Thursday, 17 September 2009
Looked at all sorts of bikes including Yamaha's XT range, Suzuki DRs and Hondas. Reliability and budget were key considerations. Especially reliability. In the end I got a 1999 Honda XRV750 Africa Twin. I'd heard good things about them from people who own them and also from people who had taken them on trips to Africa and around the world.
On the Africa Twin, MCN says "Big trail bike you really can take off road. The Honda XRV750 Africa Twin was one of the first Japanese monster trail / desert rally bikes and remains one of the best. Power output is much lower than the latest machines but the slimmer seat makes it easier to manage once you leave the Tarmac. It's not light though and even gentle drops can be costly".
They are right. Man it's heavy! 205kgs dry. It does feel solid though and not like it's about to break in two. It's tall aswell. Almost too tall for me. I'm 5 "8 and cannot rest my foot flat on the ground when stopped at the lights. Getting on the bike too is a good laugh for anyone watching, with me doing lots of hoppy, jumpy, shuffley actions before finally swinging my leg over the seat. But once in the saddle it's great. Such a high riding position and enough low down torquey grunt to hopefully see me through some fairly rough African roads. People who own these bikes tend to really love them and after having mine for a few months I can see why.