Honda Africa Twin Confirmed – CRF1000L Coming for 2016

05/12/2015 @ 12:17 pm, by Jensen Beeler38 COMMENTS

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American Honda dropped a bombshell today, confirming that the teased “True Adventure” ADV model will enter production, and be named the “Africa Twin”, as expected.

Officially designated at the Honda CRF1000L, the Africa Twin will be a 2016 model (in dealerships early next year), and best of all, it will be coming to the USA.

The 2016 Honda Africa Twin draws upon a legacy of rugged off-road race-proven machines that also wore its name, a sign that Honda intends the CRF1000L to be very capable off-road, and thus not follow the road-going adventure-sport trend.

The company says, “the all-new CRF1000L Africa Twin is set to redefine expectations of just what a large-capacity adventure motorcycle can and should be capable of, both on and off-road, and it opens an entirely new chapter in Honda’s illustrious history of dual-purpose motorcycles made for true adventure.”

We’re pretty sure that’s marketing speak for: the BMW R1200GSA has just been put on notice. We’re also pretty sure that  that the Bavarians will be giving these photos a long look, to see how the Honda CRF1000L stacks up against the venerable GS.

One feature we can expect was already teased on the True Adventure, as Honda has confirmed that the Africa Twin will have option of Honda’s dual-clutch transmission (DCT), which has been specially rebuilt for off-road use.

No word on pricing has been mentioned yet, and the only photos of the finished machine that we have are the darkened ones below. We’ve enhanced them further to show more detail, but not much extra is shown.

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Honda-CRF1000L-Africa-Twin-02

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Enhanced Photos of the Honda Africa Twin:

Honda-CRF1000L-Africa-Twin-Enhanced-06

Honda-CRF1000L-Africa-Twin-Enhanced-05

Source: American Honda

  • Typenschild Delete

    Looks like the earlier True Adventure bike was VERY close to production, at least based on these few pics. Not many differences at all. I’m educated-guessing this is the manual version and the concept bike was the DCT.

  • Jonathan

    I was a little surprised when I read they are including an optional DCT on a “true adventure” bike. The DCT on the VFR1200 adds a whole 22lbs. I wonder how much lighter the rebuilt version is. Either way it seems like good timing for this bike release when the adventure trend keeps getting more and more pavement biased.

  • n/a

    Nice. Really f**king nice.

    Ironically, the million dollar question, how much?

  • Bruce Steever

    Except, according to what i’ve heard from Honda insiders, this thing is going to be a serious dirt option, benchmarked at the KTM 990.

    Proof is in the pudding. Something tells me that BMW isn’t losing too much sleep yet…

  • Dan Hughes

    After this weekend, I’m done with massive adv bikes. To expensive to fix when you screw them up on a trail.

    But it is sooo shiny……

  • Alclab Ventek

    Nice! Hopefully this means Honda will be making more new/updated bikes! (Where is my new CBR Honda!!!?)

  • teanau

    Its got that probably over 500lbs look to it.

  • Jonn Dol

    The all-new CBR 1000 RR is also coming very soon.

  • Campisi

    We’ll see. That tire and front fender combination doesn’t look too dirt-happy.

  • Piglet2010

    No matter how good it is as a motorcycle, a Honda will never have the same cachet as a BMW when both are parked outside a fancy coffee shop.

  • Piglet2010

    Well, the dog camping guy was hinting that it was going to be very light (low 400-pound range wet) and have dirt-bike ergonomics.

  • Paul Cypert

    Another bird inspired large engined adventure bike. Finally. Way to shake up the industry Honda.

    Graphics package here also a bit loud for the 40 year olds normally riding these things. If you’re the type to go for that sort of styling you’ll go full bore with Duc or KTM. Wish they were doing something new.

    If it’s light that’ll be a big bonus and no doubt it’ll ride reliably like most Hondas…I’d just rather see one based off their 500 than 1000.

