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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Travelled to the Vancouver Motorcycle Show this past weekend.
Planned after seeing and checking out the fit and finish on a real bike, to return home, go to local dealer and place order.

Sadly, I can't do that.

The bike looked great in it's Red Rally colours, the silver was boring.

They had the Rally up on a bunch of fake rocks like an exhibit.
Was nice to check out components at face-level.

After I fought through the throngs of guys crowding the Honda rep, it was my turn to sit on it.

Felt great. Everything was cool. I transitioned to attack position....and instantly I found the problem: the pegs are wide apart, and the lower tank area is too narrow. You can't squeeze the bike with your legs!

KTM was only 50 feet away, I went over and mounted the 1190R, and did this repeatedly back and forth with the Honda. Without a doubt, they have seriously screwed up the geometry with the AT.

The KTM, you stand up, and your legs, (especially inner knees) rest directly on the downward extensions of the seat....they were aware of this...and obviously it informs the KTM seat design.

With the AT...your knees have to knock-in another 2 inches...and they grind right into the bottom of the gas tank...the seat does not extend downwards creating knee pads.

You would literally have to make knee pads attached to the tank/frame of the AT to ride it effectively standing up. In fact...because of the frame...it actually digs into the inner knees uncomfortably.

So not only does it hurt...but the angle in which your knees must be pushed to make contact with the frame and tank is just unacceptably bad!

I can't believe it.

Before any detractors claim it's my legs that are the problem...I am a highly active off-road rider. I spend 10 hours+ a week transitioning up and down constantly off-road. I am 5' 11", 190lbs. with no physical limitations to speak of.

Very disappointed with this aspect of the AT. It's almost a dealbreaker for me.

If I bought one this year, I would literally have to make some kind of pads to be able to control the bike standing up at speed properly.
 

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Good job gman. You're doubtless a more serious off-roader than many and your observations may or may not be a problem for all. At least by sounding the alert, each will be able to judge that for themselves. I appreciate that you made the effort to compare, then re-compare the fit of the AT to KTM and made your own determination of a problem that could affect others.

By contrast I recall remarks by one of the moto-journalists at the AT launch describing how he tried to position himself on the bike to look good for the Honda photographers along the dirt portion of the route. I had the feeling he would have done the same on a motorized wheelchair. Not what I consider to be the most helpful type of review.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I wouldn't even have bothered to make the post if I hadn't sat on 20+ bikes that day
and found this to be a major design flaw with the AT.

I made a 500 mile round trip to sit on the Africa Twin and examine it in person, evaluating the cockpit was the only priority for the entire excursion...I couldn't wait until June delivery.

It's not a matter of 'preference' either...the peg-width distance in relation to the knee 'grip zone' width is a number of inches wider. It just doesn't add up ergonomically.

Just calling it for what it is.

You can expect more people to make this realization as they ride the bike.
 

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Hey Gman, just joined, so forgive me for jumping in mid-stream here...

You observation is a really interesting one. Thanks for passing that info on, it's good to know. That being said, in all my years off-roading, I never liked to have my knees in constant contact with the tank, since the up & down action of the bike would cause a lot of friction on the inside of my knees. When going slow (or on my road bike), that's one thing, but as soon as pace picks up in the dirt, the only 4 contact points I want are two hands and two feet. I guess we all have our own riding style, and what works for one person might not work for another.

It's too bad that the AT configuration isn't a good fit for you - it seems like it'll be a solid bike in so many other respects. Ironically, the fact that the tank is narrow and out of the way of my legs/knees is a bonus for a guy w/my riding style. FWIW, the big tank on my GS Adventure would sometimes rub my inner knees once I got a hustle on, and that was always an annoyance for me.

Again, thanks for passing your observations on... I'm just sorry you had to go so many miles for that kind of let down! :frown2:
 

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There is nothing wrong with the AT geometry, it's your riding style.

As mentioned above you shouldn't be gripping any part of the bike with your knee's when standing off-road, never. I can't even begin to imagine doing this, you'd become a cripple very quickly. I've raced both off-road and on-road motorcycles, did hare scrambles for many years. When riding off-road you should be nimble and as relaxed as possible, not tense or gripping any part of a bike with anything but your hands. Standing lowers the centre of mass and at the same time you should be flexible to maintain the balance of the bike, moving your legs with the bike - which I don't see how you can do if you are gripping with your knee's.
 

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Agreed , I also want the bike to be able to "move around " when I am standing , a skinny bike is the best for technical stuff , fat bikes don't allow that . Most reviews really compliment the erg's and lay out of the AT. Suppose like mentioned "different riding styles "? skinny is good for bikes ... and girls . hehe
 

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I've read no reviews complaining of your problems, nor did I find it as you describe either.......so it must be your legs despite your protestations. >:)
It's possible reviews haven't have it long enough to pick up on things like that, maybe instead something to be picked up in long term reviews.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Marsbeetle, 2Sun: you wouldn't keep up with me fellahs, if you weren't gripping the bike with your legs at some point.

This post has officially devolved into amateur territory.

Nobody can tell me that extreme off-road riding and MX does not involve squeezing the bike with your legs from time to time.

I ride a lot, I ride extreme terrain and I ride endurance.

You use your legs to keep blood in your arms and give your arms very short periods of rest and blood replenishment.

The AT's area from the upper calf to the lowest thigh is not well thought-out.

I challenge anyone here to hop on an 1190 for 5 seconds...and feel the difference.

I am totally a brand-agnostic bike owner, and I WANT to buy and ride the AT.

I won't even entertain any other ADV bike. They are all too big and bulky.

The AT is the next generation...this forum is useless if there are just a bunch of Honda flag wavers on here. Where is the critical analysis?

