Originally introduced in 1983, the Honda Shadow line of motorcycles was created as the Japanese manufacturer’s way of addressing the demands of the American market. The Shadow 600 VLX model was unveiled in 1988, with the Deluxe model coming five years later as a limited edition test model. The limit of two per participating dealership has made the original VLX Deluxe a rare and valuable item among motorcycle collectors and enthusiasts.
In terms of engineering and mechanics, the VLX and VLX Deluxe are the same bike. Engine, suspension, brakes, steering, model and so on are all exactly alike.
The major difference between the two bikes is the greater amount of chrome used on the Deluxe than on the standard VLX. The side cover under the seat on the Deluxe is chrome. Since the Shadow line was made to address demands of the American market, the extra chrome on the VLX Deluxe offers more of the Harley-Davidson appearance that appeals to many American bikers. This, along with the rarity of the bike, drives the difference in price.
The seat in the original VLX Deluxe was designed to be softer and more comfortable on long rides. However, since its introduction in 1993, the seat has been made standard on both models of the VLX.