New Honda Gold Wing GL1800

Touring Redefined

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The Honda Gold Wing, since its introduction as a naked 1000cc machine in 1975 has always been the ultimate in two-wheeled travel. And it’s a motorcycle that’s been very much on its own journey, growing in physical size and displacement over the decades, all the while creating an enduring and unrivalled reputation for luxury, quality and comfort.

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’.

Core to the previous Gold Wing’s appeal was its turbine-smooth flat six-cylinder engine, which produced torque from low rpm with a distinctive power delivery and feel that quickly became addictive. 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 125bhp 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 Unicam cylinder heads – the inlet valves are operated by finger-follower rocker arm, the exhaust valves by roller rocker arms – also employ a co-axial rocker-arm shaft for both inlet and exhaust, doing away with the old model’s valve lifter structure.

The combustion chambers are now a 4-valve ‘pentroof’ design (rather than a 2-valve ‘bathtub’) with the inlet ports designed to promote ‘tumble’ flows inside the cylinders thus improving efficiency. The piston skirts wear a molybdenum coating to reduce friction.

A stiffer crankshaft, constructed from SCM440H steel, allows a pin offset of -4mm and compared to the previous design the new engine is 33.5mm shorter in length. The crank sensor (which detects engine speed and piston position for EFI and ignition) has been moved from the front of the engine to the rear, reducing the distance between the front cover and crankshaft by 7mm.

The addition of Throttle By Wire (TBW) has brought with it 4 rider modes to alter the engine’s character and power delivery, linked to Honda Selectable Torque Control (HSTC), suspension damping and the Dual Combined Brake System (D-CBS).

  • TOUR mode is the base setting for comfort and power. It gives a direct 100% opening ratio between throttle grip and throttle body butterfly, with ‘default’ damping and front/rear brake force distribution.
  • SPORT serves up the highest throttle to butterfly ratio and delivers strong acceleration, with firmer damping and rear brake lever pressure.
  • ECON mode offers maximum fuel economy and easy cruising, with lower throttle to butterfly ratio and default damping and brake force.
  • RAIN turns the dial down to suit wet and slippery conditions, with lowest throttle to butterfly ratio, default braking force distribution and soft suspension damping.

A single throttle body has replaced the dual throttle bodies of the previous design, with revisions to the diameter and thickness of the intake manifold to save weight. Intake manifold volume, from the throttle valve to intake valve has been reduced by approximately 10%, speeding up airflow and improving response.

The new 6-speed manual gearbox lowers the engine speed when cruising at 60mph, compared to the previous 5-speed design. It’s also fitted with a ‘cam damper’ between the clutch and transmission, separating each inertial mass, reducing noise and improving shift quality/durability.

Honda’s unique Dual Clutch Transmission is a natural fit for the new Gold Wing engine and development revolved around DCT as the base. This is the third all-new generation of the system and the first to have 7-speeds, specifically designed for long-distance cruising; it’s also extremely smooth and fast shifting. And lighter than the 5-speed manual transmission fitted to the previous design.

DCT delivers consistent, seamless gear changes up or down and very quickly becomes second nature in use. It uses two clutches: one for start-up and 1st, 3rd , 5th and 7th gears: the other for 2nd, 4th and 6th, with the mainshaft for each clutch located inside the other for compact packaging.

Each clutch is independently controlled by its own electro-hydraulic circuit. When a gear change occurs, the system pre-selects the target gear using the clutch not currently in use. The first clutch is then electronically disengaged as, simultaneously, the second clutch engages.

The result is a consistent, fast and seamless gear change. Furthermore, as the twin clutches transfer drive from one gear to the next with minimal interruption of the drive to the rear wheel, any gear change shock and pitching of the machine is minimised, making the change feel direct as well as smooth. Extra benefits include durability (as the gears cannot be damaged by missing a gear) impossibility of stalling, low stress urban riding and reduced rider fatigue.

In the lower speed range of the new Gold Wing’s DCT system, the ratios are close, reducing shift-shock and in the higher speed range set wider apart to reduce engine rpm. In both speed ranges comfort is improved as shifting up or down is of the highest quality.

Shift noise and shock have been addressed throughout the development of the third generation of DCT. Noise damper rubbers on both ends of the fork guide and the master arm greatly reduce any impact sound during gear changes.

A spring damper has been installed between the clutch and the main shaft in order to absorb the torque in the rotational direction, thus reducing the noise and shock of the contact between the clutch and main shaft when shifting gears.

The new Gold Wing’s DCT features a 1.1mph forward Walking Mode with reverse of 10.7mph, operated instantly from a +/- switch on the left handlebar.

