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Old 2nd November 2017, 16:00   #16
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Originally Posted by VW2010 View Post
I think this motorcycle is a winner considering similar offerings in other manufacturers are way over priced compared to the twin.

Thanks for your time to write this up and take some close up pictures.

The color scheme makes me think its a hero impulse with a slightly bigger engine
True. It is priced quite well and will mostly be more reliable as well, being a Honda.

Quote:
Originally Posted by blackwasp View Post
Great review CD, I have some queries -

1. Would you (or other bikers) prefer creep mode like we have on the cars?
2. Is the bike classified as an automatic or non geared according to the RTO?
3. Can you elaborate a bit on the off-road friendly levers? - have no idea about them.
4. I used to think that wire-spoke rims offer superior comfort compared to alloy rims + they are easy to fix as well. Is that the reason Honda has given such a configuration on the Africa Twin? And incase of a bend, the tubed tyre will hold air unlike the tubeless one that will get deflated. Aesthetics aside, how would you compare the wire-spoke + tube combo vs alloys + tubeless on ride quality?
Thank you. Well it's not a review, but more of a first impressions report and nothing more. Coming to your queries -

1. I wouldn't prefer creep mode. In cars it feels necessary because you need to take your foot off the brake pedal before moving it to the accelerator pedal, a precious few milliseconds are wasted here before the transmission actually gets your input and moves forward. The same could go wrong if the car was already on an incline, unless parking brake is used to hold it.

On a bike like the Africa Twin - there are multiple brake options to avoid this. You can use the right foot to engage the rear brakes. You can also use one finger on the front brake lever while slowly engaging the accelerator. You can even use the parking brake lever, if required (but I guess the other two options would be more than enough). So you shouldn't really miss a creep mode.

However, with 91Nm of torque and just 245kgs of motorcycle - unwanted roll forward upon engaging the drive modes could have far more drastic consequences as compared to cars. More safer just to let it move only with accelerator input - like how Honda has done - IMO.

2. My wife had the same question. She was interested to know if she can ride it will her scooter license. It is however - a geared motorcycle as per the RTO.

3. I meant two things when writing that statement. Sorry for not elaborating.

First of all - The footpegs are designed to take the weight of the rider. As you might know - during off-road situations it is best for both the motorcycle and your own spine - to just stand up on the footpegs, keep a hold on the tank with the knees and have a loose hold on the handlebar. The footpegs on the AT feels good enough to take the weight of the rider.

Secondly - that brake lever looks like it can be used to grate coconuts in a south Indian household. But it would be very useful to grip the shoes when riding in offroad situations and your shoes is full of slush and mud. Infact, hardcore offroaders might even change the footpegs to ones like the below which look like pure torture, but can be a saviour in the dirt.

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4. Wirespoke rims are easier to fix than alloys and more friendly to the abuse that these motorcycle tyres will endure. You're absolutely right on that front. Bikes like the Triumph Tiger offer alloy wheels on the base variant and wirespoke wheels on the top variants.

That said, you've got it opposite when it comes to tyres though. Tube type tyres will go completely flat with a puncture whereas tubeless tyres will leak the air slowly over time. Even if you get a flat and a shop is not available nearby - you can use a portable inflator to fill it up and carry on slowly till you get to safety. Whereas you are pretty much stranded with a flat tyre if it's a tube type.

Tubeless tyres can't be simply fitted on top of normal wirespoke wheels though - as they won't hold air with so many holes around the tyres where the spokes are held to the outer rim. There are aftermarket conversion methods available (like an example below) to try and seal these and fix tubeless, but overall it's neither a very reliable nor a very cheap (considering the cost of tyres as well) fix either.

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A road biased variant, with alloy wheels, tubeless tyres, a smaller front tyre and perhaps a manual transmission could surely widen the appeal of this motorcycle.

Hope that answers all your queries.

