As the curtains begin to close on 2017 (where did all the months go?!), Boon Siew Honda took it upon themselves to host its year end media gathering at the Sepang International Circuit. However, the event was so much more than just another chance to catch up and meet new faces over lunch aor have a poke around several models, perhaps take one or two out for a test ride.
Don’t get us wrong, all of the above is fine and dandy but Boon Siew Honda decided to up the ante by bringing in the Honda RC213V-S for members of the media to ride. Yes, that motorcycle. Unfortunately, yours truly wasn’t able to sample it for two completely justifiable reasons. The first being that an ill-fitting riding suit is just as bad as having no riding suit and two, this particular individual misplaced his adrenaline-filled syringe.
Prior to the shenanigans on track, Boon Siew Honda also took the opportunity to tease a portion of their plans for the coming year. For starters, a total of 10 new bikes will be introduced in 2018 – with some CBU models from Japan included. Boon Siew Honda has decided to remain mum on what exactly those 10 models but we reckon at least a few them will be facelifted versions of existing models.
“2018 is an important year for BSH to take a big step and move back to the leadership position in the market. We are targeting to introduce around 10 brand new models and will certainly surprise everyone with our product lineup that challenges conventional thinking and expectations,” commented Datuk Sri Wira Tan Hui Jing, deputy chairman and deputy chief executive officer (CEO) of Boon Siew Honda.
Aside from that, BSH also affirmed that it will open its first Honda BigWing centre in 2018. Said centres are designed to be one-stop sales and service facilities that cater to Honda motorcycle models with engine displacements of over 250 cc. Several locations across the nation have been earmarked with Penang, Selangor, KL and Johor on the list.
Now, back to one of the many stars of the event – more on the rest in a bit. The Honda RC213V-S is pretty much as close as any mere mortal can get to a full-on MotoGP motorcycle. Said road-racer packs a 999 cc, liquid-cooled V4 engine that pumps out a total of 159 PS at 11,000 rpm and 102 Nm of torque at 10,500 rpm. Opt for the Sports Kit and you get a total of 215 hp at 13,000 rpm and “over” 118 Nm of torque at 10,500 rpm.
Power gets to the ground via a six-speed gearbox. Elsewhere, riders are able to choose from three different power modes as well as work with the nine-way adjustable traction control system and four-way engine braking control systems. Also, a quickshifter is featured along with launch control – the latter comes only with the Sports Kit. The wheels are 17-inch forged magnesium units.
With the test ride segment done and dusted, members of the media were escorted upstairs for lunch followed by another surprise. Boon Siew Honda had also arranged to have not one but two local motorsport stars in the guise of Zaqhwan Zaidi and Khairul Idham Pawi, who themselves had finished their Asia Road Racing Championship (ARRC) and Moto2 campaign respectively.
Boon Siew Honda also announced at the event that the former, Zaqhwan Zaidi, has been promoted to the All Japan Road Race Championship (JSB1000) for next year. He starts the season in April of 2018. “Boon Siew Honda would like to congratulate Zaqhwan on his promotion to the All Japan Road Race Championship in the JSB1000 category. We wish him all the best and look forward to his performance,” commented Nobuhide Nagata, managing director and CEO of Boon Siew Honda.
Last but not least, a photography competition was also held to pick out the best photo captured during the event by members of the media. The prize? A riding jacket and a pair of riding gloves signed by a certain Marc Márquez – we heard he’s pretty handy around a circuit on two wheels. All in all, a good day indeed. Now, if only this writer could find his syringe and a suit that fits him properly.