Honda might be developing a new Africa Twin with a smaller capacity engine to compete in the lucrative 850cc segment of the Adventure Motorcycles. The brand currently has the litre-class Africa Twin for sale and the motorcycle is expected to get a larger displacement engine next year.
The new motorcycle rumoured to be under development could be called the CRF850L and is expected to follow the CRF1000L Africa Twin design philosophy. The CRF850L is expected to be developed to compete with the KTM 790 Adventure R, BMW Motorrad F850 GS and the Yamaha Tenere 700.
The current Honda CRF1000L Africa Twin for sale is powered by a 999.11cc, twin-cylinder, liquid-cooled, 4-stroke engine that produces 89 PS of power and 93.1 Nm of torque coupled to a 6-speed gearbox with an optional dual-clutch automatic. The chassis is a semi-double-cradle and the bike rides on a inverted telescopic front suspension and a Pro-Link suspension in the rear. The brakes are 310mm dual disc hydraulically operated on the front and a 256mm single disc on the rear. The brakes are equipped with a disengageable dual-channel ABS. The bike comes with 21-inch front and 18-inch rear wheel shod in 90/90 front and 150/70 rear tyres and spoked wheels. The Africa Twin has a 251mm ground clearance, 243 kg kerb weight and a fuel tank capacity of 18.8 litres. The seat height on the bike is adjustable and ranges from 820mm to 840mm.
The electronics package consists of riding modes, an off-road specific ‘G’ switch which provides half clutch control that allows the rider to respond using the throttle when negotiating complicated obstacles. The bike gets LED headlamps LED taillamps, LED turn indicators and a Rally style instrument console and more.
If Honda does make the CRF850L the bike is expected to be competitively priced and the CRF1000L will be upgraded to a larger engine to compete with the big boys of the adventure world. The CRF850L is expected to be showcased at the EICMA 2019 if the rumours turn out to be true.