Quote:
Originally Posted by anshumandun View Post
Did this test ride happen at Kamat on Hyderabad Highway? I was there a few weeks ago and saw the Africa Twin test ride happening that day. There was a long queue so I did not sign up for the test ride but had some friends who ride Triumphs who test rode it. The general observation was that Tiger guys liked it, Daytona guys found it not very exciting and then some jokingly called it a liter class Activa

If we both are talking about the same day, you might have noticed a gang of 30 Z800s there. I was a part of that. We had the highest ever gathering of Z800s that day.
Hey anshumandun. Same place, but different day. We got the chance last weekend. I believe the one you saw was targeted for the BRATS (Triumph) crowd. They are conducting multiple events and are very positive on the response this bike has evoked.

Would have been interesting to know the detailed feedback from the Tiger guys. On paper - the Africa Twin could be an option for the XR guys, though I feel the XC might be a very close match. Pricing is interesting though - as the AT is cheaper than the Tiger XC series.

Daytona guys might not like any of the adventure bikes anyway. And the Activa comment could be due to the automatic transmission + butter smooth but rather straight forward engine. The Japanese twins surely lack the charecter of the British triples and their own inline4 machines.

Quote:
Originally Posted by moralfibre View Post
Superb review CD. Very well documented to the detail. I had the privilege of sitting pillion on the test bike when we were getting my brother's CB1000-R serviced. The bike is surely long (not just tall) for anyone used to the zippyness of a naked street bike. It's as good as a long sedan to negotiate in traffic.

I did not ride it because it will take me some time to get used to all the controls and the quirkiness of each. Bombay traffic was surely not a place to try it. May be next time on an open road.

During service, a bloke had ridden down his brand new Africa Twin from Bombay. Appears that he has a manual version in Dubai that he uses. He got an electronic foot shifter (available as an accessory) fitted on the bike.

I assume that the electronic shifter won't be a 1-down 5-up for the box, but I guess the covers are common across manual and automatic versions.
Thank you sir. I would call it more of a first impressions note rather than a review.

You should surely try it next time because in D mode - it can be just as convenient as a scooter. No need to figure out anything, no need to worry about gears either. Just twist, go and brake. More fun can be had with the S modes too. It's only the manual that requires learning. Also the placement of the horn and indicator switches that have been changed from their usual places.

The bike is far less intimidating to ride than the way it looks and feels - thanks to some good engineering.

I had noticed the electronic shifter in the accessories list, but your post really made me curious. Looks like the shift pattern is 1 down 5 up for it, just nice a normal manual shifter. Only difference then would be the clutch.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Rajiv0909 View Post
Thanks for the detailed review, been a dream to own an Africa twin. Would anyone if there's any roadside support mechanism for Africa twin? Also, I heard that Honda has temporarily stopped taking bookings for this bike, is that true?
Temporarily suspended bookings because the initial lot was sold out. I suspect the demand has outweighed their own expectations. Good to see that response because it would remind Honda that they could have much better sales with other big bikes too (including the CBR650F) if they get the price right.

Not sure of the RSA. The price list I've seen does not mention it either. Will check with an owner I know and get back

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Old 3rd November 2017, 02:22   #17
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Default Re: A Closer Look - Honda CRF1000L Africa Twin DCT

Great post (review) Crazydriver! When are you upgrading?

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Originally Posted by Red Liner View Post
Btw, theres a new road oriented africa twin launching in EICMA. I think that bike will come quicker to India next year to replace this offroad variant.
I believe this current model is the road oriented AT. In EICMA, we might see an even more hardcore adventure spec Africa Twin with a larger fuel tank.

http://www.motorcycle.com/mini-featu...-of-eicma.html
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Old 3rd November 2017, 03:32   #18
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Default Re: A Closer Look - Honda CRF1000L Africa Twin DCT

Thanks for the review CrazyDriver. I am currently on a NC700x. I am going to checkout the Africa Twin at a local dealer this weekend. He has an unsold 2016 model for $11.5. It is a DCT as well, hopefully it will still be there when I go there.