Of the main shafts with a double tube structure, the outer main shaft connected with the even-number gears is linked to the inner shaft with a chain, by way of the gears on the counter shaft. This structure gives outer main shaft the role of the reverse idle shaft, which has resulted in a lightweight reverse mechanism with a compact structure - with no need for any reverse idle shaft.

When activating Walking Mode the two clutches of DCT are utilised to enable moving backward with clutch #1 and moving forward with clutch #2. In this way, moving forward or backward at walking speed is now possible with only clutch control, without any need for gear shifting. Furthermore, the throttle-by-wire system controls speed by minutely controlling the clutch capacity, while maintaining a certain engine speed, assuring controllability with a sense of security in wide-ranging situations.

The 4 riding modes are interleaved with DCT. All share the same engine character, delivery and suspension settings as the MT model but add extra DCT-specific parameters. TOUR uses the default setting for smooth clutch engagement and gearshifts in AT mode, with a low-to-high rpm range for gear shifts. SPORT deploys a more direct clutch engagement, with gear shifts programmed in a mid-to-high rev range.

ECON has a soft clutch engagement, with low-to-mid rpm gear hold and default shifting feel. RAIN also operates a soft clutch, low-to-high rpm gear hold range and slower shifting in AT mode.

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’.

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

Before designing the luggage Honda took out research to see just how owners were using their Gold Wings. And that intelligence led to the decision to reduce the total luggage volume as most were ridden for shorter, 2-3 day tours, with no need to carry larger amounts.

Capacity of the fuel tank is 4 litres less at 21 litres. But as the new Gold Wing is so much lighter and more aerodynamic, improved fuel economy of 50.4 mpg means tank range is similar to the previous design.

Luxurious instrumentation creates a unique cockpit. Different low-contrast colours with dark tones are applied to the dials, of which the peripheral areas form cone-shaped slopes to create a feeling of depth. A ring with a metal texture surrounds each dial, and the graduations glow in LED, giving concrete depth and a calm, cool image.

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 navigation system is displayed on the 7-inch full-color TFT liquid crystal display screen in the central area of the instruments and now includes a gyrocompass, which means guidance is continued even inside a tunnel. Cancellation of any waypoint or ‘go home’ instruction operation while riding is now possible.

The Gold Wing is now compatible with Apple CarPlay, so the rider can utilise the personalised information and content inside their iPhone, such as telephone numbers and music playlists. Bluetooth connectivity has been adopted and a USB cable can also be plugged in.

Just as the new Gold Wing is lighter and more compact, its high-output audio amplifier system too has evolved. Lightweight speakers are sited to work with the new riding position and achieve a sound quality with vivid presence. A passenger audio control switch is available to ensure an even more pleasant riding experience; the switches are located on the upper part of the right pannier and adjusting the volume, switching the source and fast forwarding is possible.

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.

Another benefit of the double wishbone front suspension is the 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.

The steering input – via the dual fork holders – is also separated from the suspension provided by the single shock absorber and the Gold Wing’s yaw is now 40% nimbler and easier to steer. In addition, a patented steering cross tie-rod connects the handlebars to the front axle and the position of the handlebar pivot with less mass around it (plus siting of the handlebars) delivers an entirely natural feel to the rider.

The Dual Combined Brake System (D-CBS) optimally distributes braking force to the front and rear wheels. Whereas the ABS was operated by 2 motors on the previous model, both have been replaced by one smaller and lighter circulation type ABS modulator which has been integrated with the brake ECU, resulting in a 1.3kg weight saving for the braking system. It also operates in linkage with the current Riding Mode of choice, automatically adjusting the braking characteristics to the riding situation, enhancing security. Dual 320mm front discs are gripped by 6 piston calipers, the rear 316mm disc by a 3-piston caliper.

A first for Honda is the Gold Wing’s new Pro-Arm; the old design used tapered bearings plus pivot point plates of the necessary thickness to provide correct rigidity. The new Pro-Arm design uses a redesigned (patent-pending) pivot shaft structure and attaches to the frame on its left side. The right side serves as a maintenance access. This has changed the stress and forces on the frame’s swingarm pivot plates, allowing much greater freedom of design and making the machine easier to manage; it also contributes to stability. Pro-Link provides progressive suspension action and comfort – the link plates have been optimised and spherical joints are used throughout, cancelling out torsion.

Damping level is also adjusted electrically relative to the riding mode selected by the rider. Stepper motors housed within the front and rear shock absorbers move needles to control oil flow, tailoring damping force for the riding situation.

