2022 Overdrive ADV bike shootout: R 1250 GS vs Multistrada V4 S vs Pan America vs Africa Twin vs Tiger 1200

Christopher Chaves Updated: November 01, 2022, 04:34 PM IST

Riding a motorcycle is like surfing a wave of happiness. I've always believed that. There's something so stress relieving about riding a bike. Whether it's weaving through the city on a streetbike, blazing down the highway on cruiser, slicing up winding mountain roads on a supersport, riding slow bikes fast, fast bikes slow - they all are brilliant experiences in their own right. But in India, without doubt there's nothing that compares to riding an adventure-tourer through the mountains of Himachal Pradesh. I've been blessed with multiple opportunities to do so in the past, and I'm pretty sure that it's more addictive than any substance known to man. Once you've had a taste, you'll always crave for more.

The sight of the humbling mountains that shoot up to the sky, with the river below gushing with frigid glacial water, breathing in all that crisp mountain air as you feel the warming caress of the sun's rays at the crack of dawn or even the chill of the gentlest breeze in the shadows. No lazy beach or salty sea breeze could ever match up to this. The aura of being enveloped amongst the snow-capped mountains Himalayas is absolute. So, I was ecstatic when five motorcycle manufacturers of some special ADV bikes confirmed their individual bikes availability for our big ADV bike shootout up in the mountains. This was the cherry on top. All the five big ADV machines here are created for one sole purpose - to act as multipurpose-tools in your search for adventure, and our aim with this shootout is to see which one comes out on top when subjected to varying surfaces and riding scenarios - from busy city streets and flat open highways to winding mountain roads and of course, some light and heavy off-road trails through some of the most scenic and pristine landscapes in the world.

The red hot Ducati Multistrada V4 S

We each got a good taste of what each of these marvels of machinery from across the globe have to offer us out here, in India. Starting off with the Ducati Multistrada V4, this thing is an absolute beast on the road. In true Ducati style, the manufacturer has lifted the engine off its ballistic track weapon, the Panigale V4, tweaked it around a bit to make it road friendly, shoved it into a motorcycle that you can tour on, yet it still wants to savagely devour everything on the road and relegate it all to its mirrors. The engine itself is lighter than the older unit in the multi 1260 and having the most power on tap in this company at 172PS, although it looks large and heavy, the amount of power is balanced well with incredible agility. Banging through the slick gearbox with bi-directional quickshifter offers seamless transition between gears and this allows you to slice past traffic like a hot knife through butter. It's amazing how you can be calmly cruising around smoothly in Urban mode, but a quick switch to Sport mode, and the bike simply goes ballistic. Small throttle inputs lead to tremendous response from the motor and you can actually feel the electronics keep the nose down when you crack the whip with this one. Bottom end grunt is like no other Ducati before it, but the fun with this bike lies in the upper echelon of the powerband.

The Multi V4 can be calm and well-mannered when you'd like it to be and then just go completely hysterical with explosive pace at the push of a button. The Ducati's range of performance will drop your jaw right down to the floor. The Multi has multiple levels of electronics to toggle through for you to refine your ride just the way you'd like it. I started off the trip astride the V4 and in all honesty, while the other bikes were pushing for pace down the Chandigarh highway, the Multi just seemed to be jogging along and I'd catch up without much of an effort. There were times when I felt that I was cruising at around 120kmph, and only after I glanced down at the speedo did I realise the insane speed I was riding at in fifth under 4,000rpm with utmost ease. Time to get off the gas to avoid being flagged down for speeding. It was really cool to employ the adaptive cruise control feature which effortlessly let me check and keep up with the lads while on group photo and video runs.

The four ride modes - Urban, Touring, Sport and Enduro = make electronic alterations to the power delivery and traction control make it a cinch to ride in various road conditions, and the semi-active suspension which alters the bikes damping in relation to the ride modes ensures that the bike remains grounded at all times. The smooth roads en route to Chandigard were barely a chore for any of the five bike's suspension units. But the Ducati did well to soak up whatever little undulations the roads could throw up. The plush ride, a comfortable seat, an upright riding posture with slightly rearset pegs, it all came together quite nicely with the Multi V4 and it actually felt as though I could have ridden for longer than we'd actually planned. Preload adjustment is also a couple of button pushes away with changeable presets available for rider, luggage and pillion on every conceivable combination. Touring mode lacks the edginess of Sport and perfect to take in all the sights and sounds of the wonderful scenery all around. It's the perfect mode to switch to when you fancy a calm and composed ride with a good amount of grunt on tap. Toggling through the list of electronic aids requires a certain amount of knowledge and accomplishing certain tasks take can get tedious. The silliest issue is resetting the trip meter.

