What lies over the horizon? Beyond our town, our state? Beyond the predictable, the expected? And what’s the best way to experience it? We ride motorcycles because they’re such engaging, active, personal vehicles. Travel the same roads in a car and on a bike, eat at the same restaurants, see the same sights, and then tell us which trip is the most memorable.
Honda’s 2018 Gold Wing® is an all-new motorcycle this year, designed to put you more in touch with the essential experience of riding. Changing a bike as good and as refined as a Gold Wing isn’t something you undertake lightly. So we set out to improve the newest model in every category: Engineering. Handling. Technology. Comfort. Performance. The new Gold Wing is lighter, more powerful, more nimble, and more engaging. It’s a better motorcycle in every way. What lies beyond? Ride there and find out
The new 2018 Gold Wings still use a horizontally opposed six-cylinder engine, but that’s where all similarity ends. The new bikes feature a new bore and stroke, and a displacement punched out to 1833cc. Even more important, they’re the first Gold Wings to use four valves per cylinder, a design based off our high-performance Unicam® head design. The new engine also features aluminum cylinder sleeves and a shorter, stiffer crank. The engine is more compact front-to-back, and that lets you and your passenger move forward in the cockpit for more comfort, better handling, and a more connected feel with the bike’s steering. Other innovations include integrating the starter and alternator into one unit. The overall effect is groundbreaking: a Gold Wing that’s still a long-distance champion, but one that offers a degree of engaged, sporting performance that all motorcyclists live for.
This is huge news for 2018. For the first time ever, both the Gold Wing and the Gold Wing Tour are available with a brand new 7-Speed Automatic DCT. If you’re not familiar with it, think of the paddle-shift gearboxes Formula 1 cars use.
DCT stands for Dual-Clutch Transmission. Inside, the transmission looks like a normal manual, with strong, efficient, constant-mesh steel gears. But there’s no shift lever and no clutch lever—all your shifting is controlled by buttons on the handlebar. Or you can let the DCT function fully automatically, and the bike will upshift and downshift effortlessly. The twin clutch packs, one for odd gears, one for even, makes shifting quick and seamless. The DCT has been a big hit on many Honda motorcycles, and our Africa Twin® has proven it’s tough enough for fully loaded off-road travel. But the 2018 Gold Wings have the best DCT we’ve ever offered, and the first with seven speeds. Even better, our DCT models offer a special low-speed “Walking” mode in addition to reverse (see our Models and Options chart for more information). It’s a huge help when maneuvering into or out of parking spaces with a passenger on the back.
We know plenty of Gold Wing riders still prefer a traditional manual transmission. Fear not—we have you covered. You can opt for a conventional gearbox on both the Gold Wing and Gold Wing Tour models. But we’ve gone ahead and made it even better for 2018, by adding a sixth speed. Closing up the gearbox ratios makes it easier to pick the perfect gear for sportier riding, yet the overdrive sixth still serves up relaxed top-gear cruising.
One of the first things any rider will notice about the 2018 Gold Wings is the radical new doublewishbone front suspension. Gone is the familiar telescopic fork, replaced with a strong, twin-leg structure, a pair of “A” arms and a single shock and spring. Why? The innovative, Honda-engineered design changes the path the wheel follows through the suspension’s travel, making it more of a vertical movement. That lets us move both the engine and the rider/passenger closer to the front wheel for improved handling.
When it came time to design the new Gold Wing engine, we had four goals. Make it lighter. Make it more compact. Make it more powerful. And make it more fun to ride. Along the way, we also gave the new bikes the new exhaust system-once you hear it, you’ll know it was worth it. The bikes offer a level of performance that’s immediately noticeable too-part of that’s the engine’s power, part of it is because the new Gold Wings are lighter and accelerate harder, and part of it’s due to the compact center of mass compared to previous models.
471cc Liquid-Cooled, 4-Stroke, DOHC Parallel Twin
67 mm x 66.8 mm
PGM-FI with 34 Throttle Bodies
Computer-controlled Digital Transistorized with Electronic Advance
10.7 : 1
39 kW/8,500 rpm
46.8 Nm/7,000 rpm
DOHC; Four Valves Per Cylinder
Constant Mesh, 6-Speed Return
41 mm Telescopic Fork with 5 Adjustable Level
Steel Sqare Pipe Swing Arm, Pro-Link System and Single Shock with 9-Stage Preload Adjuster
320 mm Single Wavy Disc with 2-POT Caliper
240 mm Single Wavy Disc with 1-POT Caliper
2,081 mm x 756 mm x 1,150 mm
27 km/l (WMTC Method)
Mat Gunpowder Black Metallic, Millenium Red
Meets Current EPA Standards
HISS (Honda Ignition Security System) with Wave Key Technology
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