On the street, I never felt the need for DCT. In fact I specifically looked for a NC700 without DCT. Reading all the fine reviews about the Africa Twin DCT, I am excited to check it out.
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Old 3rd November 2017, 10:12   #19
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Default Re: A Closer Look - Honda CRF1000L Africa Twin DCT

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Originally Posted by loki View Post
Great post (review) Crazydriver! When are you upgrading?

I believe this current model is the road oriented AT. In EICMA, we might see an even more hardcore adventure spec Africa Twin with a larger fuel tank.

http://www.motorcycle.com/mini-featu...-of-eicma.html
Thank you. Not upgrading too soon, for sure.

Just another week to go before EICMA. Hopefully - both the wishes do come true - a more road focussed, and an more adventure focussed version will be out!

By the way - I remember we had a discussion last time regarding sales and service by Honda in Bangalore - wherein you pointed to my experience being poor because of it not being a standalone dealership for the bigger bikes. Happy to write that I had a good discussion with the guys from Silicon Honda about this, and they not only acknowledged the past - but conveyed the steps they have been taking to improve the customer satisfaction when it comes to bigger bikes. And I am inclined to believe them - because we have been hearing good things off late, from the guys who upgraded to the Africa Twin.

And unlike the past - Silicon Honda is also concentrating their efforts on targeting riding groups and organising good test rides. Hoping to see things get even better from here on!

Quote:
Originally Posted by GutsyGibbon View Post
Thanks for the review CrazyDriver. I am currently on a NC700x. I am going to checkout the Africa Twin at a local dealer this weekend. He has an unsold 2016 model for $11.5. It is a DCT as well, hopefully it will still be there when I go there.

On the street, I never felt the need for DCT. In fact I specifically looked for a NC700 without DCT. Reading all the fine reviews about the Africa Twin DCT, I am excited to check it out.
Thats nice! Congratulations.

There is only the DCT option launched here in India - and looks like it is selling better than they expected. Bookings are temporarily on hold. People waiting in line must be jealous of hearing someone getting discounts on the bike.
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Old 3rd November 2017, 11:30   #20
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Default Re: A Closer Look - Honda CRF1000L Africa Twin DCT

Nice overview @Crazy

I had the opportunity to take the Africa for a quick spin. In my hands, the most amount of off-road action it saw was when going over cemented 'tiles' (with holes) that they have for pedestrians.

In a bike, I look for the ability to:
- Eat up bad, broken and/or unpaved roads (comfort)
- Go non-stop for 30-40 hours at a stretch (touring)
- Have a high cruising speed
- Be light enough that I'm not scared of dropping it (I'm a 6-2 broomstick)
- Ride it easily in the city (commutes)

Before I start blabbering about the Africa, here's a gist about where these opinions are coming from:
- I ride an Impulse and have done modest off-roading with it
- I've ridden the Himalayan off-road more than I've ridden the Impulse
- While my Impulse is waiting for its parts, I'm riding the Navi (with adventure kit). Every weekend, I take it on sandy and unpaved roads.

Africa Twin impressions:

- It's heavy
- Heats up quite a bit (even at 120km/h in September, I could feel the heat through my riding denims)
- Not manoeuvrable enough to conquer the city
- Not a cushy ride quality (Rear felt stiff. probably, Honda had set it up to be stiff as potential customers were riding it only on paved roads)
- Buffeting around the helmet with the stock windscreen
- Nose-dive on braking will take time getting used to. Could put off those not used to soft suspension bikes.
- No cruise control (A big miss in my books)
- EXPENSIVE (Yeah. I know, it's a steal. Especially for those looking to buy a big bike that doesn't need to be baby-ed at every speed breaker. But the price to drawbacks make it look pricier)

