EICMA 2013: 2014 Honda CTX1300 Revealed

Big Red's V-4-powered CTX hybrid of cruiser and sport-tourer

Share this Article

Just in time for the EICMA show in Milan, Honda has officially revealed the 2014 CTX1300 to the world press, and it looks exactly like the spy photos we posted on October 21st. While a bit of the surprise has been spoiled, the increased anticipation that has built around the CTX should offset any corporate disappointment from the snafu. Now, with official Honda documents in hand, we can tell you all you need to know about the CTX1300.

Watch our first impressions video of the 2014 Honda CTX1300

The CTX1300 is the second bike in the CTX series (Comfort Technology eXperience). Although there are some styling differences from its 700cc sibling, the new CTX clearly springs from the same gene pool, bearing an unmistakable family resemblance. The fairing shape with its shorty windshield and the integrated hard bags reflect the evolution of the CTX.

Honda continues its efforts to grow the motorcycle market. The CTX1300 is the latest bike in the Comfort Technology eXperience line hoping to lure people with the call of the open road.

Honda continues its efforts to grow the motorcycle market. The CTX1300 is the latest bike in the Comfort Technology eXperience line hoping to lure people with the call of the open road.

The seat height is a low 29.1 inches that, when combined with the low CG (thanks, in part, to the under seat location of the 5.1 gallon tank), will make it easier for shorter or less experienced riders to maneuver the bike’s 724 lbs. at low speeds. The riding position is relaxed with the pulled-back handlebar giving the upper body an almost cruiserish stance, while the pegs place the feet in a slightly forward from standard position. Passenger accommodations look to be equally comfortable.

Visit the Honda CTX1300 Forum

A ST1300-derived V-4 engine powers the big CTX. Now, just because the engines share the same lineage, don’t expect many similarities. The two engines have very different job descriptions. The liquid-cooled 1261cc longitudinally mounted CTX mill is tuned for bottom-end and mid-range power. While the bore and stroke retain the ST’s 78mm x 66mm figures, new pistons lower compression to 10.0:1. The four valve per cylinder, DOHC nature of the engine remains, but we can assume that the valve overlap has been lessened to aid in the bottom end power. Honda’s goal is to deliver ample motivation from the moment the clutch is released.

Not just a ST1300 engine in prettier clothing. The CTX1300 mill underwent major changes in its repurposing for more relaxed touring.

Not just a ST1300 engine in prettier clothing. The CTX1300 mill underwent major changes in its repurposing for more relaxed touring.

In keeping with the easy-to-ride theme of the CTX700, the 1300′s linear power will give sporty performance in a variety of circumstances. Since the CTX is designed for light touring, the five-speed transmission’s taller gearing will keep the cadence low out on the highway.

Follow the rest of our 2013 EICMA show coverage

Despite the fact that almost half of the CTX700s sold have Honda’s Dual Clutch Transmission (DCT), the CTX1300 will not have a DCT option. Honda says this is simply a pricing decision, but it seems odd, given the popularity of DCT in the smaller CTX. Final drive is via a shaft.

Honda claims the CTX’s handling will be sporty and confidence inspiring. The 28.1-degree rake and 4.5 inches of trail should make the CTX stable, while the wide handlebar will give ample leverage for maneuvering. Suspension duties will be provided by an inverted 45mm fork and preload-adjustable twin shocks.

Sporty handling, hard bags, and an easygoing personality were the goals of the CTX1300.

Sporty handling, hard bags, and an easygoing personality were the goals of the CTX1300.

The power to slow the CTX1300 will be provided by two 310mm front discs with three piston calipers. The rear will wear a single 315mm disc and (we assume) a three piston caliper. The front brake can be applied alone while the rear will use Honda’s Combined Braking System which applies one piston on each of the front calipers when the rear brake is applied. ABS is an available option.

The long, low and beefy style of the CTX1300 is not an optical illusion created by the unique fairing. The wheelbase measures a long 64.5 in – almost six inches longer than the ST1300 that supplied the engine and just two inches shorter than the F6B version of the Gold Wing. The effect is augmented by a meaty 200/50R-17 rear tire and the 130/70R-18 front tire.

The headlights are Honda’s first LED powered units for brightness and durability and feature LED halo accent lighting for a premium style. The taillight and turn signals also use LEDs.

You can identify the Deluxe model by the blacked out wheels and frame components.

You can identify the Deluxe model by the blacked out wheels and frame components.

Two versions of the CTX1300 will be available. The standard model received all the above listed components with an ABS option. The CTX1300 Deluxe adds standard ABS, traction control and self-canceling turn signals. Included also is an audio package with both USB input and Bluetooth connectivity for remote control of your audio device. The visual distinction for the Deluxe comes from blacked out styling accents. The wheels and frame elements around the swingarm pivot are semi-gloss black instead of the base model’s silver.

