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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all. Ever since the 2016 Africa Twin was introduced I've been thinking about buying one. I own a Honda XR650L and love it. Back in the day I rode Honda 2 stroke dirt bikes. I have a Honda generator. All of these products have served me very, very well. Few problems to speak of.

I have recently noticed there are a lot of brand new yet unsold Africa Twins at dealerships across the country at hugely discounted prices, which has me interested. Some are 2017 models, many 2018s, and 2019s as well. The 2017 bikes are listed at $8,999. That is a massive discount from the $13k+ msrp. I started to wonder if something is wrong with the earlier model years, and was reading around here that some of the engines will die at a stoplight, or even while riding. That is a dealbreaker for me. I can't imagine losing power on a mountain highway or something.

Can somebody tell me if there's an inherent flaw in this motorcycle, or if certain years are better than others and maybe something has been updated so as to stay away from the older bikes? It seems some people have never been able to remedy the problem even with the dealer getting involved. I actually prefer the older model black/red vs. the newer black or blue/white bikes. I'd like to purchase a 2017 or 2018 since the prices are great.

Lastly, if the bike is DCT equipped and that is turned off, is there any noticeable performance difference between that and the manual bike? I am thinking it would be nice to have the DCT feature, but not sure how much I'd use it. If anything it might be more desirable in the resale market as it's a more expensive bike, so it'd make sense to buy one if the price is the same. I haven't seen which model people prefer.

I guess I am just wanting a bit of reassurance that this is a solid bike that will last me for years and stay true to that Honda quality engineering, durability and reliability I've come to love and expect. Thank you.
 

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Welcome to the Forum Smiles.

Can't answer to your root concern since I only been riding the '19 DCT version since January. However, no hiccups with this configuration yet. If you are looking for brute road performance, I will speculate the DCT will beat the manual and do it in comfort. If speaking in regards to offroad, the manual may be the most versatile under the extreme situations. However, a Forum member should chime in who has actually owned and tested both DCT and non-DCT versions.

As with any bike Forum, Honda and otherwise, there are issues with some owners. However, I find Forums often attract members who are having issues or challenges and hence, the "appearance of issues" is one festering focus in a Forum. There is the vast ownership (Forum and non-Forum owners) who say nothing because there isn't anything wrong to discuss. Conversely, Forums also stage very positive remarks in regards to the bike because of overjoy and an abundance of enthusiasm and self-gratification. Some Forums just appear to be one big orgy and harvesting the truth can be difficult. Just something to keep in mind.
 

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Thanks for the reply. And yeah, I understand forums can be full of fanbois AND disgruntled owners. I tend to look for trends in terms of problems. The only two I found that really concerned me were 1) engine stalling and 2) front forks failing due to the interior finish. I am still trying to figure out which years are having trouble with each respective problem, and if there are resolutions, etc. I know the aftermarket catches up with motorcycles/vehicles to address flaws, etc., and so I am trying to understand what my options are. Like, if the 2017 model has both issues, but there is a fix and it costs X dollars, then I'd factor that into my price negotiations with the dealer, etc. There are many dealers who just want these bikes gone right now. MAKE OFFER.
 

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Thanks for the reply. And yeah, I understand forums can be full of fanbois AND disgruntled owners. I tend to look for trends in terms of problems. The only two I found that really concerned me were 1) engine stalling and 2) front forks failing due to the interior finish. I am still trying to figure out which years are having trouble with each respective problem, and if there are resolutions, etc. I know the aftermarket catches up with motorcycles/vehicles to address flaws, etc., and so I am trying to understand what my options are. Like, if the 2017 model has both issues, but there is a fix and it costs X dollars, then I'd factor that into my price negotiations with the dealer, etc. There are many dealers who just want these bikes gone right now. MAKE OFFER.
I believe the fork issue/interior coating is primarly 2016/17 models.

Fuel tank issue/particulate is only the ATAS in the 2018/19 models to the best of my knowledge and also appears to affect some 2020 models.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I believe the fork issue/interior coating is primarly 2016/17 models.

