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Honda VTX (Retro 1300) reviews

4.7
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Reliability
4.7
Overall quality
4.6
Performance
4.7
Comfort
4.4

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45 ratings and reviews

Voted most helpful review

JCA61

Corner Brook, Newfoundland

Reviewed on 2007-04-03

Motorcycle reviewed2003 Honda VTX (Retro 1300)

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5.0
This is my first cruiser and love it. I have driven sport and dirt all my life and decided to give this a shot. (it takes longer to heal the older you get) Easy to ride, handles well in traffic and plenty of power for crusing. The only complaint is the stock seat, numb bum after a hundred miles and you don't get used to it. I bought an Ultimate seat and now can ride all day.
Reliability
5.0
Quality
5.0
Performance
5.0
Comfort
4.0
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Voted most helpful review

Earl

Casper, Wyoming

Reviewed on 2007-03-01

Motorcycle reviewed2003 Honda VTX (Retro 1300)

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5.0
Awesome bike! I had a Yamaha 1100 Vstar and got rid of it - too small. The Honda VTX 1300 is the best bike I have ever owned. It has more power and rides better than I had hoped. I put sampson pipes and a pro hypercharger on it and had it dyno tuned. I was comming back from Sturgis last year with a passenger and fully loaded, and still got 50 mpg. My butt did not even get tired. The handling in the rain was perfect.
Reliability
5.0
Quality
5.0
Performance
5.0
Comfort
5.0
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Voted most helpful review

Mitch Mitchell

Euless, Texas

Reviewed on 2005-08-10

Motorcycle reviewed2003 Honda VTX (Retro 1300)

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5.0
I have had my 1300 Retro for almost two years now and it is one of the "most fun" motorcycles I have ever owned. It has enough power to come on strong if that is what you like or it can get out on the highway and run 75 all day long without any problems. I upgraded the seat to an Ultimate with backrest because the stock seat was just not up to snuff but other than that the bike is as I bought it. I threw on a few other extras such as Rivco highways pegs and J&M amplified speakers to support my XM radio. I have been on two fair trips on this bike and have no complaints but only praise. Nice change of pace from my Wing.
Reliability
5.0
Quality
5.0
Performance
5.0
Comfort
5.0
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Voted most helpful review

VTX13Rider

LaFayette, New York

Reviewed on 2005-07-18

Motorcycle reviewed2003 Honda VTX (Retro 1300)

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5.0
I purchased my 1300R in May, 2003. After a short break in trial on the seat (2000 miles), I put on an aftermarket seat. My last machine was a '76 CB750F. Now I'm at 16500 miles and it's due to have valve clearance checked, meaning I have to give it up for a day. It's like leaving my kid with a sitter for the first time. Overall, it's the best machine I have ever owned.
Reliability
5.0
Quality
5.0
Performance
5.0
Comfort
4.0
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Voted most helpful review

Chuck McGowan

Westwood, Massachusetts

Reviewed on 2005-04-18

Motorcycle reviewed2003 Honda VTX (Retro 1300)

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5.0
The 2003 is virtually identical to the 04 & 05. The power is more than enough for my size of 6'3", even with two up on the highway; I always have power in 5th to pass. Moves out 0 to 60 in 5.5 seconds which prompts the question - Why would I need to go from standing still to 60 mph in LESS than 5 seconds? It is a great cruiser and not top heavy like the 1800. The 1800 is a great bike, but I get terrific rewards from the 1300 and easy handling around town on the short fun rides. After driving 220 miles to Americade in NY, I immediately added a Mustang seat. It was excellent on the 220 mile return trip and makes riding the 1300 complete. The single pin crank gives it the traditional motorcycle rumble which is what actually sold me on this bike; I believe it is the only Honda engine that has it.
Reliability
5.0
Quality
5.0
Performance
5.0
Comfort
5.0
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Voted most helpful review

Bigdog

Lowville, New York

Reviewed on 2004-09-09

Motorcycle reviewed2003 Honda VTX (Retro 1300)

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5.0
I have waited a while to place my review. I have owned this bike for the third summer now and I love it more than ever now. My bike is one of the first ones out ser # 951. I have owned it new. The seat was awful. I replaced it with a mustang seat, a must in my opinion. I have also added a Memphis shade 21" windshield. Both these items increased comfort dramatically. I have rode the bike in NY, PA, GA, NC, SC and FL. It has never let me down. I would recommend this bike to anyone looking for a nice cruiser.
Reliability
5.0
Quality
5.0
Performance
5.0
Comfort
4.0
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Voted most helpful review

JTMauney

Houston, Texas

Reviewed on 2004-07-14

Motorcycle reviewed2003 Honda VTX (Retro 1300)

