water-cooled, 4-stroke, OHC,
V-type, 2-cylinder, 680cc engine.
The DN-01 is a concept model that was developed with
the aim of "creating new value" without being
locked into any existing category of motorcycle.
While an automatic transmission has been synonymous with
the scooter and has not been readily accepted for motorcycle
use, Honda is calling the DN-01 an "automatic sports
cruiser", featuring Honda's unique infinitely variable
hydraulic mechanical transmission, the "HFT" (Human
The DN-01 is claimed to be easy to operate with much
sportier performance than any current two-wheeled vehicles
with automatic transmissions. The DN-01 "Discovery
Cruiser" is apparently targeted towards the growing
adult motorcycle market.
Infinitely Variable HFT Transmission
infinitely variable transmission is claimed to deliver superb
throttle response and stepless shifting, with no mid-corner
shifting shocks. Riders can select from three shifting modes:
Drive Mode, Sports Mode and 6-Speed Manual Mode.
The HFT also offers the world's first (according to Honda)
lock-up mechanism in an infinitely variable, hydraulic mechanical
Powered by a 680cc V-twin engine, the machine was designed
to have novel levels of comfort and sportiness.
Original and Creative Style
The design concept
aims for a long and low, modern organic look. The image
created by the long-nose front cowl is dynamic, while the
under-cowl muffler and Pro-Arm rear suspension add a functional
beauty to the overall design.
Highly centralized mass and an ideal front/rear weight
distribution promise good maneuverability from the 1,605mm-long
Comfortable Riding Position
The large seat
is fitted with an adjustable backrest for plush comfort
on long rides, while wide footboards allow maximum freedom
of movement. Complemented by a low 680mm (26.7") seat
height, the riding position is spacious and relaxing.
Passengers should be comfortable, thanks to the ample
and lengthy passenger seat. Some information (in Japanese)
available on the
Honda DN-01 website.
Honda DN-01 Online Brochure (Note: Takes significant
amount of time to load).
DN-01 Accessories Brochure (.pdf)
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