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What Model? The follow up to the 600 Revere, the NTV 650!

I bought it on 11th of October for £450 with no MOT, £29 and three quarters of an hour later saw it with an MOT!

Good points, economical, low maintenance shaft drive, V twin with more torque than enough! Sub 6 second 0-60, planted and steady on the road.

Bad Points, weighs about the same as a fully laden fuel tanker. There are gears in the box somewhere.

Would I get another? This is my fourth one, others were lost due to an accident caused by Lizzie at Sandringham, illegally sold by a so called friend and left as a lawn ornament due to caring for relatives with cancer. Now I have a shed and another one! :D


The NTV is an ideal first bike, 57bhp, so not over aggressive, but nicely balanced with enough torque to pull tree roots up, so able to get you out of most situations that stupidity may lead you into. The bike is a naked V twin, basically the Dulville (Deauville) but without all the damned hideous plastic everywhere. Manual choke, but twin spark ignition and 3 valves per cylinder. Final drive is shaft, so no buggering about adjusting chains, cleaning or lubing chains.

This bike is unusual in that it has 3 different blasted keys. One for the fuel, the original for the seat lock and a different one for the ignition that can only have come off a Dulville as it protrudes higher than the rest of the instrument panel. Oh well! It is 19 years old! Climb aboard and crack the choke open about quarter of the way, put the key in, switch on, ensure the kill switch is set to run position and press start! Vroom, off it will chug, give it a couple of minutes, knock the choke off and the beast should settle quite happily down to 1250 rpm. The tick before you start up is just the fuel pump!

Moving off you find it is very precise at low speeds, as you wind up the power the precision is not lost and the bike will quite happily fly down the road surprising many newer bikes with it's alacrity! You will never break the sound barrier on it, but it will haul two adults down the road at 115mph (though it does help if the pillion is not expressing their displeasure by hammering on your crash helmet at the time). The bike is capable of interplanetary distances with only basic maintenance, the 650 V twin is hardly ever stressed out. My second one had down 133,000 miles by the time I got my hands on it, I think it was only just run in!

They do about 60mpg on a decent run with a 4 gallon tank, so Norfolk to North Yorkshire with no fuel stops is possible! They have a pleasant buzz when zipping along at 3 or 3 and a half thousand rpm, nothing annoying, just a gentle vibration to let you know that the V twin is earning it's keep. The gearbox though was knicked from a tractor I think. It requires firm operation and try and hurry it and it will show it's displeasure by spitting the gear back out and going into neutral! Treat it with respect and a firm boot though and there are no problems.

Light is adequate, will be better with more modern bulbs in, might even LED it! If you like them you like them, I know it won't set the world on fire but at my age I would look a right naffing pillock on a 916 or an R1 (not to mention the fact that my generous upholstery at the front middle means I wobble about like a jelly on a plate on a weight forward bike). The NTV is a more refined hooligan, happy to idle along, letting you soak up the enjoyment of the ride, or capable of taking it's shirt off and harassing the corners with a verve that would upset other bikes!

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The trick these days is finding a good one.. they became the successor to the CX500 as a reliable and affordable despatch bike. I remember the grey market imported variants with chain drive.. very common at one time. The Bros.. 400 and 650.

I always admired these bikes. I know some people reckon them to have the greatest engine Honda ever made.. for build quality and longevity.

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