My First Bike: Honda VFR400 NC30

Dale Allaton bought what he calls his first real bike – a Honda VFR400 NC30 – when still riding a runabout moped and had to wait until he was 17 to ride it.

Our Suzuki sales specialist started riding on a field bike when about six years old. It was a Honda MT5 with a Honda SS50 engine which had been uprated with a 70cc top end.

He took to the road at 16 on an Aprilia Area 51 scooter and bought the Honda VFR400 from a family friend.

The 1989 model was an import and 14 years old when he became the owner.

“That was my first real bike. It was a lovely little bike,” he said.

“I bought it when I was still 16 but couldn’t ride it until I was 17 and had passed my test.

“My moped just got me from A to B. Then I passed my test on a riding school’s 125, after one lesson. My motorcycling on the road really started with the 400.”

The 399cc, V4, 16-valve, four-stroke engine developed 59hp and revved to 14,500rpm.

“I liked the V4 engine and the single-sided swing arm and how the NC30 looked.”

It had been resprayed in the colour scheme of the later RVF400R NC35 which replaced the VFR400.

He kept the VFR400 for about six months before buying a V-twin Honda VTR1000 SP1.

“I got the SP1 from Orwell Motorcycles. It was the first bike I bought from here 20 years ago,” he added.

Since then he has been a regular customer and is now a member of our sales team.