Honda NC700X: the Swiss Army Knife of bikes?

Galleries, Reviews -

By

Not sure if you know this about me yet, but I’m a knife nerd. Blame a youth misspent causing trouble in the outdoors. So, when they called this new Honda NC700X adventure-style, automatic-transmission equipped, half-a-car-engine thing “the Swiss Army Knife of bikes” in this morning’s pre-ride brief, I was a little skeptical.

My favorite knife right now is this Esse-6. It’s made by a tiny company from Alabama, is way too big to carry every day, is illegal in most places at most times and, at 12oz and a foot long, adds a considerable amount of bulk to any load out. At $160-ish, it’s expensive enough that it’d ruin my day if I broke or lost it. I’m prepared to put up with all that because, for my ultra-light hiking and dirt bike trips, it’s a near perfect tool. It gives me the functionality of an axe in a package I can wear on my hip. It’ll take down a dead tree, then split it into useable firewood in a matter of minutes. Made from 1095 steel, it also takes a fair amount of maintenance. It’s an exotic, specialized tool that 99 percent of people would never know how to or want to use. That’s why everyone else carries a Swiss Army Knife.

My favorite bike right now is the Aprilia RSV4. It’s also made by a tiny company, this time in Noale, Italy and is obviously exotic and highly specialized. 99 percent of people would shit themselves on it in 1st gear. That’s why most people drive cars.

Where the NC700X comes into all this is in its broad applicability. Everyone, including my mom, carries a Swiss Army Knife. That’s because it can open wine bottles, cut open a package, open a beer, saw a little wood, pull out a splinter or even put a new hole in your belt. My mom’s never going to need to take down a tree out in the wilderness, in a snow storm, and trim it down to the dry wood at the very core in order to keep herself alive. Most people don’t need a motorcycle to set track records or drag elbow on The Snake, they need a practical, economical, fun bike they can use every day and enjoy riding at a realistic road speeds. Judging by the ride we did today in Malibu, the NC700X is that bike.

Let’s make a list of features that make motorcycles such practical, fun things to get around on: price, weight, control, comfort and practicality. Power and speed really don’t come into that. Any bike, even this 51bhp, 670cc parallel-twin will out-accelerate most supercars, so power and speed are just sort of a given.

Price: The NC700X will start at $6,999 for a base, non-ABS, non-DCT model. That’s crazy cheap for a bike that will get you to work, take you across the country, take you camping, or just do anything you need it to do. The version with ABS and DCT (read: automatic transmission), adds two grand to that price. Both features are nice to have, particularly for newer riders, but that extra $2k is a lot of money.

Stripped of its bodywork, the NC700 looks kinda like a big trials bike, huh? That pays off too, with the engine canted forward at 62 degrees, the steel fuel tank mounted under the seat and all that mass centralized down low, it feels like a much, much lighter bike than it actually is. Honda should do a blind taste test; you’d never guess this thing weighed more than 350lbs if you just pushed it around in a parking lot.

Weight: The NC is pretty heavy on paper — 474lbs (wet). But, by carrying all its mechanical bits and fuel incredibly low and centralized, doesn’t feel like it. It’s no more difficult to push or pick up or ride around at 0.0001mph than the 350lbs CBR250. That’s a neat trick and its achieved by a package that, shorn of its plastic, looks a lot like a trials bike. Seriously, it’s one of those motorcycles where you find yourself putting a foot down at stop lights not because you need to, but because you know you’re supposed to.

Control: That very low, very centralized center of gravity facilitates that control, but so does smooth, linear fueling, powerful-but-progressive brakes, a tall, empowered riding position and wide bars that contribute to very fast, but very predictable steering. Equipped with the auto tranny, I’d hazard a guess that someone who’d never ridden a motorcycle before could navigate a parking lot without trouble aboard the NC. In either configuration, it’ll be a great tool for learning or just for getting from A to B.

Comfort: One of the big secrets that no one will tell you about motorcycles is that most of them are horrendously uncomfortable. Even ones that look all cushy can turn out to be torture racks. Witness the Triumph Tiger Explorer or the BMW F800GS. Not the NC though. In three and a half hours of riding this morning, I didn’t get so much as a stiff neck. Don’t dismiss this either, comfort is key to usability. You could hop on this bike in stock form and ride it from LA to NY without ever wishing you were on anything else.

