During the press event, held in late June, I also got a first ride on an eighth model, which was under embargo until August 1 and will be available in “late winter” as a 2023 model. The embargo has come and gone, so I can now talk about the 800 ADVentura. (When I asked one of CFMOTO USA’s reps how to pronounce the name, he said “add-ventura” rather than “A-D-V-entura,” which is a mouthful.)
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Given American tastes for large motorcycles and the popularity of adventure bikes, the 800 ADVentura is the CFMOTO model that’s most likely to resonate with U.S. buyers. As described in my 2022 lineup review, CFMOTO established a partnership with KTM back in 2014, and soon after began producing KTM 200/390 Dukes for the Chinese market. In 2018, CFMOTO and KTM broke ground on a joint venture production facility in China.
Given the cozy relationship between CFMOTO and KTM, it’s no surprise that CFMOTO’s top-of-the-line model is powered by a liquid-cooled, DOHC, 8-valve 799cc parallel-Twin borrowed from the previous-generation KTM 790 Adventure, which makes a claimed 95 hp and 57 lb-ft of torque. Equipped with throttle-by-wire, it has two ride modes (Sport and Rain) and cruise control.
The 800 ADVentura has a chromoly-steel frame, fully adjustable KYB suspension (front/rear travel is 6.3/5.9 inches), 19-inch front and 17-inch rear wheels, and J. Juan triple-disc brakes with cornering ABS. It has a 5-gallon fuel tank, full LED lighting, and a 7-inch TFT display.
Two versions of the 800 ADVentura will be offered, an “S” (Street) model with cast wheels and a “T” (Terrain or Touring, you decide) model with spoked wheels. The T is also equipped with a quickshifter, a tire-pressure monitoring system, a steering damper, a skid plate, crash bars, handguards, and a centerstand. Claimed curb weight is 496 lb for the S and 509 lb for the T.
There was only one bike at the launch, an 800 ADVentura T, and it was hogged by everyone. I managed to get in a few laps, just enough to realize its potential. The 800 ADVentura has the wide, flat seat and comfortably upright seating position with generous legroom that we’ve come to expect from adventure bikes, and is part of what makes them so popular (unless you are short of inseam, of course).
When you’re on a closed circuit, as we were on the Minnesota Highway Safety & Research Center’s 1.2-mile, 6-turn paved road course with a one-third-mile front straight, it’s only natural to give the whip to whatever you’re riding. With the 800 ADV-T in Sport mode, I pinned the throttle and felt it surge forward with gusto.
I was the 509-lb gorilla on a track shared with wee Papios and playful 300s, so I used the 800’s wide handlebar to give a wide berth to other bikes and slice my way through the two chicanes made of traffic cones. Cornering ABS gave me the confident to dive deep into turns and trail brake to scrub off speed, and the J. Juan binders did my bidding without complaint. The 800 ADV-T handled with confidence and poise, and I was sorely tempted to exit the track and hit the road.
At the end of the day, after indulging in the gluttonous BBQ buffet laid out by Big Mo Cason (who drove all the way from Des Moines, Iowa, to cater the event) and a midafternoon downpour that drenched the track, I spent my last dozen or so laps of the day staring at the back of the 800 ADVentura. John Burns, who writes for Motorcycle.com and looks like Willie Nelson in high-viz gear, had grabbed the 800’s key and I did my best to chase him down on a 700CL-X.
I outweigh JB by 50 lb, probably 55 after hoovering two plates of brisket, mac-n-cheese, slaw, and cornbread at lunch, so my meat sack in the saddle knocked a big dent in the 700CL-X’s 83-lb weight advantage. Factor in the 800’s 21-hp upper hand over the 700 (95 hp vs. 74), however, and you’ve looking a pretty even odds. Lap after lap I’d close in on John, but I could never quite catch him. Burns got in way more laps on the 800 ADV-T than I did, and he can write – and ride – circles around me, so check out his review over at MO if you desire more depth and entertainment.
Overall, the 800 ADVentura felt solid, responsive, and – not surprisingly given the origin of its engine – on par with similar offerings from Europe. We look forward to getting more seat time for a more in-depth evaluation.
2023 CFMOTO 800 ADVentura Specs
Base Price: $9,499 (S model) Price as Tested: $10,499 (T model) Website:CFMOTOusa.com Warranty: 2 yrs., unltd. miles Engine Type: Liquid-cooled, transverse parallel-Twin, DOHC w/ 4 valve per cyl. Displacement: 799cc Bore x Stroke: 88.0 x 65.7mm Horsepower: 95 hp @ 9,250 rpm (claimed, at the crank) Torque: 57 lb-ft @ 8,000 rpm (claimed, at the crank) Transmission: 6-speed, cable-actuated slip/assist wet clutch Final Drive: Chain Wheelbase: 60.3 in. Seat Height: 32.5 in. Wet Weight: 509 lb Fuel Capacity: 5.0 gals.
Teased back in March, Can-Am finally unveiled two all-electric motorcycles during a global product reveal on August 7 at the annual Club BRP event. The models include the Can-Am Origin dual-sport and Can-Am Pulse streetbike, both slated to launch in mid-2024.
Detailed specs for the Origin and Pulse will not be released until August 2023, but BRP provided images of the futuristic-looking machines and company reps did a walk-around of the two prototypes during a virtual media briefing.
“Today, our story of innovation reaches new heights,” said José Boisjoli, President and CEO of BRP, at Club BRP 2023. “We have set out to reclaim our motorcycle heritage and are very proud to re-enter the market with the introduction of the first two models of our all-electric Can-Am motorcycle family. Half a century ago, Can-Am roared to victory on the track and the trail, and today, a legacy is reborn. In true BRP fashion, we are bringing our very own electric powerpack to our motorcycles, and crafting thrilling riding experiences for a whole new generation.”
Both street-legal models will be powered by BRP’s all-new, proprietary Rotax E-Power technology, said to provide “highway-worthy speeds with plenty of horsepower and torque.”
They also share key design elements such as their distinctive LED headlights, large TFT displays, edgy white and gray bodywork, a bright yellow panel covering their battery packs, inverted forks, single-sided swingarms, single-disc brakes front and rear (with rather small front rotors), and solo seats. Rear cowls may cover pillion seats; passenger footpegs are not visible on either machine, but production versions will likely have passenger accommodations.
Setting the Can-Am Origin dual-sport apart from its streetbike sibling is rally-style bodywork, fork guards, and spoked wheels, in diameters that appear to be 21 inches in front and 18 inches out back, common sizes for off-road tires. The final drive is enclosed, and Can-Am reps would not reveal whether power is sent to the rear wheel via chain (used on nearly all dual-sports) or belt (used on many production electric bikes).
The Can-Am Pulse has the muscular stance of a streetfighter, with racy-looking cast wheels shod with sportbike rubber and a sculpted “tank” that keeps the bike’s profile in line with conventional gas-powered motorcycles.
According to BRP, both models will “showcase state-of-the art technology” and “offer a truly connected experience for riders.” The Origin and Pulse will be equipped with an on-board charger said to offer rapid charging times and easy charging at home or at automotive standard Level 2 charging stations.
BRP says the Rotax E-Power technology will “be at the heart of all BRP electric models, across all product lines – from water to snow, to dirt and asphalt.”
Full details about the Origin and Pulse will be revealed in August 2023 to coincide with Can-Am’s 50th anniversary. For more information, visit CanAmMotorcycle.com.
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Kawasaki announced the return of several sport, retro sport, naked, cruiser, adventure touring, and dual-sport models to its motorcycle lineup. These 2023 motorcycles are set to arrive in Kawasaki dealerships during the summer months.
Models included in this announcement are the Ninja 1000SX, Ninja 400 and 400 ABS, Z H2 and H2 SE, Z900RS and Z900RS Cafe, Z400 ABS, the Vulcan S and Vulcan 900 lineups, 1700 Voyager ABS, Versys-X300 and Versys-X300 ABS, and the KLR650 lineup.
The Kawasaki Ninja 1000SX is back with its refined sport-touring capabilities, combining the power of a supersport with the feel of an upright sportbike and familiar Ninja styling.
The Ninja 1000SX features a 1,043cc liquid-cooled inline-Four, Kawasaki Traction Control, Kawasaki Intelligent anti-lock Braking System (KIBS), Kawasaki Quick Shifter, 4.3-inch all-digital TFT color instrumentation, and electronic cruise control.
The Ninja 1000SX includes rider aides such as electronic cruise control and integrated riding modes that combine traction control and Power Modes, and it is compatible with the Kawasaki RIDEOLOGY THE APP.
This 2023 model will be offered in Emerald Blazed Green / Metallic Diablo Black / Metallic Graphite Gray starting at $13,199
2023 Kawasaki Ninja 400 and Ninja 400 ABS
Ideal for both experienced riders and newer riders looking to step up from a lower displacement bike, the 2023 Ninja 400 sport motorcycle offers the largest displacement in its category.
The 2023 Ninja 400 features a 399cc liquid-cooled parallel-Twin, a slip/assist clutch, a lightweight trellis frame, Uni-Trak rear suspension, a 310mm semi-floating petal disc brake and 2-piston caliper in the front, and 220mm petal disc brake and 1-piston caliper in the rear.
A low seat height (30.9 in.), twin LED headlights, and high-grade multifunction dash instrumentation make the Ninja 400 the ideal choice for riders looking to enter the sport-riding scene.
For 2023, the Ninja 400 and the Ninja 400 ABS are available in Metallic Carbon Gray / Metallic Matte Carbon Gray, Pearl Blizzard White / Metallic Carbon Gray, and Metallic Magnetic Dark Gray/ Metallic Matte Twilight Blue. The Ninja 400 starts at $5,299, and the Ninja 400 ABS starts at $5,699.
