In 1988, Honda introduced the world to its first Africa Twin. Ever since then, the Africa Twin has maintained a stalwart following of dedicated fans. Today, the new incarnation is the feature laden, lightweight and powerful 2020 Africa Twin DCT. If you’re a fan of high quality, Honda performance bikes, then don’t miss out on our look into this rugged, road hungry beast. What we have here, is an adventure bike designed to take you into the hills of home, or on a long and relaxing road trip with a few of your buddies. Reliable, tough and well-built, the 2020 Honda Africa Twin, DCT has what it takes to become your new, best road buddy.
1. Just What is the DCT Model?
The Africa Twin line now has four versions. These include the standard, base model, also available with DCT, and the Adventure Sports ES model, in both DCT and standard. Since we’re currently concerned with the base, standard model with the DCT, just what is it? DCT was developed by Honda bikes, for Honda bikes, and stands for Dual Clutch Transmission, and uses modes D, S and N. The “D” mode is for basic street driving and commuting. The “S” mode is great for adventures over varied terrain, and the “N” mode simply stands for neutral. The DCT uses two automatic clutches along with a dual mainshaft so you get a smooth ride, and has been specifically modified for increased off-road use.
2. New 6.5 inch TFT Touchscreen Display
The 2020 Honda Africa Twin DCT offers the rider an intuitive, all color touchscreen display, with controls conveniently placed on the left handlebar. Connectivity is the word here, as you can hook up your smartphone. For instance, if you have an iPhone, then you’re able to use Apple CarPlay, as well as Apple maps. The resolution of the TFT display is quite good, and images show up as sharp as they do on your smartphone. Another option is for you to go “hands free” via Bluetooth connectivity, if you so choose.
3. Some Great Electronic Aids for Riders
The 2020 Africa Twin DCT now comes with a six-axis Bosch IMU, or Inertial Measuring Unit, and this means that riders now get access to some nifty and advanced electronics designed to make their ride more pleasurable. These electronic riding aids let the rider decide the amount of traction control or braking power, all via the large color TFT touchscreen. Other rider aids include Honda’s very own Selectable Torque Control. This keeps an eye out for wheel spinning, thus keeping the rubber to the road. Next is the Wheelie Control, Cornering ABS settings, and finally the four pre-set rider modes with two customizable options.
4. Updated Frame for Superior Handling
The 2020 version of the Honda Africa DCT, now has an updated steel, semi double cradle frame. The rear subframe material has been changed to a light weight aluminum, and comes with a lighter aluminum swingarm, based on Honda’s CRF 450 R motocross bike. Not only that the subframe can be easily removed when necessary. In addition, they also shaved 40 mm off the subframe, giving the 2020 Honda Africa Twin DCT a more streamlined look. In the end, adding the lighter aluminum swingarm seemed to work out fine, as the bike was pared down to a 524 pound curb weight for the DCT version, 501 for the manual. Thus, the bike ends up with a weight loss of 11 pounds and 10 percent power to weight ratio gain.
5. 1084cc Liquid Cooled Unicam Parallel Twin Engine
Out with the old, 998cc engine, and in with the new. The 2020 Honda Africa Twin DCT now sports a 1084cc liquid cooled, Unicam parallel twin engine. This 101 hp engine is more than enough to take you on a nice, back country adventure tour. The Unicam valvetrain works to decrease unnecessary weight on the bike. A 7 percent boost in horse power is helped along by Honda’s improved exhaust and intake systems. All in all it provides you with 77 foot-pounds of torque.
6. The 2020 Honda Africa Twin DCT has a Rich History in Racing
Did you know that the ancestor of the modern day, 2020 Honda Africa Twin DCT won the famous Paris Dakar Rally four times? It all started with the Africa Twin XRV650 in 1988 where it proved itself a hot ticket for the Honda Corporation in both race wins and production bike sales. Next up was the Africa Twin XRV750, designed with a Tripmaster computer it again proved a production bike favorite with the public. Sadly the Africa Twin was discontinued in 2003, and loyal fans had to wait out a drought of 12 years before production resumed in 2015. There’s much more, but suffice it to say that the bike you ride today, was born of greatness. Indeed, a history worth boasting about.
7. P-Pad has Been Updated
P-pad in motorcycle language refers to the passenger seat, except this is a small passenger seat. P-pads are generally placed on or near the rear fender and again, not very big. In the 2020 Honda Africa Twin DCT, the designers decided to give the p-pad a small shoulder, just enough to allow the rider to shift their weight when riding over terrain. They also gave the p-pad a grab strap for the passenger, and folding passenger foot pegs. In the end, it still looks a bit uncomfortable, especially for long riders.
8. The 2020 Honda Africa Twin DCT Handles Adventure Touring Better than Before
The folks at Honda wanted to make sure that this bike really could take on the competition in the off-road adventure touring department. As previously mentioned, they streamlined the frame, taking off around 11 pounds of metal. Next, Honda looked at the drivers seat and designed to pare it down by 1.57 inches without sacrificing comfort, as a narrower seat makes for easier rider movement. As for comfort, Honda made slight alterations in the contour of the seat. Finally, they added a shorter windscreen and dual LED running lights to improve night time visibility.
9. The 2020 Honda Africa Twin Adventure Sports Edition Also has a DCT Option
While we’ve been going over the base, standard Africa Twin model, know that it’s sibling, the Honda Africa Twin Adventure Sports model also comes with the DCT option. For some, the only reason to choose the DCT for the Adventure model are for those who will spend more time on the road, than off it. While both versions of the Africa Twin DCT are basically mirror versions, there are differences, such as the Showa Electronic Suspension, EERA, which is only available on the Adventure Sports model.
10. The 2020 Africa Twin DCT Comes with Some Great Accessories
Honda thought of all you Honda Twin owners who simply love to customize your new bikes. That being the case, they’ve put together some functional accessories to add to your riding pleasure. These accessories include a top case for storage, panniers, a polycarbonate windscreen, a low seat for those who ride best hunkered down, and an easy to carry portable motorcycle cover. There are also additional add-ons if you elect to build your own Africa Twin at your dealership.