Up the winding road to Manali, the Ducati continued to impress with great feedback from the front end while the Pirelli Scorpion Trail II treads offered a healthy dose of traction on the dry roads leading up, I could often see Vignesh's grin through his helmet every time he had a go at it, much like the others. Given the fantastic road conditions up to this point, the Ducati felt in its element, and seemed to stroll ahead of the other four bikes, egging you to ride hard and fast on every open stretch you came across. The disc brakes which are supported by cornering ABS lend the bike a sense of poise allowing you to gracefully make path corrections when you've gone in hot into a corner and other road users suddenly come in your way. You choose a line, and the Multi will stick to it.

The ride all the way up to Jispa was a breeze all considering. Some light warm-up trails were easily managed in Enduro mode which allows the rear wheel to slide a bit and the bike feels well balanced. But once we got to the fun tricky stuff off-road, that's where the Ducati felt a bit out of place. Switching to Enduro Pro mode which dials down the power delivery, while raising the bike up and turning off ABS at the rear was the obvious choice, but still, the suspension doesn't have a lot of travel room (170/180mm) which meant it bottomed out relatively easy in comparison to the others out here and the alloy rims can be damaged quite easily over the rough stuff and they're not anywhere close to being cheap to replace. Also, the tyres lacked a good the bite on loose-muddy surfaces which meant that if you're moving along slowly while lacking a high level of confidence, you'll be looking down to choose your path rather than just going at it gung-ho. And when you factor in the mental burden of keeping a bike which is over Rs 25 lakh upright at all times, that's pretty much the case for most part. If the bike tips over to one side when you've stopped abruptly over an uneven surface, and you won't have to put in too much effort to bring the 215kg back upright again. But get stuck in some slush and the Multistrada V4 isn't the easiest bike of this lot to wriggle free. Here's where all the power that was once mighty handy out on the road, felt pretty irrelevant.

To sum it up, Ducati have thrown in the kitchen sink in terms of electronic aids with the Multistada V4 S which makes riding on paved surfaces a sheer thrill. Although the bike will have you seated in a very comfortable touring-friendly stance, this Ducati feels like a proper sports-focussed machine that will provide you with all the entertainment you can possibly imagine with the power and agility it packs. Off-the-road however, you will definitely have to acquire an advanced skill-set in addition to some knobby tyres to really make the most of this motorcycle. Slapping some crash guards on will give you some much needed peace of mind too.

The well-balanced BMW R 1250 GS

There are few models more important to a manufacturer than the big boxer GS is to BMW, because this bike is seen as the big daddy of all dual-sport bikes. It's a motorcycle that's designed to perform outstandingly well over all sorts of surfaces, and over the years (four decades) the manufacturer has been setting the benchmark in this segment.

When I first got astride the BMW on this trip, it was in the mountains after riding the Pan America 1250, and the stark contrast in character couldn't have been more apparent. Though it'd been a while since I rode the big GS, I could immediately tell of this bike's unmatched level of refinement and the ease of riding compared to the heavy, thrummy Harley. The 1,254cc liquid-cooled Boxer twin is an absolute gem of an engine and right after you start her up, there are no vibrations to be felt through the bars and overall, vibes are kept to a bare minimum once you set off. Another impressive bit was the electronically adjustable semi-active suspension which in Dynamic setting, automatically adjusts preload as well as damping, and it even has an auto-levelling function when you fire her up. The Pan Am is Harley's first stab at an ADV bike, and knowing that BMW have had a go at refining the (now) big daddy of dual-sport bikes for over 40 years, I could quite literally feel the advancement in tech.

When you set off for the first time and put your feet on the pegs, the suspension adjusts to compensate all your body weight on the machine and it even stiffens up the rear spring to minimise squat under hard acceleration. I experienced this awesomeness first hand after I hit an open stretch of road in the picturesque Solang valley and whacked the throttle open to unleash all of the 136PS on offer. The throaty roar of the stock exhaust was music to my ears through the Atal tunnel. Once clear of the tourist-filled stretches, the super smooth and liner power delivery meant that I was touching triple digit speeds way before my mind could fathom it.

