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2001 Gold Wing Preview: Honda Redesigns the Family Jewel

Everyone expects Honda to replace the current Gold Wing model later this year. This is, perhaps, the most important motorcycle redesign by Honda in many years. The number of Gold Wing owners is huge, and many of them are looking to replace their aging 1500cc models (largely unchanged for nearly 15 years).

This artist’s impression gives you some idea of what the new model may look like (at least, what some people think it may look like). Mechanically, it is expected to have an 1800cc 6-cylinder engine — retaining the “flat six” configuration, rather than featuring a v-six.

Despite a somewhat retro appearance, the new Gold Wing is expected to have every modern convenience known to man (well, almost). Satellite navigation, internet connection capability, etc. If not standard, these features should be options available on the next Gold Wing.

The Gold Wing has been eclipsed, somewhat, as the world’s finest long distance tourer by BMW’s superb K1200LT. To regain its crown, the Gold Wing must not only surpass the current model with new features, but must possess improved handling. To this end, it is rumored that the new Gold Wing will feature an aluminum frame (and, perhaps, reduced weight).

In mid-September of this year, Honda should reveal the new Gold Wing in the flesh (both in Europe and in the United States). This motorcycle, which revolutionized travel by motorcycle after its introduction in the mid-1970s, is virtually a legend and something extremely important to Honda. You can be sure its replacement has been carefully thought out and designed. Whether it will hit the mark with buyers is another question — although,the loyalty factor among Gold Wing owners is extremely high.