When we received the midnight announcement that American Honda would be importing the 2014 Montesa Honda Cota 4RT Repsol Edition observed trials motorcycle into the United States, we were stunned. With all the European and Japanese models that don’t make it here, this was one bike that few people thought would make it to American shores.
Looking back, perhaps it shouldn’t have been a total shock. Just before the Cota 4RT announcement, Honda released a slick video featuring MotoGP Champion Marc Marquez and 14-time FIM Trials Champion Toni Bou, with their illustrious Repsol Honda teammates, Dani Pedrosa and Takahisa Fujinami. Basically, it was an advertisement promoting the Montesa as a cross-training tool for two of the greatest road racers in the world. Also, this video of Bou is quite impressive on its own. And, there’s a video of former World rider Amos Bilbao explaining the attributes of the Montesa Honda Cota 4RT.
We interviewed Jon Seidel, assistant manager of American Honda Motorcycle Press, about the 2014 Montesa Honda Cota 4RT Repsol Edition in an exclusive interview, to get the inside story on the import of this special-interest motorcycle, which gets its own splash page on the American Honda website.
Ultimate MotorCycling: Honda hasn’t imported a trials bike since the 1970s, even though there have always been Honda trials bikes since 1972. What prompted American Honda to bring in the Montesa Cota 4RT Repsol Edition?
Jon Seidel: This opportunity arose in conjunction with the release of the all-new Cota 4RT Model. This is the first Montesa Honda Cota model update since the 2005 model was launched. We at American Honda saw this as an opportunity to showcase the technological features of the all-new Montesa Honda Cota 4RT. Montesa is a subsidiary of ours, owned by Honda Motor, allowing direct involvement between American Honda and the Montesa factory. Therefore, we felt the timing was right to expand our product line through global capabilities. It also builds brand awareness through “halo” product tied to our Factory Repsol Race Team. Montesa Honda has 16 World Trials Titles, and 19 Manufacturer titles. This allows our Honda dealer network the opportunity to provide support for current Montesa Honda customers for sales, service, and parts.
UMC: Why the premium version of the 4RT rather than the economical standard version?
JS: Based on current market size, we decided to kick off the 2014 Montesa Honda Cota 4RT by offering the top level, premium Race Replica Championship model.
UMC: What future does Honda see in the trials bike market?
JS: As with other Powersports segments, we feel the trials segment will see modest growth in the next few years, and with our new Cota 4RT models we can help contribute to and stimulate that growth.
UMC: As the numbers are limited, how many are being imported?
JS: Based on market size, it is low volume and very limited.
UMC: Is the bike Green Sticker, Red Sticker, and does it have a USFS-approved spark arrestor?
JS: It will be red sticker and for now, and will not come with a spark arrestor.
The 2014 Montesa Honda Cota 4RT Repsol Edition will be manufactured at the Montesa Honda factory in Santa Perpètua de Mogoda (Barcelona). New for the Cota 4RT this year is a 260cc motor, which is a liquid-cooled, SOHC, 4-valve design with programmable EFI. Also new, is a reduction of engine braking, designed to give the four-stroke a feel closer to a two-stroke.
2014 Montesa Honda Cota 4RT Repsol Edition Specs
Type…Single Cylinder, 4 stroke, 4 valves, SOHC, liquid cooled
Diameter x stroke…78 x 54.2 mm
Compression ratio…10.5 : 1
Idle Speed…1,800 rpm
Engine oil capacity…0.63 quarts
Transmission oil capacity: 0.60 quarts
Fuel supply…Electronic fuel injection PGM-FI
Throttle body…28 mm
Air Cleaner…Wet, urethane foam element
Fuel Tank Capacity…2.0 quarts
Ignition System…Electronically controlled digital transistorized.
Ignition Timing…27° BTDC (Idle) ~ 45° BTDC (10,000 rpm)
Spark Plug…NGK CR6EH-9
ACG output…ACG 160 W
Clutch…Wet, multiplate with coil springs
Primary Reduction…3.166 (57/18)
1… 2.800 (42/15)
2… 2.384 (31/13)
3… 2.000 (30/15)
4… 1.272 (28/22)
5… 0.814 (22/27)
Final Reduction…4.100 (41/10)
Final Drive…520 roller chain
Type…Diamond shape, Aluminum twin spar
Dimensions…(L x W x H)…79.3 x 32.7 x 44.5 inches
Seat height…25.6 inches
Footpegs height…15.4 inches
Ground Clearance…13.2 inches
Dry Weight…162 pounds
Front…39 mm Showa cartridge-type telescopic fork with spring preload, and compression and extension damping adjustments, 6.9 inches of travel.
Rear…Pro-Link, Showa damper with spring preload and rebound damping adjustments, 6.7 inches travel
Type…Aluminum / Wire spokes
Front…21 × 1.60
Rear…18 × 2.15
Front…5.7 – 6.4 psi
Rear…4.2 – 4.9 psi
Front…185 × 3.5 mm hydraulic disc with 4-piston caliper and sintered metal pads
Rear…150 × 2.5 mm hydraulic disc with 2-piston caliper and sintered metal pads
2014 Montesa Honda Cota 4RT Repsol Edition MSRP…$8999