If you’re in the market for a motorcycle that's much more than just a way of negotiating the urban jungle and can effectively cope with almost any environment you put in its way, you’re looking for a pretty special bike. The all-new Africa Twin is exactly that kind of machine.
The redesigned Africa Twin is lighter, more powerful, and even more feature-packed than the previous model. In developing the new model, our engineers and designers succeeded in meeting increasingly stringent Euro 5 emissions regulations whilst also increasing the power and performance of this outstanding adventure bike.
It was something of a bold move when Africa Twin was reintroduced to the market in 2016, this was after the original XRV650 and XRV750 that were inspired by Honda's Paris Dakar-winning bikes had gone out of production back in 2003. For most observers, the reintroduced model really nailed its brief, so it was no small task to improve it.
Of course, being an adventure bike that's designed to be as at home in the wilderness as it is on the road, it's inevitable that some compromises must be made. Although we have dedicated off-road bikes, and others designed purely to deliver the ultimate on-road riding experience, the Africa Twin is one that has to handle it all. The previous generation did a great job, but the all-new Africa Twin takes this kind of ultimate versatility and capability to another level entirely.
Today though, now we've brought you this all-new model, you don’t have to take our word for just how sensational this redesigned model really is. We gave the media a chance to get to grips with the new Africa Twin on the Italian island of Sardinia, and here's what the likes of Motorcycle News (MCN), Bike Social, Visordown and More Bikes thought of the new model.
When any product is given to a large number of professional reviewers in the media to try out, you’re inevitably going to get a range of opinions, and bikes are no different.
However, by reading a range of reviews of the Africa Twin and Adventure Sports after journalists got a chance to try out the new bikes in Sardinia, one thing becomes very clear; our engineers and designers knocked it out of the park with this one by improving on what was already a superb machine.
"I’m a big fan of the design and technology of DCT – it’s very, very clever."
The review also draws attention to the choice and diversity offered by the new Africa Twin family, and the fact buyers can choose whether to have a DCT or a manual version. Simon explains, "There are, effectively, six new Africa Twins for 2021."
The CRF1100L Africa Twin is described as "the cheapest, lightest, most sprightly and most off-road and urban-traffic biased Africa Twin," while the CRF1100L Africa Twin Adventure Sports is explained as, "the Adventure Sports model with a bigger tank, for more serious touring and longer distance road-based riding, but still with off-road ability."
In summing up, Simon refers to the success the Africa Twin has enjoyed since its 2016 re-launch by writing,
"But in the short term (and I wouldn’t bet against the long term either) I can’t see any reason why the Africa Twin’s success won’t continue for at least another four years."
WORLD LAUNCH: @HondaUKBikes' 2020 Africa Twin!— MoreBikes (@EvenMoreBikes) October 10, 2019
It's day two & we're riding the standard Africa Twin and standard Africa Twin Adventure Sports. We'll be bringing you our first thoughts on both new bikes throughout the day. Stay tuned: https://t.co/7HipFGVAdp#Honda #africatwin pic.twitter.com/hcWmeF2fKh
A bike designed to handle all sorts of road and off-road surfaces must have the ride and handling as top priorities, and Visordown isn't holding back with its praise in this important area. Harry says of the handling,
"In short, the handling is super composed. It’s nearly impossible to tie the bike in knots, impart due to the electronics and epic two-channel ABS system, but also down to the frame and suspension geometry."
Commenting about the choice offered to buyers with the new model, the Visordown review states,
"if you’re all about off-roading then the manual variant would be a better option. If you’re not an expert on the rough stuff, then the DCT system allows you to focus on the path ahead and not worry about simultaneously coordinating all four limbs at once."
MCN was also hugely positive what has been done to improve the new model, especially in terms of handling and performance commented,
"The new engine injects a welcome boost in performance that is certainly a noticeable improvement. The lower seat height and narrower waist mean it feels less intimidating at slow speed and the electronic suspension delivers a plush ride quality."
MCN explained the difference between the stock Africa Twin and the Adventure Sports version and who each bike may appeal to by saying the stock Africa Twin has been moved more towards the off-road side.
The review says,
"It may be more agile than the last Honda Africa Twin Adventure Sports, but I can’t help but feel UK riders will be swayed by the practicality offered by the Sports over the stock model’s rugged outlook on life and lighter overall weight."
There's little doubt Honda has enhanced the new Africa Twin's road-going capabilities to make it even more capable and comfortable, but Ross Mowbray from More Bikes was especially impressed with the off-road capabilities of the new model.
"Interestingly, there’s been a slight shift of priorities for this year too – so while the Adventure Sports was previously Honda’s hardcore off-roader, this time, the standard Africa Twin’s the one that’s ready to hit the trails."
He elaborated on the new model's off-road credentials by adding,
"If you’re a serious off-road rider, you’ll be amazed at what the bike’s capable of doing. And if you’re an average off roader who likes to tackle the occasional trail, the Africa Twin will help you get a real wriggle on."
The all-new Africa Twin really is a bike that can just about do it all. But don’t just take our word for it. Check out what the reviewers say about the new model in more detail, and you'll soon find yourself itching to go out and try one out for yourself at your local Honda dealer.
Just ridden the first 80 miles on the 2020 #AfricaTwin Adventure Sport (some off road, some twisties, some motorway) and despite being an almost entirely new machine it feels very much like a more refined, gruntier, smoother and - importantly - lower Africa Twin. pic.twitter.com/iG9ShDihjT— Bennetts (@bennetts_bike) October 9, 2019