Honda Africa Twin Forum banner
  • Hey everyone! Enter your ride HERE to be a part of July's Ride of the Month Challenge! Theme: Drop it like it's hot!
1 - 12 of 12 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
218 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm moving to the LA area this summer and likely won't go through the trouble of importing my EU 2016 AT :(
Much to my surprise, I really like Honda DCT and feel the pros outweigh the cons, especially when riding in traffic is a reality.
During my time in Europe, many of my local freeways see cagers cruising at 100(160kph). I find the AT cruises comfortably closer to 90mph and I missed my sport bikes with longer gears in this situation.
Maybe I'm wrong but it feels strange to spend extended periods so close to redline after so much time on my sport bikes with a 13k limit.
Also I am not sure a big, heavy, expensive bike such as the AT is really want I want to go off road with beyond light duty that the VFR could likely also handle.
So if I don't plan to really use the off road ability of the AT for fear of crashing and the VFR is a little better on long trips, maybe the larger bike would more closely suit my needs.
Maybe some riders in the LA area can weigh in on their experiences.
I believe the VFR has tubeless wheels, not to start a discussion, but something I want.
Weight isn't an issue if mostly on road.
Better two up suspension on VFR
Higher cost, but I'm okay with that.
I do still own a sport bike, but the Honda would be my commuting and primary bike.
I'll get a light weight dual sport later for crashing off road.

Don't misunderstand me, I really love my Twin, it's a great compromise.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
65 Posts
Hi Niterunner,

I've had both - currently the AT.
The VFR was awesome, sad to see it go.
My issue was that, in my mid sixties, it was a big lump to move around.
Putting it into my garage, up a slight slope, was hard work.
I agree that I miss the tubeless tyres - looking to emulate that on the AT as funds allow.
Will cruise all day effortlessly well above legal limits - not that I ever did that. - AT won't comfortably.
Still wouldn't be able to pick it up by myself though but it does "feel" a lot lighter than the VFR.
In an ideal world I'd have both but the wife keeps wasting money on food and shoes.....
Z
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
119 Posts
I'm not sure you are going to find any highways around LA where you can cruise at 100 and keep your license at the same time.
I test rode the DCT version of the VFR1200x when I was shopping and really loved the feel of that engine. If I did mostly 2-up riding, or didn't need to do more than gravel or forest roads, it would be a strong contender.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
218 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks zarafah, I think I read your post about this on crosstourer forum.
mwmanual, good point about local speed limits, I guess in many ways the AT is just "fast enough" and perhaps I should endeavor to keep my license on such a bike. However I do plan a lot of two up riding and I've learned that I don't enjoy much more than fire roads on a shiny expensive toy like the AT and it's capability is always tempting me to try things that will eventually result in a grow man sobbing over broken plastic and bent steel. The AT was supposed to be a round the world bike and in many ways it is, but if I mostly want a bike that keeps going when the pavement ends there are other options that are more road worthy and I can save the gnarly stuff for a true bush basher.
Perhaps a secondary dual sport is the way to go if you have space or cash for two bikes.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
991 Posts
The VFR1200X is a terrific bike if you want to tour, ride mostly on road or light gravel, and want a lot more power. It's significantly better at touring and higher speed. You'd have plenty of power to do 100/160kph all day on that bike, just not as capable for trails or offroad by a long shot. The V4 motor is silky smooth, the DCT is terrific, and it's a fun bike to ride. That being said as an all-around adventure bike I'd take the AT any day.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
480 Posts
Does the VFR1200X have cruise control yet, I can't see it on the Honda website for the bike spec but it may be there? I'm not sure I would want to tour without it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
114 Posts
Hello.. I’m in So.Cal
I too had to make the choice between the 2
Black is my 1st choice for bike color
VFR more towards my type of riding
But me being on this site should be answer enough... I have a rally red
I’ve had my AT for around 16 months.
Weekend adventurer
25k miles later and and don’t regret it one bit
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
285 Posts
The VFR1200X is a terrific bike if you want to tour, ride mostly on road or light gravel, and want a lot more power. It's significantly better at touring and higher speed. You'd have plenty of power to do 100/160kph all day on that bike, just not as capable for trails or offroad by a long shot. The V4 motor is silky smooth, the DCT is terrific, and it's a fun bike to ride. That being said as an all-around adventure bike I'd take the AT any day.
The VFR1200X is a fantastic road bike with some off road capabilities for the average bloke, I found it to be a tad top heavy. On marble gravel you have to watch the weight of this machine, especially 2 up. It does feel more out of control in these conditions. Where the AT is definitely more controllable & balanced which give you a more enjoyable ride on the dirt. I too was looking at the VFR1200x but, it is a question of what you are going to do with your bike. For me it came down to this: I wanted something round a 1000cc that could tour with luggage even 2 up, but be as agile as possible when you hit the dirt. Since handling goes hand in hand with safety it is one of the most important factors of a bike. The 1200x has more lovely power, but that is about the only thing compared to the AT. The AT is very much a all rounder, it does quite a lot for the price you pay for this type of bike. I must say the more you ride it in different conditions the more you understand it's vast capabilities. In my opinion Honda have done well here with the basics of this machine. It is strange that they do not incorporate cruise control on many of their bikes which could make long distance more comfortable. (the 1200x does not have cruise control) The cruise control factor would not sway me into buying another bike though..
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
218 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks again for the input guys.
AT is a true all rounder, but if you need to be honest about the type of riding you will realistically be doing the most or the bike may not be the best option much if the time. My biggest letdown wasn't so much the lack of a higher top cruising speed as much as how the bike handles two up. We know the soft suspension is an issue and maybe stiffer springs is the trick, but could the lighter weight also contribute to the two up feel on a bike this tall? Could heavier bikes have an advantage here for longer range two up riding?
I'm not a big or heavy guy by any means, nor is my lady friend, but the bike still feels a bit unsettled two up compared to my sport touring bike with its super stiff suspension. I will be buying a 250 or 400 for gnarly stuff with or without a trailer.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
285 Posts
when you are 2 up you need to give quite more preload on rear to make the bike more settled, make sure the front axle is seated properly for stable front. (Shocks tubes not sticking anywhere in travel..) The latter is extremely important for any bike!

I find the AT to be stable enough 2up when all these are correct on pavement & gravel..

Ps. Tyres also could make a difference if you have more towards the off road type on pavement.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
218 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
While preload can be increased for two up riding, I think most would agree the bike is really setup for solo lightweight riders and adjustment range is skewed away from heavier loads. Two up presents the most dangerous condition for emergency maneuvers if the bike is not properly loaded and I'd prefer to have the safest setup with this cargo aboard. Has anyone calculated a realistic max load with the available settings of the stock suspension?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10 Posts
Also living in southern California I can attest to the fact you don't want to riding at 100mph, or even 90. You will surely attract the attention of the local law enforcement. Even 80 is sketchy around here, but often acceptable.
 
1 - 12 of 12 Posts
Top