Hello from Texas Hill Country, just outside of Austin, Texas. In addition to soaking up some of that prairie life, I am out here to ride the 2018 Honda Gold Wing.
For this model year, the iconic touring bike gets an all-new design, making it the sixth generation of the Honda Gold Wing, which has a focus on being more compact, refined, and built for today’s modern touring rider.
As such, roughly 90 lbs of fat have been trimmed off the ol’ Wing, thanks largely to a more compact engine design and what Honda calls a “double wishbone” front end (you might call it a Hossack suspension design).
In total, there are five variations of the new Gold Wing. The Honda Gold Wing Tour is the design you will most likely recognize, as it comes with integrated trunk and passenger chair, it in turn has three flavors: standard, DCT (dual-clutch transmission), and the airbag model returns to the lineup as well.
Replacing the Honda Gold Wing F6B is what Big Red simply calls the Honda Gold Wing. It has a more bagger look, with the trunk/passenger chair removed. It comes in two flavors, standard and DCT.
A hallmark technology for Honda now, this is the third generation of Honda’s dual-clutch transmission, which has considerable refinements over the previous generation, especially in its Gold Wing application, and features seven speeds for optimal cruising.
With snow and ice expected in Texas this week, our ride plans have changed a bit, but we still should be able to give the new Gold Wing a couple hundred miles of testing, riding through the hill country, outside of Austin.
For bonus fun, Honda has brought some of its 2017 models as well, so we should be able to give a good comparison between the two generations of this incredibly popular motorcycle (roughly 800,000 of them have been sold worldwide, and most of those were in the USA).
Per our new review format, we will be giving you a live assessment of the new Honda Gold Wing models right here in this article (down in the comments section), and there we will try to answer any questions you might have.
So, here is your chance to learn what it’s like to ride the Honda Gold Wing, before even my own proper reviews are posted. As always, if I don’t know an answer, I will try to get a response from the Honda personnel. So, pepper away.
Spec-Sheet Comparison of Relevant Models to the Honda Gold Wing:
|Honda Gold Wing||BMW K1600 GTL||Yamaha Star Venture||Harley-Davidson Road Ultra|
|Horsepower||125 hp||160 hp||not disclosed||not disclosed|
|Torque||125 lbs•ft||129 lbs•ft||126 lbs•ft||114 lbs•ft|
|Weight||787 lbs (wet)||772 lbs (wet)||957 lbs (wet)||910 lbs (wet)|
|Engine||Horizontal Six-Cylinder, 1,833cc||Inline Six-Cylinder, 1,649cc||Air-cooled V-Twin, 1,854cc||Air-Cooled V-Twin, 1,753cc|