You do not grip a bike with your knee caps...but when you are riding off road...the terrain dictates all manners of unrehearsed movement....it's a ballet.

Imagine banging the unprotected insides of your knees into irregular, sharp edged areas repeatedly for days on end....just think about it.

Unbelievable responses on this.
 

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Hi!

The bike has no problem, in fact, the driving position is the best.

The position is quite good, sitting and standing, I have 1.86 and just had to buy some risers.

The only problem I found on the bike duringthe 1200 km I have done, are the passenger footpegs, which in offroad can knock the legs. As for me a design error, but the only one I've found so far.

Besides the bike is guaranteed to be great fun to drive on and offroad.

The only bike that I can compare the @ is guaranteed the 950/990.
 

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Marsbeetle, 2Sun: you wouldn't keep up with me fellahs, if you weren't gripping the bike with your legs at some point.

This post has officially devolved into amateur territory.

Nobody can tell me that extreme off-road riding and MX does not involve squeezing the bike with your legs from time to time.

I ride a lot, I ride extreme terrain and I ride endurance.

You use your legs to keep blood in your arms and give your arms very short periods of rest and blood replenishment.

The AT's area from the upper calf to the lowest thigh is not well thought-out.

I challenge anyone here to hop on an 1190 for 5 seconds...and feel the difference.

I am totally a brand-agnostic bike owner, and I WANT to buy and ride the AT.

I won't even entertain any other ADV bike. They are all too big and bulky.

The AT is the next generation...this forum is useless if there are just a bunch of Honda flag wavers on here. Where is the critical analysis?

You do not grip a bike with your knee caps...but when you are riding off road...the terrain dictates all manners of unrehearsed movement....it's a ballet.

Imagine banging the unprotected insides of your knees into irregular, sharp edged areas repeatedly for days on end....just think about it.

Unbelievable responses on this.
Hi gman

I understand your point of view, and your concern for the use you intend to give to the bike, but each one has a different style of riding, I also do a lot of offroad, and felt no problem with the position and i control the bike with my legs also and feel comfortable standing. I had a 950 SE and remember me similar position (standing)

I do not minimize your concern and comment is just my opinion so far :)

you need to do one test ride to confirm.
 

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It doesn't bother me much either way. I am NOT a hardcore off road rider... I am a street rider who wants to go to places where the paved roads end on my travels. I've got next to no inclination to learn how to be a good off road rider, I just want a bike that makes it easy enough for me that I don't drop it every five minutes. The DCT ease of use off road is the big selling point of the bike for me therefore... KTMs don't have that.

I think for those who are hardcore off road riders, it sounds like it comes down to personal preference to me. Until gman and the others actually race off road, it's all just forum talk. Hopefully he enjoys his KTM (saw one up close the other day, lots of accessories added to it, stunning looking bike!) and we all enjoy our ATs :)
 

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gman does bring up some valid points, but as others have said, it does depend upon your riding style and possibly your height. Not having sat on one yet, I have no opinion either way. So far, there have not been many detailed offroad reviews other than the press launch, so it is difficult to gauge how many people agree with gman. However, he is the first person to mention it, so may not be a common problem. Obviously an issue for you gman and that is all that really counts. I thank you for bringing it to our attention.
 

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Its crazy to think that everyone's riding style, size and preference is the same. I love the fact there is another adventure option out there, and its a honda! It only pushes the others to make better bikes for us all.

One thing I have to chime in on is that I have spent A LOT of time searching the AT for many months now, and there are only a few negative comments out there. That has to say a lot for a "basically" first year build. To me its about making a bike that can do everything, for a wide range of people, and with Honda reliability. That has me sold. Realistically, how many out there are going to be SERIOUS off road riding the AT? 5%?? Honda knows this, look at the tires.......
 

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For you, not for me. It was fine for me with the TT position. I'm not a pro or an expert but for me it was perfect. I did more than 100 km in forest trail and I was very happy with it.

Different style or differt needs perhaps.

I don't take the Africa for an enduro bike.

I remember my trail training and here is the position for a trail

https://youtu.be/j0j234coyeg?t=36s

This kind of forest trail

 

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@gman - You can't expect to make a post on a forum saying there is a problem with the geometry of a new motorcycle after just sitting or standing on it and expect people to agree with you. Surely ?

There are literally a hundred reviews around the web now by both journalists and owners of this motorcycle alike and none, not a single one, have I read where it was mentioned that there is a problem with the geometry. Also, not all those who have written these reviews are amateur off-roaders, a lot have probably been riding for longer than both you and me.

I agree 100% that you have a problem with the AT - you've made this abundantly clear. But I do not agree that there is a problem with the AT itself in this regard.

Of all the motorcycles I've owned over the years I've also had one or two that I could simply not get comfortable with. My R1 was one such motorcycle. The geometry on the R1 in relation to my body size was simply not a match, it just didn't feel right at all. I've owned more than a dozen bikes, including motocross bikes and enduro's. I will tell you right now that none of those bikes had a geometry problem, only my body in relation to their ergonomics was a problem for me on some.

With regards to your riding style - you were talking specifically about standing and gripping with your knee's. Here again, it is most likely the size and shape of your body that may dictate how you ride. What I said previously can be read in many articles from instructors and professional riders around the web. If you don't believe me, go check for yourself.

Good luck in finding something suitable to your liking.
 

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Maybe these panels were installed to reduce this effect being discussed here? They do have some depth to them. The pegs do appear to be positioned further from the frame than those of my no-longer-with-me WR400F. The C14 pegs are really close, but the Concours is a wide bike anyway.





 

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Maybe these panels were installed to reduce this effect being discussed here?
Those look like frame protectors. A common problem with off-road motorcycles is people's boots rubbing the paint off the frame, those panels are designed to prevent that from happening. Nice that they are included as many are bought after-market.
 
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