Fuel tank issue/particulate is only the ATAS in the 2018/19 models to the best of my knowledge and also appears to affect some 2020 models.
Thank you. I'm going to do a bit of reading on the tank particulate matter thing. I also came across a spoke and wheel corrosion problem that seems to be fairly common. Is there corrosion anywhere else? As long as the engine, frame, computer etc. are solid, I could deal with a re-spoke or some after market wheels and a front fork rebuild. As long as there aren't any major surprises and I can get an insane deal on the bike, I think I want to do it.
 

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Thanks for the reply. And yeah, I understand forums can be full of fanbois AND disgruntled owners. I tend to look for trends in terms of problems. The only two I found that really concerned me were 1) engine stalling and 2) front forks failing due to the interior finish. I am still trying to figure out which years are having trouble with each respective problem, and if there are resolutions, etc. I know the aftermarket catches up with motorcycles/vehicles to address flaws, etc., and so I am trying to understand what my options are. Like, if the 2017 model has both issues, but there is a fix and it costs X dollars, then I'd factor that into my price negotiations with the dealer, etc. There are many dealers who just want these bikes gone right now. MAKE OFFER.
(y)
 

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Thank you. I'm going to do a bit of reading on the tank particulate matter thing. I also came across a spoke and wheel corrosion problem that seems to be fairly common. Is there corrosion anywhere else? As long as the engine, frame, computer etc. are solid, I could deal with a re-spoke or some after market wheels and a front fork rebuild. As long as there aren't any major surprises and I can get an insane deal on the bike, I think I want to do it.
I have heard about the spoke corrosion issues. Neither my wife or I have had it on our bikes, a 2016 and now a 2019 ATAS, my wife a 2017. But living in Colorado things tend to get brittle and dry out rather than rust.

I never had any issues with the forks prior to trading in my 2016. She hasn't had any issues with the 2017. They were/are both problem free so far.

The 2019 ATAS on the other hand has been in twice to have the tank cleaned, fuel pump replaced and both fuel injectors replaced inside 6K miles. I am hoping that is now behind me.

There have been a few posts about bad welds and corrosion with the 2018/19 white frames. My welds look fine to me and again, Colorado and rust not really a big thing.

I spend money on UV blocker rather than ACF-50 :)

Sent from my SM-N975U1 using Tapatalk
 

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Bought a NOS 2017 DCT in September, last year, and a have been quite happy with it.

Retorqued the lower tripple clamps to 15nm from 25 to help with the fork wear issue that some experience. Will likely include rotating the fork tubes 90 deg into my oilchange routine, since it is pretty easy. Got it cheap enough that Ohlins forks may be in the future, if it turns into a real problem.

Like the DCT. Was skeptical at first; rented one for a day ride, and was still skeptical, but got a good deal on one that happened to be DCT, so pulled the trigger. After a little under 3,000 miles, I think I like the DCT better. Throttle control is everything. It will listen to your input from the throttle and make descisions about what gear it thinks you want. I find the S2 mode is pretty close to making the same decisions I would make with a manual. When off road, I still tend to put it in manual mode and shift with the trigger shifters on the left side grip.

Have had zero issues with stalling. Zero issues with corrosion. Bought the bike in Sept, but live in AZ, so no winter salt. Has crossed a few streams, though.

Thought about buying a couple of year old BMWGSA 1250, but for the price difference between a used GSA and a new Africa Twin, I decided I could add a few farkles and be happy with the twin. So far, so good.