As with any new Honda, a raft of accessories is slated for the big CTX. Highlights include: a tall windscreen, audio package (for the base model), LED fog lights, heated grips, centerstand, rear rack, trunk, and tons of chrome accent items.

Although the retail price has not been released, Honda says the CTX1300 will sticker around $17,000. Honda wants to position the CTX1300 as an entry into its premium bike lines, so the price must stay below the F6B’s $19,999 MSRP. No word was given for the Deluxe model. The color options will be Metallic Black, Gray Blue Metallic, Candy Red. Expect dealer availability in March 2014.

Even without the blurred faces of the spy shots, you should recognize this happy CTX1300 riding couple.

Even without the blurred faces of the spy shots, you should recognize this happy CTX1300 riding couple.

Free Insurance Quote

Enter your ZIP code below to get a free insurance quote.

Honda Dealer Price Quote

Get price quotes for Honda from local motorcycle dealers.

Honda Communities

Get Motorcycle.com in your Inbox
  • selarsson

    Awesome!!! Looks like a Goldwing that just went under a harvester.

    • Scott

      I’m thinking that Honda thought they could do the F6B treatment to the ST1300 and have a hit. Not likely to see many of these on the road.

  • Kevin

    This is in a word “DISAPPOINTING”. Dig into the parts bin, find some decent pieces, wrap it in new and (personal opinion) cheap looking plastic and try to cross market into different segments. Honda Power Sports appears to have decided that the American market isn’t worth any effort and not meritorious of R&D funding, and not just with motorcycles but across the board including outboard motors

    • Rick Vera

      I agree that Honda has a proclivity for letting things get old and then mildly restyle it or spin off another bike to try to extend the life of an already aging product. Honda’s “getting up there” Goldwing-derived bagger, F6B, is a prime example. However, that business model isn’t exclusive to the US market. The aging Honda NT700V and its “adventure” counterpart, the Transalp, are chugging along in the Euro market. The same goes for the long-in-tooth VFR800 and the “new” Crossrunner.

      Nonetheless, aside from sourcing an underutilized engine out of the ST1300, I don’t see much else from their parts bin. Furthermore, I salute Honda for not bowing to the Bar & Shield’s model of what a bagger “should be.” Rather than take Kawasaki and Star’s approach—emulate a successful formula as closely as possible—they reinterpreted the bagger concept using Honda’s own history and values to make it their own.

      In response to your cross marketing into different segments bit:
      Rigid definitions of motorcycle genres only matter for comparative purposes. Sometimes, we motorcycle enthusiasts (and even motor journalists) get swept up in picking apart every nuance of a bike and are ready to define a whole new sub-genre from those nit-pickings. If the handlebars are a bit back or the riding triangle a bit different or the windscreen a bit taller or the fairings more pronounced, now it’s a psuedo-luxury-mid-size-semi-sport-half-tour-derp-derp-derp. In short: it doesn’t matter. This thing is a full-size bagger. An exceptionally unique one, yes, but it doesn’t require any more derivation than that.

    • selarsson

      Could it be that they look at the US market, are puzzled by the success of cruisers and try to come up with something that targets that segment that but don’t quite get it? Though built in the same vein, the valkyrie was a much more appealing product and I still wonder what it would be to ride it.

  • DrDon

    A sad, sad day for Honda fans…
    It appears that they have abandoned the sport-touring marketplace all together. No replacement for the now aged ST1300, the new VFR 800 won’t be imported to the USA, and who knows what will happen to the VFR1200. (Frankly, I was hoping for a VFR1200 based sport tourer/replacement for the ST1300…)

    Instead, we get answers to questions seemingly nobody has asked. A CTX sport cruiser??

    And what’s the deal with automatics? You’d think Honda woud get the message that automatics are generally regarded as a joke that’s for scooters only. The Hawk 400 and CB750 Hondamatics of the late 70′s were dismal failures in the marketplace. The DN01 “aka – Do Not Order 1″ was grossly overpriced, and Yamaha’s automatic FJ is a sales dud as well.

    A bit of advice to the few folks out there that actually like those things… wait 6 months and they’ll be discounting them big-time to get them off the showroom floors, like they did with the Pacific Coast and the DN01.

    Honda engineering is first class, but their marketing guys in the USA are dim-witted fools.

    Thank God for Yamaha, Kawasaki and Suzuki.

    Sadly, Big Red is Dead

    • Keith Lamb

      Like it or not, the NC/CTX with automatic are selling fairly well. It’s not for me, but there’s nothing wrong with them marketing in that direction. And as I get a bit older, I suspect I’ll prefer an automatic so I can keep riding safely a few more years.
      I just wish they’d stop making motorcycles with fugly noses. This thing has the same weird front end they put on the CTX bikes and the DN01.

  • Name

    I’ve had my VFR800 for a long time and love it. I think this new bike looks neat. Pretty expensive though.