+ It has plenty of torque
+ Easy and affordable maintenance (Honda reps say a typical service should cost between Rs. 6-7k)
+ No creep mode (Thank God. With the DCT, it'd have eaten the odd clutch in no time)
+ No gear changes necessary (I can easily ride it like an Activa)
+ Can cruise all day at 150km/h
+ Big-bike feel with narrow seat and tank for easy gripping (Feels very intimidating when you're looking at it, but less so when you're on it)
+ Safety kit like multiple riding modes, traction control will give you the confidence to push it

If I had Rs. 15 L to spare, I'd still buy the Himalayan. Even with all of its issues, it's very good alternative to consider. It's lighter, much cooler (literally), more comfortable, has enough power, cheap to buy, cheap to fix (relatively), easily available parts, no wind buffeting even with the stock windscreen, can cruise at 110km/h, and is more than capable off-road to satisfy most buyers.

The Himalayan can do 90% of what the Africa does at one-sixth the cost. That's after keeping Rs. 1 lakh aside for just-in-case emergencies. Coz, ya' know, it's Himalayan.

I'd want it to lose about 50kg but I can live with its 200kg weight. At least won't have to hit the gym. The Himalayan is heavy, but not scary heavy. You'll learn to appreciate the advantage of lightweight bikes once you start riding off-road. My Navi gives me a lot more confidence to push myself than the Impulse ever did. Because I know I can pull it out of a ditch.
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Old 3rd November 2017, 12:33   #21
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Default Re: A Closer Look - Honda CRF1000L Africa Twin DCT

More news from EICMA 2017

True Adventure?
http://overdrive.in/news-cars-auto/2...ma-2017-debut/
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Old 4th November 2017, 08:41   #22
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Default Re: A Closer Look - Honda CRF1000L Africa Twin DCT

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Originally Posted by MaheshY1 View Post
I'd want it to lose about 50kg but I can live with its 200kg weight. At least won't have to hit the gym. The Himalayan is heavy, but not scary heavy. You'll learn to appreciate the advantage of lightweight bikes once you start riding off-road. My Navi gives me a lot more confidence to push myself than the Impulse ever did. Because I know I can pull it out of a ditch.
Absolutely agreed. But then, thats true in many cases! Another similar example - I've seen and heard of many KTM 390 riders who ride and keep up with the superbikes in the corners. Also heard of many of the big adventure bike owners waiting and waiting for a KTM 390 Adventure or the BMW 310GS to be launched in India as they wanted it to be added to the garage as a more user-friendly do-it-all option.

Personally, I would have liked the Himalayan to have bit more power - to be able to cruise around 120 - 130 kmph on the new-age highways, but otherwise I do agree with you that it is a good motorcycle to have some adventure on! The smaller the machine - the easier it is to explore the capabilities of the machine, within the limits of the rider's abilities. But then - people always dream for bigger and better machines, dont they.

Where I mentioned that the Africa Twin is light and nimble to ride - that is in comparison with machines like the Versys 650, the Triumph Tigers, the Explorers and the most sought after BMW GS. GS in particular felt like a horse as compared to the likes of the Africa Twin. Against these similar competition bikes - the Honda is lighter and feels simpler to ride.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sharkbait View Post
More news from EICMA 2017

True Adventure?
http://overdrive.in/news-cars-auto/2...ma-2017-debut/
Will be known by next week.
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Old 5th November 2017, 17:45   #23
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Default Re: A Closer Look - Honda CRF1000L Africa Twin DCT

Quote:
Originally Posted by MaheshY1 View Post
- Be light enough that I'm not scared of dropping it (I'm a 6-2 broomstick)

- I ride an Impulse and have done modest off-roading with it
- I've ridden the Himalayan off-road more than I've ridden the Impulse
- While my Impulse is waiting for its parts, I'm riding the Navi (with adventure kit). Every weekend, I take it on sandy and unpaved roads.