The Ninja 400 ABS KRT Edition is painted in a Lime Green / Ebony color scheme and starts at $5,899. The Ninja 400 KRT Edition without ABS will come in the same color scheme starting at $5,499.
2023 Kawasaki Z H2 and Z H2 SE
The flagship model of the Kawasaki Z lineup, the 2023 Z H2 features a balanced supercharged 998cc liquid-cooled inline-Four, a 6-speed dog-ring gearbox, a slip/assist clutch, a lightweight trellis frame, high-performance Showa suspension components, and Brembo monoblock brake calipers.
The bike also offers an IMU-based electronics package, Kawasaki Quick Shifter (KQS), Kawasaki Launch Control Mode (KLCM), Kawasaki Cornering Management Function (KCMF), electronic cruise control, integrated riding modes, all-digital TFT color instrumentation, smartphone connectivity via RIDEOLOGY THE APP, and LED lighting.
For 2023, the Z H2 comes in Metallic Phantom Silver / Metallic Carbon Gray and starts at $18,500.
The Z H2 SE offers the same features that come standard on the Z H2, with the addition of the Kawasaki Electronic Control Suspension (KECS) with Skyhook EERA Technology, which adapts to road and riding conditions in real-time, providing the ideal amount of damping by combining high-level mechanical components with the latest electronic control technology and reportedly giving the rider a smoother ride as it continually adapts to the road surface in real-time.
For braking power, the 2023 Z H2 SE will once again feature Brembo Stylema monoblock brake calipers, a Brembo front brake master cylinder, and steel-braided lines.
The 2023 Z H2 SE will be offered in Metallic Matte Graphenesteel Gray / Ebony / Mirror Coated Black starting at $20,700.
2023 Kawasaki Z900RS and Z900RS Cafe
The Kawasaki Z900RS retro-sportbikes reignites the classic style of the original Z1 900 motorcycle.
The 2023 Z900RS and Z900RS Cafe feature a 948cc liquid-cooled inline-Four, a slip/assist clutch, horizontal back-link rear suspension, authentic retro styling, an iconic teardrop fuel tank, a tuned stainless steel exhaust system, a round LED headlight, and bullet-shaped analog dials.
For 2023, the Z900RS comes in a Metallic Diablo Black / Metallic Imperial Red paint scheme starting at $11,949. The Z900RS Cafe adds cafe-racer styling with a front cowl, a special seat, and a drop handlebar, and is available in Metallic Diablo Black starting at $12,399.
2023 Kawasaki Z400 ABS
Described in a 2018 Rider First Ride Review as a “Ninja 400 with a flat handlebar and no fairing,” the Kawasaki Z400 ABS naked sportbike features a 399cc liquid-cooled parallel-Twin, a slip/assist clutch, streetfighter styling, a lightweight chassis, an upright riding position, a low seat height (30.9 in.), and standard ABS.
For 2023, the Z400 ABS is available in Metallic Matte Graphenesteel Gray / Metallic Spark Black and Pearl Robotic White /Metallic Matte Graphenesteel Gray starting at $5,399.
2023 Kawasaki Vulcan S, Vulcan S ABS, and Vulcan S Cafe
The Kawasaki Vulcan S sport cruisers are geared to fit a wide range of riders as a result of not only the bikes’ reported starting curb weight just shy of 492 lb but also the exclusive Ergo-Fit sizing system, which includes 18 possible configurations for the handlebar, footpegs, and seat.
Both bikes feature a 649cc liquid-cooled DOHC parallel-Twin and sportbike-derived chassis and suspension. The 2023 Vulcan S Cafe also comes equipped with three-tone paint, signature tank badging, sport striping, and a dark-tinted windshield deflector.
For 2023, the Vulcan S is available in a Metallic Flat Spark Black colorway starting at $7,349, the Vulcan S ABS is offered in Pearl Matte Sage Green / Metallic Flat Spark Black starting at $7,899, and the Vulcan S Cafe is available in Pearl Storm Gray / Ebony starting at $8,099.
In our “Middleweight Touring Cruisers” comparison test, which included the Vulcan 900 Classic LT, Rider EIC Greg Drevendstedt wrote: “Cruisers are about style and sensation. How a cruiser looks is just as important as how it sounds and feels.”
All three of the 2023 Vulcan 900 cruiser models feature a 903cc liquid-cooled, fuel-injected V-Twin and a low seat height (26.8 in.).
The Vulcan 900 Classic features rider footboards with a heel/toe shifter, tank-mounted instrumentation, and a 180mm rear tire. The Vulcan 900 Classic LT features a studded seat with standard passenger backrest, leather saddlebags, and a height-adjustable windscreen. The Vulcan 900 Custom features wide drag bars and forward-mounted footpegs, a low center of gravity for easy handling, custom styling with a teardrop tank, parallel slash-cut pipes, and pinstripe wheels.
For 2023, the Vulcan 900 Classic is available in Metallic Spark Black /Metallic Magnesium Gray starting at $8,999. The Vulcan 900 Classic LT is available in Pearl Storm Gray / Ebony starting at $9,999 with a 24-month limited warranty, and the Vulcan 900 Custom is available in Pearl Matte Sage Green / Flat Ebony starting at $9,499.
2023 Kawasaki Vulcan 1700 Voyager ABS
The 2023 Vulcan 1700 Voyager ABS touring cruiser features a 1,700cc liquid-cooled, fuel-injected, transverse 52-degree V-Twin, Kawasaki Advanced Coactive-braking Technology (K-ACT II) ABS, throttle-by-wire, and electronic cruise control.
The bike has a frame-mounted fairing, an intercom-headset compatible audio system, and integrated luggage. For 2023, the Vulcan 1700 Voyager is available in Pearl Storm Gray / Ebony starting at $19,299.
2023 Kawasaki Versys-X 300 and Versys-X300 ABS
With a compact Ninja-derived 296cc liquid-cooled DOHC Twin, the Kawasaki Versys-X 300 is a nimble, lightweight motorcycle that’s suitable for commuting or touring.
The Versys-X 300 has a lightweight chassis, long-travel suspension, a low seat height (32.1 in.), front cowling with a tall windscreen, and a rear carrier.
The 2023 Versys-X 300 is available in Pearl Matte Sage Green / Metallic Matte Carbon Gray starting at $5,899, while the ABS model comes in the same color scheme starting at $6,199.
2023 Kawasaki KLR650 and KLR650 ABS
The KLR650 sports a 652cc liquid-cooled Single nestled in a recently redesigned high-tensile double-cradle frame. In 2022, the bike was upgraded with new improved ergonomics, bodywork, a taller two-position adjustable windscreen, a larger aluminum rear carrier, increased generator capacity, and an LED headlight. It features all-digital multifunction instrumentation, an optional ABS system, and 7.9 inches of front travel coupled with 7.3 inches of rear travel.
The 2023 KLR650 is available in three colorways – Pearl Storm Gray, Pearl Solar Yellow, and Candy Lime Green – and starts at $6,899. The KLR650 ABS is offered in Pearl Storm Gray starting at $7,199.
2023 Kawasaki KLR650 Adventure and KLR650 Adventure ABS
The KLR650 Adventure model is built off of the standard KLR650 platform and designed for the rider who is looking for increased carrying capacity and convenience. It comes equipped with factory-installed side cases, LED auxiliary lights, engine guards, a tank pad, and both a DC power outlet and USB socket. It’s available both with and without ABS.
The 2023 KLR650 Adventure is available in Cypher Camo Gray starting at $7,899, while the KLR650 Adventure ABS also comes in Cypher Camo Gray starting at $8,199.
2023 Kawasaki KLR650 Traveler ABS
The KLR650 Traveler model consists of the same features found on the standard KLR650 as well as a factory-installed top case and both a DC power outlet and USB socket. It comes equipped with ABS.
The KLR650 Traveler ABS is offered in Pearl Solar Yellow starting at $7,599.
With more than a decade of motorcycle testing experience under my belt, it’s rare to get a first ride on a motorcycle built by a company I have no prior experience with. When CFMOTO invited Rider to Minneapolis to ride its 2022 lineup of motorcycles – a total of seven models (plus an eighth model that’s under embargo) – I was all-in.
CFMOTO’s motorcycles range from small to middleweight in size, and they’re attractively priced. The lineup includes the 126cc Papio minibike ($2,999), 300NK naked bike ($3,999), 300SS fully faired sportbike ($4,299), 650NK naked bike ($6,499), 650 ADVentura street-adventure bike ($6,799), 700CL-X street scrambler ($6,499), and 700CL-X Sport modern café racer ($6,999). The Papio comes with a one-year warranty while the others are covered for two years.
For my first ride on each model, I worked my way through the lineup from smallest to largest, from the Papio to the 700CL-X Sport. After logging several laps on each bike, I rode them again and again in random order throughout the day.
Our test riding was done at the Minnesota Highway Safety & Research Center (MHSRC), a training facility that includes a 1.2-mile paved road course with a half-dozen nicely radiused corners, a one-third-mile front straight that leads into a slightly banked left-hand sweeper, and an ultra-tight, winding half-mile infield course. Like real-world roads, the pavement was rough and littered with tar snakes that got greasy in the midday sun, and it was damp in the morning after overnight rains and again after an afternoon cloudburst. The track allowed us to test multiple bikes in succession and pursue top speeds without running afoul of local law enforcement.
After a full day of at least 100 laps on eight different models, we had an opportunity to spend the next day testing the model of our choice on public roads. I picked the 650 ADVentura and logged another 350 miles on it.
Unless you’re familiar with ATVs and side-by-sides, CFMOTO might be new to you too. Established in Hangzhou, China, in 1989, the company grew quickly to become a supplier of engines, parts, and components for some of the biggest brands in powersports. By 2000 CFMOTO had begun manufacturing motorcycles, scooters, and off-road vehicles.
