For 2021, beyond creating the world’s premier do-it-yourself, adventure-travel event series, Overland Expo embarked on an entirely new kind of project. For the first time ever, Overland Expo built an Ultimate Overland Motorcycle, the Honda Africa Twin Adventure Sports ES DCT.
Overland Expo has always been about educating, outfitting, and inspiring overlanders. To some overlanding is defined by 4×4 vehicles, Overland Expo is equally passionate about adventure motorcycles and how they define their own space inside overlanding. We created the Ultimate Motorcycle and outfitted it with the latest and greatest adventure-moto gear to prove just how incredibly capable adventure motorcycles can be. What’s more, the Africa Twin is the literal embodiment of Overland Expo’s ethos.
Over the last year, the Africa Twin has been on display at all Overland Expo live events. It traversed the United States as well, playing starring roles in Overland Expo editorial content on the Compass. This includes How-to, Trips & Trails, and more. If the build was the ‘outfitting,’ the Compass content was the ‘inspiring and education’ portion of the project.
Here are all the stories the Africa Twin has been a part of:
- Why We Chose the Honda Africa Twin — 2/23/2021
- Overland Expo Announces First-Ever Overland Motorcycle Build — 2/23/2021
- Overland Expo Reveals Ultimate Overland Builds 2021 — 8/27/2021
- Up Close and Personal with Overland Expo’s Ultimate Motorcycle — 9/08/2021
- How-to: Ride Two-Track on a Honda Africa Twin DCT — 9/17/2021
- Trips & Trails: Colorado BDR Segment 4 — 10/05/2021
- Trips & Trails: Aspen Ridge — 10/12/2021
- How-to: Plan for an Adventure-Moto Trip — 10/14/2021
- Gear Chronicles: Finding Higher Ground with KonTour Seat — 10/21/2021
- The Ultimate Overland Trip on Our Ultimate Overland Motorcycle — 10/26/2021
Now, with those trails traversed, stories told, and lessons taught, it’s time for the final portion of the Africa Twin’s lifecycle; Bring a Trailer auction to benefit the Overland Expo Foundation.
Since the outset of the build, it has been Overland Expo’s goal to send the Ultimate Moto to auction on the leading online auction website Bring a Trailer. All 100% of the proceeds of the auction will go directly to the Overland Expo Foundation.
While we prepare to send the Africa Twin off for auction, we wanted to take one last look at all the incredible gear that we added to the Africa Twin, transforming the already capable bike into our vision of the Ultimate Overland Motorcycle. In alphabetical order, here are the gear categories:
Crash Protection & Skid Plate: Outback Motortek
Outback Motortek’s Ultimate Protection Combo MAX includes Upper Crash Bars, Lower Crash Bars, Engine Guards, and Skid Plate that work in conjunction to protect some of the Africa Twin’s most essential components. Outback prepared this combo package after brutally drop-testing motorcycles, ensuring that their products meet the highest standards in off-road conditions. The skid plate and lower crash bars serve as the foundation of the protective accessories and, when paired with upper crash bars and engine guards, your bike is sure to withstand the perils of gravity in even the most rugged conditions.
Hard Luggage: Jesse Luggage
Jesse’s Xventure 10 Panniers are 100% handcrafted in the USA. Built from 2-mm thick 5052 aluminum for durability, they are welded on both the interior and exterior of the pannier to provide a “seamless” look and cleaner assembly over the riveted box designs. Along with the welding, there are built in rib rails to give these panniers superior strength.
Lighting Kit: DENALI Electronics
The DENALI D7s we chose for the build are the brightest lights that DENALI offers at over 15,000 lumens. The D7s will light up even the darkest road or trail. The D7s are ideal for night conditions when you need the most visibility. In fact, they’re so bright that you have to be careful not to blind other drivers or riders. The D7s are mounted to a bike-specific mounting bracket for the Africa Twin Adventure Sports ES.
Navigation & Communication: Garmin
One of the most trusted names in GPS navigation and satellite communication is Garmin – maker of top-tier products for motorcyclists and adventurers of all kinds. Garmin navigators help you find your way and their satellite communicators help you stay in touch when you’re far from home. The Ultimate Overland Motorcycle will be fitted with a Garmin zūmo XT and we’ll keep a Garmin inReach Mini on us wherever we’re riding.
Built for action, the LT2000 Winch from Superwinch provides up to 2,000 lbs of reliable pulling power, more than sufficient for getting your bike out of sticky situations or up onto a trailer. This multi-purpose winch features a free-spooling “pull and turn” clutch, a handlebar mounted rocker switch remote, and 49 feet of 5/32″ rope wire. Perfected over the years, the LT Series offers unmatched durability and performance.
KonTour Seat creates the ultimate solution for motorcycle seat comfort. From the ground up and inside out, KonTour addresses specific shortcomings inherent in stock seat design by utilizing the best combination of high-tech materials for their custom motorcycle seats.
Soft Luggage: Wolfman Motorcycle Luggage
Wolfman tailored the ever-popular Enduro Tank Bag WP with an improved and more ergonomic shape. Made with water repellent materials, a tank bag is one of the most useful pieces of motorcycle luggage you can add to your bike. Perfect for holding quick-grab necessities and smaller items, when we hit the road on the Ultimate Overland Motorcycle, we won’t leave home without it.
Tires: Heidenau K60 Scout
Heidenau’s durable compound, combined with a tread to handle just about anything, has made for a tire that’s become the beloved tire of adventure bike travelers the world over. In adventure riding, the road can be unpredictable, but we know that the K60 Scouts will have our back on the Ultimate Overland Motorcycle.
Doubletake Mirrors are designed for dependability on even the most rugged adventures. Frustrated with mirrors that broke and limited visibility, Doubletake decided there had to be a better way and designed the best folding ADV mirror on the market today. Manufactured in Colorado, they offer a satisfaction guarantee and a lifetime warranty against breakage of the housing.
A radiator puncture due to road debris will certainly ruin your day of riding. That’s why AltRider Radiator Guards were designed to protect the radiator from road debris while allowing as much airflow as possible. Constructed from 1.4 mm aluminum, the guards feature louvered cutouts to increase the stiffness and allow greater airflow.
Nobody wants their bike to tip over when parked in loose gravel or on soft ground. The AltRider Side Stand Enlarger is designed to increase the size of the side stand, giving your bike a more stable foot to stand on. Starting with a piece of 1/8 inch thick stainless steel, the Side Stand Enlarger is laser cut and machine formed to perfectly fit onto the Africa Twin’s side stand foot. The AltRider Enlarger’s weight is minimal to avoid the side stand bouncing around and inadvertently cutting the ignition.
Comprised of a riser and enlarger plate, the AltRider DualControl Brake System enhances control and reaction time while riding. The DualControl easily bolts to the brake pedal and allows for a larger control surface for rear braking and better rider ergonomics when transitioning from a seated to standing position.
When it comes to custom fabrication, there is nobody better equipped than Ross Taylor of Rolling Living. With decades of experience in CAD design and working behind the welding helmet, Ross created a custom mount for the Superwinch winch that securely attaches the winch to the Outback Motortek upper crash bars.