[Africa Twin] ...Heats up quite a bit (even at 120km/h in September, I could feel the heat through my riding denims)

If I had Rs. 15 L to spare, I'd still buy the Himalayan. Even with all of its issues, it's very good alternative to consider. It's lighter, much cooler (literally), more comfortable, has enough power, cheap to buy, cheap to fix (relatively), easily available parts, no wind buffeting even with the stock windscreen, can cruise at 110km/h, and is more than capable off-road to satisfy most buyers. The Himalayan can do 90% of what the Africa does at one-sixth the cost.
Well, I'm another 6'2" broomstick with an Impulse, who's ridden that and the Himalayan and the Navi in the hills/mountains. So birds of a feather... and I'd have to agree with your conclusions!

The downsides of an 800+cc bike in this context outweigh the advantages, in my view.

I was riding a friend's Tiger around South Delhi several weeks back. Great bike of course - great sound (aftermarket pipe), great power (really too much I suppose), nice seat, and the ABS actually worked for me in one harrowing moment... A buttery smooth engine at every rpm - I finally understood what everyone said about the great flexibility of these Triumph triples.

But then, the owner himself is not about to take it to Ladakh or Spiti - just not really the machine for that, he says (he enjoyed the former on a Himalayan last year). So what IS it good for, in particular?

The whole time I was riding it in Delhi, I kept wondering where the switch was to switch off / control what seemed like infuriatingly fickle (sometimes left side, sometimes both sides, occasionally off) kneecap warmers... (a.k.a. radiator output vents)... Seriously, rather intense heat there, and that was in September. Would be great in Mongolia in winter perhaps, and you might even justify it if your regular commute was Manali-Leh in Spring/Autumn. And of course if you were doing 150kmph down a European autobahn, you'd be unlikely to notice it even in summer. The rest of the time - and for the average person living in the Indian metros, you've gotta be wondering whether all that almost untapped power / speed potential, the status prospects, and the multiples of lakhs above other options, are really worth some particular discomforts and excesses. Someone was saying 200kg here, but the U.S. site shows 240. Nimble as Honda may have managed to make it feel, it's going to feel extremely heavy when it goes down on your leg halfway through a nallah in Spiti... or even when you're trying to reverse it out of your parking slot at the office. I'm not a big fan of the Himalayan, but unless a rich uncle left me money in his will and specified that I use it for a big-cc adventure bike, I'd have to pass on the likes of this one. For Paris-Dakar, great... but is this really the thing to be riding regularly in the subcontinent?

Quote:
Originally Posted by MaheshY1 View Post
Go non-stop for 30-40 hours at a stretch (touring)
I read that at 48 years old (but I think it would've been the same when I was 20) and ask myself, "Are we bikers or masochists?" I don't even want to sit on a sofa for 30-40hrs non-stop at a stretch. How are we defining "touring"??? The Iron-Butt competition is something else entirely...

Quote:
Originally Posted by CrAzY dRiVeR View Post
+ Good build quality, well priced and backed by Honda support network.
- Boring...Feels very relaxed and lacks drama even at the redline in lower gears.
Honda seems to have a bit of a reputation worldwide for producing very nicely engineered, very reliable, very refined, capable bikes... which are unfortunately too often lacking in character. Perfectionism, if that's what it is, can be a real drag... But there are clear exceptions to that stereotype.

Also, this bike sells for under 9L in the U.S., so I have a hard time calling it (along with just about any other import in India) "well-priced". The duties just make for pathetically low VFM, IMO, especially with domestically-produced and much lower priced options either already here, or on the near horizon. At the point that volumes can justify building them here, we can start seeing some great bikes offered at truly reasonable prices.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CrAzY dRiVeR View Post
I've seen and heard of many KTM 390 riders who ride and keep up with the superbikes in the corners...
....big adventure bike owners waiting and waiting for a KTM 390 Adventure or the BMW 310GS to be launched...as a more user-friendly do-it-all option.