Rear spring preload is also now electrically adjusted. It’s an intuitive – rather than numerical – system. Separate from the 4 riding modes, there are 4 settings of preload relative to load from soft to hard: single rider; rider with luggage; rider with pillion, and rider with pillion fully loaded with luggage. The setting is displayed on the TFT screen and adjusted via switch.

Rake and trail are set at 30.5°/109mm, with wheelbase of 1695mm. The previous Gold Wing weighed 413kg wet; the new Gold Wing weighs 365kg wet. The Gold Wing Tour weighs 379kg wet and the DCT and airbox version weighs 383kg wet.


Colour Options


Candy Ardent Red & Darkness Black Metallic

Candy Ardent Red & Darkness Black Metallic


Darkness Black Metallic

Darkness Black Metallic



Representative example

GL1800B GOLDWING 19YM - Terms & Conditions
TypePCP
36 Payments of£239.00
APR6.9%
OTR£22,299.00
Deposit£4,399.97
HUK Contribution£0.00
Amount of Credit£17,899.03
Final Payment£12,434.88
Final Payment inc Option Fee£12,444.88
Total Amount Payable£25,448.85
Option to Purchase Fee£10.00
Annual Contracted Mileage4,000
Excess Mileage Charge10p
Interest Rate pa6.69%

View all Finance Examples
GL1800 GOLD WING TOUR 18YM - Terms & Conditions
TypePCP
36 Payments of£249.00
APR6.9%
OTR£26,779.00
Deposit£6,641.68
HUK Contribution£0.00
Amount of Credit£20,137.32
Final Payment£14,785.05
Final Payment inc Option Fee£14,795.05
Total Amount Payable£30,400.73
Option to Purchase Fee£10.00
Annual Contracted Mileage4,000
Excess Mileage Charge11p
Interest Rate pa6.69%
GL1800 GOLD WING TOUR ABS DCT & AIRBAG 18YM - Terms & Conditions
TypePCP
36 Payments of£259.00
APR6.9%
OTR£29,799.00
Deposit£8,256.32
HUK Contribution£0.00
Amount of Credit£21,542.68
Final Payment£16,111.41
Final Payment inc Option Fee£16,121.41
Total Amount Payable£33,701.73
Option to Purchase Fee£10.00
Annual Contracted Mileage4,000
Excess Mileage Charge14p
Interest Rate pa6.69%
GL1800 GOLD WING TOUR ABS DCT & AIRBAG 19YM - Terms & Conditions
TypePCP
36 Payments of£269.00
APR6.9%
OTR£30,699.00
Deposit£8,668.20
HUK Contribution£0.00
Amount of Credit£22,030.80
Final Payment£16,311.60
Final Payment inc Option Fee£16,321.60
Total Amount Payable£34,673.80
Option to Purchase Fee£10.00
Annual Contracted Mileage4,000
Excess Mileage Charge14p
Interest Rate pa6.69%
GL1800 GOLD WING TOUR 19YM - Terms & Conditions
TypePCP
36 Payments of£249.00
APR6.9%
OTR£27,499.00
Deposit£7,490.52
HUK Contribution£0.00
Amount of Credit£20,008.48
Final Payment£14,626.78
Final Payment inc Option Fee£14,636.78
Total Amount Payable£31,091.30
Option to Purchase Fee£10.00
Annual Contracted Mileage4,000
Excess Mileage Charge11p
Interest Rate pa6.69%
GL1800B GOLDWING 19YM - Terms & Conditions
TypeVPL
36 Payments of£489.00
APR6.9%
OTR£22,299.00
Deposit£6,389.23
Honda Deposit contribution£0.00
Amount of Credit£15,909.77
Total Amount Payable£23,993.23
Interest Rate pa6.69%
GL1800 GOLD WING TOUR 18YM - Terms & Conditions
TypeVPL
36 Payments of£619.00
APR6.9%
OTR£26,779.00
Deposit£6,639.73
Honda Deposit contribution£0.00
Amount of Credit£20,139.27
Total Amount Payable£28,923.73
Interest Rate pa6.69%
GL1800 GOLD WING TOUR 19YM - Terms & Conditions
TypeVPL
36 Payments of£619.00
APR6.9%
OTR£27,499.00
Deposit£7,359.84
Honda Deposit contribution£0.00
Amount of Credit£20,139.16
Total Amount Payable£29,643.84
Interest Rate pa6.69%
GL1800 GOLD WING TOUR ABS DCT & AIRBAG 18YM - Terms & Conditions
TypeVPL
36 Payments of£659.00
APR6.9%
OTR£29,799.00
Deposit£8,358.39
Honda Deposit contribution£0.00
Amount of Credit£21,440.61
Total Amount Payable£32,082.39
Interest Rate pa6.69%
GL1800 GOLD WING TOUR ABS DCT & AIRBAG 19YM - Terms & Conditions
TypeVPL
36 Payments of£679.00
APR6.9%
OTR£30,699.00
Deposit£8,607.82
Honda Deposit contribution£0.00
Amount of Credit£22,091.18
Total Amount Payable£33,051.82
Interest Rate pa6.69%
GL1800B GOLDWING 19YM - Terms & Conditions
TypeVPL
36 Payments of£489.00
APR6.9%
OTR£22,299.00
Deposit£6,389.23
Honda Deposit contribution£0.00
Amount of Credit£15,909.77
Total Amount Payable£23,993.23
Interest Rate pa6.69%
GL1800 GOLD WING TOUR 18YM - Terms & Conditions
TypeHP
36 Payments of£619.00
APR6.9%
OTR£26,779.00
Deposit£6,639.73
Honda Deposit contribution£0.00
Amount of Credit£20,139.27
Total Amount Payable£28,933.73
Option to Purchase Fee£10.00
Interest Rate pa6.69%
GL1800 GOLD WING TOUR 19YM - Terms & Conditions
TypeHP
36 Payments of£619.00
APR6.9%
OTR£27,499.00
Deposit£7,359.84
Honda Deposit contribution£0.00
Amount of Credit£20,139.16
Total Amount Payable£29,653.84
Option to Purchase Fee£10.00
Interest Rate pa6.69%
GL1800 GOLD WING TOUR ABS DCT & AIRBAG 18YM - Terms & Conditions
TypeHP
36 Payments of£659.00
APR6.9%
OTR£29,799.00
Deposit£8,358.39
Honda Deposit contribution£0.00
Amount of Credit£21,440.61
Total Amount Payable£32,092.39
Option to Purchase Fee£10.00
Interest Rate pa6.69%
GL1800 GOLD WING TOUR ABS DCT & AIRBAG 19YM - Terms & Conditions
TypeHP
36 Payments of£679.00
APR6.9%
OTR£30,699.00
Deposit£8,607.82
Honda Deposit contribution£0.00
Amount of Credit£22,091.18
Total Amount Payable£33,061.82
Option to Purchase Fee£10.00
Interest Rate pa6.69%
GL1800B GOLDWING 19YM - Terms & Conditions
TypeHP
36 Payments of£489.00
APR6.9%
OTR£22,299.00
Deposit£6,389.23
Honda Deposit contribution£0.00
Amount of Credit£15,909.77
Total Amount Payable£24,003.23
Option to Purchase Fee£10.00
Interest Rate pa6.69%


