uk Road test today - Honda CRF1000L Africa Twin Forum
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-12-2016, 06:13 PM Thread Starter
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uk Road test today

So today was an eventful day. I first tested a Triumph Tiger 800 XrX and then an Africa Twin. Its the AT you're interested in so I will tell you what I thought about that.

I think the biggest compliment I could give the AT is it feels a lot like my Nc700 (only more so, if you get what I mean). Such a big and intimidating looking bike has no right to feel so easy to ride. The engine is very accessible, with loads of low down power and I felt right at home on it from the second I chucked my leg over the high seat. It certainly doesn't 'feel pull your arms off' fast by any respect, but it does pile on speed quite deceptively. I think this is exacerbated by the aero on the bike which is excellent. I'm 5'11"and felt very little wind noise and could even have the visor open at about 55mph. Didn't really get the chance to get on the motorway to test what it is like at cruising speeds. I rode the manual but I could tell the engines nature would be perfectly suited to an auto box if thats your thing

Bike felt very nimble both at low and high speeds and hid its weight well. I didn't really notice the problems some people have had with the pegs being too small, although I did find the pegs was right where I wanted to put my foot down when at traffic lights, I guess that is more a 'getting used to it' kinda thing than a fundamental flaw. I also noticed the seat was very very hard which might be a bit unforgiving on a long ride.

So to sum up the positives I was very impressed by the bike, it felt much more special than the Triumph I tested earlier in the day despite the relatively small gap in price and the virtually zero gap in power between the two. It also felt much easier to live with on a daily basis too.

So the negatives? Well there was the seat as mentioned, plus I couldn't get the display to read in MPG no matter how hard i tried. If it does indeed only read in Miles/Litre this is a massive oversight and would annoy me a fair bit over time. Same with the inability to see the distance till empty. Hopefully I was just being an idiot and couldn't work it... I do hope so. Minor i know, but its the little things

So what else? Well its clear that the Honda Dealer network doesn't know anything about the AT. I asked about service intervals/ cost and they didn't really know. They then added that it was a pain in the backside to work on that needed lots of specialist tools. Not really what a high-miler like myself wanted to hear. Also asked a few other questions which the respose was 'we don't know yet' Not what you wanna hear when trying to make a 10.5k decision. Guess this is research I will have to do myself (I will no doubt have a hunt around on here for the info)

I've also mentally got over the fact the AT has tubed tyres, which is an uncomfortable leap into the unknown for me (considering my milage). So I will have to do a bit of research into what sports touring tyres are available in tuped type in the AT sizes (again I will have to use this forum for your helpful advice once again).

I also have strong reservations the tank range will be as impressive as Honda make out. Anything less than a 200 mile range will be a pain for me meaning a daily fuel stop

Lastly I think the forks felt a tiny tiny bit soft under braking, but this is very minimal and I'm sure this can be dialled out with a little bit of adjusting.

So all in all I love the bike (apart from the above niggles/ concerns), just need to do some research and some sums to see if it adds up to being the right bike for me for my high milage needs. I hope my uneducated review is helpful to some, I have found the reviews that have gone previously very helpful.

I look forward to finding out more about the AT and hopefully what I find out (probably from you guys) will sway me into buying one (as i really did enjoy riding it)
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-12-2016, 06:27 PM
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Agreed.
The information to dealers has been quite surprising. Even when talking with them at the bike shows or follow up calls/e-mails, I know as much or more than they do. We have Powerhouse dealers in Canada, which my understanding was to follow a more 'Apple store/ computer-like' model of knowledgeable staff and support for repair, etc. I can't say I notice much difference and we went from three Honda dealers to one - not sure the strategy has turned out the way they intended. It they provide the information about their bikes and train the dealers they'd likely sell even more bikes, although I don't think Honda is suffering.

That being said, my local dealer has done the best they can answering questions, providing support and have been reliable for parts orders - so, kudos to Rocky Mountain Powerhouse, Calgary.

It sounds like you really liked the bike. Which is reassuring since here in North America it sounds like we'll be waiting a while longer.

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So what else? Well its clear that the Honda Dealer network doesn't know anything about the AT. I asked about service intervals/ cost and they didn't really know. They then added that it was a pain in the backside to work on that needed lots of specialist tools. Not really what a high-miler like myself wanted to hear. Also asked a few other questions which the respose was 'we don't know yet' Not what you wanna hear when trying to make a 10.5k decision. Guess this is research I will have to do myself (I will no doubt have a hunt around on here for the info)

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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-12-2016, 08:43 PM
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Just to clarify:

Dash does show miles per gallon, you have to tell it that you want it to display those units. Long press down select and set together to enter the dash's set up mode (if you're fortunate enough to find a machine where those buttons work!)

220+ miles is easily achievable - as is 55mpg. The display only shows mileage left / range once the final bar of the fuel gauge starts to flash. For me that's been anything from 45 miles to 38 miles dependant upon how I'm riding / the consumption at the time
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-13-2016, 03:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FMB View Post
So the negatives? Well there was the seat as mentioned, plus I couldn't get the display to read in MPG no matter how hard i tried. If it does indeed only read in Miles/Litre this is a massive oversight and would annoy me a fair bit over time. Same with the inability to see the distance till empty. Hopefully I was just being an idiot and couldn't work it... I do hope so. Minor i know, but its the little things
Yes you can

https://www.dropbox.com/s/isp3woltts...%20EN.pdf?dl=0

Few dealers are not interested enough ... to sell bikes ;-)
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-13-2016, 04:55 AM Thread Starter
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Awesome news, thanks all, that's a couple of negatives answered already

You're already proving more knowledgeable then the people trying to sell the bikes haha
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-13-2016, 05:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by S4MST3R View Post
Just to clarify:

Dash does show miles per gallon, you have to tell it that you want it to display those units. Long press down select and set together to enter the dash's set up mode (if you're fortunate enough to find a machine where those buttons work!)

220+ miles is easily achievable - as is 55mpg. The display only shows mileage left / range once the final bar of the fuel gauge starts to flash. For me that's been anything from 45 miles to 38 miles dependant upon how I'm riding / the consumption at the time
Did not know that just done mine took about 30 seconds to change.

Thanks
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-13-2016, 06:14 AM
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Dealers clearly have a lot to learn. We were talking about it on the FB page ( https://www.facebook.com/groups/431505460372379/ ) where most of us were happy with dealers. However, it's clear that many are pretty poor! Very frustrating.
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-13-2016, 06:54 AM
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They then added that it was a pain in the backside to work on that needed lots of specialist tools. Not really what a high-miler like myself wanted to hear.

Don't buy from that dealer! what are they on? it's a piece of piss to work on!
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-13-2016, 03:58 PM
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I Agree with S4MST3R on the Tank range 200 + will / is Easily achievable without much effort at All
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