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Author [ES] [CA] [PL] [PT] [IT] [DE] [FR] [NL] [DK] [NO] [GR] [TR] Topic: My Crosstourer experience, Day 1  (Read 4676 times)

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Offline AIR4CE1

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My Crosstourer experience, Day 1
« on: April 21, 2012, 07:12:42 PM »
Before I give my opinion about the Crosstourer, allow me to give some background history. In October 2011, I bought a new KTM SuperDuke 990R. I loved the bike, beautiful craftmanship, and stunning LC8 motor. Unfortunately the KTM aftersales backup in South Africa (KTM SA  :178:) and an unscrupulous and dishonest KTM dealer (Alfie Cox Racing :133:) tainted the KTM ownership experience for me.

What I missed with the KTM SuperDuke, was it could not be used as a weekend cruising bike or tourer, it is just too "hardcore" and begged to be thrashed all the time. In January 2012, I bought a new Honda XL700V Transalp. The Transalp complimented my KTM SuperDuke perfectly, and I had the ideal 2-bike combination. The Transalp is a good bike (for the money) and happy to cruise all day at 120 - 130 km/hr comfortably. This is what it is designed for, and after an evolution of many years, Honda have perfected the Transalp. However, if you are on the freeway and need to accelerate out of the way or ahead of fast moving cars, the Transalp can be a little underpowered, and 160 - 170km/hr is strained.

Two months ago, I was approached my a guy who desperately wanted to buy my KTM SuperDuke, and I sold it at a huge financial loss. I then became frustrated with the Transalp as a single bike, and put my name down for both the Triumph Explorer and Honda Crosstourer.

On Thursday, I tested the Explorer and did not like it. On Thursday afternoon, the Crosstourer arrived. Honda South Africa dealers were not prepared to put a Crosstourer out as a demo bike, so no test rides are currently available. You order, you pay, you ride - in that order.

I paid for the Crosstourer, and yesterday (Friday) rode the bike the 8km from the dealer to my home. But it was midday traffic, through a busy area - and I did not feel comfortable or confident on my first short ride. I parked the Crosstourer, and at night came down and looked at the bike. I thought I had made a huge mistake, and came back upstairs and made a list of alternative bikes I should have considered. I did not sleep easily.

This morning at 07:00, I ventured out for a first proper ride, thinking I would do a trip of 50 - 70km. The bike just felt like an old glove, and I just could not stop riding. 150km down the road, I decided to turn back. On the return trip, I almost wanted to weep because this bike is so fantastic and exactly what I wanted from a fast powerful tourer.

I wanted to weep because I initially thought I had made another mistake by buying the Crosstourer and had set myself up for further disappointment and financial loss, as on the KTM. But this bike is stunning and truly peerless.

Initially the weight is noticeable, but once the bike is rolling this weight disappears. You only need to be cautious when entering driveways or petrol stations, or making low-speed manoeuvres on uneven ground.

This bike tracks beautifully on long sweeping bends on the freeways. 140 - 150km/hr is an all-day cruising speed. 160 - 170km/hr is still relaxed, and the bike feels like she is on rails. I saw an indicated 190 - 205km/hr and the bike was still balanced, running smooth, and pulling.

On my return trip, I travelled South along the sea front. Overtaking slower cars was an ease. The power and acceleration in 4th and 5th gears is endless and huge. The Crosstourer will frighten off many superbike riders in roll-on acceleration from 120 - 180km/hr.

After the first day, and 341km, I am overwhelmed and convinced.

The standard exhaust has a slight flutter when you blip the throttle from idle, but has a wonderful deep tone in the 3 - 4000 rpm range. I doubt if I will change the canister, and the original polished stainless steel exhaust looks stunning and complete. The original header pipes may look a little too thin.

I heard a slight drive-train whine in first gear, and the gear change between 1st and 2nd (up and down - manual gearbox) can be a little clunky. But I also heard this on a VFR1200 today, and my dealer said this is normal as the drive-train is designed to handle the torque of the 1200 V4.

The build quality is stunning, and the paint finish beautiful.