According to Alan Cathcart, in a company profile published in 2015 on Rider’s website, “CFMOTO emphasizes quality of manufacture rather than low cost, so while its bikes are well priced, they’re also well-made and durable.” In 2014, Austrian manufacturer KTM established a partnership with CFMOTO, and the company began producing KTM 200/390 Dukes for the Chinese market.
Stefan Pierer, CEO of KTM, told Cathcart, “We built up a very good trust level with CFMOTO – they are a very serious Chinese company. We’ve now arranged to do a 50/50 joint venture on KTM products made in China for sale worldwide. … I’m happy to attach the KTM name to something made by them.”
CFMOTO has been selling off-road vehicles in the U.S. since 2002, and it established its American headquarters in Plymouth, Minnesota, in 2007. In 2012, CFMOTO began importing motorcycles, including the 650NK naked bike and the 650TK sport-tourer, both powered by a liquid-cooled 649cc parallel-Twin.
Cathcart reviewed the 650TK in 2015, which retailed for $6,999, and gave it high marks. Other than a few fit-and-finish complaints, he concluded that the “CFMOTO 650TK is as capable, practical, and pleasing as any motorcycle costing twice the price” and “an awful lot of motorcycle for the money.”
After a couple of years, CFMOTO pulled out of the U.S. motorcycle market because its offerings didn’t resonate with American buyers. It went back to the drawing board, developed a full lineup of bikes, introduced them in Europe and other markets where they were well-received, and decided to try again in the U.S. CFMOTO has 550 dealers in the U.S., with nearly 200 of them selling motorcycles. All 2022 models have been available since April.
2022 CFMOTO Papio
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Since the Honda Grom was introduced in 2014 and became a runaway best-seller, the small-bore segment has expanded rapidly. These days, the Grom will set you back $3,499, the Kawasaki Z125 Pro goes for $3,399, and the Benelli TNT135 is $3,199. The Papio, which takes its name from the genus that includes baboons, slides in below the others at $2,999.
Weighing weighs just 251 lb and rolling on 12-inch wheels, the Papio has a 126cc air-cooled fuel-injected Single that kicks out 9.3 hp at 8,500 rpm and 6.1 lb-ft of torque at 6,500 rpm. Unique in this segment is the Papio’s 6-speed gearbox, which helps it achieve a respectable top speed – even with my 215 lb in the saddle, I saw an indicated 62 mph by the end of MHRSC’s front straight.
The Papio is aptly named. The Minnesota-nice guys from CFMOTO, who used cones to create two chicanes on the MHRSC track to slow things down, asked us not to race each other. One bike is a ride, two bikes is a race, and three Papios is a barrel of baboons. We couldn’t help ourselves.
Small and affordable the Papio may be, but it’s nicely featured, with LED lighting all around and a digital instrument panel. It has a telescopic fork with 4.3 inches of travel, a rear shock that has five-click preload adjustability, and single-disc brakes front and rear. Seat height is 30.5 inches, fuel capacity is 1.9 gallons and color options are Lemon Green and Galaxy Grey with red accents.
2022 CFMOTO300NK / 300SS
The next rung on CFMOTO’s moto-ladder is a liquid-cooled, DOHC, 4-valve 292cc Single with Bosch EFI that makes a claimed 28.7 hp at 8,750 rpm and 18.7 lb-ft of torque at 7,250 rpm. You can choose the naked 300NK ($3,999) in Athens Blue or Nebula Black, or the fully faired 300SS ($4,299) in Nebula White or Nebula Black.
Both feature a steel trellis frame, a 6-speed transmission with a slip/assist clutch, an inverted fork with a progressive-rate spring, and a preload-adjustable rear shock. Ten-spoke 17-inch cast-aluminum wheels are slowed by a 4-piston radial-mount front caliper with a 300mm disc, a 1-piston rear caliper with a 245mm disc, and Continental dual-channel ABS.
With its tubular handlebar and slightly taller seat (31.7 inches), the 300NK has a more upright seating position and weighs 333 lb. The 300SS has sporty clip-ons, a 30.7-inch seat height, and a 364-lb curb weight. Both are fun and flickable with linear but modest power delivery, and the counterbalanced Single is remarkably smooth. The brakes, however, felt wooden, a problem that would likely be solved by more aggressive pads.
These are stylish, well-equipped bikes, with LED lighting and a 5.5-inch TFT display with Bluetooth that pairs to the CFMOTO Ride smartphone app, which provides vehicle info and navigation (the app is also compatible with the Papio, 650NK, 650 ADVentura, and 700CL-X Sport, but not the 700CL-X).
2022 CFMOTO650NK / 650 ADVentura
Moving up from the 300s to the 650s gains 357cc and an extra cylinder. The liquid-cooled, DOHC, 8-valve 649cc parallel-Twin in the 650NK and 650 ADVentura is said to churn out 60 hp at 8,750 rpm and 41.3 lb-ft of torque at 7,000 rpm. Like the 300s, the 6-speed transmission is equipped with a slip/assist clutch.
Ratcheting up the price – $6,499 for the NK (Nebula White or Nebula Black) and $6,799 for the ADVentura (Athens Blue or Nebula White) – brings higher specification. Both have brakes made by J. Juan, a Spanish supplier owned by Brembo, with dual 300mm discs up front with 2-piston calipers and a single 240mm disc out back with a 1-piston caliper. Continental dual-channel ABS is standard, and 17-inch cast wheels are shod with premium Pirelli Angel GT sport-touring tires.
The 650NK, which weighs 454 lb, carries 4.5 gallons of fuel, and has a 30.7-inch seat height, is equipped with KYB suspension, with a non-adjustable fork and a preload-adjustable rear shock. The 650 ADVentura has an inverted fork with 12 clicks of rebound adjustment and a rear shock with adjustable preload and rebound (eight clicks). Both models have full LED lighting and a 5-inch TFT display.
Standard equipment on the ADVentura includes Shad hard saddlebags, a windscreen with 1.5 inches of toolless height adjustment, and a USB charging port on the dash. It weighs 481 lb (add 17 lb for the saddlebags), carries 4.75 gallons of fuel, and has a 32.3-inch seat height.
Both 650s have upright seating positions, and thanks to its taller seat, the ADVentura offers more legroom than the NK. Both are very approachable and fun to ride. Twisting the right grip delivers rheostat-like power with barely a hint of vibration from the counterbalanced Twin. They are light enough to be tossed into turns, their Pirelli tires provide good grip, and their brakes shed speed quite well. They felt stable at speed too – I maxxed out at an indicated 106 mph on the NK and 107 mph on the ADV. (Read more 650 ADVentura impressions below.)
2022 CFMOTO700CL-X / 700 CL-X Sport
Though gaining just 44cc in displacement over the 650s, the 700s represent a big step up in specification and performance. Their shared liquid-cooled, DOHC, 8-valve 693cc parallel-Twin makes a claimed 74 hp at 8,500 rpm and 50.2 lb-ft of torque at 7,000 rpm, and both have a 6-speed transmission with a slipper clutch and chain final drive.
The 700s are also equipped with throttle-by-wire, which enables two ride modes (Sport and Eco) and one-touch cruise control. They have a stylish, throaty exhaust can on the right side, self-canceling turnsignals, and all-round LED lighting with a daytime running light.
Wrapped around the engine is a tubular chromoly steel frame connected to a steel trellis subframe and a lightweight gravity-cast aluminum swingarm. KYB suspension includes a 41mm inverted fully adjustable fork and a linkage-mounted rear shock that’s adjustable for preload and rebound. Seat height is 31.5 inches and fuel capacity is 3.4 gallons.
The 700CL-X street scrambler ($6,499) is available in Coal Grey with bronze wheels or Twilight Blue with black wheels, and it has a tubular handlebar and Pirelli MT-60 dirt track-style semi-knobby tires. J. Juan brakes include a 320mm front disc with a radial-mount 4-piston caliper and a 260mm rear disc with a 2-piston caliper, and Continental ABS is standard. Curb weight is 426 lb.
The 700CL-X Sport ($6,799), available in Nebula White or Velocity Grey, takes a more aggressive café racer approach to styling and ergonomics, with clip-on handlebars, bar-end mirrors, a removable rear cowling (passenger pegs are standard but a passenger seat is sold as an accessory), and faux carbon fiber accents. Top-shelf Brembo brakes include a radial front master cylinder, radial-mount monoblock Stylema 4-piston calipers squeezing 320mm discs, and a 2-piston rear caliper squeezing at 260mm disc. Five-spoke cast aluminum wheels are shod with Maxxis SuperMaxx ST sport tires. Curb weight is 451 lb.
These bikes are a helluva lot of fun, with engine response that feels like a bigger step up from the 650s than the small displacement bump would suggest. With its wider handlebar, more upright seating position, more comfortable seat, and lower weight, the 700CL-X was my favorite of the two. Other than the 650 ADVentura, it’s the bike I spent the most time on, chasing down – but by no means racing – other journalists on the track.
A Day in the Life of the 2022 CFMOTO650 ADVentura
CFMOTO’s 650 ADVentura has the Kawasaki Versys 650 LT in its crosshairs. Both are street-adventure bikes with 649cc parallel-Twins, upright seating positions, small upper fairings with height-adjustable windscreens, and removable hard saddlebags. There are some differences too – the Kawasaki has traction control but the CFMOTO doesn’t, for example, and the CFMOTO has a longer warranty – but they’re similar enough to be kissing cousins.
The biggest delta between the two is price. The Kawasaki’s MSRP is $9,999, but the CFMOTO’s is only $6,799. You can buy a lot of overpriced gas for $2,200.
Since a middleweight street-adventure bike is right in Rider’s wheelhouse, the 650 ADVentura is the bike I chose to spend the day with. On a hot, muggy morning in late June, I threw a leg over a blue one in a hotel parking lot in Maple Grove, Minnesota. My visits to the North Star State are few and far between, so I headed north to Duluth on the southern shore of Lake Superior to visit the Aerostich store and factory and have lunch with Andy Goldfine.
