The Honda Africa Twin has been almost universally celebrated as an excellent long-range off-road adventure machine. The 2018 Africa Twin Adventure Sports is the same recipe with a little extra special sauce.
The cool concept bike Honda trotted out at the Osaka Motorcycle Show more than a year ago has been brought to life, and it looks pretty close to the upgraded world-crossing motorcycle we were ogling back then.
Honda says the new Adventure Sports trim gets a little extra suspension travel with new Showa shocks, almost an additional inch of ground clearance, and more comfort accessories including a bigger windscreen to make distance riding less exhausting. The fuel tank’s been enlarged by almost 1.5 gallons–an immense increase in the motorcycle world–my Yamaha WR only has about 1 gallon fuel capacity in total.
The Africa Twin Adventure Sports also runs standard heated grips and a 12 volt socket, auto-canceling turn signals (fancy!) and a flatter, 1.2-inch-taller seat.
Both the standard and Adventure Sports variants get internal and bolt-on bit changes to their 998 cc SOHC SOHC eight-valve parallel-twin engine. A new airbox and piping is supposed to improve the bike’s midrange responsiveness.
A throttle-by-wire system is new for this year too, along with a Honda Selectable Torque Control (HSTC) system that can effectively cycle the sensation of power delivery between seven different modes.
I have not yet had the privilege of riding any Africa Twins, but despite the bike’s steep price tag (over $13,000) just about everything I’ve read or heard has been positive. I can confirm that adventure touring by motorcycle is one of the most rewarding and exciting ways to see the world, as long as you don’t mind being hot and cold and wet and dirty.
The expansion of this motorcycle market is encouraging, though. Shoot, I’m inspired to load up my saddle bags and ride into the desert already.