The GS pumps out a healthy 143Nm at low revs and acceleration is brisk right from the get-go thanks to the shaft drive and BMW's variable valve technology which makes performance accessible even at crawling speeds without the engine knocking. Out on the twisty bits towards Jispa, the BMW takes to corner carving like you wouldn't believe. Not to say there is anything wrong with a big ADV bike that can go around turns at mind bending speeds, but it's the manner of execution that's oh so impressive. The fact that it's the second heaviest bike of the five out here is nothing short of amazing. The years of engineering that BMW have put into the bike up to this point are all there to be seen and felt as soon as you hit a series of fast bends. The suspension system doesn't allow the bike to dive and rise with sudden acceleration and braking, and keeps the bike nice and flat in most instances.

The brilliant balance and neutral handling of the BMW makes it effortless to flick around, and this coupled with the linear power delivery, the various riding modes, and the light clutch and throttle action make it an easy bike that you could rode around all day on. Out on the highway Nikhil and I joked that the BMW comes across as a magic carpet, exuding an exceptionally comfortable ride quality that almost completely irons out small, sharp undulations, and because it you didn't have to put any shoulder into getting it around a bend quickly, like the others were doing on the competition here. There were multiple instances when we reached out destination way after sunset, and all of us concurred that though some of us were previously a bit sceptical about this feature, the bikes headlamp - which swivels to illuminate corners while riding - proved really useful in the dark.

Once we were out on the off-road stretches, the R 1250 GS showed off why it gained its reputation for being the one to beat in its class. The suspension struts at both ends softened the blows over some of the really rough stuff and even when it bottomed out, it wasn't bone jarring like with the Harley-Davidson where you felt like the bike is trying to shed some weight - namely yours, entirely. Nikhil, who is one of the instructors at the BigRock Dirt Park really had a blast honing about astride this one. In Enduro Pro ride mode, with the tail stepping out, the bike feels so well balanced and in control, some of us lacking a high off-road skill-set managed to have a ball of a time. Even when I embarrassingly got stuck in a spot I thought would be easy pickings, I was impressed by how easy it was to move the 249kg bike about and quickly make my escape like nothing happened. It looks and feels heavy, but once you're astride, it really doesn't feel so. It's amazing how the ride modes help transform this oversize enduro into a comfortable tourer, but it's no match for the Multistrada V4 in terms of manic power delivery.

In Dynamic Pro configuration, the electronic suspension automatically adjusts preload as well as damping, and it even has an auto-levelling function when you fire her up. Plus, when you set off for the first time and put your feet on the pegs, the suspension adjusts to compensate all your body weight on the machine. Best part is that you can feel it all happen in real time. All extremely impressive tech that's aimed at making things a whole lot easier on you. But in retrospect, it sort of robs you from experiencing some of the physics of it all and allowing you to really connect with the bike, if you think about it. Can you make your way through a trail without all these tech features? Of course you can. But they sure make the experience much more comfortable and a bit easier, which usually translates to more fun for the average rider. In keeping with the spirit of adventure we hit the dirt while off-roading on the Honda, the Tiger and the BMW and the GS was by far the easiest to get upright again. Nikhil showed us how it could be done with one hand.

All in all, the BMW 1250 GS comes across as a motorcycle that lets you choose your definition of adventure while acting as a faithful companion throughout it all. It has to be one of the most dynamic motorcycles of our time. But to me, for some reason, it seems to be lacking that certain bit of rider involvement and drama that I'd have liked from the experience. The exceptional bit about the R 1250 GS is its low centre of gravity, and the way the electronics package brings it all together.

The awe-inspiring Honda Africa Twin Adventure Sports

The tall, skinny Honda Africa Twin Adv Sports was the one bike that we were all initially itching to get our hands on, but by the end of the ride, we wanted none of it, thanks to an underlying problem with our test bike. This would mark the first time I'd be riding the manual transmission bike after previously riding the dual-clutch automatic version which was impressive in its own right. It's got all the makings of a proper ADV bike - the 21/18-inch wheel setup, the slender frame, fully adjustable (manual) suspension, a generous amount of suspension travel, the works.

