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2018 Honda GoldWing at a glance

The 7-inch full-color TFT liquid crystal display screen provides infotainment-related information (for the audio and navigation systems) as well as managing the HSTC and suspension adjustment. Information is displayed in differentiated segments in a very functional order, so the rider can get all the relevant data with the minimum of eye movement.
The 7-inch full-color TFT liquid crystal display screen provides infotainment-related information (for the audio and navigation systems) as well as managing the HSTC and suspension adjustment. Information is displayed in differentiated segments in a very functional order, so the rider can get all the relevant data with the minimum of eye movement.

  • 2018 GoldWing arrives in Australia February 2018
  • Three models – GoldWing – GoldWing Tour – Goldwing Tour Premium
  • Big Engine Update for the flat-six now with 170Nm @ 4500rpm
  • Seven-speed DCT for GoldWing Tour and GoldWing Tour Premium
  • Conventional six-speed with slipper clutch for GoldWing Tour
  • Fly-By-Wire with four riding modes – Hill Start Assist
  • Changing riding modes also alters suspension, traction control and ABS
  • New double wishbone front suspension and frame
  • 48kg lighter – Now 365kg wet
  • Massive brakes front and rear
  • Apple CarPlay with 7” TFT display with nav and audio
Double wishbone front suspension advantages include a reduction in sliding friction (from bump deflections and steering input) that a standard telescopic fork creates as the stanchions travel up and down in the fork leg; the new Gold Wing front end is 30% smoother. Bearings are used in all shaft bush areas for steering and suspension stroke, further reducing friction.
Double wishbone front suspension advantages include a reduction in sliding friction (from bump deflections and steering input) that a standard telescopic fork creates as the stanchions travel up and down in the fork leg; the new Gold Wing front end is 30% smoother. Bearings are used in all shaft bush areas for steering and suspension stroke, further reducing friction.

So for 2018 the GL1800 Gold Wing takes a new direction and is brand new from the wheels-up. It still has an evocative, flat six-cylinder engine that delivers an avalanche of torque and power, and it still remains Honda’s flagship premium tourer, loaded with features that allow two people to ride in style. Yet it’s smaller, much lighter and much more agile – very much a true ‘rider’s motorcycle’.

It presents a unique silhouette and counterpoints comfort with the dynamic abilities of chassis and engine, adding the traditional Gold Wing premium level of fit, finish and materials.
It presents a unique silhouette and counterpoints comfort with the dynamic abilities of chassis and engine, adding the traditional Gold Wing premium level of fit, finish and materials.

Mr Yutaka Nakanishi, Project Leader 18YM GL1800 Gold Wing

“We wanted our new Gold Wing to maintain its luxury but to be a much more ‘rounded’ motorcycle. A machine as useful to its owner around the city as it is out on tour. And more exciting to ride than ever. So we started from a blank piece of paper and made the Gold Wing smaller and lighter, and added all the technological hardware and software the modern rider could wish for. Now, just as in 1975, it remains a flagship model for Honda – and we are very proud to start this new chapter for such an important name.”

2018 Honda GoldWing
2018 Honda GoldWing

And as a result the new Gold Wing’s appeal is broader, reaching out to a younger generation of motorcyclists that may have overlooked – or simply not been aware of – the previous design. Honda promises that the new machine is just as happy on an urban commute as it is the open road, the Gold Wing is now a bike for all reasons, rather than just one.

In response to the evolutions of demographics and the motorcycle market, the development team in charge of the bike’s future have decided on a radical departure from what would be a traditional update trajectory.
In response to the evolutions of demographics and the motorcycle market, the development team in charge of the bike’s future have decided on a radical departure from what would be a traditional update trajectory.

Model Overview

The new ‘face’ is daringly forward-slanting; combined with the compact fairing proportions, it presents an energetic frontal signature.
The new ‘face’ is daringly forward-slanting; combined with the compact fairing proportions, it presents an energetic frontal signature.

Sharing a common engine and chassis platform, the new ‘Wing will be available as the base model GL1800 Gold Wing, and as a ‘Tour’ edition with top box, which will also offer a version equipped with DCT and air bag. Depending on the variant, up to 48kg has been saved compared to the previous model.

The previous Gold Wing featured an expansive design and attitude. The new Gold Wing is a completely different proposition and replaces the relaxed lines of the outgoing model with a more honed, athletic ethos. Key words the Honda team used during development were ‘Refined Shape, Taut Styling’.
The previous Gold Wing featured an expansive design and attitude. The new Gold Wing is a completely different proposition and replaces the relaxed lines of the outgoing model with a more honed, athletic ethos. Key words the Honda team used during development were ‘Refined Shape, Taut Styling’.