Specifications

Bore × Stroke (mm)73mm x 73mm
CarburationPGM-FI electronic fuel injection
Compression Ratio10.5:1
C02 Emissions128 g/km
Engine Displacement (cc)1,833cc
Engine Type (cm³)Liquid-cooled 4-stroke 24 valve SOHC flat-6
Max. Power Output93kW/5500rpm
Max. Torque170Nm/4500rpm
Oil Capacity (Litres)4.4 litres (MT)
StarterIntegrated Starter Generator system
Throttle Bore50
Clutch(MT) Hydraulic, wet, multiplate with coil springs, assist slipper cam
Final DriveEnclosed shaft
Gearbox6 speed Manual including overdrive and electric reverse
Transmission Type6-speed
Battery Capacity (VAh)12V-20Ah
Caster Angle30.5°
Dimensions (L×W×H) (mm)2,475mm x 925mm x 1,340mm
Frame typeAluminum die-cast, twin tube
Fuel Tank Capacity (Litres)21.1 litres
Fuel Consumption5.6 litres/100km
Ground Clearance (mm)130mm
Kerb Weight (kg)365kg
Seat Height (mm)745mm
Trail (mm)109mm
Wheelbase (mm)1695mm
ABS SystemElectronically-controlled combined ABS system
Brakes Front320mm x 4.5mm dual hydraulic disc with 6-piston calliper, floating rotors and sintered metal pads
Brakes Rear316mm x 11mm ventilated disc with 3-piston calliper and sintered metal pads
Suspension FrontDouble Wishbone
Suspension RearPro Link
Tyre Size Front130/70R 18
Tyre Size Rear200/55R 16
Wheels Front18 x MT3.5
Wheels Rear16 x MT6.0
12v SocketUSB as standard / optional 12v charger
HeadlightsLED
Instruments7-inch TFT display
Tail LightLED

Gold Wing GL1800 brochure

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