The clocks are incredibly clear and distortion free in any lighting condition. Again, something you take for granted that brings real benefits when executed correctly. The best part? Those are huge buttons on each side of the instruments, making them easy to operate, even with winter gloves.

Practicality: After “OMG, bikes R Dangerous!!!1!!” the most common reason given as to why you shouldn’t be riding one is some sort of perceived practicality deficit. I mean I don’t own a car and manage to live life out of a backpack, but god forbid I need a full size piece of plywood from Home Depot on short notice (they’ll rent you a truck from any store for like $20…). And practicality is where the NC700X absolutely aces things. Not only is it cheap to buy, but it’ll also be cheap to run. Claimed fuel economy is 64mpg average, while today the consensus was 59mpg during enthusiastic riding. That’s on par with the CBR250R, just in a bike that’ll easily pull ahead of traffic on the highway (top speed is 120-ish), even while carrying luggage or a passenger. Add to that heaps of storage room (the compartment between your legs held my size L Icon Airmada just fine) and the optional 45-liter, two-full-face top box and you’d be able to fit a week’s shopping. Bolt on the optional panniers (slimmer than the bars, thank god) and you’ve got more than enough to take off camping for a week or more. All the other factors combine to create practicality too; the NC is comfy, easy and frugal.

If this were any bike maker but Honda, the story would likely stop there. But with the NC, it doesn’t. Poking around, this isn’t a bargain basement motorcycle. Welds are extremely high quality, all the storage compartments and luggage opens with the ignition key, the mirrors are vibe free and deliver good vision, the tiny stock screen offers excellent wind protection; everything on this bike is suprisingly nice.

Watertight and lockable, there’s room for a full-face helmet or a case of beer in there.

Handling? The non-adjustable forks and preload-only shock might look a little budget on paper and they are really soft, but both actually contain actual damping and the bike turns, holds a line and leans like a much more expensive motorcycle. The very low center of gravity means a little more lean angle per given speed, but hang off and that’s resolved. I was surprised that I didn’t so much as caress peg to pavement all day. If I owned one, I wouldn’t change a thing.

The competition? The Kawasaki Verys 650 is a little more powerful, but feels pretty much on-par to the Honda, while retailing for $7,800. The V-Strom 650 is faster, more versatile and actually capable of some dirt road riding, costs a little more — $8,299 — but comes with ABS as standard. My biggest criticism of the Honda is that ABS is only available as part of that DCT/ABS package, adding $2k to the price. As a bike targeted at new riders, commuters and such, it should really have ABS as standard. The Honda is friendlier than the Suzuki though, masking its 32+ inch seat height with slimness and that incredibly low Cg.

Options? This is the best application of DCT yet; that transmission actually makes it a better, smoother, more intuitive motorcycle, but adds (a lot of) money and complication. ABS removes no brake feel while increasing safety. The tall screen works great, really transforming the bike into a genuine tourer. The boxes are decent value and extremely well-integrated. The OEM crash bars? Wait for Touratech or somebody to come out with something that’ll actually protect the bike in a crash.

So that’s it. A bike that’ll tour, commute, ride around an MSF parking lot or take you camping all with equal aplomb. It might not open a beer bottle, but since it’s actually engaging and fun to ride, we’ll give Honda that Swiss Army Knife thing. The NC would be a great first bike, a great budget commuter or just a great only bike for anyone looking for to do-it-all on a price and running cost budget. If you think you need a car, think again, what you really need is an NC700X.

It’s not going to be the ultimate specialized tool for experts and it doesn’t give the emotional connection between man and machine an RSV4 does, but it’s a damn good motorcycle. I had fun riding it today and you will too. It’s a practical, affordable tool capable of solving most of the problems day-to-day life can throw at you.

