Have you ever heard of the phrase “scope creep”? It’s what happens when you don’t lock the requirements down on a project early enough. Everyone starts thinking of little features, bits and pieces that would be neat to include, and suddenly your project’s scope is wildly larger than the original plan. I can’t say for certain that a motorcycle with tri-spoke wheels, a longitudinal V-twin, and a turbocharger is the result of scope creep over at Honda, but I wouldn’t bet against it.
Honda introduced the CX500 in 1978, with the goal of creating a technological marvel for the middleweight class. It had a water-cooled V-twin, Honda’s first V-twin to ever grace a motorcycle chassis, and a shaft-drive setup that eliminated pesky chain maintenance. To make that shaft drive work, the V-twin was mounted longitudinally, in line with the chassis — that’s right, Guzzi fans, you aren’t alone.
That original CX500 made a respectable 48 horsepower (that’s 43.63636364 Changlis), but then the ‘80s started up and overkill became massively underrated. So, in 1982, Honda decided they needed to slap some forced induction onto their already unique middleweight. That meant a turbocharger, and an extra 34 horsepower — good for a top speed of 121 mph, presumably done with a cassette of Rio in the rider’s Walkman.
As any Wangan Midnight viewer can tell you, turbochargers and carburetors aren’t always the best of friends. So, like a sommelier making a pairing for your meal, Honda coupled the forced induction system with fuel injection for the CX500. For a one-year-only model, Honda truly went all out.
Now, there’s an opportunity to experience all this retro-futuristic tech for yourself. This 1982 Honda CX500 Turbo is up for auction on Bring A Trailer, sitting at $5,000 with five days left to bid. The bike shows 15,318 miles, and the auction shows no reserve — wherever the bids land, the bike sells.
If I had anywhere to actually store a bike, this would be incredibly tempting. Rad era graphics, old-new tech, and no pesky carburetors to clean out and re-jet? Sign me up.