The engine and chassis have been designed together, to move the riding position forward and create a much more compact motorcycle. The aluminium beam frame is constructed around the link front fork, which allows the engine to come further forward – as the front wheel moves up and down in a more vertical plane – while providing high-quality suspension control and front-end stability thanks to its stiffness and reduced friction. Suspension damping can also be adjusted electrically.

The new Gold Wing’s die-cast aluminium twin beam frame is designed to package the (now much more compact) engine in a tighter space, 40mm further forward. Its structural thickness has been optimised in each area to deliver a smooth and stable ride, from walking speed upwards, whether on tight city streets or out on the open road. The frame and swingarm together are 2kg lighter than the previous design.
The new Gold Wing’s die-cast aluminium twin beam frame is designed to package the (now much more compact) engine in a tighter space, 40mm further forward. Its structural thickness has been optimised in each area to deliver a smooth and stable ride, from walking speed upwards, whether on tight city streets or out on the open road. The frame and swingarm together are 2kg lighter than the previous design.

Optimised for size, the new flat six-cylinder engine has lost none of its power, torque and addictive delivery. Throttle By Wire has been added, with 4 rider modes; TOUR, SPORT, ECON and RAIN. Honda Selectable Torque Control (HSTC) maintains rear wheel traction while the suspension damping and Combined Brake System (CBS) alter depending on mode selected. Hill Start Assist (HSA) and Idling Stop add ease of use and improve fuel efficiency.

To realise the handling ambitions of the new chassis the 1,833cc engine too has been redrawn. Still as a horizontally-opposed flat six, but now with four valves per cylinder rather than two, much more compact in size and 6.2kg lighter. Peak power of 93kW arrives @ 5,500rpm, with peak torque of 170Nm delivered @ 4,500rpm. The bore size of 73mm (from 74mm) has been optimised to stroke of 73mm and bore pitch shortened 9mm; the left and right cylinders are offset 4mm and the cylinder sleeves are now aluminium. Compression ratio is set at 10.5:1.
To realise the handling ambitions of the new chassis the 1,833cc engine too has been redrawn. Still as a horizontally-opposed flat six, but now with four valves per cylinder rather than two, much more compact in size and 6.2kg lighter.
Peak power of 93kW arrives @ 5,500rpm, with peak torque of 170Nm delivered @ 4,500rpm. The bore size of 73mm (from 74mm) has been optimised to stroke of 73mm and bore pitch shortened 9mm; the left and right cylinders are offset 4mm and the cylinder sleeves are now aluminium. Compression ratio is set at 10.5:1.

The manual transmission is now 6-speed, while the new Dual Clutch Transmission (DCT) features 7-speeds, with clutch feel, shift speed and rpm range of up/downshifts tailored specifically to each riding mode. It also features a creep forward and back function. The manual machine employs the same reverse system as the previous design.

2018 Honda Gold Wing Tour
2018 Honda Gold Wing Tour

And much thought went into the Gold Wing’s paint finish. The upper bodywork features deeper tone colour, with thick clear-coat complemented by seats finished in high-quality, high-grain materials. The lower body is highlighted with vivid textures that make a strong visual statement.

2018 Honda GoldWing Tour
2018 Honda GoldWing Tour

  • GL1800 Gold Wing – Matte Majestic Silver.
  • GL1800 Gold Wing ‘Tour’ – Candy Argent Red and Pearl Glare White
  • GL1800 Gold Wing ‘Tour’ with DCT & air bag– Candy Argent Red/Darkness Black and Darkness Black metallic
2018 Honda GoldWing
2018 Honda GoldWing

2018 Honda GoldWing
2018 Honda GoldWing

New features like the smart key system, Apple CarPlay and Bluetooth connectivity bring even more convenience.
New features like the smart key system, Apple CarPlay and Bluetooth connectivity bring even more convenience.
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6 COMMENTS

  1. Best article yet on the new Wing’s specs.

    A lot of changes to the engine, but not sure how much of that matters if it’s putting out the same torque and only 6 more HP than my ’03. New/old overlay charts for torque and HP don’t show much difference other than a little at the top and bottom ends, where I don’t spend a lot of time. More gears and DCT will make more use of what power’s there, but this seems like a lot of new engine investment for basically no power difference. The better aero and weight will help, but seems like a lost opportunity.

    As far as their surveys showing most people only travel for three days, well I hope that works out for Honda, but the storage issue by itself just caused me to pull my deposit. Will have to wait for a saddlebag fix OEM or aftermarket.

    • The thorough redesign was improved fuel efficiency, weight reduction and the adaption of the DCT as the previous style motor would not have fitted in the bike with DCT. I believe the slight reduction in standard luggage capacity was again for weight loss and making the bike feel more agile and nimble than before. Time will tell if they have hit the right recipe.

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