Sorry for the stock images and short review, the CD Honda gave me with riding images won’t load on my computer and I’m (trying to) fly to Ashland to be the first journalist to ride the Brammo Empulse. Come back on Monday for that and hit this link if the gallery won’t load by itself: http://hellforleathermagazine.com/2012/08/honda-nc700x-the-swiss-army-knife-of-bikes/?gal=1#/4

  • Dylan

    Pretty interesting concept for a bike, I can definitely see the appeal for some people, but its just not for me.

    That knife of yours though…that’s one sexy piece of metal

    Also when are we going to hear more about that new Icon lid? The Airmada sounds pretty sweet

  • protomech

    On my short list for a touring bike. Unusually practical, 70 mpg in a bike that’s not a 250cc is pretty nice.

    Will be waiting with bated breath for Empulse report.

    • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

      With the tall screen, it’s as good a, just as comfy, more frugal tourer than most anything else.

  • Beale

    I’m starting to really dig the idea of this bike but I still have a few reservations. I love a torquey motor but I do like it to have some ability to rev. I wonder if I’m going to feel like it’s choked with its low redline.

    I never connected with my Wee-strom. Without question, a great motor but good god, it was hard to look at. Top heavy and ungainly looking. It was ugly even from the rider’s position. If this feels smaller and lighter, then I will probably get over the low reving motor. I’m sure it’s just as off road-able as a V-Strom which is to say it’s not unless you’re adept a riding street bikes in the dirt.

    • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

      Driven a diesel car? This is much the same. You just adapt your riding to short shift, there’s plenty of acceleration, just not that full throttle, high revs, yahoo shit.

      • Gene

        No thanks. I had a Hawk GT which was an awesome chassis (deltabox AND single-sided swingarm in the ’90s) with an absolute shit motor.

        Never again.

        • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

          It’s in no way a shit motor. Kinda neat actually, there’s tons of torque.

          • Holden and Annette

            I understand Wes’s analogy to a diesel car. I have a VW Jetta TDI (notice that I didn’t say I *drive* it, just that I *have* it — I put at least 20 times more mileage on my moto than on the car, simply because I’d rather be shot out of a cannon than squeezed out of a tube) and that torquey car engine is very fun. Yes, you have to shift quickly, but, well, it’s something you have to experience to understand, I guess. Torque in a subcompact is fun as hell, and I trust Wes that a torquey moto engine is fun, too.

        • John

          I like the Hawk’s engine and it’s short shift. My only complaint is the lack of 6th gear for freeway use.

    • John

      I had a Hawk GT and couldn’t stand the Suzuki SVs. Didn’t like how they rode, didn’t like how they felt. Flat, hard seat, weird ergos, top heavy. Nice engine, but that’s where it stopped. Ugly as sin below the waist.

      I’m curious what happens if it is modified though. What happens to this bike with the same kinds of mods people do on the Hawk GT.

  • Jan Wrobel

    In Europe Honda offers a version with abs but without dct, at about $600 above the basic version. Is this one not available in US? Strange.

    • Dani Peral

      In Europe NC700X can only have ABS (500eur) but no DCT.

      But here we also have NC700S, wich is a roadster version, without that trail aesthetic: http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-fChsHdyyy_I/T-vhcpyiVOI/AAAAAAAAACM/ZhgO8d-4amw/s1600/2012-honda-nc700s2.jpg

      It is a thousand euros cheaper than NC700X and it is exactly the same bike. Here in Europe the NC700S is the only one that can have DCT.

      Isnt the NC700S going to be sold in the US?

      • Jan Wrobel

        In Poland at least, NC700X is offered with dct as well. Info based on Honda website.

        • Dani Peral

          Then its in Spain only…anyway, it should be an option in both bikes…

    • SamuraiMark

      Same here in Canada. NC700S and NC700X with ABS, but no DCT. And by that I mean only the ABS version is available not Canada. Not the non-ABS version, nor the DCT.

  • Ax

    Awesome bike with some sensible ideas making it a practical daily ride. The designers dropped the ball putting the fuel access beneath the passenger seat, though. Gonna have to remove anything strapped to it every time you refuel.

    Really do like this otherwise, but my Yamaha Majesty is still more practical and useful as an only vehicle.

