Africa Twin 17, 18, or just wait until 20

Discussion in 'Japanese polycylindered adventure bikes' started by Astronutz, Sep 23, 2019.

  1. twinrider

    twinrider Pass the catnip

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    OK, I was thinking you were focusing on touring. The AT is great at soaking up bumpy back roads. For commuting on busy city streets the DCT is a big labor saver (I had an DCT for 2 years and commuted through Tokyo daily). The downside of the DCT is the complex nature of the tech (mine stopped downshifting one day, stranding me) and the loss of a clutch lever that allows you to instantly cut the power when needed (u-turns, emergency stops, etc.). If you care about shift points while touring, you'll find the DCT has a tendency to shift when you don't want it to (for example, taking a hairpin turn in second and having it suddenly shift into first mid-turn). So I left mine in manual mode when doing fun riding. If I did was shopping again for an AT, I'd get a manual and install a Rekluse. This would also be a huge labor saver as you wouldn't need to operate the clutch at stops and in first gear, but you'd retain all the pluses of a clutch.

    I'd advise you to seriously consider getting the 2020 as it has tubeless wheels and the latest generation DCT apparently uses the new IMU to help determine shift points, so hopefully this will eliminate the unwanted midcorner shifts. No doubt the ABS and TC will also be greatly improved thanks to the new IMU.
    #81
  2. ZenPuddleJumper

    ZenPuddleJumper No more tickets, please.

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    I'd love the 2020, but my budget is whatever I get from selling the R12R... Yeah, I hadn't thought about the tubeless factor. I'm definitely doing some new mental calculations and considering mods on the R12R that might make up some of the difference between it and the AT. Firmer, taller seat, raise the bars. This recalls an '07 K12R I had years ago which I tried the same stuff to make it fit me better. I raised the bars, installed a huge windscren, but it still wasn't quite perfect. I think my pursuit of perfection gets me thrashing between different bikes too often. I need to learn to be satisfied with what I have.
    I really appreciate all the thoughtful comments. It definitely helps me see some of the flaws in my rationalizations.
    #82
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  3. MillennialFalcon

    MillennialFalcon Improvement starts with self

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    Let's just hope someone makes a fork conversion kit for the T7 so we can swap some real forks on it because I'm right there with ya as far as at least the (initial) Yamahas have minimal doo-dads so the "blank-est canvas" to start with. Swap in 48 mm forks and it's as close as most of will ever get to a Dakar bike. Plus it's engine is the next SV650 engine, i.e. the most worked-on bike engine ever. I wonder how difficult valve-checks and air filter maintenance will be? If those things are better than on the AT, then with real forks the T7 would be my AT replacement at least for solo riding.
    #83
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  4. Junglejeff1

    Junglejeff1 Long timer

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    I want to get another just for myself.I sold my yz smoker this last spring and hung up my race boots(I got hurt pretty bad last year on it at loose moose national).Really missing riding gnarly offroad.I compete in trials but does not give me the adrenaline rush I desire.Thinking ktm 500 and get into dual sport riding which is pretty popular in Michigan and Wisconsin.
    #84
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  5. XR Valdeez

    XR Valdeez Been here awhile Supporter

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    I may be a little late to this conversation, but what the hell....

    I can give you my opinion based on a recent ride of mine on my '17 AT manual clutch.

    I did a 23,000 mile ride to Ushuaia from Los Angeles. I had a Camel adv aux tank and my suspension was redone by Precision Concepts. I rode a fair amount of dirt over the trip from 0' altitude to almost 15,000'. The bike ran flawlessly the ENTIRE trip! LINK to the trip.

    I recently went to a Honda dealer and saw a '17 manual still on the floor. Don't hesitate, get one. You won't regret it. Ya, I've seen the '20 and it's cool and flashy, but I won't be getting one.

    Hope this helps!

    Esteban

    [​IMG]
    #85
  6. neanderthal

    neanderthal globeriding wannabe

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    I've done 70XXX miles on AT DCTs and only had two punctures in that time. I mostly commute and tour, so your riding seems similar to mine. It's a pain in the neck when it happens, but I can live with once every 35XXX miles.

    In my mind you get the black 2018 DCT and do what upgrades you desire. A throttle lock will be useful for the few long journeys you take. I've done 3 long journeys of ~5k miles on this most recent bike and didn't lament the lack of cruise once. But when i go, i'm destination focused, time limited, so i'm hauling ass and stopping for gas about every hour. You'll do that at 90- 100mph. (I also had a back injury from an accident in February and needed to stop frequently to stretch when I could feel the tension building.) Ride more sedately and 200 miles per tank is easily achievable.
    #86
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  7. MillennialFalcon

    MillennialFalcon Improvement starts with self

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    Definitely get a dual sport! The whole "I still need to ride home" will keep your behavior sane but you'll still get in plenty of trouble being on a thumper.
    #87
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  8. Kommando

    Kommando Long timer

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    LOL. A new 2020...Carbed, air/oil-cooled, cable clutch, cable throttle, cable speedo, cable enrichener, RSU damping-rod forks, no tach, incandescent lighting, tubed tires, 5spd, and a little over 50WHP/L at 367lb curb.

    What a versatile boonies bike!
    #88
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  9. FPGT72

    FPGT72 Long timer

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    I have not read the entire thread, but I can say I was having the same battle in my brain as you till last saturday when I bought a new 17 AT out the door for $10,147.
    I looked at Tigers....REALLY liked the tigers, they had a left over KTM 1090 for $12 something, the new 790, and I think sitting on a wood plank is better then the stock seat on the KTM...and the plastic gas tank looks so mother fucking stupid....way down by your feet.....no...I hate everything about the KTM from the rock hard seat, to the insect looking lights, to that stupid gas tank.

