The 2023 Bike Shed London Moto Show took place from Friday, 26 May through Sunday, 28 May at the historic London Tobacco Dock. Norton Motorcycles chose to reveal the production version of its V4CR to the world for the first time at the party. It’s the first bike that the current iteration of Norton has built from the ground up, which makes it of particular interest.
At the end of 2021, Norton first showed off its V4CR Prototype at that year’s Motorcycle Live show, giving an important glimpse into the direction in which the new management would be headed. Derived from what Norton learned in crafting the V4SV, the V4CR shares the same liquid-cooled, 72-degree, 1200cc V4 engine that powers the V4SV. It makes a claimed 185 brake horsepower at 12,500 rpm, as well as 125 newton-metres (about 92.19 pound-feet) of torque at 9,000 rpm. Bore and stroke are 82mm x 56.8mm.
Of course, any bike is more than just its engine. In the Norton V4CR’s case, it features an aluminium tubular chassis with CNC machining on the outriggers and headstock. Each frame is TIG welded by hand at Norton HQ in Solihull, England. The swingarm is a single-sided billet aluminium affair with rising rate linkage geometry. The swingarm pivot, rake angle, and steering offset all feature adjustable geometry as well. Wheelbase is 1,435 mm (or just over 56.49 inches).
Gallery: Norton V4CR
Unsurprisingly, Norton sourced up-spec componentry for the V4CR. Suspension duties are performed by Öhlins, with a fully adjustable 43 mm NIX30 upside down fork in the front, as well as a TTXGP rear shock that’s also fully adjustable, and made just for Norton. The rear shock also gets a hydraulic preload adjuster. There’s also an Öhlins steering damper on board, for good measure.
Braking is taken care of by a pair of radially mounted Brembo monobloc calipers up front, along with two 330 mm floating brake discs and a Brembo master cylinder. In the rear, you’ll also find a single Brembo caliper and master cylinder, as well as a single 245 mm brake disc.
Because it’s 2023, the Norton V4CR gets LED lighting all around, as well as a suite of electronic rider aids. A six-axis inertial measurement unit (IMU) helps to modulate settings for the three available ride modes: Wet, Road, and Sport. The V4CR gets lean-angle-sensitive traction control, wheelie control, and ABS front and rear as standard. It also features a full quick-shift system and auto blipper, as well as a six-inch full-colour display that automatically adjusts brightness with ambient lighting. Keyless ignition and an electronic steering lock are also standard.
If you’ve noticed that we haven’t talked about the wheels yet, that’s because we also haven’t talked about the available colour options. Choose Manx Platinum if you want platinum bodywork accented by carbon panels, along with an orange saddle. These are paired with a set of forged aluminium, matte black OZ Piega wheels.
Go for the V4CR Carbon colour option instead, and you’ll get a raft of exposed carbon fibre bodywork everywhere, paired with a black saddle. The wheels on this variant are—you guessed it—more carbon fibre, in the form of a pair of BST Rapidtek wheels.
Only 200 of Norton’s V4CR machines will ever be hand-built at the Norton factory in England. RRP will be £41,999. A serious bit of coin for a serious bit of bike, or so it would seem on paper.
“The Norton V4CR is a raw expression of impeccable design and intoxicating performance. We’ve taken the engineering of the V4SV and stripped back the outer shell to ensure the rider gets a truly uninhibited motorcycling experience,” offered Norton Motorcycles CEO Dr. Robert Hentschel in a statement.
“The V4CR is the first completely new model we’ve built. Our engineering and design teams have been meticulous in their approach, from initial sketches to concept production, through to the final finishing touches. The bike is the culmination of all our learnings and investment over the last three years and we’re delighted that we can now share this taste of Norton’s future,” he said.
“TVS has invested £74m in the past three years and are committed to Norton’s future. Along with the V4CR which we’re super excited to launch here at The Bike Shed Show, we’re working on new models, not all of which will be powered by an internal combustion engine, with the next model arriving at the end of 2024,” added Norton communications manager Jordan Gibbons.
“Along with new model development, we’re focused on growing our UK dealer network from eight dealers currently. But we know that trust is key, so we are offering a test ride at home service, removing the barrier to experience Norton if they don’t have a dealer close to them right now,” he concluded.