  • Julian

    Are you a prepper Wes? German media is reporting that more and more Americans are preparing to survive in the wilderness because they believe the breakdown of modern society (natural desasters getting worse, economy collapsing, etc.)is near. I learned that they call themselves preppers and train in the woods armed with large knives…

    • Erik

      I would like to know where American preppers plan to find wilderness, last time I checked it was all being paved.

      • JTB

        Erik I do not know where you live but you need to get out more. If the zombie apocalypse happens or the social collapse or just get tired of society there is a lot of places you can be very remote. Living in Duluth MN but orig from San Fran I find that in about 5 mins I can be downtown here to work and about 40 mins can be at a remote cabin deep in the woods. With enough food and supplies living around me that a store would not be needed.

        • Erik

          I liven in Alberta Canada, where they film all the new American Westerns cause the wild west has disappeared under a forest of strip malls. Minnesota is really part of Canada so you will be fine but frozen JTB. In case anybody says Idaho, forget that idea urban preppers, the survivalists already there will hunt the newbies down for food, unless of course they are wimmen, who will be capture and caged for their young uns to play with :-0

      • austin_2ride

        They took all the trees
        And put them in a tree museum

        Then they charged the people
        A dollar and a half just to see ‘em

        • austin_2ride

          Don’t it always seem to go
          That you don’t know what you’ve got
          Till it’s gone

          They paved paradise
          And put up a parking lot

    • Roman

      Yeah, this site definitely has some random survivalist shit pop up every now and then. I see it as more of a endearing quirk than anything worth taking too seriously.
      http://hellforleathermagazine.com/2011/06/how-to-survive-the-big-one-using-a-motorcycle/

      • http://greatjoballweek.blogspot.com/ Case

        There’s a lot of macho guy overlap in motorcycles, guns, knives and survivalist bullshit. Most of these guys are ‘prepped’ for survival the same way that most people ride their 1200GS off road. Which is to say, not at all. If I hear one more fat fuck make noise about his ‘bug out bag’ I’m going to stab myself with Wes’ boutique knife. The only thing they’re bugging out to is White Castle.

        That said, you may want to prepare for a 72-96 hour loss of services in the event of a disaster. Society is extremely unlikely to collapse but a localized disaster (i.e. Hurricane Katrina, or earthquake) is reasonably probable no matter where you live. Basic first aid, potable water and some defensive means will see you through.

        As for the bike, I dig it. The frame geometry looks great. They built a bike that looks like you can throw a leg over, twist and go. It’s like a scooter in all the good ways and like a motorcycle in more good ways. Yeah the price isn’t rock bottom but it’s a Honda. I hope hit sells.

        • austin_2ride

          “Yeah the price isn’t rock bottom but it’s a Honda.”

          I’m not saying this is the same and I hope it isn’t but remember the NRX1800 Rune. A Honda dealer less than fifty miles from me still has a brand new one with a custom paint job. It’s listed as used because PSN powered websites only list the last 2-3 years of models.
          Check it out

          http://hondamotorsports.liquidmotors.com/Used/2004_HONDA_RUNE___/Marysville_OH/LISTING-16633609/VehicleDetails.aspx

          • Roman

            I’m thinking the Deauville is a much better analogy. Don’t think those have sold well at all. But the adv-rider category is hot right now and the price is right, I can see this one doing well, especially if we’re hit with another gas price spike.

          • http://greatjoballweek.blogspot.com/ Case

            Ahh the Rune. Also the Fury, which is grounds for firing an entire product design team, and then firing whoever approved production. Honda has laid some eggs but they deserve credit if this bike as good as Wes claims.

  • Nick

    Don’t forget about our guns, Julian.

    This is a really intriguing bike. Not sure if this my cup of tea (functionally – I’d like more power, especially to use for two up riding). However, this could be Honda’s most important model if they manage to connect with buyers. A $7k bike with functionality is amazing today. I’m going to go out on a limb and predict this will be a modern SV650.

  • Ben

    nice knife Wes.

    good price point and working man’s steel. It isn’t so pricey that you feel guilty about bashing it into a crusty old log or shanking a can of beans, yet still a quality peace.

