After a series of teasers released on social media, the 2020 Honda Africa Twin CRF1100L has now been revealed, coming with a host of updates. Set to first enter the European market this year, the 2020 Africa Twin will come in two version as previously – the standard Africa Twin and the Africa Twin Adventure Sports.
While previously the standard Africa Twin was biased more towards road use with the Adventure Sports version meant for more rugged riding, the new standard CRF1100L is given more off-road capability while the Adventure Sports takes on the long distance touring and overlanding mantle.
Looking at the standard Africa Twin, the 2020 model comes with a more compact body with the biggest change happening in the LED headlights with DRLs that adjust to ambient lighting. The front windscreen is a mini unit with no adjustment and while the seat height stays the same at between 850 to 870 mm, the handlebars are now mounted 22.5 mm taller.
Aside from looks, engine capacity on the Africa Twin takes a bump from 998 cc to 1,084 cc, with the parallel-twin power plant now producing 100 hp at 7,500 rpm and 105 Nm of torque at 6,250 rpm, a 6 hp and 6 Nm increase. The engine has also lost a little weight, some 2.5 kg.
As previously, the Africa Twin is available with either a manual six-speed gearbox or Honda’s six-speed DCT automatic transmission. When using DCT, there are four gearbox modes – MT for full manual control of shifting by the rider, D for normal use, S for sports and G for off-road duty.
The DCT gearbox is connected to the inertial measurement unit (IMU), which operates in conjunction with the Africa Twin’s traction control, cornering ABS, wheelie control and rear wheel lift modules. This gives the Africa Twin four ride modes – Tour, Urban, Gravel dan Offroad – with two more user customisable modes.
Another big change to the Africa Twin is the instrument panel, which is now a full-colour, 6.5-inch TFT-LCD touchscreen unit. Aside from displaying all the necessary information the rider needs, the screen allows connection to Apple CarPlay, Bluetooth and navigation, while cruise control is standard.
Suspension for the standard Africa Twin uses a 45 mm diameter Showa front fork, fully-adjustable with 230 mm of travel while the rear end has a fully-adjustable monoshock with 220 mm of travel. Weight is claimed by Honda to be 226 kg with fuel carried in a 18.8 litre tank.
On the other hand, the Africa Twin Adventure Sports dials things up a notch with Showa EESA electronic suspension that comes with four modes, Soft, Mid, Hard and Offroad, plus one user customisable mode. However, for the rider on a budget, Honda sells the Adventure Sports in a variant that omits the Showa EESA, substituting it with the standard version’s adjustable suspension.
Other differences between the standard CRF1100L and the Adventure Sports is a 24.8-litre fuel tank, wider engine guards, aluminium rear rack and tubeless tyres and rims. The windscreen on the Adventure Sports is also taller and adjustable, supplemented with additional wind protection in the form of side vanes on the front cowl.
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