Last year’s Honda Gold Wing was the first re-design of the luxury tourer by Honda in roughly 15 years. The result? A stunning machine that we raved about in our ride review.
Taking nearly as long to thoroughly re-design its luxury sport tourer, Honda now introduces a new Pan-European (which should be known as the ST1300 when introduced in the U.S.) to the European press. Although sporting the same engine layout (a V-4), the engine, and the entire machine, is brand new. Just like it did with the new Gold Wing, Honda went to an aluminum frame, for less weight and increased rigidity. The Gold Wing handles like a much lighter bike and we expect the new ST to do likewise.
Important new design features include push-button adjustable windscreen (with a very wide range of adjustability), three-position seat height adjustment, fuel-injected 1260cc engine that is lighter and smaller than the engine in the prior model, beefy 45mm forks to compliment the stiffer frame, dual-element fuel tank (containing 29 litres in two separate compartments, including one under the seat – nearly 8 gallons), improved fuel and aerodynamic efficiency (together with huge fuel capacity makes for tremendous range), and thorough instrumentation (care to know the ambient temperature?).
With increased luggage capacity (including two, huge glove boxes) and a more upright seating position (see illustration), Honda’s obvious aim is the best of both worlds — sportier handling with more luxury and comfort. Together with the thrust Honda promises from the huge, new engine, we are expecting quite a sport tourer. We can’t wait to test one.