  • Martin

    “Most people don’t need a motorcycle to set track records or drag elbow on The Snake, they need a practical, economical, fun bike they can use every day and enjoy riding at a realistic road speeds.”

    Yes.

    Thanks for this write-up. I only wish the ABS was available with the DCT here in the US.

    • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

      To be clear, there’s two versions of the NC700x. One with a manual transmission and non-ABS brakes and one for $2k more with DCT and ABS. Plus all the optional luggage and screens and stuff on top of either model.

      • Martin

        Thanks. That was a typo on my part. I’d like the ABS but not the DCT.

  • ike6116

    Lately it seems you’ve been going out of your way to slight the GS, which runs counter the glowing praise BMW used to receive from this very site.

    “Even with the damage, the F800GS remains one of the easiest-to-ride, most capable adventure tourers. Perfectly happy tearing down dirt roads, attacking paved corner and spending entire days on the highway. The only more versatile bike out there is the R1200GS”
    -Crash Report: 2010 BMW F800GS

    Initial Report: 2009 BMW F800GS
    “If we could only have one motorcycle for the rest of our lives, the F800GS might be it”

    Im certain there’s more examples but the link to “Expedition: Labrador” is broken.

    So what’s up? BMW was good at spending entire days on the highway and was a candidate for singular bike in your lives when they were loaning you bikes to ride and crash in Canada but now they are “torture racks”?

    • Mike in NYC

      As a G650GS rider I’m curious about this as well, but in any case I’m glad to see more competition in this space.

    • Mr.Paynter

      I can’t quite remember and I am too lazy to go look (sorry) but didn’t the reviews fade in relation to the Triumph clone being ridden later on?

    • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

      Great bike, it’s not comfortable. Other, newer bikes are doing the game better, too.

    • John

      The 800GS bikes have dirt bike ergos and seat. Hardly a long distance cruiser.

  • http://www.muthalovin.com the_doctor

    Wes, I think you have a future reviewing knives.

  • Todd

    “Hi. My name is Todd and I’m a Red Rider.”

    I feel like I’m attending a Red Riders Anonymous meeting when looking at this bike. I love all my bikes for their individual unique characteristics. However from everything I’ve read about this bike like my Honda ST1300 does everything and does it well. Sure it’s not sexy like that hot chick at that bar that you know is high risk/low reward but Hondas are “The Sure Thing” of motorcycling.

    There is nothing wrong with settling when it comes to the utter pain of standing on the side of highway with your “hot chick” while cars speed by noisily. Besides “The Sure Thing” would have gotten you to the bar already.

  • JTB

    I think as new riders should take the MSF and learn to ride a fully clutched bike. I also feel that the same should be for cars too. My daughter learned to drive a stick car and knew how to ride a bike at the age of 10. Whne the time came to teach her to drive a car it was soooo much easier and she now has the skill and hopefully clarity of thought to not be stuck some where because the car is a stick and her friend is to drunk to drive or what ever else may happen(which in my head is she knocks him out after he tries monkeying with my daughter) but that is me deluding myself thinking she will always be sweet and innocent innocent. :)

  • cdeforrest

    Disappointing to hear about how ABS is only available on DCT-equipped bikes, in the US, for now.

    Hopefully that will change, but I’ll be surprised if they sell this bike for more than a couple years in the US anyway. It’s way too practical to be popular here in the land of cruisers & Busas.

    I liked the PC800 & NT650 Hawk, too, so I figure this will follow in their footsteps. I’d love to be wrong, though.

  • John

    As an ex VT Ascot, Sabre 700 and HawkGT owner, this bike looks good as a replacement. It looks more comfortable, more practical. The weight is a bit of a bummer, I’d have expected less from a parallel twin, rather than more.

    Still, the tank storage is excellent and the ergos look pretty decent. For that kind of weight, it would be nice to have shaft drive though.

  • aristurtle

    I’m seriously considering this bike for when I replace my well-worn-down EX250 (“Scarface”). It looks like it has just about everything I’d want, and the insurance company won’t gouge me the way they will for a serious sportbike that I’d probably never take to a track or otherwise ride in anger anyway. (I checked and getting, for example, a CBR600F4i will more than double the insurance I have to pay, and this is for bare-minimum liability coverage. Even an ER-6n is startlingly pricey.)

