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ADV NewsNew 2020 Honda Africa Twin Confirmed With Sweeping Changes

New 2020 Honda Africa Twin Confirmed With Sweeping Changes

 Newly-released photos of Honda's 2020 Africa Twin reveal major revisions.

Published on 09.11.2019

So it’s true. There is indeed a new Honda CRF1100L Africa Twin and Africa Twin Adventure Sports headed our way for 2020, and thanks to newly-published vehicle certification filings discovered by Motorcycle.com we know several new, key details.

The documents filed confirm the existing 998cc mill has received a capacity bump from 998cc to 1084cc, which will increase horsepower from 94 to 101 @ 7500 rpm. And while not yet confirmed, peak torque is expected to rise from 73 to 79 ft-lbs @ 6000 rpm. This measured expansion is one way Honda is getting ahead of looming EU 5 and 6 emissions restrictions, which would potentially decrease output in the existing engine by roughly as much as is being gained here. Don’t be surprised to see similar compensatory bumps in displacement across brands.

Close inspection of the low-resolution black-and-white photos filed with the documents reveal many additional changes to the Africa Twin, including upgrades to its chassis, electronics suite, and bodywork.

Photos filed show the 2020 Honda Africa Twin Adventure Sports will feature cross-spoked tubeless-tires and what appears to be cornering lights.

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A generously-sized TFT display will now summon all of the bike’s readouts, while its electronic assets are accessed via the high-resolution touchscreen. The display is nestled atop a more streamlined fairing, which incorporates intake channels that appear smaller and lower than those on the previous design. The AT’s distinctive twin headlights look to be slightly larger and instead of bulging, both are flush to the fairing.

There is also a new (presumably still steel) frame and detachable subframe for the Africa Twin that houses an unchanged drivetrain, still available in both models as either standard or DCT. Beefier plating protects the new twin’s bottom end and reworked exhaust.

Both models show a TFT screen as well as a redesigned tail section, frame and hand guards.

Moreover, the windscreen on the standard model is quite a bit shorter than on the original, giving it a more-aggressive off-road look. In turn, the shield on the AS version is much larger by comparison. Both models are equipped with redesigned hand guards that appear more substantial than the flimsy issue on the original ATs.

By all accounts the standard Africa Twin’s fuel tank is larger for 2020. It was assumed it would utilize the more voluminous 6.4-gallon tank already in use on the Adventure model, but in the photos it appears the Adventure Sports tank is still larger.  

The standard model features a more off-road oriented short windscreen and a larger tank.

Out back, the tail section of the bike has been trimmed, and while the standard version features tidier grab rails, the AS edition wears a more substantial tail rack than previous.

The AS version also receives cross-spoke tubeless wheels and a deeper, more comfortable-looking seat than the tall, flat original design. We can’t tell for sure, but there might be cornering lights beneath the headlamps on this pricier edition, though any stock crash guards are notably missing, at least in these design certification photos.

We don’t believe the 2020 engine will feature the DOHC system slated to replace the AT’s existing Unicam, or the revolutionary Direct Fuel Injection Honda has patented to manage the 1100cc mill more efficiently. We do expect Honda, with its involvement in highly-sophisticated automobile racing technology, to lead the motorcycle industry with this feature and that we’ll see the more precise DI on the Africa Twin no later than 2022.

The next level of reveal for the 2020 Africa Twin and Africa Twin Adventure Sports is likely to be the Tokyo Motor Show in late October. We’ll keep you up on all the details here.

Photos: Motorcycle.com

Author: Jamie Elvidge

Jamie has been a motorcycle journalist for more than 30 years, testing the entire range of bikes for the major print magazines and specializing in adventure-travel related stories. To date she’s written and supplied photography for articles describing what it’s like to ride in all 50 states and 43 foreign countries, receiving two Lowell Thomas Society of American Travel Writer’s Awards along the way. Her most-challenging adventure yet has been riding in the 2018 GS Trophy in Mongolia as Team AusAmerica’s embedded journalist.

Author: Jamie Elvidge
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14 thoughts on “New 2020 Honda Africa Twin Confirmed With Sweeping Changes

  1. Now why doesn’t Yamaha think like that ! Reconfigure the 1200 Tenere, drop 2k of the retail price and be in the same as Honda in sales. This one could be a winner for Honda as long as there is gas to put in the tank !
    Hoping the price tag doesn’t put it into the born into privilege category.

    • This looks ands sounds great. These stupid euro standards are systematically making these bikes heavier(cant blame Honda really) Its great that they are molding to the market, tft dash, tubeless tires larger fuel tanks. It will take alot of voodoo metal working magic to keep these bikes from touching 570lbs(dct model)
      I cant see Honda jacking up there value anywheres near Bmw proportions, its not there angle and nor is Yamahas.
      Funny thing about emissions standards…..they kinda go to the shits once a guy slams an aftermarket exhaust and adds a fuel controller. Guys mess around with there trucks up north here all the time, jacked up and noisy, alter collision contact points and safety.. so really, euro emission standards like “rules” are only good for those that decide to follow them.

    • Most adventures include highways, so yeah….. Cruise control matters. Its a big reason i chose my Triumph Tiger 800XCX and sold my F800GD

      • When I was shopping for a mid-size ADV bike, I looked at both the BMW G800gs and the Triumph Tiger 800 XCx. The Tiger had cruise and the G800 did not. That was a deciding point for me.Who ever you are, you will spend a great deal of time on pavement. The added cost and weight (if any) doesn’t seem relevant to the overall competency of the motorcycle, so why not include cruise control? My purchase was made in 2017 The BMW G850gs now offers cruise, and I wonder what took so long?

    • Who doesn’t ride highways? Even on an ADV motorcycle? What could possibly be a downside to including a cruise control feature? I can’t understand any resistance to this.

      • Theres not a downside to CC aside from costs. I think its a bit shallow to dismiss a motorcycle as a whole when there are aftermarket cruise controls out there to do what you want. For $577US you can add it to the AT from MC Cruise control.
        I think Hondas doing a great job with the AT and look forward to real world review when it comes out.

    • Who doesn’t ride highways on any road legal bike? I’m not a great fan of cruise control, but have to admit that long distance trips often include long highway stretches and some might find cruise control useful in those situations.

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  5. No cruise control nixes the deal for me. I’ve traveled Arctic to Anarctic and cruise control is a must have. Gravel is great, but between all those gravel roads is a whole lot of pavement.