...But then - people always dream for bigger and better machines, dont they.
Question is "WHY???"

I saw a YouTbe video where a RC390 rider was actually losing ground at points to an Impulse on well-paved twisties someplace in Uttarkhand (obviously quicker on the straights, but anyway...). Amateur rider vs. "professional" said the caption.

When our own skills / real-world requirements are in no way up to the capabilities of a particular machine, bigger is actually NOT better.

In the motocross context, the 250cc class machines were on many tracks turning faster times than the 500's... because they were just a lot more manageable and easy to ride, thus also easier (not to mention safer) to ride fast.

In the Gurgaon (for example) context, a (large-cc-bike-owning) friend there sends a steady stream of sad stories of the deaths of people with the means to buy these bikes, but not the requisite skills, self-control, presence of mind to ride them well.

The Impulse had been feeling pretty peppy lately, and I was thinking of foregoing any additional mods. I hopped aboard a Machismo 500 and rode it for a week, enjoying it thoroughly - for a few days. But it started feeling sluggish after awhile (just as it had felt after a month on my much more powerful DR350). Back on the humble Impulse today, it could've felt there was actually something wrong with it, it was so slow off the mark.

There is no end to the lust for power, and it is never ultimately satisfying. I guess it was Rockefeller who was asked how much money was enough: "Just a little bit more" replied the zillionaire... Not much different here.

The ever-more-complete connection with the machine - preferably over the long-term - is considerably more important than the raw sensations of g-forces, in my view.

Lots of potential analogies with other aspects of life here, which I needn't get into just now...

Regards,
-Eric
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Old 6th November 2017, 18:00   #24
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Default Re: A Closer Look - Honda CRF1000L Africa Twin DCT

Quote:
Originally Posted by ringoism View Post
Well, I'm another 6'2" broomstick with an Impulse, who's ridden that and the Himalayan and the Navi in the hills/mountains. So birds of a feather... and I'd have to agree with your conclusions!

The downsides of an 800+cc bike in this context outweigh the advantages, in my view.

I was riding a friend's Tiger around South Delhi several weeks back. Great bike of course - great sound (aftermarket pipe), great power (really too much I suppose), nice seat, and the ABS actually worked for me in one harrowing moment... A buttery smooth engine at every rpm - I finally understood what everyone said about the great flexibility of these Triumph triples.
What its good for.

After reading all the reviews this is what I gather.

It's built on the same philosophy as the BMW R1200GS Adventure. Ducati Multistrada Enduro. KTM 1190 Adventure R. Riding to inaccessible places you can't get to. Even in an SUV. Without using a bike trailer.

You can do it on a CRF250l as did my Indian tourist friend in Thailand using bike hire, but these buyers want to enjoy the tarmac in between home and secret destination too.

Other facts I gleaned out of the different reviews.

DCT geared to enjoyment of off road. Mud plugging without the distraction of being in the right gears.

DCT problems mainly in the handlebar control area.

Foot lever for DCT useful for those used to foot shifts.

A DCT owner loved the auto shift feature for holding his Starbucks cup in his free hand. Shades of the Activa!

Low seat adjustment available on after market sites.

Switchable ABS to execute slide turns.

The spokes actually function as springs, explaining their choice for off road.

Manual box. Cruise control (after market). Alloy rims with tubeless tyres. Perfect for Supermoto config.

No chrome moly frame. Useful for that long way round tour where special welding not available. As well as Puncture kit fixable tubed tyres. Perfect for those Long Tours.

It's dethroned the GS because of the price and the great combination of off road and on road.

BTW, everyone uses 450 cc for the Dakar.