Work obligations consumed part of my morning, so I left late and slabbed it on Interstate 35 to make time. Boring yes, but also a good way to get to know how a bike runs at sustained high speeds. Keeping up with traffic, the speedometer hovered around 80 mph the whole way. For 160 miles I passed lots of trees as well as billboards for fishing boats, fishing lakes, fish camps, and marinas. The 650 ADVentura hummed along beneath me, giving off a bit of engine heat but hardly any vibration.
Two hand knobs can be loosened to adjust the height of the ADVentura’s windscreen. With it fully raised and supplemented by deflectors on either side of the dash, wind protection was good with no buffeting. As I got closer to Duluth, I caught the edges of two rainstorms and got a little damp in my mesh jacket and riding jeans. As I-35 descended a steep hill toward downtown, the temperature dropped into the mid-50s due to the cooling effect of Lake Superior. By the time I dropped the kickstand in Aerostich’s parking lot, my teeth were chattering.
After touring Aerostich’s headquarters and warming up with coffee and a warm bowl of soup during lunch with Andy, I rode up one of Duluth’s steep streets and cruised along Skyline Parkway Scenic Byway, which follows a ridgeline just west of the city and offers panoramic views of Duluth, the harbor, and Lake Superior. The byway offered up some fun curves, plenty of frost-damaged asphalt, and even some gravel on the north end near Hawk Ridge. The final 4 miles of the byway follows Seven Bridges Road, which cuts back and forth over the cascading course of Amity Creek on a series of arched stone bridges.
The 650 ADVentura has the qualities I love most about middleweights – modest curb weight, light steering, and enough power for a lively riding experience. Its suspension and brakes are dutifully competent, and its slip/assist clutch helps it shift with ease. Its wind protection, ergonomics, and smoothness made my 350-mile day enjoyable, though its soft seat foam crushed down and didn’t offer adequate support. Fuel economy during my all-day test ride was 45.5 mpg, good for 216 miles from the 4.75-gallon tank.
Overall, I was impressed with the 650 ADVentura as well as CFMOTO’s other models. They are stylish, well-built with quality components, and spec’d with desirable features. And at a time where value is increasingly important, they offer incredible bang for the buck.
2022 CFMOTO 650 ADVentura Specs
Base Price: $6,799 Website:CFMOTOusa.com Warranty: 2 yrs., unltd. miles Engine Type: Liquid-cooled, transverse parallel-Twin, DOHC w/ 4 valve per cyl. Displacement: 649cc Bore x Stroke: 83 x 60mm Horsepower: 60.3 hp @ 8,750 rpm (claimed, at the crank) Torque: 41.3 lb-ft @ 7,000 rpm (claimed, at the crank) Final Drive: Chain Wheelbase: 56 in. Rake/Trail: 24.5 degrees/4.1 in. Seat Height: 32.3 in. Wet Weight: 498 lb (w/ saddlebags) Fuel Capacity: 4.75 gals. Fuel Consumption: 45.5 mpg Estimated Range: 216 miles
After a short hiatus, CFMoto is again importing its motorcycles to the U.S. It is offering seven bikes as part of its 2022 lineup. With a range of small and middleweight motorcycles, CFMoto continues its reputation for reasonable price points for both novice and advanced riders.
The 2022 models include the Papio minibike ($2,999), the 300NK naked bike ($3,999) and 300SS sportbike ($4,299), the naked 650NK ($6,499) and 650 ADVentura adventure bike ($6,799), and the classic series 700CL-X ($6,499) and 700CL-X Sport ($6,999).
CFMoto Comes of Age
Following the creation of a trademarked liquid-cooled 4-stroke engine in Hangzhou, China, CFMoto was founded in 1989. It has been a supplier of engines, parts, and components for some of the biggest brands in powersports. In 2002, the company entered the U.S. market. In 2005, it built the company’s U.S. headquarters in Plymouth, Minnesota.
In the early years, the company produced mostly small-displacement models. In 2012, CFMoto introduced the parallel-Twin 650NK, followed shortly after by the 650TK tourer. While there were a few superficial details that raised an eyebrow, overall the bike performed very well considering its $6,999 price point.
After the 2016 model year, CFMoto stopped importing bikes to the U.S. The company continued to make motorcycles, and in 2017 CFMoto signed a joint venture agreement with KTM, according to the CFMoto website.
“The joint venture will bring CFMOTO’s R&D and manufacturing capability to a whole new level,” Minjie Lai, CFMoto general manager, said at the groundbreaking ceremony for the joint venture production facility in March 2018. “CFMOTO will benefit from KTM’s advanced technology and profound experience from years of being a leader in the power sports industry. KTM recognized how our manufacturing capacity, supply chain management, and channel development could help implement their global strategy.”
As of 2022, the company states it has more than 500 dealers in the U.S. Read on to learn more about the new models for 2022.
2022 CFMoto Papio
The CFMoto Papio features a 126cc air-cooled 4-stroke Single with a 6-speed gearbox that kicks out 9.3 hp at 8,500 rpm and 6.1 lb-ft of torque at 6,500 rpm. The telescopic fork provides approximately 4.3 inches of travel, and the rear monoshock has five-click preload adjustability. Both ends employ lightweight 12-inch alloy wheels paired to 130/70 rear and 120/70 front street tires. Stopping power comes from a 2-piston caliper and 210mm disc up front and a 1-piston caliper grabbing a 190mm disc in the rear.
The Papio has a 30.5-inch seat height, a 1.9-gallon fuel capacity, and a 251-lb curb weight. It has LED lighting all around and a multifunction LCD instrument panel. It comes in Yellow or Gray/Red Dragon for $2,999.
2022 CFMoto 300NK and 300SS
Both the 300NK naked bike and 300SS sportbike come with a liquid-cooled 292cc DOHC 4-valve Single that makes a claimed 29 hp at 8,750 rpm and 18.7 lb-ft of torque at 7,250 rpm. Both bikes have Bosch EFI, dual-channel ABS, and a 6-speed gearbox with a slip/assist clutch.
Braking is handled by a radially mounted 4-piston front caliper with a 300mm disc and a 1-piston rear caliper with a 245mm disc. The 300NK and 300SS also both have an inverted fork and internal-floating-piston monoshock in back with five clicks of preload adjustability.
The differences between the two are primarily curb weight and dimensions. The naked 300NK weighs 333 lb, has a 31.2-inch seat height, and a 3.3-gallon tank. The fully faired 300SS weighs 364 lbs, has a 30.7-inch seat height, and a 3.3-gallon tank.
The 300NK comes in Athens Blue and Nebula Black for $3,999, and the 300SS is offered in Nebula White and Nebula Black for $4,299.
2022 CFMoto 650NK and 650 ADVentura
Moving up to the middleweight class, CFMoto offers the naked 650NK and 650 ADVentura adventure bike. Both bikes feature a 649cc DOHC liquid-cooled parallel-Twin that makes 60 hp at 8,750 rpm and 41.3 lb-ft of torque at 7,000 rpm.
Both bikes have dual-channel ABS, a 6-speed gearbox with a CF-SC slip/assist clutch, and a 2-into-1 tuned exhaust. Brakes are by J.Juan, with dual 300mm discs in front with 2-piston calipers and a single 245mm rear disc with a 1-piston caliper.
The naked 650NK weighs 454 lb, and the 650 ADVentura weighs 480 lb. But the bigger difference in the bikes comes from their intent. As an adventure bike, the 650 ADVentura comes factory-equipped with progressive-rate inverted fork with 12-click rebound adjustability, and the rear cantilever swingarm utilizes an internal-floating-piston monoshock with stepless preload and eight-click rebound adjustment.
The ADVentura has LED lighting all around, a 5-inch color TFT display, and 4.75-gallon tank. It is also equipped with removable hard-sided panniers, handguards, and an adjustable windscreen.
The sporty 650NK has a KYB telescopic fork with 4.7 inches of travel and a preload-adjustable KYB rear monoshock with 1.8 inches of travel. It has LED lighting all around, a 5-inch color TFT display, and rolls on Pirelli Angel GT sport-touring tires. Seat height is 30.7 inches and fuel capacity is 4.5 gallons.
The 650NK is offered in Nebula White and Nebula Black for $6,499, and the 650 ADVentura comes in Nebula White and Athens Blue for $6,799.
2022 CFMoto 700CL-X and 700CL-X Sport
Taking it up a notch, the 700CL-X and 700CL-X Sport motorcycles both feature a 693cc DOHC liquid-cooled parallel-Twin that makes 74 hp at 8,500 rpm and 47.9 lb-ft of torque at 6,500 rpm. Both bikes have throttle-by-wire, dual-channel ABS, a 6-speed gearbox with a CF-SC slip/assist clutch, 2-into-1 tuned exhaust, a fully adjustable KYB 41mm inverted fork, and a linkage-mounted, progressive-rate KYB rear shock with rebound adjustability.
The 700CL-X and 700CL-X Sport also offer Economy and Sport riding modes and one-touch cruise control. For braking power, the 700CL-X has a J.Juan 320mm single disc and radially mounted 4-piston caliper in the front, while the 700CL-X Sport has a Brembo Stylema 4-piston front calipers with dual 320mm discs. In the rear, both bikes have a 2-piston caliper with a 260mm disc. The 700CL-X rolls on Pirelli MT60 tires, while the Sport is fitted with Maxxis SuperMaxx ST tires.
As premium models, the 700CL-X and 700CL-X Sport feature LED lighting all around, daytime running lights, self-canceling turnsignals, and a 3.5-gallon tank. The 700CL-X has a single upright handlebar with dual mirrors on top, while the Sport features clip-on handlebars with bar-end mirrors.