The Crosstourer is simply the best bike I have ever owned, and any tears shed today were simply because I did not have words adequate to express my absolute joy.
« Last Edit: April 22, 2012, 07:44:19 AM by AIR4CE1 »

Offline Doc

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Re: My Crosstourer experience, Day 1
« Reply #1 on: April 21, 2012, 07:21:48 PM »
 :460: ..no, excellent posting!

Now you know how I feel. Honda have built a gem! It's  :005:  good!

And that word 'peerless' has appeared again. Mmm...

...maybe I was wrong.  :084:
« Last Edit: April 21, 2012, 07:25:06 PM by Doc »

Offline ojo

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Re: My Crosstourer experience, Day 1
« Reply #2 on: April 21, 2012, 07:50:54 PM »
Congrats to your new CT  :460:  ...
... i could easy understand your "feelings" .... Crosstourer is such a joy to ride YAY  :305:

So you are able to drive fast down there in SA are ya  :062: so keep safe   :034:
Around the world and back ... driven Honda motorbikes all over Europe, Australia, NewZealand, Japan, Russia .....
my latest trip: http://www.austral.omania.ch/index.html

Offline Ralentino Vossi

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Re: My Crosstourer experience, Day 1
« Reply #3 on: April 21, 2012, 08:12:08 PM »
Sounds great AIR4CE1  :046:
congratulations
Iv only ridden the Dct for 55 miles road test and 10 miles on a manual bike but no what you mean
you just feel you want to take a month off work and rack in the miles  :305: :031:
hopefully mine will show up soon Im getting a bit fed up waiting
come on Honda UK get your act together :232:

Offline Doc

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Re: My Crosstourer experience, Day 1
« Reply #4 on: April 21, 2012, 08:13:54 PM »
*Originally Posted by ojo [+]
So you are able to drive fast down there in SA are ya  :062: so keep safe   :034:

I'm sure this information from the Internet is incorrect:

The general speed limit on South Africa's national highways, urban freeways and other major routes is 120km/h (75mph). On secondary (rural) roads it is 100km/h (60mph). In built-up areas it is usually 60km/h (35mph), unless otherwise indicated. Check the road signs.

 :007:

Offline jacob

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Re: My Crosstourer experience, Day 1
« Reply #5 on: April 22, 2012, 02:24:08 AM »
a great posting and you have written the words those of us that now have a CT are feeling ... it is a most pleasurable bike to ride, I am waiting for the rain to go away so I can get back again myself - congratulations on taking delivery and deciding to keep the CT
2012 VFR1200X CrossTourer - April 2012 - http://crosstourer.tumblr.com/

Offline AIR4CE1

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Re: My Crosstourer experience, Day 1
« Reply #6 on: April 22, 2012, 07:40:41 AM »
DOC,

You are correct regarding the legal speed limits in South Africa, so you need to be a little strategic.

In my area along the East Coast of KwaZulu-Natal there are a few fixed speed cameras, but we know the locations of most of these. And these cameras take photos of the front of a vehicle, not the rear.

Yesterday when I travelled 100+ kilometres North along the coast line, I was cruising at 140 - 150km and made a mental note of where traffic officials were hidding in the bushes with their speed timing devices. In fact, I was stopped by an officer doing 142km/hr, but with a little diplomacy, he let me off saying the speed was not too excessive.

With the knowledge of where the officers were hiding, the trip back South was just a little quicker :305:

Anyway, yesterday was more a test of the bike's abilities. My normal freeway / open road cruising speed is around 140km/hr - with buckets of diplomacy on standby.
« Last Edit: April 22, 2012, 07:47:43 AM by AIR4CE1 »

Offline Doc

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Re: My Crosstourer experience, Day 1
« Reply #7 on: April 22, 2012, 09:15:43 AM »
Sounds like Germany - except for the considerate cops!

I find the Crosstourer so easy to ride fast - you don't realize the speed you are travelling until you look down at the tacho.

A good speed over here is an indicated 120-130 (115-125 on the gps). Should you inadvertantly go too fast, up to 20 kph over the limit is a fine of €35 but no points.

Although there's no limit on the motorways, I don't use them except in the car - bikes are not meant to be ridden in straight lines.

Be safe  :031: