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Africa Twin 'Sport. It's a hoot.


Gerontious
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far too early for a proper review.. that can come later, this is just a 'first impressions'.


Dry this afternoon after a morning of rain and so I took the bike out for a bimble.. mainly backroads up to near Lincoln. ODO is now at 125 miles.

 

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Im really only now getting to grips with the DCT gearbox and.. its completely bonkers. Pull away and there is no lurch. no forward 'bump'.. it just starts to move and rapidly climbs the gears. Go up a hill and it drops a gear or two, depending on how steep. coming down.. so far it seems to prefer dropping to third.. but the hills I went down weren't exactly steep. I have to resist the urge to 'rev' the bike.. as that probably wont end well in traffic. but.. its just a button push to put it into neutral. Its very strange seeing '1' on the instruments at a standstill and the bike not moving.


Only once.. again, did i reach for the clutch lever.. and grab nothing.


Ive had it in 'Tour' mode so everything was a bit 'lazy' and relaxed. Im going to leave trying the 'sport' modes until I'm past the first service and the end of this 'pretend' running-in period. To be honest i dont feel even slightly limited by this.. as it is, the bike is far more 'eager' than the GS.


The DCT means its all about the riding with no thinking about the gears at all, but its easy enough to change gear on the fly without a pause. The switch for 'down' is where the left indicator button was on the GS - thumb push, the 'up' switch behind.. so index finger for that.


I made one schoolboy error.. when I pulled over, I tried the handbrake... and then pulled away with it still on. the bike moved.. but there was obviously a problem. a red light with P being the giveaway. The pad is smooth so, no harm done.


Before i left home I put the seat in its low position.. more comfortable for me until i get lower foot-pegs. The tank is a very different shape to the GS so is taking a bit of getting used to to find the sweet-spot for my knees. I also put some grip puppies on and the grips feel much more natural. The heated grips are strictly 'alright' nothing to write home about. warm rather than hot. Not something Im worried about as I never used to use the ones on the GS.. which are far hotter. It was 10c so not exactly freezing out.


Im going to stick the knee-pads on tomorrow.. if I can. Not starting work until 7:30pm... at the moment Monday is looking good for another bimble.. I fancy a ride over to the coast.. or perhaps to the Ponderosa for lunch. At this rate i should be able to get the first 600 mile service over with before Christmas. The dealer told me it would cost £130 oil and both filters.


Suspension is just great.. I've not touched it so far, the bike just glides over speed humps and pot holes as though they're not there. I'm used to a fairly firm ride.. so perhaps some tweaking to be done in the future.


its an odd hybrid bike.... on the one had this 'throttle by wire' gizmo.. so not mechanical, its like the CanBus on a modern GS. But the rest of the electrics has fuses. so.. mainly a proper 'old school' bike in that sense. with some 21st century 'additions'. would you call them upgrades? I dunno. No mechanical 'wire' cables at all to snap. which is a good thing in my book. Ive had a throttle cable snap and it wasn't easy riding the bike. Ive also had something similar with the Clutch. but with this bike those concerns are a thing of the past. All LEDs aside from.. oddly, the license plate, which has a bulb. don't ask me why they did that.


My bag arrived today and its a beautiful fit, lengthways it covers the pillion seat to the rack. 49 litres of storage which is all I will need next for next year. Unless I do manage to get the proper panniers. Im not going to bother with a top case.


I only noticed it today.. due to the bit of sunshine, the white 'sparkles' it looks just like the way it would if covered in frost. And the blues, change shade.. becoming metallic depending on the light.


So far.. pretty chuffed... that rare thing for me, a bike that fits me, instead of forcing myself to fit the bike. I wore boots today that are impossible with the GS, impossible to squeeze my toes under the gear lever. I mean.

 

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I'll be taking her out again tomorrow as its due to be dry until about 2pm

Edited by Gerontious
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Thankyou.


I have just looked at the Honda website and the price has increased in the past few days by £505 for 2019 models - now £13999.. this increase seems to be with immediate effect. Also the 0% offers are set to end on 3rd of January.


so, the price I paid: £11607 seems even more of a good deal. my discount has gone up to £2,392. had I waited for a 2019.


The 2019 comes in the same colour, but without the 30th anniversary badge on the tank. There is also a new 'silver' colour. which to me looks a little like Urban Camo. All other specs remain the same.


I prefer the tricolour.

 

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Sunday at work and of course it was a blue sky day.. with just a bit of cloud in the Afternoon.


Today.. of course the forecast was for rain right across Derbyshire from the M1 to the M6. I ummed and aahed and then at 10am thought 'sod it- lets go'


added another 221 miles.. so now at 346. and did a few shires. 6 of them. I was going to stop at the Welsh border and turn around. but kept on going. It really did rain all the way across to the M6.


Very few bikes out and about, No Bikes at all at the Pondy except this one. Grey... and 7c explains that, looked like it had recently rained.. I didn't hang about, it was after 2pm. And i wanted to be back on the A50 before dark.

 

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More than half way to the first service now.. had it in sport mode, the lowest level and the exhaust made noises Im just not used to. I think I should take it back and complain.


I felt almost hooligan-like (ish)


People looked. :shock:

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Nice bike :thumb: why did you want an auto one ?

 

Because Ive owned a BMW for the best part of 21 years and wanted a change. a complete change and something totally different. I also have spent far too many years with the nagging worry at the back of my mind about 'what if'. what if the clutch dies on me.. its the best part of £600 for a new one (6hrs labour + parts, adds up). Ive also had the clutch fail because the actuator arm snapped (in middle-of-nowhere Austria) and earlier this year the throttle cable snapped. I got tired very quickly of wire cables.


The DCT has a clutch that will last.. probably forever. because its absolutely nothing like a traditional clutch. no friction plates. The bike has NO wire cables to snap. Its an Auto.. but with full manual override. just all changes are "clutch-less" - no lever to pull. up and down - finger and thumb. I've always thought that was a really wacky idea.


Ive been keeping my eye on these DCT bikes since they first appeared 9 years ago.. reading about how crude they were to begin with, but have improved. Now up to the 3rd generation box and its a peach. slick, smooth, seamless. I can have fun using the gears.. dropping a gear if I want to.. or need to. or just forget about the gears and enjoy the ride. every change smooth as silk. Go from neutral to 1st and clutch (2) is ready and waiting for me to change to second and as soon as I do that clutch (1) is already waiting with 3rd gear and so it goes on.


riding in auto mode and I cant even tell when it changes gear. its rapid off the line.... open the throttle and it leaps away 1st, 2nd, 3rd in the blink of an eye. fast.


Ive been hearing things like this and wanted to try it for myself. Ive never owned a Honda. Just 1 Kwak. 5 Trumpets and 4 Beemers.


I have liked these new Africa Twins.. after watching ride reports on YT by a chap who has done a 'proper' round the world on one in 2016.


And.. only this year did Honda do the one thing I have been waiting for.. they finally got rid of the throttle cable. The bike is now "Ride by Wire". something BMW have had for about 14 years.


And i fancied a brand new bike.. instead of yet another second hander.

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