PowerSports Business

November 27, 2017

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NEWS 8 • November 27, 2017 • Powersports Business www.PowersportsBusiness.com GL models that came before it. "We wanted our new Gold Wing to main- tain its luxury but to be a much more 'rounded' motorcycle — a machine as useful to its owner around the city as it is out on tour and more exciting to ride than ever," Mr. Nakanishi, large project leader for the 2018 Gold Wing, said in a statement. "So we started from a blank piece of paper and made the Gold Wing smaller and lighter and added all the technological hardware and software the modern rider could wish for. Now, just as in 1975, it remains a flagship model for Honda — and we are very proud to start this new chapter for such an important name." 2018 UPDATES The 2018 Gold Wing comes in two versions — the Gold Wing and the Gold Wing Tour. The Gold Wing Tour offers saddlebags and a top case, a tall electrically adjustable wind- screen, electrically adjustable suspension and front and rear speakers. DCT and DCT Airbag iterations of the Tour are available. The standard Gold Wing model has saddle- bags but no top case or the rear speakers that come with the top case; it has a shorter elec- tric windscreen; and the suspension preload is adjusted manually. A DCT version of this model is also available. The standard Gold Wing also does not include: Honda Selectable Torque Control, electric damping-adjust, a center stand or heated grips. Improvements to the 2018 Gold Wing line start at the engine, which is more com- pact, lighter and more fuel efficient. With the manual six-speed transmission, it loses 13.7 pounds versus the 2017 model, and it's 29mm shorter in the front section. It's also been placed forward in the chassis for better weight distribution. The new engine, cou- pled with aerodynamic improvements and an overall weight loss of nearly 90 pounds, combine for better fuel efficiency, allowing Honda to include a 1.1 gallon smaller gas tank on the bike. In addition to the six-speed manual trans- mission, a seven-speed automatic Dual Clutch Transmission (DCT) is available, and it offers a forward/reverse Walking Mode. The 2018 Gold Wing also has sportier han- dling, better low-speed maneuverability and high-speed stability. The double-wishbone front suspension makes the bike more com- fortable and steering easier. And the rider and passenger sit 36mm further forward with better airflow thanks to new air-guiding ducts and the electric windscreen. When it comes to technology, Honda has brought a throttle-by-wire system to the Gold Wing, offering four riding modes: tour, sport, econ and rain. The Gold Wing also has Hill Start Assist and a finely tuned cruise control system, and the Tour model has Honda Selectable Torque Control. Honda is also the first in the industry to bring Apple CarPlay technology to its motorcycles, as the iPhone-friendly system appears on the 2018 Gold Wing. All the new technology can be run by new controls and viewed on a 7-inch, full-color, Thin Film Transistor liquid-crystal display. DEALER REACTION Honda invited a few of its top-performing dealers to the global unveil, and they were impressed. Scott Pletcher of Track 'N' Trail in State Col- lege, Pennsylvania, said he saw, "A lot of good changes it definitely needed." One feature that he took note of is the new Smart Key that allows the rider to start the engine of the bike only with the Smart Key in his or her possession, eliminating the need to find the key and insert it into the ignition. Ricky Floyd, owner of Sunrise Honda in Searcy, Arkansas, and Shawnee Honda Polaris in Shawnee, Oklahoma, said the new technology would also attract customers into his dealerships. "The navigation system is nice. ABS on the model is nice. The tall windshield is nice, Apple CarPlay. I just like the lighter weight," he said. "It's nice that you're getting better fuel mileage as well." Both men believe the new Gold Wings will move well, once they arrive in dealer- ships in February. "I think a lot of past customers are going to trade in their bikes for it," Floyd said. Pletcher added, "They haven't changed it in so long; everybody's ready for new ones." Honda's marketing of the new Gold Wing models will be aimed at existing customers, those who left Honda for other brands and those new to touring. Two video ads were previewed during the unveiling, and both show younger couples riding the new Gold Wing together. "Some of those ads are a little different, trying to generate a little interest from a younger buyer, so it'll be interesting to see if it works, " Pletcher said. The Gold Wing Tour and Gold Wing Tour DCT is available in Candy Ardent Red, Pearl White or Pearl Hawkseye Blue. The Gold Wing Tour will have an MSRP of $26,700-$27,200, while the Gold Wing Tour DCT will run $27,700-$28,200. The Gold Wing Tour DCT Airbag comes in Candy Ardent Red/Black with an MSRP of $31,500. The standard Gold Wing and Gold Wing DCT is available in Candy Ardent Red, Matte Majestic Silver or Pearl Stallion Brown. The Gold Wing is priced at $23,500-$23,800, and the DCT version is $24,700-$25,000. PSB GOLD WING CONTINUED FROM FRONT COVER Dealer Ricky Floyd tests out the new features on the 2018 Gold Wing Tour. Photos by Liz Keener/Powersports Business Honda has introduced a sportier Gold Wing to the 2018 lineup, without a top case, starting at $23,500. Foothill Ranch headquarters receives innovative design award Kawasaki HQ wins 2017 REmmy Award Kawasaki's headquarters in Foothill Ranch, California has been recognized for its innova- tive working environment with a 2017 REmmy Award in workspace design. "One of the primary goals of our new building design was to immerse our team members and visitors into the Kawasaki Brand," said Kawasaki's vice president of Marketing, Chris Brull. "Our lobby welcomes everyone with the brand DNA, featuring our signature green and multiple displays of our race bikes in action. Engineering strength, along with our diversity and heritage are all showcased for everyone to see as the Kawa- saki brand flows throughout the design." KMC moved into its new space in June 2016 and the innovative design incorporates individual and group workstations; as well as employee wellness areas and the legendary Kawasaki Heritage Hall "We are honored to receive a REmmy Award," said Kawasaki senior vice president, Sales & Operations, Bill Jenkins. "When we made the decision to move into our new head- quarters, we wanted to create a productive and fun work environment. We had the challenge of mixing a creative space with warehousing and shop areas. It was a team effort for our new headquarters in Foothill Ranch to meet all those needs and it is great to be recognized with this REmmy Award. This year marked the 11th year of the REmmy Awards, an annual program put on by The Southern California chapter of CoreNet Global. The group is focused on advancing real estate knowledge, connecting people, and pro- moting personal excellence through programs focused on the needs of its 400 local members. The REmmy Awards recognize leader- ship and innovation in corporate real estate. This year there were 42 finalists spread over four categories: CRE (Corporate Real Estate) Executive of the Year Young Leader of the Year Innovative Workplace (Less than 50,000 sq.ft.) Innovative Workplace (Greather than 50,000 sq.ft.). PSB The lobby features Kawasaki's signature green and multiple race bike displays. Kawasaki Motors Corp. moved to its current location in June 2016. Photos courtesy of Kawasaki Motors Corp. Kawasaki's headquarters in Foothill Ranch, California, has won a REmmy Award for design.

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