Both models have a 31.5-inch seat height. Curb weight is 432 lb for the 700CL-X and 451 lb for the 700CL-X Sport.The 700CL-X comes in Twilight Blue and Coal Gray for $6,499, and the 700CL-X Sport comes in Nebula White and Velocity Gray for $6,999.
For more information or to find a CFMoto dealer near you, visit CFMotoUSA.com.
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The whole family will be able to take their turn on two wheels following the recent announcement from Kawasaki of the return of three models for the 2023 model year – the KLX300 dual-sport, KLX300SM supermoto, and Ninja ZX-6R sportbike – as well as a new electric balance bike for the kiddos called the Elektrode. Read on to learn more about these bikes, then don your gear and follow Kawasaki’s advice to “let the good times roll.”
2023 Kawasaki KLX300
The Kawasaki KLX300 dual-sport returns for 2023 with all the features riders have grown to love, whether off-roading or on the street. Starting at $5,899 for the familiar Lime Green ($6,099 for the Fragment Camo Gray), the KLX300 is still a financially friendly entry point for new motorcycle riders. It features a 292cc DOHC liquid-cooled 4-valve Single with its powerband, electric starter, cam profiles sourced from the KLX300R off-road model, and a 6-speed gearbox. We did a first ride review on the KLX300 in March 2021 and reported solid bottom-end torque and midrange power.
The bike has a steel perimeter frame and aluminum swingarm, a 21-inch front and 18-inch rear wheel combo, and dual-sport tuned long-travel suspension for optimal ground clearance. The 43mm inverted fork with adjustable compression damping and the fully adjustable gas-charged Uni-Trak shock provide 10 inches of travel in the front and 9.1 inches in the rear, meaning the KLX300 can dish out whatever the trail (or asphalt) throws at you. When it comes to braking, the dual-sport comes with a 2-piston caliper and 250mm disc up front and a 1-piston caliper and a 240mm disc in back.
2023 Kawasaki KLX300SM
First introduced for the 2021 model year and developed alongside the KLX300 dual-sport, the KLX300SM shares a similar engine and chassis with its stablemate. However, the SM features a host of supermoto-inspired components, including 17-inch front and rear wheels paired with IRC Road Winner RX-01 street tires, supermoto-tuned suspension, and a larger 300mm disc and 2-piston caliper up front for braking.
Priced at $6,299 for both Neon Green and Ebony, the KLX300SM is still a great entry-level supermoto bike but with the credentials that make it attractive to more skilled riders as well.
2023 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R
In order to meet growing consumer demand, Kawasaki has reportedly moved up the production and introduction of its 2023 model Ninja ZX-6R supersport motorcycle, featuring a 636cc 4-cylinder DOHC engine optimized for both the street and the track. The Ninja ZX-6R has the Kawasaki QuickShifter, Kawasaki Intelligent anti-lock Brake System (KIBS), selectable power modes combined with Kawasaki Traction Control, Showa suspension with a SFF-BP fork, slip/assist clutch, adjustable clutch lever, multifunction LCD screen, and a pressed-aluminum perimeter frame.
The 2023 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R is available in Metallic Matte Twilight Blue / Metallic Diablo Black without ABS for $10,699, or in Metallic Matte Graphenesteel Gray / Metallic Diablo Black for $10,999 without ABS or $11,999 with ABS.
2023 Kawasaki Elektrode Electric Balance Bike
From the brand behind the KX motocross powerhouse comes the new Elektrode electric balance bike. Little rippers can now start their journey on two wheels as early as 3 years old, putting them on the path to the podium earlier than ever.
Since engine noise and exhaust can often be intimidating to young children learning to ride, the Elektrode should help encourage those who might otherwise be nervous to see how much fun riding can be. The Elektrode is lightweight and compact in size to allow for easy transportation in the back seat or trunk of a car.
The 2023 Elektrode electric balance bike features an air-cooled, brushless, in-wheel electric motor producing 250 watts of acceleration at the rear wheel. Power is said to be delivered in a smooth, linear fashion, getting the bike moving in a predictable way and gradually building the rider’s comfort with power and control. The motor positioning contributes to the Elektrode’s low center of gravity, which should create a light steering feel and easy turning and leaning.
The Kawasaki Elektrode’s in-frame lithium-ion battery is said to provide up to 2.5 hours of riding (or approximately 9 miles) depending on battery and rider conditions. The battery takes 2.5 hours to fully recharge from any home outlet, car, camper, or side-by-side vehicle, and the bike features an auto-sleep feature that shuts off the power after 10 minutes of inactivity. The battery’s location in the aluminum frame provides protection from dirt, debris, and potential impact damage that could occur during hard use.
Three speed modes allow young riders to grow and adapt as their abilities increase. Modes can be selected using the LCD screen located on the handlebars – but only when the bike is at a complete stop. Each mode caps the electric bike at a specific speed: low at 5 mph, mid at 7.5 mph, and high at 13 mph. A special parental lock requires a unique passcode to deter unauthorized changing of power levels. Or turn off the power entirely, fold up the rubber-padded steel footpegs, and use the Elektrode as a standard balance bike.
The Elektrode’s lightweight aluminum frame and 32.8-inch wheelbase provide durability while remaining light for kids to handle. A highly rigid steel front fork on the front of the bike should grant young riders a solid feel for steering, and a 160mm rear-mounted mechanical disc brake provides ample stopping power at the pull of a lever.
To add to the lightweight, sturdy nature of the Elektrode, Kawasaki designed special 16-inch cast-aluminum wheels with 16- x 2.125-inch HE-type knobby tires for use on several different types of terrain and tubes with Schrader valves.
The Elekrode is designed to accommodate riders from ages 3 to 8. The 16-inch wheels and adjustable components make it suitable for growing riders, including over 4 inches of adjustability in the seat, meaning the Elektrode can fit children 37-55 inches tall. The handlebar design promotes an upright riding position without compromising knee space, providing the extra room as kids grow, and with a common-sized handlebar and seat, parents will have the ability to change and customize their child’s bike as they see fit.
And when it comes to looking cool, Kawasaki designed the Elektrode to look like a full-fledged off-road machine. A KX-inspired front number plate adorns the front of the Elektrode, and the bike comes in the iconic Kawasaki Lime-Green coloring and racing graphics.
The 2023 Elektrode electric balance bike will be available in Lime Green with for $1,099.
For more information or to find a Kawasaki dealer near you, visit Kawasaki.com.
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We test the all-new 2023 Triumph Tiger 1200, which is available in five variants: GT, GT Pro, GT Explorer, Rally Pro, and Rally Explorer. The GT models are geared toward street adventures, while the Rally models are designed to get dirty. We rode all but the base-model GT at the Tiger 1200 world press launch in Portugal.
The updated Tiger 1200 adventure bike is both slimmer and stronger. It lost 55 lbs and gained serious grunt with the 1,160cc inline-Triple adapted from the Speed Triple 1200 RS, which makes 148 hp at 9,000 rpm and 96 lb-ft of torque at 7,000 rpm. Reworked from nose to tail and crown to sole, the new Tiger 1200 platform also has a new lightweight trellis frame, a cast-aluminum Tri-Link swingarm with shaft final drive, Showa semi-active suspension, a full electronics suite and much more.
Sometimes there is a recognizable moment when you click with a motorcycle. That moment didn’t happen right away on the 2022 KTM1290 Super Adventure R. It happened after we had already completed two days of testing and photography, burned 18 gallons of premium fuel, and redlined the KTM on Jett Tuning’s dyno.
That moment came on a Saturday, when I was out on a solo ride, winding my way through Los Padres National Forest on State Route 33. The 33 passes within earshot of my house, but it doesn’t get good for another 13 miles, when it starts to slither through a canyon carved by the Ventura River and enters Wheeler Gorge, which is so narrow that three tunnels had to be blasted through the rock to build the road. After climbing out of the gorge and passing a campground, Route 33 curves left in a big sweeper that’s like passing a bright-red neon sign that says GO FOR IT!
It was a cold, gray morning – just 43 degrees, according to the KTM’s temperature gauge. My fingers ached and I wished the bike had heated grips, but the engine and tires were up to temp. I thumbed a few buttons to switch from Street to Sport mode, gave the throttle a good twist, and felt the 1290 lunge forward.
Following the big sweeper is a series of constant-radius corners – right, left, right, left, right, left – that are like a racetrack with smooth pavement and familiar curves. I quickshifted down a couple gears, adjusted both body and throttle, and looked far ahead to each corner exit. As the last one opened onto a long straight, I gave it the whip. The big blocks of the Bridgestone Battlax Adventurecross AX41 tires squirmed as they found grip and the TC light flashed to let me know the electronics had things under control.
That was the moment. That was when a mix of satisfaction and heightened awareness combined into a mischievous smile that no one could see. When I realized that this – this right here – is what it’s all about.
Refined over many years, the LC8 has been further updated to reduce weight and improve performance. Thinner crank-case walls and other internal changes shed 3.5 pounds of weight. Revised oil routing reduces friction losses, while new ignition coils and a centralized spark plug improve combustion. A new cooling system uses dual radiators to better dissipate engine heat. A revised and repositioned airbox allows the ram air intakes to work more efficiently. In front of the fuel tank is a new storage compartment, which can be removed by taking out four screws to easily access a new air filter with vertical ribs that help direct dust and dirt to the bottom of the airbox. A new Euro 5-compliant exhaust system has two headers, two catalytic converters, and three sensors, and a revised stainless-steel silencer reduces exhaust noise.
The 6-speed Pankl transmission has been reworked to provide shorter shifting action and smoother, faster gear changes, especially when using the optional quickshifter. The shift drum, now made of aluminum rather than steel, is lighter and machined with more precision. A new bronze coating on the shift forks reduces abrasion compared to the hard-chromed parts on previous models. New friction plates help the slip/assist clutch disengage easier at low speeds.
