Unveiling the Misunderstood Masterpiece: Why You Need a Honda Transalp in Your Life

The Transalp is often unfairly overlooked, yet thousands of riders regard it as a reliable, easy-to-handle touring machine and a sturdy, durable city commuter.

honda xl650v

Initially conceived as a 500cc V-twin all-roads machine, the engine displacement grew to 583cc by launch, and the Honda XL600V was born. The 1987 model had a Paris-Dakar type full cowling, off-road style 21-inch front wheel, and block treaded tires. In reality, few Transalps were ever used off-road, but the "go anywhere" appearance captured many hearts.

Between its launch and 2008, the engine size gradually grew to 680cc while the basic engine unit was shared with other Honda models such as the Deauville. Power output varied – according to year and model – between 50 and 55 horsepower with the first and last models at the lower figure.

Over time, it became clear that most riders predominantly used their Transalps on paved roads and the front wheel was downsized to 19 inches while other refinements to rim widths and brake specifications were adopted.

At its heart, the relatively narrow 52-degree V-twin engine proved capable of enduring high mileage with minimal maintenance, while the chassis and running gear, though robust, required regular cleaning and protective coating to withstand daily winter riding.

Although lacking the bare-chested off-road credentials of the africa twin, the Transalp provides a great riding environment with an upright riding stance, decent weather protection, and good fuel mileage – what else does a daily rider need?

The Transalp was sold in large quantities, so there is a good pool of complete bikes out there. Add the fact that CMSNL has searched far and wide for OEM spares and you can be confident that your Transalp can conquer Alps and Autobahns for many years to come.

issued: Monday, March 25, 2024
updated: Monday, March 25, 2024

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CMS is an independent supplier of spare parts and has no commercial link with Honda, Suzuki, Yamaha or Kawasaki.