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Honda reveals CRF1000L Africa Twin

Honda CRF1000L Africa Twin

Honda hopes to convert adventure riders to automatic transmissions with one of three models of Honda Africa Twin expected to be available in Australia next year.

It will arrive in Australia in January and pricing will be announced shortly, says Honda Australia spokesman Glyn Griffiths.


The standard model comes in silver, while an ABS model and an ABS with automatic dual clutch transmission (DCT) will be available in a choice of “CRF Rally” and “TriColour” combinations.

“We are anticipating a greater percentage of our sales will be the ABS model (non-DCT) and feel that the DCT model will gain traction as the market accepts this technology in the adventure touring segment,” he says.

The Africa Twin has never been available in Australia before, but now it will arrive to take on the rapidly growing big-bore adventure bike market.

Like most of the new breed of big-bore adventure bikes, there is a tonne of new technology.

In particular, this is the first to offer a semi-automatic transmission with no clutch lever.

The DCT features the standard manual mode, allowing the rider to shift gears through a handlebar trigger, as well as two automatic modes. ‘D’ mode is for better fuel economy and cruising, while ‘S’ mode has more power, with three different shift patterns to choose from: S1, S2 and S3.

It also has a ‘G’ switch on the right side of the instrument panel to improve traction and machine control by reducing clutch slip and has incline detection, which seems to hold the gears on a steep uphill and drop down gears for descending a slope.

We’re not sure what adventure riders will think of this new technology and Honda will have to do a lot of convincing to switch these riders over to clutchless automatics. However, it could be a handy system for those who are new to off-road riding.

It also features Honda Selectable Torque Control (HSTC) system from the VFR800X Crossrunner which is a type of traction control with three selectable levels.

Riders will also be able to turn off the ABS system for the rear wheel, which is ideal for dirt riding.

At its heart, the Africa Twin is powered by a parallel twin with 69kW of power at 7500rpm, 98Nm of torque at 6000rpm. It features a 270-degree crank shaft that Honda claims will improve feel for rear wheel traction.

The engine is housed in a steel semi-double cradle frame.

The bike weighs from 226-242kg fully fuelled, depending on transmission.

There are no details at this stage on the suspension except that it has upside-down forks. However, we’re fairly sure it is a traditional system rather than electronic, or they would have been crowing about it.

Honda CRF1000L Africa Twin

Honda CRF1000L Africa Twin

  • Engine: liquid-cooled, 8-valve, 998cc parallel twin
  • Bore x stroke: 92×75.1mm
  • Power: 69kW (93hp) @ 7500rpm
  • Torque: 97Nm (72lbft) @ 6000rpm
  • Transmission: 6-speed manual or DCT semi-auto
  • Dry weight: 208kg (212kg with ABS, 222kg with Dual Clutch Transmission)
  • Wet weight: 228kg (232kg with ABS, 242kg with DCT)
  • Fuel capacity: 18.8 litres
  • Length x width x height: 2335 x 875 x 1475 mm (92.7 x 34.4 x 58 in) STD, 2355 x 930 x 1475 mm (92.7 x 36.6 x 58 in) DCT
  • Wheelbase: 1575mm
  • Seat (Standard/Relaxed): 870/850mm
  • Clearance: 250mm
  • Tyres: 90/90-R21; 150/70 R18
  1. I’m reading about the bike now stateside, and an article in “Rideapart” suggests that the specs for this bike are LESS than the Suzuki V-Strom, which this particular journalist owns, and enjoys very much. So the point was, this bike will have a place, but given the specifications, it may take a lot more by Honda to impress potential buyers. Here is a link to the
    article. You may enjoy it!!

  2. Specs don’t mean much to me, some of the bikes ive enjoyed the most look pretty shitty on paper (transalp). I look forward to a test ride and trying out the dct.

    On a side note. The site is coming along awesome I have been reading since i stumbled on it 6 months or so ago. I don’t know your history Mark; I assume your a journalist which has decided to go out on your own, or an enthusiast or whatever, it doesn’t really matter, your content is great and frequent. Big thumbs up from me!

    1. Hi Alex,
      Thanks for your comments.
      I agree about specs.
      And yes, you’re right, I’m a 35-year journo veteran now freelance and writing about my passion! thanks for your support. Please tell all your friends.

  3. Mark is being very modest here….
    I’ve been reading Australian Road Rider and Cruiser & Trike since their beginnings and its impossible to pick up an issue and not read one of his articles…..his name has appeared in many different publications, even the boring old RACQ magazine isn’t safe……..
    Over the many years we have all been reading our favourite pieces of reading material, no, not the ones that have those centerfolds in them, but most have read one of Mark’s articles and not even known it….
    This is an exellent site and always a good read…. keep up the good work Mark ……
    Stay safe.

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