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 Honda - XLV Africa Twin
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Honda D2-492-28-18
Photo ou archives : F-M. Dumas

Capacity : 750
Model : XLV Africa Twin
Production : 1988 - 1996
Category : (On-Off) Dual Purpose


750 Africa Twin - 1988

A ship of the desert

The name "Africa Twin" alluded to the great Trans-African endurance rallies, though the Africa Twin was not actually derived from the remarkable NXR, which won the Paris-Dakar rallies of 1986-88. The first production off-road twin offered by Honda in 1987 was the 600 Transalp touring machine, a far cry from the two-wheeled desert ships which competed in the African rallies.

Authentic Desert Bike

The following year, the Africa Twin 650 eventually appeared. The Transalp was closely identified with the racing NXR. It retained the 52-degree V-twin with three valves per cylinder and liquid cooling. However, the strong sump shield, large fuel tank, twin headlamp, aluminum swing arm and its broad-shouldered stance signaled that here at last was an authentic desert bike.

A Potent Grand Tourer

In the course of various updates, this machine's displacement was increased from 750 to 1000cc and many detail improvements were made. It became a point of reference in the large-displacement, twin-cylinder, off-road category. Having demonstrated its great capabilities in Africa during the Paris-Dakar marathon, the Africa Twin became a prime choice as an effective grand touring machine that handled well, was reliable and was comfortable. Its highly flexible engine and well-balanced cycle components made its rider oblivious to the size and saddle height that had been bred on the tracks across the Sahara.


Engine: 742cc (81x72mm) water-cooled 52-degree V-twin four-stroke

Power Rating: 59 hp @ 7500 rpm

Valves: single overhead-camshaft; 3 valves per cylinder

Fuel System: carburetor

Transmission: 5-speed, chain final drive

Suspension: telescopic forks (front); swing arm with single damper (rear); travel 8. 7 inch (front); 8.3 inch (rear)

Brakes: twin discs (front); disc (rear)

Wheels: 21 inch (front); 17 inch (rear)

Weight: 463 lb

Maximum Speed: 109 mph

High, heavy and handsome, the Africa Twin rode as well as it looked. The original show model of 1988 set the style for the 1992 version (inset).

Motorcycle encyclopedia Moto Passion, realised by François-Marie Dumas, include almost 2000 photos presented with an exhaustive history of the motorcycles exhibited.

This unique collection has been realised with the participation of many specialists. With many thanks in particular to Yves Campion, Michael Dregni, Didier Ganneau, Jean Goyard, Helmut Krackowizer, Michel Montange, Christian Rey, Bernard Salvat, Mick Woollett, etc

One can order here

  • Original cards on paper (in french)
  • High resolution scans or original documents presented and signed with my name.

Please contact me at info@moto-collection.org for conditions and copyright.

© Tous droits réservés
François-Marie Dumas

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