Rumor Check: Honda's Mini-Africa Twin Will Be The XL750 Transalp
Trademark filings confirm the return of a familiar name.
Back in May 2021, MO’s resident sleuth Dennis Chung took a dive into the rumor mill surrounding a possible mini-Africa Twin coming from Honda. Trademark filings for the name Transalp were filed in several markets around the world, including the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.
Considering the success of the Africa Twin, and the history of the Transalp name, it wasn’t completely out of reach to think a mini-Africa Twin was coming. Now Dennis has done it again, as he’s uncovered a trademark application filing from Honda Motor Corporation, dated August 12, 2022, for the name XL750 Transalp. This is the strongest indicator yet that such a model is coming, as the publication of said trademark occurred 10 days later.
Details about said XL750 Transalp are virtually nil at the moment, but if history is to repeat itself, then the XL750 Transalp will likely be a more street-biased ADV machine, leaving the heavy off-road lifting to the Africa Twin. That being said, back in the day the Transalp was still fairly capable off-road – and considering the current explosion in middleweight adventure bikes, maybe Honda will deem it necessary to give the Transalp more off-road chops to compete with the established players. From an engine standpoint, it seems more than reasonable to assume the 750 engine will no doubt be the same one powering Honda’s new Hornet, and all we know about that so far is that it’s a middleweight Twin.
The XL branding is a nod to previous Honda dual sports, but since that’s the case it also seems odd Honda hasn’t chosen to use any CRF branding – maybe a further delineation between the “Adventure Sports”-focused Africa Twin and the “Rally Touring” nature of the Transalp.
Looking back at concept imagery from the Hornet’s initial revealing at EICMA 2021, we’re reminded that the parallel-Twin engine will likely be a Unicam design, again shared with the XL750. The Hornet will probably be shown first, because of the previous concept and teasers, but Transalp fans likely won’t have to wait much longer after that. It could even come as soon as Intermot or EICMA this year, but next year wouldn’t be a surprise for the XL750.
As always, we’ll report back once more details emerge.
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More by Troy Siahaan