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Honda CRF1000L Africa Twin Highlights
May 15, 2017: Honda Motorcycle and Scooters India (HMSI) has launched the CRF 1000L Africa Twin in India at Rs 12.9 lakh (ex-Delhi). It is available in just the Dual Clutch Transmission (DCT) trim. The low pricing is courtesy Honda's decision to locally assemble the bikes here. The Africa Twin gets a 998cc parallel-twin motor that puts out 95.3PS at 7,500rpm and 98Nm of torque at 6,000rpm. Suspension duties are handled by fully adjustable 45mm upside down forks with 230mm of travel at the front and a fully adjustable rear monoshock with 228mm of travel at the rear. Seat height is 870mm and can be reduced by 20mm. The seat is narrow which told enable shorter people to ride the bike as well. Electronics include ABS and a three-stage traction control.
The CRF1000L Africa Twin mainly competes against the Triumph Tiger 800 XCx, Suzuki V-Strom and the Versys 1000. In fact, the Africa Twin undercuts the Tiger 800 XCx by Rs 5,000 and the V-Strom by Rs 45,000. The Africa Twin is an excellent value-for-money proposition and is one of the best overlanders you can get your hands on in India.
May 15, 2017: Honda has launched the CRF 1000L Africa Twin at Rs 12.9 lakh (ex-Delhi). The bike is available in two transmission options abroad - a six speed manual and a Dual Clutch automatic transmission. It will be the DTC equipped bike though that will come here. The Africa Twin was first showcased at the 2015 EICMA motor show in Milan. The Rs 12.9 lakh asking price seems to be courtesy of Honda's decision to assemble the Africa Twin here which should knock down around Rs two lakhs off the sticker price of an equivalent CBU variant.
One look at the Honda Africa Twin and it is clear that this is a purpose-built bike. The tall dimensions are standard fare but what sets it apart is that unlike the other adventure bikes in this category, the body lines have a flow and aren’t strictly utilitarian, sci-fi looking panels. The design isn’t pure aesthetics either. The front fairing and windscreen, which is a source for much wind noise and buffeting on many large adventure bikes has been dialled down via wind tunnel testing and tuning.
The overall width of the bike is kept reasonable thanks to the parallel twin engine setup. This not only makes it easy to manage but also enables easy stand-up riding when needed. The seat height of 871mm is good news for the Indian rider too, where average height is lower than the global average. Up front the twin headlamps with their black surrounds look like ski helmet goggles, while the air intakes on either side of the lamps have been neatly placed.
The fairing extends down to cover the radiators and gives the front a muscular profile. Body graphics on the red-white-black paint scheme extend onto the seat and serve to integrate the overall design. Adding to the front volume are the body-colour painted hand guards on the handlebars. The motorcycle comes fitted with a robust one-piece rear grab handle and rear luggage rack which looks like it could handle a good amount of load.
The 18.9-litre fuel tank sits high, below which the engine rests on six mounting points in a semi double cradle frame, supplemented by a rigid rear sub frame. At the rear, panels below the grab handles have two slots each to fit the large panniers offered with the motorcycle.
The 2016 model comes in two variants, powered by a 998cc 8-valve parallel twin engine with the compact Unicam - a feature also found in smaller Honda CRF models - and a 270-degree crank. It produces 94bhp at 7500rpm and peak torque of 98Nm at 6000rpm. One of these variants will feature a manual gearbox. However, the highlight in the line-up will be the dual-clutch automatic transmission (DCT) gearbox on the top variant, which enables gear shifts via buttons on either side of the handlebar, in addition to the standard foot shifter. However, despite the high figures this is not a race bike, partly due to its weight of 231 kg (manual variant). With luggage loaded and two riders, the Africa Twin engine will be able show its full capabilities on any given surface, but will not pop surprise wheelies.
The Africa Twin is a big bike by any measure, and to bring it to a halt, Honda has fitted it with twin 310mm wave floating hydraulic discs up front with 4-piston calipers, along with a 265mm wave single disc brake at the rear. To enable its go-anywhere purpose, the bike has high ground clearance and suspension travel of 9.1 and 8.7 inches at the front and rear respectively. Both the setups are fully adjustable. With a 21 inch tyre at the front, and 150-section 18 inch tyre at the back, the bike gets a classic ADV set of road-biased tyres. The sizes are standard, so those looking for trail or off-road specific tyres can switch easily. The bike features a 43 degree steering lock, meaning that it can turn in small circles. This can also prove a boon in traffic, if you choose to take it to town.The narrow body also makes it easier to manoeuvre in both daily riding and in extreme conditions. The bike maintains a steady stance due to the centralisation of weight.
To supplant the stopping power, the bike gets ABS, which is switchable for the rear wheel. This feature could come in handy when tackling off-road obstacles. Further, the DCT variant also gets a lever-lock type parking brake system. The bike also features traction control in the form Honda’s Selectable Torque Control (HSTC) system, with 3 three different riding modes, which can also be turned off.