    • Kevin

      It is not almost impossible to buy a car with a manual these days, I can site many of them and not just econo-boxes. Most cars with sporting drive characteristics have them available, including luxury marks like Cadillac.

      • Kevin

        Econo boxes or expensive sport sedans. A $60K CTS-V isn’t a real option for a young family or driving teenagers and if I want to drive something sporting I’d ride… a bike.

  • DrDon

    I DID read the article, and yes, I know that this thing won’t be offered
    with an automatic… My comments were addressed re. Honda’s overall
    direction, not just at this tragedy of a design. Honda invests tons of
    engineering time and money into directions that are seemingly irrelevant
    to the vast majority of the motorcycling public. And yes, I know that
    these things are aimed at “new riders” not motorcycling veterans.
    Fine. But where are the VFR and ST1300 replacements for your
    established customers in America? In short, create new technology?
    Fine. But ignore your long established customer base at your own peril !

    • Name

      Fair enough. Honda hasn’t made anything that desperately makes me want to trade in my VFR. I might go try this one out though.

  • Eric

    Really Honda? Tuned for torque? When will these guys learn that those are on more epitaphs for dead bikes that any other phrase. I wanted to like the CTX.. but would only have considered it if it were up to the ST1300 specs.. Oh well.. Another year Honda refuses to take my consumer $$$

    • Rick Vera

      I’m holding out hope that Honda still has a direct ST1300 replacement in the pipeline and that this isn’t it. Personally, I think it’s neat. In a world of baggers where the biggest difference is if it’s a fork or frame mounted fairing, Honda took several leaps ahead of the staunch and stale stalwarts and made a bike that fits the general mold of a popular segment while still being uniquely Honda. I understand if you were looking for an ST1300 replacement, as I was, and disappointed by it if this indeed is what replaces it. However, I think it’s simply a new genre of bike for Honda and not replacing anything. With respect to that, I think they did a great job.

      Also, “tuned for torque” has been Harley’s unwritten mantra for their engines for the last thousand years it seems and they’re not dead. Even in the realm of Honda’s Goldwing, an +1800cc flat-fix only pumping out ~100hp is certainly tuned for torque and not high end horsepower, and again, those bikes aren’t dead either. With that, I’m afraid I have to disagree with your assessment on Honda’s choice to tune the ST1300-derived motor for this application.

    • Guest

      Also, “tuned for torque” has been Harley’s unwritten mantra for their engines for the last thousand years it seems and they’re not dead. Even in the realm of Honda’s Goldwing, an +1800cc flat-fix only pumping out ~100hp is certainly tuned for torque and not high end horsepower, and again, those bikes aren’t dead either. With that, I’m afraid I have to disagree with your assessment on Honda’s choice to tune the ST1300-derived motor for this application.

      • Auphliam

        Also, “tuned for torque” isn’t mentioned anywhere in the article.

        • WEB

          The liquid-cooled 1261cc longitudinally mounted CTX mill is tuned for bottom-end and mid-range power.

  • Name

    Actually, taking a second look its like my 2000 VFR and Guzzi V7 got mixed up in a transporter accident. Obviously I’m in the minority but it’s pretty neato. I actually would like a cruiser but the clearance and obligatory pirate outfit aren’t my style.

  • Auphliam

    Looks like alot of fun to me.

  • madskills

    At $17,000 it seems really expensive. I think it should around $13,500. At that price you can get a BMW 1200GS.

  • michaelfalke

    I love it! I hate the price though. Positioning it at about $14,500 would make this machine sell like hotcakes for the touring market. Now add a cruise control and sell it for $15,000 would make it THE bike for us old guys who love to tour on something lighter than a Wing.

    • Kevin

      Now add a tall accessory windshield and you getting close to an FJR in price if not capability!

  • Jonathan

    *I* wanted a new Pacific Coast. What is with these tiny little saddle bags???

  • Archie Dux

    They could call it the Uranium Wing because It’s not quite as heavy as a Gold Wing.

    • Rick Vera

      Oh yea? Gold’s molar mass is 197 grams per mole; uranium is 238 grams per mole. Read: uranium is heavier than gold. You might want to pull up a periodic table next time.

      • Archie Dux

        Uranium weighs 18,900 kilograms per cubic meter. Gold weighs 19,320 kilos per cubic meter. Gold atoms pack together more tightly, so a given volume of gold will weigh more that the same volume of uranium. I win, you lose. So, yeah.

        • Rick Vera

          Ha! Excellent! I suck. But yes, good job. I’ve no idea why I checked molar mass and not density.

  • http://ommag.blogspot.ca/ OMMAG

    728 lb. There’s the real problem. Although Honda stylists are out to lunch and have been for a long time, it is the product development and marketing gang who are really making a mess of the bikes.

  • desselle0010

    I like the looks but the price is unbelievable. The F6Bs are already going for less than this due to poor sales.