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4.0
In February of 2002, I had a brand-new CBR600F4i stolen from me. Deciding that maybe that was a hint to get away from sportbikes for a while, I talked with the Honda dealer about a replacement after my insurance check arrived. He told me that a new cruiser, the 1300 version of the VTX, was coming out in an early release that May. I liked the brochure, so I put my money down and waited. 16,000 miles later, I must say I've had very few qualms with this motorcycle, and it's produced an overall pleasurable two years of riding for me. The Good: It's got great bang for the buck. There's simply not anything else that really compares at this level from the other manufacturers. You get plenty of torque and horsies, styling as curvy-sexy as Jayne Mansfield, a low, comfortable seat height, and pretty good balance and handling for a 700 pound motorcycle. And you get all that for a great price out the door. Now that it's mature, the bike is also easily accessorized. Best of all, it's got that Honda quality (mostly) built-in. Which segues to... The Bad: Overall, it's definitely traditional Honda quality, but there are a few niggles, and they're quite minor. First is the well-known radiator fuse problem. The fan is drawing right at the limits of the 10A fuse, and can blow under a heavy load, (i.e. - when it's dog-stinkin' hot outside). It is worth noting, however, that I've only had this happen once in over 17,000 miles on this bike, and I live in Houston. So it's not a really big deal, and Honda provides an extra fuse in the box. As I said, a niggle; overall, this bike is bulletproof as far as mechanical reliability, just like the rest of their products. On another point, it seems that all of Honda's design engineers think all Americans are 6'4" tall, with arms like a gorilla. Every one of their cruisers that I've ridden seems to have the bars set just a bit too far forward and down, forcing you to stretch and slouch forward just the tiniest bit. Over short distances, this is not really a problem, but over a 500-mile day, it can become very tiresome indeed. This, however, is now fixable, with the arrival of aftermarket pull-back risers. Just a note to Honda: We're not all professional basketball players over here. Start putting pullbacks on your cruisers, please. The Ugly: Not much to say here, except that there are a lot of overly cheap plastic parts on the bike. I know this is done to hold down cost, but some of the pieces, (e.g.- turn singal housings), are just plain crappy, in both look and feel. Not very Honda-like at all, especially when set next to one of their excellent and top-quality sportbikes. Of course, your views on this may vary. I like tightly-fitted, well-designed parts on my vehicles. Even one cheapo-looking part can spoil an overall impression, if it's prominent enough. In summary, I'd certainly not hesitate to recommend this motorcycle. While it's a little large for a beginner, it's a good second bike. I would also recommend it over the 1800 version, both for pricing and design reasons. The 1800 bikes are simply too top-heavy. They handle about like an empty superfrieghter in a hurricane. If you're in the market for a cruiser, this motorcycle should definitely be on your test-ride list. I've certainly enjoyed the two years I've owned mine, but now it's getting a little boring; time for a return to sportbikes for a few years. Happy trails.
Reliability
5.0
Quality
4.0
Performance
4.0
Comfort
4.0
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Voted most helpful review

Jim Driscoll

Bulverde, Texas

Reviewed on 2004-06-09

Motorcycle reviewed2003 Honda VTX (Retro 1300)

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5.0
I've ridden a long time., mostly off road. Looked long and hard at a cruiser that would look good, ride good and not break me. Looked at the 1800 and now that I've had the 1300 for a year, part of me says I should have gone with the 1800, but most of me says the 1300s is a better balance all around. Plenty of power, wobbles occassionally in the front end(lot's of big bikes have similar issues), but all in all a very reliable and predictable ride. Great Ride. Everyone should take a rider safety course!
Reliability
5.0
Quality
5.0
Performance
5.0
Comfort
5.0
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Voted most helpful review

Devin Bush

Elba, Alabama

Reviewed on 2004-06-07

Motorcycle reviewed2003 Honda VTX (Retro 1300)

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4.0
Well I have had my 1300 retro for about 3 weeks and just wanted to give my 2 cents because I would often read these reviews before I bought mine. Overall it's a good bike so far. The glitches are that I have a small oil leak from one of the valve covers that I hope can be taken care of at the 600 mile service. Also I lost one of the bolts that hold the seat. And after seeing this I found a few others that needed to be tightened. Those are the negatives. The positives are a great look and good performance. My wife and I ride two up most of the time and it handles the job great. I think I will be happy in the long run.
Reliability
4.0
Quality
3.0
Performance
5.0
Comfort
4.0
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Voted most helpful review

David Machado

Maylene, Alabama

Reviewed on 2004-05-27

Motorcycle reviewed2003 Honda VTX (Retro 1300)

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5.0
I have the Illusion Blue Retro cruiser. It wows everyone, biker or not. Has decent power and pick up. Decent handling though I tend to scrape a good bit. I do get head bobble with my Memphis Fats windshield. I am also hearing some vibration of the instrument console around 25 miles per hour but it goes away at other speeds.
Reliability
5.0
Quality
3.0
Performance
4.0
Comfort
4.0
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