    Like others said, though, it’s really disappointing that ABS is only available on the DCT version. What’s up with that?

  • Tyler

    I saw this bike at a bike show earlier in the year. It looks decent, and was pretty comfortable to sit on. I think the storage in the normal gas tank area is a great idea.

    I’m not in the market for one of these (just bought an R6), but it’s a neat bike. Honda should try and aggressively sell it to people who are interested in bikes, but think they’re impractical.

  • NewOldSchool

    Do Honda tool kits still come in a blue plastic pouch?

    One of my bikes is a 70′s Honda with what looks like the same toolkit. Just kinda amused its still the same.

    • Campisi

      The CBR 250 tool kit has a black vinyl pouch. “Tool kit” is a charitable term in this instance, though; all you get is an Allen wrench for the bodywork, and a steel cable thing that in some alternate dimension is supposed to function as a helmet lock.

  • contender

    Pretty good….But the tail light is awful. You’d have to replace it to clean up the rear end at all. No good.

    And the panniers would hold what, exactly?

    • muckluck

      It’ll hold your trapper keeper!

  • lowslydr

    What colors will this be available in for the US? Honda’s site only shows the gray/black version, but a solid black would be much nicer IMO.

    • SamuraiMark

      Solid black only in Canada. Maybe USA too?

      • http://www.facebook.com/lindy.leroux Lindy Justin Le Roux

        in SA it is out in Black & White, Solid Black and Black & Red, I havent seen a Black & Silver by us yet! ” J “

  • Michael Gore

    Now if Honda can get people in the US to think of MC’s as transportation and not recreation. They need another media blitz, but if they’re smart they’ll take it digital, and not conventional.

    • Denzel

      This makes me realize bike manufacturers do not advertise on tv…contrast deluge of car ads…why??

      It’s as if they’ve given up on mainstream consumers…people who don’t already ride…

  • mchale2020

    I like it and whenever I have to consider a new vehicle for transportation, it would be kind of pointless not to consider a bike like this.

    It’s interesting, this bike is probably the Honda Accord of motorcycles, while being more exciting than an actual Accord could ever hope to be.

  • John

    A truly interesting article would be to take a Honda Hawk GT, stock or lightly modified and put it against the NC700x on the track and see how they compared.

    • Jim Fox

      Again, the NC700 is NOT a track bike.

  • Gene

    Hm. Guess I will have to ride one at Biketoberfest if they bring it. I can’t imagine they won’t, buuuuut this is Honda after all…

    I do remember the Suzuki Burgman shocked the hell out of me motor-wise, so hopefully this’ll be the same.

  • Joe

    For some reason I have the inkling to trade in my Bonnie on this. The bike will be my only mode of transportation soon, and I know I could live out of a backpack, but the extra mileage, lower insurance (most likely), and more space would be nice.

  • Sentinel

    It’s nothing more than a glorified scooter, masquerading as a motorcycle! *facepalmz*

    • Jim Fox

      Why make moronic comments? I sold a (new) scooter for this and there is NO similarity, except the fuel consumption is identical!

  • Campisi

    So, I take it the DCT was fine? It was hardly mentioned, so I assume it wasn’t obtrusive or particularly impressive.

  • Kevin

    Again with the beaks. This will end up being an identifiable trend of the new millennium for motorcycles. Die soon please?

    • lowslydr

      The NC700S is much more attractive, hopefully they’ll import it to the US if it’s successful elsewhere (they’re even selling them in Canada).

  • SamuraiMark

    I would swap my FZ6 for one of these, but for that stupid under-pillion gas cap. I have to un-bungie my dry bag every time I fill up?

    • http://www.racetrackstyle.com Racetrack Style

      great point. Re-work the tail section such that you pull down the plate or panel for the gas cap like older cars. (or maybe a setup like the BMW 800 would work)

      @Kevin – +1 about the beaks

    • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

      Why not just put your stuff in the luggage compartment?

