The Honda Africa Twin gets a sibling for the 2018 model year, as the Honda Africa Twin Adventure Sports debuted today at Honda’s pre-EICMA event. As expected the Africa Twin Adventure Sports is a more off-road focused version of the Honda Africa Twin, and comes with a robust set of features that make it easier to go globetrotting on the plucky ADV bike from Honda. Like on the now revised 2018 Honda Africa Twin, the Adventure Sports version comes with improvements over the original Africa Twin design. This includes new foot rests, a new instrument panel, RbW throttle control with three throttle maps, seven levels of traction control system, a new exhaust design, and a lithium-ion battery.
Honda seems set to update the Africa Twin, its plucky ADV model, with a more off-road focused machine. Teasing the new model online, the Honda Africa Twin “Big Tank” – nicknamed for its supposedly larger 22-liter fuel tank – is expected to debut next week at the EICMA show in Milan. Not too much is known about the machine, but we expect it to borrow heavily from the Honda Africa Twin Adventure Sports Concept, which debuted at the Osaka Motorcycle Show last year. Accordingly, we can expect more off-road goodness for the Africa Twin in Italy, with a slight styling refresh as well. The larger fuel tank (up from the stock 18-liter unit) will necessitate some bodywork changes, which includes a redesigned flat seat.
When it comes to adventure-tourers that can actually go off-road, the Honda Africa Twin easily rises to the top of the list. Couple that to Honda’s pursuits in the Dakar Rally and other rally raid events, and its easy to see where the Honda Africa Twin Rally could be born. A special model being built by Italy’s Honda importer that was unveiled at this year’s Motodays show, the Africa Twin Rally won’t be hitting other markets any time soon (read: never), though it shows a machine that many ADV riders have been clamoring for, since the first shots of the Honda CRF450 Rally hit the internet. The Honda Africa Twin Rally loses roughly 15 pounds over its OEM predecessor, mostly by using carbon fiber and a minimalist LED headlight assembly. Yes, a roadbook is an optional accessory, for when you find yourself in the middle of The Dakar.
File the Honda Africa Twin Enduro Sports concept under things we like, as the adventure-bike concept takes perhaps the most off-road competent ADV bike on the market, and raises its dirt credit by another factor of ten.
Built off the Honda CRF1000L Africa Twin, the Enduro Sports concept is intended to expand the Africa Twin family, and to help the new adventure bike attract more riders into its Cult of Brap.
To do this, Honda’s R&D department came up with several lighter weight chassis components (Honda does say what specifically, of course), which were initially developed for the Honda CRF450 Rally race bike, which competes in the Dakar Rally.
The styling is aggressive, especially with the revised headlight assembly. The windscreen and fairings have been re-styled for a sportier look as well, and of course the Termignoni exhaust system is eye-catching, in utilitarian sort of way. Overall, the effect is quite stark.
Honda concept bikes have a funny way of becoming production models in a year or two’s time. As such, we wouldn’t mind have one in our garage. Would you?
The Honda Africa Twin doesn’t lend itself naturally to a supermoto format, though it is one of the most capable off-road adventure bikes on the market, but you have to admit that this photoshop render by French designer Nicolas Petit is very intriguing. Maybe it’s our obvious bias towards anything supermoto that is talking, or maybe it’s that there is something to the idea of taking the Africa Twin, adding 17” wheels, and lowering it just enough that riders can actually flat-foot the machine while sitting on it. Add in some styling cues that scream “supermotard” and you have a very handsome machine that is ready to conquer anything the urban environment can throw at it. Hell, it’s probably just a scary clown costume away from a good time on a gravel road. Right??!
Honda’s flagship factory, in the Kumamoto Prefecture, is now back to normal production levels, after its slow recovery from earthquake damage sustained earlier this year.
Honda says that its large motorcycle production lines are now ready to go back to work, meaning the production at the Kumamoto factory is now back to its normal levels, though mini-vehicle parts production has been transferred to Honda’s Suzuka factory.
After seeing the region devastated by earthquakes, the Honda factory in the Kumamoto Prefecture is slowly coming back online. The Kumamoto factory (seen above, before the earthquake) has been offline since April 14th, though resumed minor operations on May 6th.
Honda says it has finally completed removal of debris from its most affected facilities; and as of June 6th, the company has partly resumed production of its main motorcycle models.
This is of particular note for American motorcyclists, as it means that Honda can once again being producing the Honda Africa Twin adventure-tourer, which was mid-production for the US market at the time of the earthquakes.
The Honda Africa Twin is on the short list for being one of the top bikes released in 2016, with Big Red finally getting serious about the adventure-touring market. To drive that point home further though, Honda has released another variation of the Africa Twin, which it calls the Africa Twin Adventure Sports Concept. The premise with the Africa Twin Adventure Sports Concept is pretty simply, and it borrows heavily from what others in the ADV space have done: if the Africa Twin is Honda’s answer to the BMW R1200GS, then the Africa Twin Adventure Sports Concept is Honda’s answer to the BMW R1200GS Adventure.
If you are a Gen-X male, you probably remember the Choose Your Own Adventure series of books. If you don’t happen to fit this demographic, and don’t have a clue what I am talking about, don’t worry the idea is pretty simple – let me break it down for you.
Each book contained an adventure for the reader, and every dozen pages or so, the story would give a choice on how to continue. Each choice you had to make also had a certain page in the book that you would skip to, in order to continue the story on the path you desired. If you were like me, you almost always failed or died in your task. There is probably a life lesson in there…somewhere.
What does this have to do with motorcycles you may ask? Ah well, Honda has for us the modern-day version of the Choose Your Own Adventure books, using YouTube in a very similar manner. What are they promoting, you may ask? The Honda Africa Twin adventure bike, naturally.
The story found in the YouTube might not be of the same page-turning qualities as the original namesake, but we doubt you can take a wrong turn in Honda’s variable story line. Check it out, after the jump…and yes, for those keeping score, this is yet another video from Honda on the Africa Twin. Sweet merciful Jesus.
American Honda has released pricing details on the 2016 Honda Africa Twin today, an eagerly awaited nugget of information for many adventure-touring riders who are interested in the CRF1000L.
We won’t waste your time with hyperbole, if you want a Honda Africa Twin, you’ll need $12,999. If the dual-clutch transmission model is your cup of ADV, then you’ll need some extra coin, as its MSRP is $13,699.