Holding the LC8 in place is a chromoly-steel trellis frame that uses the engine as a stressed member of the chassis. To improve weight distribution and agility, the steering head was moved back 15mm, the engine mounts were relocated, and the aluminum subframe was redesigned. A longer cast-aluminum swingarm, which has an open-lattice design to minimize weight, improves stability during acceleration.
Zeros and Ones
We’re living in the digital age, and nearly every top-tier motorcycle has electronic features that allow the riding experience to be customized and enhanced. Equipped with throttle-by-wire and a new 6-axis IMU, the 1290 SA-R has ride modes (Sport, Street, Rain, and Off-road), dual-mode ABS (Road and Off-road), KTM’s Motorcycle Stability Control system, and cornering lights. The ride modes adjust engine output, throttle response, and lean-angle-sensitive traction control.
In full-power Sport mode, the 1290 produced 126 hp at 9,100 rpm and 88 lb-ft of torque at 8,000 rpm at the rear wheel on Jett Tuning’s dyno. Street mode offers the same level of power with less direct throttle response and more TC intervention. In limited-power Off-road mode, it made 81 horsepower at 6,600 rpm and 62 lb-ft of torque at 6,900 rpm. Rain mode offers the same power with softer throttle response and maximum TC intervention, whereas Off-road mode allows the greatest amount of rear-wheel spin among the four modes. (These dyno figures are down a few points because the knobby tread of the 40% on-road/60% off-road Bridgestone AX41 rear tire does not hook up as well as a more street-biased tire on a dyno’s rear drum.)
Our test bike was equipped with the optional Tech Pack ($749.99), which adds Rally mode, motor-slip regulation, hill-hold control, and the up/down Quickshifter+. Intended for aggressive off-road riding, Rally mode delivers full power and 1:1 throttle response, or it can be customized with maps from other ride modes. It also allows rear-wheel slip to be adjusted (levels 1-9) on the fly using up (+) and down (-) buttons on the left switchgear. The same buttons are used to set, resume, and adjust speed for cruise control, which is standard.
Rally mode also activates a special screen on the new, larger 7-inch color TFT display that shows slip level and gear position in extra-large numerals. On the TFT’s default and sub-menu screens, the information is shown using bold, vivid fonts and graphics. The angle of the TFT display can be adjusted, and the surface is scratch- and glare-resistant. It’s easy to read even in bright sunlight, and the background color automatically changes from white to black in low-light situations. KTM has always had an intuitive menu system, and it is now even easier to use, aided by redesigned switches.
Greg’s Gear: Helmet:Fly Racing Odyssey Adventure Modular Jacket and Pants: Fly Racing Terra Trek Gloves:Alpinestars Patro Gore-Tex Boots: Forma Adventure
Bluetooth connectivity is available via the KTM MY RIDE smartphone app, which will display turn-by-turn navigation, mu-sic, and incoming calls on the TFT. The storage compartment in front of the fuel tank is waterproof and has a USB charging port, though it cannot be locked. KTM’s keyless Race On system, which uses a remote fob to turn on the bike, lock/unlock the steering, and open the gas cap, offers extra security with a new Anti-Relay Attack mode.
Heading for the Hills
The 1290 Super Adventure R is KTM’s top-dog ADV for the dirt, but like any adventure bike in the open-class segment, most of its miles will be logged on pavement. That’s why it has Sport, Street, and Rain ride modes, a Road ABS mode, cruise control, and removable rubber inserts in its cleated footpegs. Although the new Bridgestone AX41 tires have an off-road bias, the big-block tread rolls smoothly on the road with minimal noise and provides decent cornering grip.
With photographer Kevin Wing on my six, we rode more than 200 paved miles to reach Lone Pine, a high-desert town that sits at 3,700 feet in California’s Owens River valley. A few miles to the west, the Sierra Nevada range forms a jagged wall that towers more than 10,000 feet above the valley floor. On a clear day, standing just about anywhere in Lone Pine provides an unobstructed view of 14,505-foot Mount Whitney, the highest peak in the lower 48 states.
We were battered by severe headwinds on the ride to Lone Pine. The KTM’s short, rally-style windscreen, which can be hand-adjusted up a couple inches, provides only modest wind protection. Handguards are standard, and the lower pods of the horseshoe-shaped fuel tank (a design also used on the 890 Adventure) provides some lower body protection. Wrapped around the new tank is fresh bodywork with large exit vents for the dual radiators. With most of the fuel located in the pods on either side of the engine, the upper tank area was made slimmer to facilitate stand-up riding.
The two-up seat was also redesigned. It has firm, supportive padding and grippy cover material, and the height of the pi-lot’s portion was lowered from 35 to 34.6 inches. Behind the pillion seat is a sturdy aluminum luggage rack with integrated passenger grab handles. The rack provided a convenient place to mount Nelson-Rigg’s 30-liter Hurricane Waterproof Backpack/Tail Pack to carry my gear.
As with many full-size adventure bikes, the KTM has a spacious cockpit with an upright seating position, generous legroom, and a comfortable reach to its wide, tapered aluminum handlebar. Seat height is fixed, but handlebar position, clutch and brake lever reach, and gear shifter and brake pedal height can all be adjusted to suit different riders.
In the rolling foothills between Lone Pine and the Sierra Nevada lay the Alabama Hills, a group of rock formations that for many years has been a popular filming location for westerns and other movies. The area is crisscrossed with sandy roads and trails, making it an ideal place to evaluate the 1290’s off-road chops. Before leaving the pavement, I aired down the AX41 tires from the recommended 35/42 psi to 30 psi at both ends for better traction. The TFT’s bike info screen shows a schematic of the 1290, and at the lower pressure the wheels changed from green to red and the tire-pressure-monitoring system issued a warning (which can be cleared by pressing a button). To maximize off-road capability as well as tire choices, the 1290 has a 21-inch front and 18-inch rear wheelset. Spoked aluminum rims are made by Alpina, and they have an O-ring seal system that accommodates tubeless tires.
Riding an adventure bike off-road, especially a powerful one that weighs 539 pounds, comes with abuse. Tubular-steel lower crash bars and a big skid plate are standard equipment, as are a centerstand and integrated mounts for optional saddlebags. The 1290’s greatest asset for off-road riding is its WP XPLOR suspension, which was originally developed for and is still used on KTM’s EXC enduro models. The fully adjustable setup offers 8.7 inches of travel at both ends (ground clearance is 9.5 inches). The 48mm inverted fork has compression in the right leg and rebound in the left, both easily adjustable with dials on the fork caps. Out back, a PDS (Progressive Damping System) monoshock offers both low- and high-speed compression, rebound, and a remote preload adjuster. Damping settings were revised to provide greater control, and the rear shock now offers more bottoming resistance.
The high-quality suspension is incredibly forgiving. It compensates for mistakes and minimizes drama, absorbing hits big and small to keep the chassis from getting out of shape. The 1290 also has a steering damper made by WP, which helps keep front wheel deflections from becoming white-knuckle headshakes. When riding a big ADV off-road, it pays to be judicious with line choice, but soft sand, ruts, and other obstacles often have other plans. Time and again, the 1290 allowed for corrections to be made or dealt with the unexpected in a way that translated into trust and confidence.
On one long stretch of two-track in the Carrizo Plain National Monument, I was up on the pegs and humming along at speed when the road beneath me suddenly disappeared. A small gully had snuck up on me, and I launched off the lip and landed hard on the opposite face. The suspension fully compressed but didn’t bottom out abruptly, and the bike stayed on course. I was chastened by my oversight but relieved by the outcome.
The 1290’s Off-road and Rally ride modes, especially the latter’s adjustability for throttle response and rear-wheel spin (it also turns off wheelie control), allow the engine’s power to be tailored to conditions. With a linear power curve and a flat torque spread, it’s easy to dial in just what you need for big powerslides or to slowly navigate a tricky rock garden. The slip/assist clutch provides good feel at the lever, the quickshifter simplifies gear changes, and the Off-road ABS allows the rear wheel to be locked up as needed.
As good as the 1290 Super Adventure R is off-road, it’s also highly capable and an absolute blast to ride on paved backroads. Those who don’t plan to do much off-road exploring will get more mileage and better grip out of a set of 90/10 adventure tires, but the 40/60 Bridgestones allow deep lean angles and provide good straight-line stability.
The appeal of adventure bikes is their ability to do it all. You could mount luggage on the 1290 and ride solo or with a passenger to the nearest campground or clear across the country. Its 6.1-gallon tank encourages long rides between fuel stops. Over the course of our 1,000-mile test, we averaged 36.4 mpg and 222 miles of range. With headwinds on the free-way and aggressive on- and off-road riding, fuel economy dipped as low as 30 mpg (184 miles). In mellower conditions, we got 44.3 mpg (271 miles).
Once you arrive at your destination, you can drop the luggage and explore what begins when the pavement ends. No, you can’t ride a big ADV like it’s a dual-sport. But with a little restraint and sound judgment, the 1290 Super Adventure R can take you to places well off the beaten path. There are more than one million miles of unpaved roads in this country and millions more beyond our borders. What are you waiting for?
