Honda finally readies itself to launch Africa twin in the country by June 2017. It is expected to reach India as CKD units. The launch that was supposed to happen earlier was delayed due to an earthquake near the company facility in Hamamatsu, Japan which produced the assembly kits. The price for this adventure tourer is not yet officially known but it is expected to be anywhere between Rs.16-18 lakh. However, it is still unclear whether India might receive both manual and Automatic Dual Clutch transmission variant or any of these.
All new Africa Twin will be powered by a 998cc, liquid cooled, parallel twin engine developed using a four stroke Unicam 8-valve head design. This motor will produce 94bhp worth power and 98Nm of torque. The global markets feature Africa twin as both 6-speed manual and 6-speed DCT transmission variants while confusion still prevails on the Indian spec model.
The DCT variant comes with three riding modes- D for normal, S that gets three stages as S1,S2 and S3 for sports, G for off-road. There is also an incline detection system that helps to balance and ride at any inclination by shifting gears accordingly. The ground clearance is at 250mm, thanks to the short height of the engine under the hood. This was achieved as a result of the careful planning done to accommodate the water pump and clutch case together.
Built on a steel semi double cradle frame, the Africa twin matches agility, stability and balance in equal measures. Suspension is taken care of by adjustable Showa inverted forks at the front with four-piston brake calipers and rear Showa forks with hydraulic preload adjustment. Fuel tank capacity is massive at 18.8 litres enough to ride long range upto 400kms. The tyres are 90/90-21 and 150/70-18 tubes which is best suited for off-roads compared to alloy wheels.
In terms of safety, the Africa twin features Honda Selectable Torque Control that comes in three modes. It is easy for the rider, especially on off-roads to switch on the ABS (Anti-lock Braking System) to apply to the rear wheels.
Africa Twin will be competing against the likes of Triumph Tiger, Kawasaki Versys 1000 and the Ducati Multistrada after the launch.