Last edited by mobike008 : 7th November 2017 at 16:51. Reason: Please avoid quoting large posts when replying. Thanks!
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Old 7th November 2017, 07:16   #25
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Default Re: A Closer Look - Honda CRF1000L Africa Twin DCT

Instead of a more road focussed variant as expected - Honda has revealed a more adventure focussed variant at EICMA 2017. Called the Adventure Sports.

http://www.advpulse.com/adv-bikes/20...enture-sports/

Quote:
Key Feature Updates
• Longer travel suspension, flatter seat and more upright riding position
• Extended fairing protection and taller screen
• Heated grips as standard plus AC charging socket
• Rider’s footpegs/pillion footpeg hangers designed for off-road use
• Stainless steel spokes offer durability and ease of care
• Emergency Stop Signal function for rear indicators
• Throttle By Wire (TBW) brings with it 3 rider modes
• HSTC (traction control) now has 7 levels and OFF
• New intake design and exhaust aid mid-range response
• New exhaust also designed to improve engine note
• New lighter balance shaft weight
• New lithium-ion battery saves 5.1 lbs (2.3kg) and enhances durability
• Assist/slipper clutch helps upshifts and downshifts
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Old 7th November 2017, 18:38   #26
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Default Re: A Closer Look - Honda CRF1000L Africa Twin DCT

Quote:
Originally Posted by proton View Post
I gather...It's built on the same philosophy as the BMW R1200GS Adventure. Ducati Multistrada Enduro. KTM 1190 Adventure R. Riding to inaccessible places you can't get to. Even in an SUV. Without using a bike trailer.

You can do it on a CRF250l as did my Indian tourist friend in Thailand using bike hire, but these buyers want to enjoy the tarmac in between home and secret destination too.
There is an awful lot between a 1200GS and a CRF250. How about some middle-ground here?

My assertion would be that you don't need 1000cc to enjoy any kind of tarmac anywhere in the world, and it is a distinct disadvantage under any other condition. Even a good 600/650 (KLR?) can easily maintain (and far exceed) typical European/North American highway speeds, all the more so here in the subcontinent.

I used the word "outweigh" re: the disadvantages, and for me, forgiving the pun, weight is really the issue, though admittedly there are other issues when it comes to utilizing high-powered machines on anything but a highway (despite all the electronic aids that are in vogue now, I don't find throttle modulation very easy/pleasant on bikes that are excessively powered for their intended riding context). Anyway, many a GS/Tiger rider has complained about how heavy / unwieldy these bikes are in those "inaccessible" places, saying (as aforementioned) they would really prefer something more nimble.

I've ridden a 916cc Ducati, a Bonneville, and a Tiger on-road, among larger-cc bikes, and I admit I liked them; But also have done some very long North-American, entirely tarmac cross-country travels very satisfyingly on 350/600cc dual-sports, which were really the better all-rounders.

Moreover, in my experience the interstate highways of the world are generally not such pleasurable places. Speeds are high enough and traffic volume is plentiful enough that one needs to be alert / focused on the road constantly, not on the scenery (if it hasn't been typically altered for the worse near such motorways). I once rode (pillion) down from Rotterdam to Lyon, southern France, through Belgium and Luxemborg, on a BMW K75... at times cruising at 150kmph... and can honestly say that the only time we were truly enjoying ourselves was when we got off the multi-lane and (attempting to avoid a very expensive toll) ended up on some little-used would-be shortcut that went up over the Alps. Yeah, we got lost and arrived at our destination late. So what? Saw some great things and stopped in some great places along the way.

So you think you need a big bike to ride on mostly ugly highways that you won't really be able to relax and enjoy the views on anyway...? Why not just take your time and enjoy the byways, and make do with a smaller bike that will be a LOT more capable / fun when you arrive on those back-country trails???

Since you mention Thailand: Years ago I rented an old Honda "Baja" 250cc dual-sport (with dual-headlamps) there... a very pleasurable machine both on those nicely-paved four-lanes outside Chiang-Mai (at 110kmph or better), on the twisty two-lanes in the mountains north (?) of the city (where as a fresh Yank I forgot which side of the road I was supposed to be riding on, beholding the "idiot" in the car coming at me in "my" lane!), and also on the trails I eventually found myself exploring, which I am rather certain no liter-class "adventure" bike could ever have managed (my mount was half their weight). Some great memories there...