2022 KTM 1290 SUPER ADVENTURE R SPECS
Base Price: $19,499 Price as Tested: $20,249 (Tech Pack) Warranty: 1 yr., 12,000 miles Website:ktm.com ENGINE Type: Liquid-cooled, transverse 75-degree V-Twin, DOHC w/ 4 valves per cyl. Displacement: 1,301cc Bore x Stroke: 108 x 71mm Compression Ratio: 13.1:1 Valve Insp. Interval: 18,600 miles Fuel Delivery: Keihin EFI w/ 52mm throttle bodies x 2 Lubrication System: Dry sump, 3.8 qt. cap. Transmission: 6-speed, hydraulically actuated slip/assist wet clutch Final Drive: X-ring chain CHASSIS Frame: Chromoly steel trellis w/ engine as stressed member, aluminum subframe & cast aluminum swingarm Wheelbase: 61.3 in. Rake/Trail: 25.3 degrees/4.4 in. Seat Height: 34.6 in. Suspension, Front: 48mm inverted fork, fully adj. w/ 8.7 in. travel Rear: Single PDS shock, fully adj. w/ 8.7 in. travel Brakes, Front: Dual 320mm floating discs w/ 4-piston radial calipers & ABS Rear: Single 267mm floating disc w/ 2-piston caliper & ABS Wheels, Front: Spoked tubeless, 2.50 x 21 in. Rear: Spoked tubeless, 4.25 x 18 in. Tires, Front: 90/90-21 Rear: 150/70-18 Wet Weight: 539 lbs. Load Capacity: 453 lbs. GVWR: 992 lbs. PERFORMANCE Horsepower: 126.4 hp @ 9,100 rpm (rear-wheel dyno, Sport mode) Torque: 87.7 lb-ft @ 8,000 rpm (rear-wheel dyno, Sport mode) Fuel Capacity: 6.1 gals. Fuel Consumption: 36.4 mpg Estimated Range: 222 miles
Another crop of returning 2022 models, as well as a couple for 2023, has been announced. Joining those listed above are 10 additional models in four categories, including sport, miniMOTO, dual-sport, and scooter.
Headlining the announcement is the legendary CBR1000RR-R Fireblade SP, which in 2022 adopts important new performance upgrades to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the Fireblade’s original introduction in Europe (followed a year later in the U.S.).
Also returning for 2022 are the CBR650R sportbike and CB650R naked bike, both of which come standard with ABS. On the miniMOTO front, the 2023 edition of the popular Grom is back, as is the 2022 edition of the retro Trail 125. The PCX also returns for 2022, continuing as the benchmark model among scooters, and joined by the 2023 Ruckus.
Three dual-sport machines were also announced – the popular CRF300L; its adventure-focused sibling, the CRF300L Rally; and the classic XR650L, the latter in a new color.
“We recognize that motorcycling comes in many forms, a fact that is reflected in today’s announcement,” said Brandon Wilson, American Honda Manager of Sports & Experiential. “The models included are each unique, but they share a commitment to delivering the enjoyment of two-wheel recreation. We’re proud of the disparate nature of the motorcycling community, and we’re happy to serve all of its members in 2022 and beyond.”
To celebrate the original, groundbreaking CBR900RR and a record of continuous challenges since the introduction of that game-changer, Honda offers a stunning 30th Anniversary version of the CBR1000RR-R Fireblade SP. For 2022, development of this model’s inline four-cylinder engine centers on mid-corner acceleration: the intake ports, airbox, airbox funnels and exhaust mid-section are all revised to deliver extra midrange power. The final-drive sprocket has gone up three teeth for stronger acceleration through each ratio, and quick-shifter performance has been upgraded. Honda Selectable Torque Control (HSTC) has also been optimized, with feedback from HRC’s riders, for refined rear-tire traction management, and throttle feel has improved even further.
The 2022 Honda CBR1000RR-R Fireblade SP will be available in Pearl White with an MSRP of $28,900, and it will be in dealerships in July 2022.
2022 Honda CBR650R
Designed to be appreciated on the street, but drawing inspiration from the supersport realm, the CBR650R excites riders with its sharp lines, complete bodywork, and corner-carving abilities, but it also delivers comfort, practicality, and value. A full-fairing sport variant of the standard CB650R, this model has a high-quality Showa Separate Function Big Piston fork, stylish aesthetics and excellent emissions performance. With a finely tuned chassis delivering light, responsive handling, and a high-revving inline 4-cylinder engine that offers enjoyable power, the CBR650R is exciting to ride and a pleasure to own, a gratifying intersection of values for the modern sportbike rider.
The 2022 Honda CBR650R will be available in Matte Black Metallic with an MSRP of $9,799, and it will be in dealerships in August 2022.
2022 Honda CB650R
Honda’s iconic CB moniker evokes a proud legacy of middleweight machines that boast user-friendly four-cylinder engines mated to nimble, confidence-inspiring chassis. That’s also an accurate description of the CB650R, which features a Showa Separate Function Big Piston fork, excellent emissions performance, striking aesthetics, and comfortable ergonomics. Showcasing Honda’s Neo Sports Café design theme through its smooth lines and compact packaging, the CB650R is a popular and enjoyable naked bike that builds on the CB history of catering to diverse riding experiences, from daily commutes to exhilarating outings on tight, twisting backroads.
The 2022 Honda CB650R will be available in Matte Black Metallic with an MSRP of $9,299, and it will be in dealerships in September 2022.
The undisputed emperor of the miniMOTO world and the spawner of a vibrant subculture of fun-seekers, Honda’s Grom inspires a cross-demographic army of enthusiasts who embrace the diminutive model with remarkable passion. Its low seat height and approachability make it an unintimidating option for new riders to learn with, while its modular styling and peppy performance make it an entertaining plaything for experienced riders and a customization platform for those looking for an amusing project. It’s no wonder that the Grom continues to be one of the powersports industry’s most popular motorcycle models.
The 2023 Honda Grom will be available in Matte Black Metallic, Cherry Red, and Force Silver Metallic for the non-ABS model (MSRP is $3,499) and Pearl White for the ABS model (MSRP is $3,799). It will be in dealerships in April 2022.
When it comes to fun, approachable, popular miniMOTO models, no manufacturer even comes close to Honda, and the Trail 125 is a prime example of one such machine that also pays tribute to the past. The model harkens back to a golden era of motorcycling when there was seemingly a CT model on the bumper rack of every motor home but, like Honda’s nostalgic Monkey and Super Cub, it also incorporates the modern joys of practical design and hassle-free technology. Compared to the urban-focused Super Cub on which it is based, the Trail 125 has a number of rugged upgrades, making it ideal for casual trekking on- and off-road.
The 2022 Honda Trail 125 will be available in Glowing Red with an MSRP of $3,999, and it will be in dealerships in April 2022.
The motorcycle industry’s top-selling dual-sport model, the CRF300L boasts strong power, low weight and excellent on- and off-road performance, while also delivering unparalleled value, reliability, and styling. The model has a broad powerband, predictable handling, and aesthetic cues that are carried over from Honda’s CRF Performance line, and it’s available in standard and ABS versions, both of which are ready to provide low-cost transportation and true dual-sport adventure.
The 2022 Honda CRF300L will be available in Red with an MSRP of $5,349 without ABS and $5,649 with ABS. It will be in dealerships in April 2022.
Based on the standard CRF300L, but with comfort-focused upgrades including handguards, more fuel capacity, and a frame-mounted windscreen, the CRF300L Rally evokes images of the Dakar Rally while delivering practicality and value. More suitable for long-distance adventuring than its standard sibling, the Rally version is also a stellar commuter.
The 2022 Honda CRF300L Rally will be available in Red with an MSRP of $6,099 without ABS and $6,399 with ABS. It will be in dealerships in April 2022.
2022 Honda XR650L
Yes, the XR650L has been a familiar part of Honda’s lineup for many years, but there’s a reason the tried-and-true dual-sport model continues to be popular with customers. It’s highly adaptable, opening the door to adventure on single-track trails, dirt roads, and backroads, while also delivering capable transportation in the city. The natural result of those characteristics – plus a proud Baja heritage – is a diehard following of riders, who will be pleased to know that the model has received a styling facelift for 2022.
The 2022 Honda XR650L will be available in White with an MSRP of $6,999, and it will be in dealerships in April 2022.
2022 Honda PCX
Honda’s PCX is the ultimate tool for tackling urban environments in style, continuing to set the standard for scooter design and technology. Equipped with a freeway-capable engine, the PCX is equally suitable for new riders and more experienced customers, delivering performance, fuel economy, great handling, a comfortable ride, and simple operation – all attributes that are vital in the scooter category.
The 2022 Honda PCX will be available in Pearl White with an MSRP of $3,899 without ABS and $4,099 with ABS. It will be in dealerships in April 2022.
2023 Honda Ruckus
When it comes to little two-wheelers that ooze personality and attitude, it’s tough to top Honda’s unique Ruckus, the model that launched an entire scooter-customization subculture. With an exposed frame and dual round headlights contributing to an industrial-looking design, plus practical features like reliability, fuel efficiency, and nimble handling, the Ruckus a great choice as a platform for personalization or affordable, around-town transportation.
The 2023 Honda Ruckus will be available in Gray, White/Metallic Blue, and Metallic Blue/Tan with an MSRP of $2,899, and it will be in dealerships in April 2022.
Heavyweight adventure bikes are built to munch miles and tackle trails. The brief sounds simple, but balancing the demands of tarmac and terrain is a subtle art. Most manufacturers favor one side of the on-/off-road equation. Instead of splitting the difference, though, the 2023 Triumph Tiger 1200 splits the field, catering to long-haul road trippers with the GT series and intrepid explorers with the Rally variants.
The thoroughly updated Tiger 1200 didn’t just assume a split identity, it also went on a crash diet, shedding a claimed 55 pounds. To pack on extra muscle, Triumph repurposed the 1,160cc inline-Triple from the 2022 Speed Triple 1200 RS to pump out 148 horsepower (at 9,000 rpm) and 96 lb-ft of torque (at 7,000 rpm). Surround that punchy powerplant with a lightweight trellis frame, a cast-aluminum Tri-Link swingarm with shaft final drive, and Showa semi-active suspension, and you end up with one capable cat.
The Tiger 1200 variants may share the same DNA, but they express different traits. The GT and Rally models have different headstock angles, suspension travel, damping rates, ride modes, and curb weights. Those differences allow the GT to pound the pavement while the Rally tears up the trail, with Pro and Explorer versions of each, the latter with more fuel capacity and other features for long-haul travel (including heated seats, a tire-pressure monitoring system, and blind-spot radar). With the latest-generation Tiger 1200 primed to take on the competition, we tested the GT Pro, GT Explorer, Rally Pro, and Rally Explorer (but not the base-model GT) variants on Portugal’s picturesque backroads and enduro tracks to determine whether these heavyweight adventurers can satisfy the needs of different ADV riders.