Some things I added:

Heed bunker crash bars (upper and lower protection)
Bark Buster Storm grip crashbars
RAM Phone mount
Touratech Pannier mounts
Kreiga 032 bags
Scott chain oiler X series electronic
Camel Pro footpeg brace (known weakness in 2016/2017 model)
Camel Pro windshield brace
Camel Pro side stand (larger footprint for sand, maybe stronger.)
Apollo heated grips
Black Dog Cycle Works bash plate
Eastern Beaver PC 8 switched power supply
Eklipse power 12v & USB outlets and jump start connections
Shinko 805 rear, Shinko 705 front tires
Honda "Low" seat
Kaoko throttle lock for cruise control substitute

probably some more stuff that I am forgetting... Will likely add some more lights on front at a some point.

I would have to add it all up, but probably close to $3,000 in the aftermarket and a couple/three days of time. However, it does exactly what I want, now, so am happy to be all in for less than $12,000. Probably won't trade it for a long time.

Good luck with your decison. 2018 and newer are "ride by wire" so would make after market cruise control easier.
54878
 

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2018/19 years have stainless steel spokes, a different coating on the fork legs, and are throttle by wire which will allow an integrated electronic cruise control (McCruise) add-on if you would desire one as well. The 2018/19 models also have more settings for the Torque control as well and a different Screen/ gauge setup, in addition there is a lighter weight balancer assembly, slightly different mapping of the injection and a slightly changed intake tract to improve low end and mid-range. I would not be afraid to buy any model year AT however.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I wonder if the people who were/are complaining about the bike dying intermittently have the fuel tank debris problem but don't know it. I was reading a thread where that was the symptom for a guy who had his fuel tank and fuel pump replaced due to said debris.
 

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I wonder if the people who were/are complaining about the bike dying intermittently have the fuel tank debris problem but don't know it. I was reading a thread where that was the symptom for a guy who had his fuel tank and fuel pump replaced due to said debris.
Far as I know tank crap and filter plugging is ATAS related.
my 2017 coughs and dies on throttle blip at zero/low speed very infrequently.
 

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Thanks for the reply. And yeah, I understand forums can be full of fanbois AND disgruntled owners. I tend to look for trends in terms of problems. The only two I found that really concerned me were 1) engine stalling and 2) front forks failing due to the interior finish. I am still trying to figure out which years are having trouble with each respective problem, and if there are resolutions, etc. I know the aftermarket catches up with motorcycles/vehicles to address flaws, etc., and so I am trying to understand what my options are. Like, if the 2017 model has both issues, but there is a fix and it costs X dollars, then I'd factor that into my price negotiations with the dealer, etc. There are many dealers who just want these bikes gone right now. MAKE OFFER.
Buy it at $8999 and go ride it. Dealers won’t acknowledge fork issues. My 2017 had fork wear 2-years on but I’d never have known unless I had suspension service. Bought springs for my weight and re-valve with the service. Best $1.2K ever spent.
ya at idle it sometimes infrequently coughs and dies at a throttle blip. Never put me in difficulty.
buy cheap. Add USEFUL farkles. Ride.
 

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I too don't understand why there are so many leftovers. I had a 2016 DCT which was awesome. Decent on-road, but darn good off-road. As the original reviews said, it makes a decent rider a good rider offroad. I'm now on a 2019 ATAS. Love it. Handles much better than the 2016 on-road. Very stable with good feedback.... I've not had any issues with either and I ride 50/50... That DCT is great on steep offroad sections.
 

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There is no DCT "feature" that can be turned off. It shifts under electronic control, whether triggered by the ECU, or yourself by manual paddle switches on the left grip.
 

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I picked up my '17 as a leftover in late '18 at a steep discount... (not as good as they are now). Mines a manual as I was not interested in dct. I think honda just overestimated demand. I never expected to own one, but I remember watching the hype about their arrival for what seemed like years. So I wouldn't read too much into the availability of so many leftovers.

No issues with my bike. Yes it's undersprung which I expected but it's served me well for 20k miles now. I'm currently saving for a full suspension upgrade and I'll consult with cogent who's only 20 minutes away from me about what direction I should go.

Personally, I'm not into the gadgets and am more attracted to simplicity than overly complex things. My bike probably contains more tech than I would actually like.....****, give me analog clocks! My vote would be to grab a '16 or' 17 at a complete steal and have more than enough leftover for farkles and a trip to boot!
 

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There is no DCT "feature" that can be turned off. It shifts under electronic control, whether triggered by the ECU, or yourself by manual paddle switches on the left grip.
DC = dual clutch, one on each side of the multi-geared power pathway. This mechanism does what a mechanical shift does: disengage clutch, shift gear, reengage clutch. Speed matching is done automagically and the shift time is very fast. The trigger for this event can come from the smart (so called) ECU or from switches on the left hand grip.

DC technology has been driven and matured by the racing environment. Whenever the clutch is disengaged there is no power going to the roadway. Minimizing this no-power time has been instrumental in dropping lap times if even by a few 10's. This is a lifetime in sports like Formula One where 1/10 of a second can routinely cover the first 10 cars on the qualifying grid. Ferrari was one of the first to bring DCT to F1. They managed to get gear changes down to 20 milliseconds and thus reduced lap times by several 10ths. Every one in F1 uses DCT shifting today. You won't be competitive without it.

Want to control the DCT during performance events? Switch to manual and unlearn the classic left-hand, left foot drill for gear changes. Honda's DCT is pretty bulletproof until/unless there is a failure in the sensor or actuation systems.
 

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2017 picked up as a leftover in 2019 for 10K. No issues at all with the bike other than drowning it in a river a couple weeks ago. I think there are a couple reasons you see so many left overs at the dealers.
1. HP, Many riders think that they need 140+ HP on a bike and the AT just isn't there. I ride with KTM 1290's and BMW's and have no issue keeping up and in some cases leaving them behind but the old more is better sometimes prevails.
2. Harley syndrome! If you look at adventure bikes I think BMW is the Harley of adventure bikes, some, NOT ALL, buy them to be part of the club! They make very competent adventure bikes but you will also pay north of 20K to be part of this club.
3. Bells and whistles, some people like gadgets, I don't!
Just my .02
 

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I think the reason there are left overs is simply because they are in a class with shaft drive bikes full electronic gizmos with 8 usb chargers - magazines say its in last place due to that and most folks just can’t bring themselves to buy what comes in last place

I’ve had tigers, gs’s and a range of other adventure bikes - for me I wanted the lightest most offroad bike without all the electronic stuff - I just want a big dirtbike - been holding out to check out the Yamaha 7T but stumbled on a pandemic motivated seller with a ’17 that was bought new in Feb of 18 and only had 94.1 miles on it when I picked it up last week - less than 100 miles - AND... it came with the honda protection plan for 3 years more coverage for a no brainer price of 7500

its a Honda - nothing wrong with left overs - deals to be had
 

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Discussion Starter #19
There is no DCT "feature" that can be turned off. It shifts under electronic control, whether triggered by the ECU, or yourself by manual paddle switches on the left grip.
I do realize that now. The articles I read were very vague about it and I was thinking you could just deactivate it and have a regular system. That being said, from everything I've read I think I want it. I have been riding motorcycles since I was a young teenager over 35 years ago, so shifting is not something I struggle with, but I like the idea of having this feature on such a heavy bike when I'm off-road.

My XR650L is a pig of a bike, and this one will be over 150 lbs heavier. Being able to have both feet off the pegs in dicey conditions without needing to grab a gear seems too good to be true. And, I laughed out loud when guys said they can now have their Starbucks in one hand while riding. Considering this is perhaps the only adventure bike with this feature is a plus in my book. I like having different things. I'll still have 3 other bikes anyway.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
I too don't understand why there are so many leftovers. I had a 2016 DCT which was awesome. Decent on-road, but darn good off-road. As the original reviews said, it makes a decent rider a good rider offroad. I'm now on a 2019 ATAS. Love it. Handles much better than the 2016 on-road. Very stable with good feedback.... I've not had any issues with either and I ride 50/50... That DCT is great on steep offroad sections.
Did you get the DCT in the 2019 as well?
 
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