  • thumper702

    In this politically-correct age of America, I’m sure someone will deem the “Africa Twin” name as offensive, and demand it be changed. Uggghhhh.

  • Don’t bet on that, these teaser-photos look promising…

  • Ryan Donahue

    Maybe. But I don’t want the Beemer price tag on the Honda, so I’m fine with the disparity.

  • Ryan Donahue

    I’m going with $14k – $15k.

  • Ryan Donahue

    I have a Duc, two actually, and I want this in the stable to compliment my Multi. It’s far more dirt worthy and lighter. And it won’t hurt as much when I drop it. The Africa Twin is the middleweight adventure bike that can actually adventure that has yet to be made.

  • Ryan Donahue

    My money; take it Honda. All of it. I want this bike badly.

  • tony

    wow, a new motorcycle from honda. who’da thunk it ?

  • singletrack

    Overheard at Honda… “Ok guys, people want 1000cc dual sport bikes. Leave that XR650L alone.”

  • Piglet2010

    Tell a person who knows nothing about motorcycles that you ride a Honda and they will be ho-hum. Tell the same person you ride a BMW or Ducati, and they will say nice bike or Wow!

  • PaulMcM

    I bet this is a very well-made motorcycle. And I bet it will give the KTM a run for its money off-road (though the KTM will produce much more peak HP). However, I don’t see this as a sales success in the US. The BMW GS guys don’t really need or want a bike that is more off-road capable, since they spend 99.9% of their time on pavement. Also the yuppie GS snobs won’t buy Japanese. Potential customers with poor credit ratings (or less disposable income) will look at the much cheaper (and more versatile) Suzuki V-Strom. This Honda may steal some buyers from KTM, but I don’t think it will pull anyone away from Ducati’s Multi-Strada, despite Honda’s copy-cat red and white paint job. My advice — this is the adventure equivalent of the VFR1200 — a very good machine that really isn’t what customers actually want. It’s way more “off-roady” than it needs to be. And frankly it sort of seems like a Honda version of Yamaha’s Tenere, and that was NOT a sales success at all in North America. My prediction: If you really want this bike, wait 18 months and it will be deeply discounted (just like the VFR1200 was).

    What I was hoping for was a better, more intelligent version of the GS — a good bike for primarily road use that doesn’t have the reliability issues of the GS, or the lame GS instruments, or the silly GS fairing, or the easily damaged GS cylinder heads, and excessive weight. I commend Honda for building a proper dual-sport liter-bike, but I really don’t see this Africa Twin taking buyers from BMW, KTM, or Suzuki. If the Honda is cheap enough, the small set of guys who might otherwise buy a Tenere may get the Honda instead, but stealing a few buyers from Yamaha won’t make this a success, at least not in North America. This might be a good seller in Europe where the Dakar look is more popular.

  • Frankly I don’t care about non-motorcyclists opinion about bikes, nor I have the motivation to show off outside a fancy coffee shop, (in any kind of bike…).
    I like ADV bikes for what they intend to do best: Travel and enjoy the long way back home ;)
    These teaser photos look promising on that, so I will wait for the full preview and the technical details of the new Africa-ner.

  • Piglet2010

    You are not in the target demographic for being a BMW customer then.

    Exact same bike – at $15K it will be considered overpriced if it says Honda-Kawasaki-Suzuki-Yamaha on it, but reasonably priced at $18K if it says BMW, Ducati, or Harley-Davidson (in the case of cruisers) on it. Such is the reality of the market (and of course, not just for motorcycles), and people who are not brand, culture, and race conscious in assigning value judgements are the social outliers.

  • Piglet2010

    Agreed, but remember that the US is no longer an important motorcycle market to Honda (and the other Japanese manufacturers), since 90% of the motorcycles are sold as status/lifestyle toys, and not for their inherent qualities. And except maybe for people of Asian decent, US and European brands will always win the Status & Lifestyle™ competition over Japanese or other Asian brands.

