Marking the 30th anniversary of the original XRV650 Africa Twin, Honda announced some updates to the CRF1000L Africa Twin for 2018, along with a new, more off-road capable version called the Honda CRF1000L2 Africa Twin Adventure Sports.

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“Our CRF1000L Africa Twin has proven itself a worthy successor to the original and very much the ‘Go Anywhere’ machine that we set out to make,” says K. Morita, large project leader for the Adventure Sports. “Over the last two years it’s a motorcycle that’s covered millions of kilometers, and we have received plentiful feedback from owners. For 2018, with the Africa Twin Adventure Sports we have used the revised CRF1000L as a starting point and added everything the long-distance rider needs to get the very most out of any adventure.”

The 2018 Honda Africa Twin Adventure Sports comes in a Tricolore paint scheme inspired by the original XRV650 Africa Twin’s colors.

The 2018 Honda Africa Twin Adventure Sports adds a larger 6.3-gallon fuel tank (compared to the regular Africa Twin’s 5-gallon tank), which Honda claims is sufficient for a range of 310 miles. The larger tank requires a wider fairing which, combined with the taller windscreen, gives Adventure Sports riders more wind protection. Other upgrades over the base model include longer-travel suspension, crash bars, a thicker sump guard and heated grips as standard equipment.

For 2018, Honda modified the Africa Twin’s airbox and lightened the balancer shaft, aiming for improved mid-range performance. The exhaust system was also revised, with a 2-1 downpipe now flowing gas through two catalysts (instead of one), which allows for a smaller muffler that now houses two chambers instead of three. Honda also replaced the battery with a lithium-ion cell, resulting in a 5.1-pound weight reduction.

A new throttle-by-wire system offers four modes: Tour, Urban and Gravel presets, along with a user-defined mode. These preset modes offer various combinations between power delivery, engine braking and the Honda Selectable Torque Control. The previous Africa Twin offered a three-level HSTC; for 2018, the Africa Twin receives a 7-level HSTC (the system can also be turned off).

For better off-road use, both the base Africa Twin and the Adventure Sports receive new, wider footpegs, beefier steel mounting plates, and revised pillion footpeg mounts to create more room for the rider’s feet when standing. Honda also angled the instrument panels differently to improve visibility when standing on the footpegs.

The Adventure Sports’ 45mm Showa upside-down fork has 9.9 inches of stroke and 8.8 inches of axle travel (compared to 9.1 inches stroke and 8.0 inches of axle travel on the regular Africa Twin).  The Africa Twin Adventure Sports’ rear shock offers 9.4 inches of rear wheel travel (8.7 inches on the Africa Twin) from 4.0 inches of stroke (the Africa Twin’s shock has 3.7 inches of stroke).

The longer-travel suspension also means a taller seat height, with the Adventure Sports’ saddle at a lofty 36.2 inches (though it is adjustable to a slightly more manageable 35.4 inches). The Adventure Sports version is also about 29 pounds heavier than the regular Africa Twin, claiming a curb weight of 535.7 pounds with manual transmission or 557.8 pounds with DCT.

The 2018 Honda Africa Twin and 2018 Honda Africa Twin Adventure Sports will arrive in U.S. dealerships next summer; pricing remains to be determined.

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  • Old MOron

    Hmm, early reports indicated the latest AT would be “more off-road capable.”
    I guess they meant the added crash protection rather than, say, lighter weight.
    Oh well, it’s not different than any of the big ADV bikes.
    Bring on the MOronic shootout!

  • HazardtoMyself

    So does the new one still come from the factory with street tires? The base press photos show street tires, yet the action shots show a more dual sport tire.

    It’s like Honda knows the majority will be making Starbucks runs so they give it street tires. Yet by showing more of an off road tire in the action shots they acknowledge that the stock tires are less than ideal for off roading.
    Maybe tire type should be an option?

    • Johnny Blue

      How about a new version of Africa Twin, with one sided swingarm, and a lefty fork like the MTBs, those with only one fork leg, so the wheel changes become really a 10 minutes deal. Then they can sell the bikes with two sets of wheels. One set with street tires and the other one with off-road tires… :))

    • Gabriel Owens

      The description said tube type which automatically makes me think offroady.

  • Junker

    Is it about time to call the decline of the ADV trend? I mean, once Honda finally goes all-in you gotta figure the end is near. Like when your barber gets interested in the stock market It’s time to sell.

  • Alaskan18724

    Okay. This is a retro of a different color. Or am I the only one old enough to have coveted the original Africa Twin? Discuss amongst yourselves.


    Honda is moving in the right direction. Good.

  • Shlomi

    36.2 inch seat hight, 30 lbs more ~ 540 lbs🙁, are those ADV meant for giants aliens? Who can possibly ride those things off road? Last time I checked giant millennial don’t buy motorcycles.

    • Alaskan18724

      There aren’t any giant millennials. Huh. First I’ve really noticed that. Millennials average 5’6” and 135 pounds. Not the target audience for this beast.

  • Gabriel Owens

    310 mile range but no cruise control. With all that suspension travel this would be a good soft touring bike, no?

  • Alaskan18724

    The tricolor paint scheme doesn’t hurt the eyes. Harkens back to the original Interceptor. Be still my heart.

  • freeflyer

    Honda would have done better with only two versions. Both versions with more fuel capacity,better windscreen and a cruise control.One version with spoke wheels and the other with cast wheels . What they’ve done now is a confusing exercise for a limited market, Don’t like the paint job either.

  • Patriot159

    Too big and heavy for me but DANG that’s a nice bike!

  • swaan

    I am sad that long distance adventure bikes have become so heavy 🙁