    I walked out the door around $7k....that is over SEVEN THOUSAND FUCKING DOLLARS under the Tiger price.....I can do a fuck ton to the AT for $7k....and that includes adding cruise on the fucking bike.

    I know my use for the bike....I will put around 5k a year on it driving back and forth to work and running into town.....I am not going to outer mongolia.....EVER. It is however going to be going down gravel every day it is rode to work, crappy pot hole county roads.....I want something that will take the bad roads better then the versys I had.....and it does.

    I have yet to hit 100 miles on the bike yet....just got the tags and stuff yesterday, and hopefully will take a short cruise tonight.....so far I like it quite a bit....more power then I will ever need...even 2 up....but my wife and I weigh about as much as one fat fuck coming in at ~ 250 for the both of us together....so no issue with power.
    #89
  10. smalls78

    smalls78 Been here awhile Supporter

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    This is fucking great

    I had a 2012 Tiger 800XC and loved it, and have really loved the new Tiger 800 as well. But cost of maintenance is high.
    #90
  11. Benjah

    Benjah Been here awhile

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    LOL, so true.
    #91
  12. neanderthal

    neanderthal globeriding wannabe

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    Way to make me feel like a fatty. Fully geared i'm probably +250lbs.
    #92
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  13. twinrider

    twinrider Pass the catnip

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    You're comparing apples and oranges. A current AT owner has a lot less incentive to buy the 2020 then someone who doesn't own an AT and would be buying new either way.
    #93
  14. Benjah

    Benjah Been here awhile

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    If I didn't already have a '16 I would absolutely take a 2020 over any previous year AT. They only get better with each new update and the 2020 was a hell of an update.
    #94
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  15. Greg the pole

    Greg the pole There are no stupid questions, only stupid people

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    The stock suspension will be like any yamaha stock suspension. The weakest link. See FZ09/FJ09/FZ07, and i've owned all three. The Tenere 1200 had decent out of the box suspesion, but the rear shock got tossed for a Yacugar, and forks eventually got a revalve.
    Yamaha valves are every 42k km. I did mine twice in the time I owned the tenere. Nothing really went wrong with that bike. T7 should be dead easy to work on. Not a fan of the look. But opinions and all that.
    #95
  16. Greg the pole

    Greg the pole There are no stupid questions, only stupid people

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    2017 manual, with 2 seasons, a shit ton of extras, and about 26k km. Besides enlessy fucking around with the suspension, the rest of the bike has been faultless, and a perfect fit for what I need it for.
    I read the spec sheet for the 2020, like the look of the standard model, but....like @MillennialFalcon pointed out, none of the redesigns address the issues that the AT has.
    Mainly the shit front fork design. It's still sitting on 45mm forks which look identical to the 16-17, 18-19 gens. Different color of legs, but the front end is the same.
    To me, they are putting lipstick on a pig.

    yes it has cc, a bit more power (power commander will sort that on older gens).
    The cat sticks out on the outside down pipe...should be good for skid plate designers.
    I personally don't give a rats ass about apple car play. I wouldn't touch it in a car or truck, not sure what the big deal is on a bike. Just me.
    Tubless tires on the ATAS...Outex in mine. It's prefectly fine.
    I want a good motor (all of them have it) and good reliable suspension, that I don't need to throw money at (none of them have that).

    To sum up..i'm not rushing off to get a 2020. Will ride this one for a few more years, and see what's out then, and more importantly look at how the T7s, 790R's are holding up.
    Unless I sort out the forks, and they can somehow magically transfer to a near new 2021 AT, that's the only way I'd get another Honda.
    #96
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  17. ukiboy

    ukiboy Been here awhile

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    My 2018 Africa Twin has been great. A year or so and 8000 miles and it’s a fantastic bike.
    I looked at the new model and see TFT screens, electric suspension etc and I think I’m getting old.
    It’s great having this tech on a bike if you want it and we are spoilt as a consumer having all this choice.
    It’ll no doubt make for a great biking experience and I considered trading my bike for a ‘20 model but instead went for a VFR800F. Last major update in 2014. Old school and older tech, I’m in my comfort zone with something like that. At 45 years old I feel more comfortable with a last generation bike
    #97
  18. smalls78

    smalls78 Been here awhile Supporter

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    My generalization: without seeing the new 2020 of course

    1) If you don't own an AT your options are to buy a new 2020 or find a deal on a previous generation and use saved money for upgrades, yet it will likely depreciate faster than you save. My opinion would be to wait for new 2020 if you can. Not saying buying a previous generation is a bad idea.

    2) If you own a well modded previous generation, I'd likely not buy a new 2020. I'm not sure the new 2020 would be worth the extra money..unless your previous generation has a ton of miles and you're ready to trade. Only caveat is cruise control in my opinion, which can be added aftermarket.

    As of now, I'm gonna wait.
    #98
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  19. smalls78

    smalls78 Been here awhile Supporter

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    I've always wondered to myself when I see previous generation bikes with low miles being sold...that they never had a chance. These bikes were designed to last a good while if taken care of. Look back on a 2016 YouTube review of an older generation bike and you'll likely see reviews of how awesome they are. Just because the new gen comes out, doesn't take away from the older gen being a good bike. This is why I ride a 2015 GSA...it's awesome and still "new".
    #99
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  20. playinatwork

    playinatwork Been here awhile

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    I don't see what makes the 2020 better than my 2018 ATAS.
    My 2018 bike has McCruise control and a 3M tubeless rear wheel. It also has more ground clearance and longer travel suspension than the 2020. I don't know what Apple car play is but I think I can do without it. I'd rather have the extra 1" of travel and clearance than 5% more power. More power always seem to get me into trouble anyway; kind of like more tequila.
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