    P.S. The VFR1200F is still listed on Honda’s US website, but as a 2013 model.

  • Do you really believe that a badge on a tank can make you a social outlier!!!!???????????????
    I am not in the target demographic for being a ‘consuming sheep’, and not just for motorcycles…
    A motorcycle model-choice doesn’t define your personality, it’s not an extension of you, it’s just a bike!!!
    We are not what we have, or what we can afford, but this is something that marketing gurus want us to forget….
    If something is not according to my needs, likes, and wants, I am not going to buy it because it’s trendy, but I will not jump into conclusions about other people’s choices either.
    Enjoy your ride, and be sure that when we meet on the road I will salute you no matter what you ride ;)

  • BlueS

    Hey GeoKan, really well said…! who cares what people think/say/ride. Ride whatever you enjoy riding, and wave to everyone else that’s not in a cage…
    I am seriously intrigued by the new Africa Twin. I like the Tenere, but it’s way to heavy. I had a VStrom 1000 and it’s a great bike and super engine, but way too heavy to take it off road. Beemers are just as heavy and cylinders in the wackiest location possible. For some reason, KTM and the orange parade does not do it for me. So, I ride a Ducati and very happily, but no way in the dirt! This new Honda could be a great addition…. Something to venture into the woods and on the dirt roads with..
    Well, it’s time to shop for a bigger garage and maybe a small house to go with it – “honey, whichever house you like is fine, as long as it has a three car garage or bigger – a full heated/cooled shop would be better”.

  • Piglet2010

    Did you read what I wrote? It appears you are replying to something rather different than my meaning.

    Hint – this is about the majority of motorcycle purchasers in the US, and NOTHING to do with my personal beliefs.

  • Sorry for the misunderstanding, I am not from the US, and I am not familiar with the way people live and behave in the States, but from the way you describe me ‘the reality of the US market’, it’s quite manipulable, and I don’t like that.
    Of course there is manipulation in the European market also, maybe in a more mild form I think, but that’s just my opinion, don’t take my word for granted…

  • Piglet2010

    Very few people ride for transportation in the US, and you see a lot more motorcycles on the roads on weekends than weekdays. So they are mostly toys for well-off people, such as upper middle class professionals playing pretend 1%MC club member on expensive but slow Harley-Davidson cruisers (the best selling bikes in the market), or pretend Charlie and Ewan on large and expensive ADV bikes. A Japanese bike, no matter how good, does not fit into these scenarios (and as an aside, why scooters sell poorly).

    Similar trends are found in automobiles, housing, watches, clothing…, really is a messed up country in some ways.

  • Kwitter ones

    Not true at all, my old Africa Twin draws more attention then the F800GS for example. BMW are not that cool to look at… and even more, everybody has a GS these days…

  • Kwitter ones

    And in the end everybody did own a Honda and has great memories about these bikes…. never heard this from BMW and sure not Ducati…

  • Kwitter ones

    Loving being a social outliner…..

  • stevecro

    or brand conscious “wanker”. I think Honda as a brand is generally well regarded everywhere. If they can show us it’s not “vanilla” but actually has excitement value I reckon they have it made. But < 200 kgs must be achieved

  • steveco

    it is trying to bring “massive” down to “manageable”. I got a 230kg Adv bike last year because I needed to be able to pillion and do highways well. It was the lightest weight I could get for a litre+ bike. 200 kgs and more off road ability would get my dollars instantly. I know Honda is a safe bet for a good bike

  • steveco

    my trusty old DR650 is for trails touring. The bigger mumma does other stuff better

  • Piglet2010

    Well, I have only owned four Honda motorcycles (still have two) and two Civics – and will probably own a few more in the future.

  • Piglet2010

    Honda – Says the owner is a sensible person who chooses quality and reliability at a reasonable price.

    Ducati – Says the person has a lot of discretionary income, and is not afraid to spend it.