I surely didn't need a trailer to get the bike home...

IMHO it's largely (maybe not entirely) the disease of "bigger is better".

And the people who (very often) deepen their debt to get themselves into the saddle of one of these have to find ways to justify it... that's where the forums / reviews you read come in...

If it weren't for the necessity of long legs, I'd say that what would in honesty work best as an all-rounder in the Indian context would be something like a 650cc Suzuki DR (more offroad bias) or Kawasaki KLR (more comfy on-road).

Come to think of it the rotax-powered BMW Funduro was "perfect" for India - except for its market timing...

-Eric

Last edited by ringoism : 7th November 2017 at 18:55.
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Old 7th November 2017, 18:55   #27
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What we need is a goddamn adv bike built on the 690 single from ktm. That would solve every bikers wet adv dream.
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Old 8th November 2017, 00:50   #28
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What we need is a goddamn adv bike built on the 690 single from ktm. That would solve every bikers wet adv dream.
The new bikes shown at EICMA are all in this mid size adventure bike segment. The Tiger XCx 800, Tracer GT, GS850, and KTM 690. The Honda NC750 is also has a few nice upgrades like LED lights, and little more power. I am going to hold off upgrading from my NC700 till I see all of these new bikes at the Long Beach Motorcycle show next weekend.
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Old 8th November 2017, 06:42   #29
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The new bikes shown at EICMA are all in this mid size adventure bike segment. The Tiger XCx 800, Tracer GT, GS850, and KTM 690. The Honda NC750 is also has a few nice upgrades like LED lights, and little more power. I am going to hold off upgrading from my NC700 till I see all of these new bikes at the Long Beach Motorcycle show next weekend.
Forget those dinosaurs. The new potential 790 adventure r is the bike to get. 169 kgs for the naked. Lets say 10 kgs more for the adventure variant. 180 kgs. Take my money.

Watch out everyone else... The asteroid is coming...and its orange. Bright big orange.

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Old 8th November 2017, 13:32   #30
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Default Re: A Closer Look - Honda CRF1000L Africa Twin DCT

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There is an awful lot between a 1200GS and a CRF250. How about some middle-ground here?

My assertion would be that you don't need 1000cc to enjoy any kind of tarmac anywhere in the world, and it is a distinct disadvantage under any other condition. Even a good 600/650 (KLR?) can easily maintain (and far exceed) typical European/North American highway speeds, all the more so here in the subcontinent.
<SNIP></SNIP>

Come to think of it the rotax-powered BMW Funduro was "perfect" for India - except for its market timing...

-Eric
Rather than address the relevant points of your post , the issue can be answered by providing the factors that influence the person who is a potential buyer:

Directly relevant factors for choosing for local use (AKA buyer resonance!):

High disposable income.
Enjoys high powered machines.
Most likely upgrading from a smaller machine.
Differentiates between reaching destination fatigued as a result of riding a buzzing 650 or lower and reaching relaxed.
Knows big machines are actually safer, for highway cruising and overtaking, because of power delivery available at lower rpms. And you may need power left to get out of a sticky situation or to complete the overtaking manoeuvre.
Wants/needs to do some off roading, either as part of the journey or separate mud plugging.

Indirectly relevant factors (AKA needing an excuse, justification, for buying!):

Can’t resist the attractive pricing!
It’s dual purpose, I can use it to pick up the milk!

When choosing for long distance travel use, a different kettle of fish, refer:

http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/gea...ing-outfitting

I tried the Funduro. It overheats in Indian conditions. Heard some teaplanter in Darjeeling is very happy with it after buying it used in, and riding it from, Mumbai!
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