Today, we’re thrilled to feature this Honda XR600 street tracker from the good folks of Barcelona’s Vintage Addiction Crew, built in collaboration with their friends at Moto Racing Canet. The inspiration comes from the Honda RS750D, as well as the Harley-Davidson flat trackers of days gone by. In our estimation, this is one fitting tribute, built from one of our favorite platforms: the big Honda thumper.
The Honda XR600R, built from 1985 to 2000, offered a 591cc engine with four valves placed in a radial arrangement RFVC (Radial Four Valve Combustion) with a single camshaft, offering 46 horsepower. The bike could run on low-octane fuel from remote regions of the Baja peninsula, and offered an innovative electronic enduro meter. The XR600R is nothing short of legendary, having won Baja 1000 races over a staggering 12-year period. No other machine can boast that legacy.
Below, get the full story on the build.
Honda XR600R Street Tracker: In the Builder’s Words
(Written in Spanish by Carlos of V / A. Translation and highlights by us.)
The Honda XR600R was a very popular all-terrain motorcycle with a single-cylinder air-cooled four-stroke engine. The bike was manufactured by Honda from 1985 to 2000 and was part of the Honda XR series. The XR650L road-side model currently available is similar to the XR600R, with a larger displacement engine, but with less compression and less power. The XR600R was replaced by the XR650R with a 649 cc liquid cooled engine and an aluminum frame.
The displacement of the engine is 591 cc with four valves placed in a radial arrangement RFVC (Radial Four Valve Combustion) with a single camshaft. It has a dry sump lubrication system. The engine has a compression of 9.0: 1 with a stroke diameter of 97 × 80 mm. The engine is powered by a 39 mm piston carburetor. The front suspension is managed by two conventional 43 mm forks with compression and rebound adjustment valves, and at the rear is a simple Prolink shock with preload, compression and rebound adjustment. The bike has a five-speed transmission and a kickstarter. The 1985 models weighed 121kg with later models gaining 20kg more like cheapened materials with rocking arms and wheel base growing.
Once we had the machine in hand, we made many turns to the design, a tracker with supermotard tires, a vintage-style enduro…the truth that we were a little lost as to the design. But as often happens, the inspiration came one day without thought, while looking at vintage photos of flat track races with the Honda RS750D and Harley Davidson of the time. It was perfect for our project.
Before starting, I told you that this bike was made in collaboration with the Moto Racing Canet workshop, where Jordi Bañeras and his team devoted a lot of effort to completely rebuilding the old Honda’s seized engine. They had to buy a second engine not being able to take advantage of many of the internal components because of too much wear and tear or simply being damaged. Once rebuilt, sanded, and painted, we keep it safe.
At this point we entered the stage where we designed and manufactured all the aesthetic parts. The new tank is from an H-D Sportster, for which we made a new tunnel to fit perfectly to the chassis of the Honda. A new sub-frame was manufactured in two halves detachable to accommodate the new flat track style fiberglass seat. I could not miss a good escape made in V / A.
We opted, as it could not be otherwise, for Supertrapp silencers, and we manufactured the collectors in two pieces made in 0.8mm stainless steel with a style and design 100% vintage.
We also worked on the suspension, lowering the front and rear and restoring the shock absorbers, oils, seals, caps, springs for better operation. Nineteen-inch wheels front and back for this build, with special Mitas tires for flat track.
Once finished all the aesthetic part the motorcycle was fully disassembled and taken to the corresponding treatments for each piece. Chassis, forks, sandblasted and powder paint. For the delicate task of replicating the colors and coming up with a new design, we trusted once again in our painter, Kilian Ramirez of Pica-studio, who paints like few can.
Back with all the material ready for the assembly, we moved to the Moto Racing Canet workshop, where together with his people, we made the perhaps most important step — the final assembly — where special emphasis was placed on the details of the finishes, screws, electrical installation, and carburetor tuning for the new engine.
We are in love with the final result, a very comfortable bike to ride quietly, but underneath its vintage appearance hides a very fun engine with a few surprising benefits at high speeds.
Finally, thank you to all the professionals who have contributed a little bit of their best work so that the final result of this Honda is so beautiful!