  • Pete

    Well Wes, we know what Cody’s dad was serving you in that fancy box. Kool-aid, and it sounds like you drank a lot.

    • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

      Nah, I brought beer up from Brammo.

  • gtsoup

    So Wes, would you take the NC700X over the CBR250R? I’m 6’4″ and have the CBR primarily as a fuel efficient commuter (but also for just plain fun), but am thinking this might do the trick better and a little more comfortably for me.

    • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

      Yeah, it’s a much more versatile bike. Equally at home in tow or crossing the country.

    • Tyler

      I’m your size, and when I sat on the NC700, it felt pretty good. The 250 is quite small (not unusable, but small).

    • Allyn Pierce

      I’m 6’3″ and it’s very comfy.

  • muckluck

    What really would have made this bike even better as a low maintenance bike is a single sided swing arm!

    • Glenngineer

      Waste of weight.

      • Kevin

        Thank you sir. I feel like 80% of the internet would have misspelled either “waste” or “weight” and here you nailed them both. Well. Done.

    • http://www.BrewSmith.com.au dux [87 CBR600, 95 XR600R]

      Shaft drive

      • Beale

        Electric centerstand.

        • okto

          heated brake levers

          • Joe

            Mr. Fusion Hybrid drive

            • Eduard

              a laser

              • Archer

                Chrome spikes. Long, sharp ones.

  • Johndo

    Just saw one in flesh at the dealer last week. That “gas tank” compartment is huge! They really made that motor freakin low in order to be able to fit such roomy cargo space. I’m seriously considering it as a utility bike for when I need to carry lots of stuff or ride 2 up (something my MT-01 isn’t great at). Cheap, reliable, practical, drinks as much gasoline as a scooter, yet still looks good and seems decently comfortable.

  • John Merlin

    Where did you guys go?

    Sorry to be off-topic, but I worry. You get bought – and now we hardly hear from you.

    • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

      Again, there’s no reason to worry and nothing evil going on. It’s August and I’ve been very, very busy. Flew up to Oregon straight from this launch and spent two long days riding it. Flew back to LA at 3am on saturday, spent the day at a wedding, then woke up at 5 to go race motocross with Jamie for the new season of the show.

      We’re launching a major new business and the team is working hard on that. Content will remain a little slow until we’re up and running with that.

  • greg

    How would you compare the DCT to the Aprilia Mana? Is it as fast? Handling, DCT vs CVT?

    • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

      They’re around the same speed. The Mana is a little more awkward at low speed (higher center of gravity) and DCT is always going to be a little more responsive than CVT. The NC handles better and is more comfortable.

  • Jon B.

    wow… i like it?

  • contender

    Its capable, sure, and definitely practical. There’s no real mention of fun, though. So it’s no RSV4…but how fun is it to ride? A passing mention at the end of the article that praises the practicality is not selling me.

    I wish honda dealers were better about demo rides.

  • Doug

    Hmm. Near horizontal engine. Tank under seat … MY GOD, IT’S FULL OF SUPERCUB.

  • Rey Garcia

    I have the NC700X. Over the years I’ve owned over 18 motorcyles, so I have alot to compare it with. This is defintely a fun ride!! It’s equally enjoyable around town as it is on the highway. It sits very high, so you can see everything that’s going on around you. But because of the narrow profile where the tank meets the seat, I’m able to plant my feet firmly on the ground (& I only have a 30″ inseam!!). I haven’t discovered any quirks yet. If you’re looking for a fun, cool looking, modernly equipped commuter bike that sips gas, then this one’s for you!!

  • Chris Lampley

    Are you sure your helmet was the Icon Airmada? I love that helmet but haven’t bought one because the L does not fit in my center compartment.

  • Krish Mohan

    I hope Mr.Siler asks and not tells us if this bike is the Swiss army knife of bikes. Sorry, that spot has been taken (at least for the last 10 years) by the one and the only one: KLR650. The NC700X is underpowered and overweight. It has a puny sub 4 gallon tank, it’s front brakes look a suspect to me. The DCT/ABS model, cannot be even called a scooter (from where I come from, scooters have gears), it is just a big moped. How can one call this a motorcycle? It has no clutch and gear levers.