GO GET ’EM, TIGER
At the heart of the Tiger 1200 is Triumph’s liquid-cooled, 12-valve, 1,160cc inline-Triple engine. The mighty mill shares the same bore, stroke, and compression ratio as the Speed Triple 1200 RS, but a 270-degree crank, a 1-3-2 piston firing order, and shaft final drive endow the Tiger with a personality all its own. Those preparations outfit the Tiger 1200 for life on the open road and off the beaten path.
A steady torque curve and linear powerband make the Tiger ready to romp, with usable power throughout the rev range. In Tiger trim, the big Triple with a T-plane crank may not boast the most stimulating power profile in the class, but what the 1200 loses in outright horsepower numbers, it makes up for in character. Between 4,000-7,000 rpm, the engine emits a bellicose growl, and it roars up to its 9,500-rpm redline.
Unfortunately, that pleasing exhaust note is accompanied by extra vibrations just above 6,000 rpm. The footpegs buzz first and the vibes reach the bars in the higher registers. Luckily, the mill only spins 4,000 rpm at 70 mph in 6th gear, remaining comfortable for long-distance journeys. At a more spirited pace, those vibrations aren’t top of mind. During slower city riding, short shifting quelled the tremors and softened the power delivery.
That same approach benefits trail riding, too. On the road, the direct line between the rider’s right wrist and the rear wheel lets the Tiger pounce out of corners. The torque-rich midrange that suits the road, however, can overwhelm grip in the dirt. The tractable Triple is just as happy to spin up or chug along, and I quickly adapted my inputs to the conditions. Triumph’s ride modes also help tame the Tiger.
Road, Rain, and Sport ride modes come standard on all models and adjust the Triple’s character accordingly. The GT Pro and GT Explorer add Off-Road and Rider (custom) modes, and the Rally Pro and Rally Explorer go one step further by adding an Off-Road Pro mode. Each mode dials the Tiger’s throttle response, damping settings, ABS, and traction control to the occasion, allowing the big-bore ADV to adapt to any environment.
The Road and Rain modes live up to their names with usable power and increased ABS and TC intervention. The Tiger bears its claws in Sport mode, with a stiffened suspension, reduced traction control, and peppy throttle response that encourages a lively pace. Off-Road lowers the thresholds of both traction control and ABS actuation, while Off-Road Pro disables both for unfettered fun. With a dedicated button at the left switchgear, riders can quickly toggle between the ride modes while the Tiger is on the move.
ONE AGILE CAT
While the Tiger’s engine is the star of the show, its new Showa semi-active suspension is hardly an understudy. It offers automatic rear preload adjustment and two damping maps – Road and Off-Road – which are preselected with on-road and off-road ride modes, and damping is adjustable over nine levels within each map, from Comfort (soft) to Sport (firm). Users can fine-tune the settings on the fly to deal with pothole-strewn roads, fast-paced twisties, technical trails, long-haul cruising – you name it.
Regardless of conditions, neither end of the nine-setting spectrum felt too spongy or hard-edged. Even in Comfort mode, the fork yields sufficient support under heavy braking without diving excessively. Conversely, the shock doesn’t buck the rider out of the seat in the Sport setting. Each mode prepares the chassis for differing conditions, but the system’s electronically controlled valves preserve the Tiger’s composure.
Users will inevitably find the suspension’s limits off the beaten path, but due to the Rally’s 8.7 inches of suspension travel and the GT’s 7.9 inches, bottoming the Tiger isn’t easy. Of course, a brisk pace on rutty trails will tax the suspension, but the semi-automatic system remained stout on the fire roads and technical singletracks we explored on the Tiger 1200 Rally Pro.
In concert with the adaptive suspenders, Triumph outfits the Tiger 1200 with superbike-worthy Brembo Stylema calipers. A Magura HC-1 radial front master cylinder provides precise feel and feedback at the lever, and braided hoses maintain consistent performance. The system’s finesse shined when modulating the binders on the trail, yet there’s more than enough bite and stopping power when hammering the brakes into a paved hairpin. The setup’s dependable braking performance increases confidence and complements the Tiger’s sporty ambitions.
Thanks to the communicative and responsive chassis, including a new, 12-lbs-lighter trellis frame, the Tiger 1200’s sharp on-road handling belies its 540- to 575-lb curb weight (depending on variant). The heavyweight adventurer feels light on its toes, and correcting a line mid-turn is effortless. As expected, the GT series attacks the tarmac best thanks to its 19-inch/18-inch cast-aluminum wheels shod with street-optmized Metzeler Tourance 90/10 tires. However, the Rally Pro and Rally Explorer are no slouches on the asphalt, even with 21-inch/18-inch tubeless spoked wheels shod with more dirt-oriented Metzeler Karoo tires. Despite the Rally’s slight disadvantage on the street, riders with even modest off-road ambitions will benefit from the trim’s capability without losing too much pavement performance.
In the dirt, it’s easy to tell when the Tiger breaks traction, allowing the rider to adjust throttle application accordingly. After sliding the Tiger through several corners during the off-road day, a ham-fisted whack on the throttle quickly brought the rear wheel around. Luckily, the Off-Road mode’s traction control helped me save the potential low-side crash. Expert off-roaders will spring for the Off-Road Pro’s aidless experience, but the standard Off-Road setting’s safety nets will suit many novice-to-intermediate riders.
RIDE THE TIGER
The Tiger 1200’s ergonomics puts the rider in a commanding position to tackle both on- and off-road sections, with a roomy cockpit that offers enough space for the rider to move fore and aft. The two Explorer variants raise the handlebars to accommodate the larger 7.9-gallon fuel tank (up from 5.3 gallons on the GTs), but it doesn’t sacrifice comfort in the process.
While the Tiger’s ergos fit my 5-foot, 10-inch frame, results will vary based on the rider’s dimensions and weight. The same goes for the windscreen. In the lowest setting, the screen pushed oncoming air up to my shoulders. The highest position shifted that current to the peak of my helmet, introducing reverberating wind noise and batting about my head. For that reason, I kept the one-hand adjustable screen in the low setting, but customers may remedy the situation with a windscreen extension from Triumph’s accessories catalog.
On the technology front, the Tiger 1200’s user interface is intuitive and straightforward. A dedicated home button on the right switchpod opens the primary menu, and a joystick at the left lets riders quickly toggle through settings. Unlike some of its competitors, the Tiger’s folder system is easy to navigate and requires a minimal learning curve. In certain modes, the 7-inch TFT display even prompts riders to revert to the previous ride settings, allowing users to seamlessly jump back on the trail without resetting ABS, traction control, and suspension damping options.
The Tiger’s new blindspot detection system, which is standard on the Explorer models, matches that convenience with safety. Similar to the tech found on the Ducati Multistrada V4 S, the Continental-developed system utilizes a rear-facing radar and mirror-mounted lights to inform riders when other vehicles enter their blindspot. The tech accurately detected both cars and motorcycles during my time with the Tiger 1200, but the light location doesn’t always grab the rider’s attention. Whereas the Multistrada places the notification lights at the top outer corner of each mirror, Triumph positions them at the lower edge, which may not be in the user’s line of view when looking far up the road. The system works just fine, but Tiger 1200 riders may want to do a double take before committing to a lane change.
Other useful features that are standard on the higher-spec Pro and Explorer models include cruise control, a quickshifter, cornering lights, hill hold control, LED auxiliary lights, heated grips, a centerstand, a skid plate, engine protection bars (Explorers and Rally Pro), and fuel tank protection bars (Rally Explorer).
OUT OF THE BAG
With the introduction of the 2023 Tiger 1200, Triumph returns its biggest cat to the adventure lineup. It may have taken Hinckley a few years to overhaul the heavyweight ADV, but the 55-pound weight savings, semi-active suspension, T-Plane inline-Triple, and other upgrades were worth the wait. The GT and Rally lines make all that fun accessible to both worldly travelers and rugged overlanders.
Pricing starts at $19,100 for the standard Tiger 1200 GT, which is competitively priced and equipped to take on its main rival, the BMW R 1250 GS. The higher-spec Pro and Explorer variants add more features to suit different on-road, off-road, and long-haul missions. The agility of the GT, GT Pro, and Rally Pro along with long-distance capabilities of the GT Explorer and Rally Explorer position the Tiger 1200 as a suitable option for all styles of adventure riding. Yes, balancing the demands of tarmac and terrain is a subtle art, but Triumph proves that it’s possible to have the best of both worlds. Choose your own adventure.
2023 Triumph Tiger 1200 GT Pro / GT Explorer / Rally Pro / Rally Explorer Specs
Base Price: $21,400 / $23,100 / $22,500 / $24,200 Website:triumphmotorcycles.com Engine Type: Liquid-cooled, transverse inline-Triple, DOHC w/ 4 valves per cyl. Displacement: 1,160cc Bore x Stroke: 90.0 x 60.8mm Horsepower: 148 hp @ 9,000 rpm (claimed) Torque: 96 lb-ft @ 7,000 rpm (claimed) Transmission: 6-speed, hydraulically actuated slip/assist wet clutch w/ quickshifter Final Drive: Shaft Wheelbase: 61.4 in. Rake/Trail: 24.1 degrees/4.7 in. (GT models) / 23.7 degrees/4.4 in. (Rally models) Seat Height: 33.5/34.3 in. (GT models) / 34.4/35.2 in. (Rally models) Wet Weight: 540 lbs. / 562 lbs. / 549 lbs. / 575 lbs. (claimed) Fuel Capacity: 5.3 gals. (Pro models) / 7.9 gals. (Explorer models)