Honda’s Africa Twin is a hard-core off-road machine. Honda went to great heights (pun intended) to prove that this was indeed the case, and in doing so earned the Africa Twin the unique distinction of breaking the record for highest altitude reached by a twin-cylinder motorcycle.
Also known as the CRF1000L, the Africa Twin is powered by a 998-cc parallel-twin engine producing 95 PS at 7,500 rpm, and 98 Nm at 6,000 rpm mated to a six-speed transmission with a slipper clutch. Five riders braved the treacherous slopes of the Nevado Ojos del Salado which is located between Argentina and Chile, and is the world’s highest active volcano. They reached a staggering 5,965 metres or 19,570 feet, (close to 2,000 feet higher than Khardung La).
Led by Fabio Mossini, Enduro Champion with Honda’s Sud America team, the riders had to traverse through gravel, mud, ice, and battered tarmac with temperatures dropping to -5°C. The ascend to the top of the peak was completed in 24 hours, and the Africa Twins weren’t drastically modified for the journey either, with the bikes being different from the stock variant through only a Termignoni exhaust, revised final sprockets, new Metzeler MC360TM tyres, and some choice pickings of optional accessories from those available at Honda.
We expect the Africa Twin to make it to Indian shores later this year, so who knows, maybe someone (I volunteer!) will take it up to Khardung La soon enough as well?