2020 Honda CRF1100L Africa Twin Preview, Prices, and Video
When Honda re-introduced the Africa Twin to its lineup for 2016, the bike shook up the adventure touring world, not only because the motorcycle took inspiration from the original NXR750 Africa Twin that claimed four-straight victories in the Paris-Dakar Rally of the late 1980s, but also because it was available with Honda’s automatic Dual Clutch Transmission (DCT).Honda updated the Africa Twin for 2018, offering the more-ADV ready CRF1000L2 Adventure Sports models alongside the base models. The bikes returned in 2019 as a carryover with new color schemes, but there are many changes for 2020.
Meet the Honda CRF1100L Africa Twin. As the name says, the engine grows to 1100cc. Honda has also updated the electronics, and once again offers the Adventure Sports ES version.Following are the fast facts: 1. The water-cooled, overhead-cam, parallel-twin engine receives an 86cc displacement increase, growing from 998cc to 1084cc. Honda says it has improved intake and exhaust systems, resulting in a horsepower boost of approximately six percent. The new bike makes 101 horsepower, up seven horsepower over the previous generation. It also puts out 77 ft/lbs of torque.2. The 2020 Honda CRF1100L Africa Twin’s frame is updated for optimized for handling. The rear subframe is now aluminum and detachable, plus the CRF450R-style aluminum swingarm is lighter and more rigid.3. Due to the use of a six-axis IMU, the new CRF1100L Africa Twin has more advanced electronic aids. Functions include wheelie control, cornering ABS, rear-lift control, DCT cornering detection, and cornering lights.4. The new Adventure Sports ES model now features electronic ride-height suspension. The Adventure Sports ES model is also updated with tubeless wheels, heated grips, accessory socket, larger skid plate, aluminum rear rack, and a larger 6.5-gallon tank over the base model’s five-gallon tank.5. Although power has increased, the ADV motorcycle weighs less than the outgoing 2019 model. The base CRF1100L weighs 498 pounds, and the DCT model tips the scales at 520 pounds. The weight savings are due to a lighter engine and transmission.6. The seat also got lower—from 34.3 to 33.4 inches. A low seat is available at 32.5 inches, and a taller one up to 35.2 inches. 7. The standard CRF1100L has a renewed focus on off-road use, with a shorter, fixed windscreen and a 5.0-gallon fuel tank.8. There are now four versions of the Africa Twin: the base CRF1100L in both standard and DCT; and the CRF1100L Adventure Sports ES in both standard and DCT.9. The 2020 versions have a new 6.5-inch TFT color touchscreen display that is compatible with Apple CarPlay. The touchscreen display is optimized for ease of use when changing the electronic adjustments. 10. Cruise control is now standard on all Africa Twin versions.11. Wheel sizes are still dirt-oriented. The 2020 Africa Twin has a 21-inch front and 18-inch rear, both wire-spoked wheels. The Adventure Sports ES uses tubeless tires.12. Except for the addition of cornering ABS, the braking system remains unchanged. The 2020 CRF1100L arrives with dual 310mm front discs squeezed by four-piston Nissin calipers, and a single 256mm disc out back squeezed by a single-piston caliper.13. With the updates come a significant price increase:
2020 CRF1100L Manual: $14,399 (up $800 over 2019 model)
2020 CRF1100L DCT: $15,199 (up $800)
2020 CRF1100L Adventure Sports ES Manual: $17,199 (up $2100)
2020 CRF1100L Adventure Sports ES DCT: $17,799 (up $1900)
14. For 2020, two color options are available: Pearl Glare White/Blue, and Matte Metallic Black. 15. The 2020 Honda CRF1100L Africa Twin will be available in dealerships beginning in March 2020.
KTM RC 390 and Gordon McCall of Quail Motorcycle Gathering
byMotos and Friends by Ultimate Motorcycle
Hello and welcome once again to Ultimate Motorcycling’s weekly Podcast—Motos and Friends.
This week’s Podcast is brought to you by Yamaha motorcycles. Discover how the YZF-R7 provides the perfect balance of rider comfort and true supersport performance by checking it out at YamahaMotorsports.com, or see it for yourself at your local dealer.
This week features Senior Editor Nic de Sena’s impressions of the new KTM RC 390. The entry-level KTM has always been an impressive motorcycle that has sold extremely well, however the factory has now taken the bike to another level, with top-spec features that are typically found on flagship machines. Clearly KTM has realized that even smaller engined machines should have high spec suspension, brakes and electronics packages. Nic tells us how well the new RC 390 is equipped, and what he thought of riding the smaller displacement rocket.
In the second segment I chat with automotive and motorcycle industry icon, Gordon McCall. Gordon is the Director of Motorsports at the Quail Lodge & Golf Club in Carmel Valley, California.
This weekend of Saturday May 14th sees the annual Quail Motorcycle Gathering re-start after its Covid-forced hiatus, and having attended every one of the previous Motorcycle Gatherings, personally I’m very happy that the event is back on the schedule. Gordon chats about the event and a little of what’s happening this year. It’s a great event and if you feel like a trip to the gorgeous Quail Lodge in Carmel Valley, you’ll get to meet Gordon, Roland Sands, and of course a large number of stunning motorcycles too.
From all of us at Ultimate Motorcycling, we hope you enjoy this episode!