After seeing Nikhil suffer with the bike killing power and all the fun on the first day we set out, I volunteered to take the reins on day two. The problem still persisted, which made my ride up to Manali one of the most risky to date, but there were times when the bike would get into the groove and act as it normally should, and when that happened, I couldn't have been happier. Yes, the way the bike is setup makes highway rides extremely boring and not as involving as the others in this lot, but there was one stretch of battered ghat roads NH 154 up towards Sundar Nagar where the heavens had mercy on me and the bike ran perfectly without any hiccups.

It took to of ditches and potholes like they were non-existent and I was so happy to be finally riding the bike as I should that I didn't have to bother keeping an eye out for them anymore, unleashing all of its 99PS might, I gave it the beans walked away from it all without a single ache or pain. The Africa Twin is ever willing to change direction in a hurry, but drop a shoulder into a corner at pace and the bike doesn't feel as planted or composed as the other bikes here, even over the smooth stuff. The big 21-inch wheel up front the main culprit behind it because even the suspension manages well, positive feedback was always going to be an issue. That and though the knobby treads provide a good amount of grip, they aren't the best on this king of surface.

Even though it's not the best down the highway, its big 24.5-litre fuel tank (the standard Africa Twin gets a smaller tank) maximises range between stops and the wind-cheating fairing, height-adjustable lower-set seat and heated grips mean you can clock up the miles with abandon, while the height-adjustable screen reduces helmet buffeting. It's a motorcycle that's built to be hardy, with a large aluminium skid-plate and side-fairing inserts serving as protection for its innards. The new dual LED headlights with DRLs look great and as I would find out after sunset, even provides consistent visibility, while also incorporating cornering lamps that light up corners when you lean in. For the longer rides, there's cruise control to manage the distance and an ACC charging socket to keep your devices charged.

Treat the CRF1100L to rough surfaces and that's when it really begins to shine. It's off-road prowess more delectable than the sweet aromas of wood-fire cooked meals emanating of the homes and local eateries scattered throughout the valleys. It weighs 239kg which might seem like a lot to handle on paper, but in reality it feels far from it. Its narrow mid-section makes standing up and gassing it over the rough stuff a breeze, even if you're lacking confidence. The front end feels ever so light yet it stands up to a serious bashing when ridden hard. Standing up on this bike feels natural with the bars well-within reach and the tank contoured nicely for you get a good grip with your legs and get its tail out and slide around to your heart's content. The Honda doesn't get any of the fancy semi-active suspension bits with its own suspension having to be adjusted manually but does work brilliantly over rocks, and every time you feel like you're getting bogged down in the much, there's enough power on tap for you to get right back on track in a jiffy. With 103Nm of torque, at your disposal, and enough grunt at the low end of the powerband the Honda really doesn't feel underpowered off-road if one assumed so. It feels light, is built solid and really houses all you would ever need for any hardcore off-road excursions.

Besides the underlying issue with our test bike, there was one major hiccup I found with this Africa Twin. And that would have to do with the Honda's electronic aids. The electronics suite on the Honda is the least complicated in comparison to the rest in this group, although it does come with a 6-axis IMU, dual channel ABS, traction control and Bluetooth connectivity. You'll have access to the settings via the well-lit, rather simplistic and nice 6.5-inch screen that now supports android Auto and Apple CarPlay, however you'll have to the manual a couple of times to get used to the sequences of button processes and combinations to arrive at the alteration you'd like to make with the bike's setup - like hunting for the three-levels of 'wheelie control' feature for instance, which will require you to press the page button first (yes, there's one of those) before you go down and side to side a couple of times on the arrow keys before you get down to it.

Overall, the Honda Africa Twin Adventure Sports really allows you to experiment with your off-road riding techniques and have a complete blast while at it. Even Nikhil, who has the most off-road experience from all us riders really went full send with this one and gave us some highly dramatic shots over some massive rocks on a partially dry the riverbed in Jispa. Clearly a master of Big Rocks (get it?). Anyway, it's really impressive what Honda have done with this engine unit because off the road, it will keep up with the Tiger and the GS, no problem. It's just a shame that our test bike had some issues that needed to be sorted out, because although in this case it the issue was a one-off, if it actually ran the way it should have, this bike would definitely have to be my personal pick of the lot.

The heavy-footed Harley Pan America 1250 Special

On this test, you could say that the Harley-Davidson rides into unfamiliar territory, having entered the ring of seasoned brawlers being the inexperienced rookie with its Pan America 1250 Special. First up, it has to be said that the Harley is a motorcycle that definitely requires a lot more effort from you to ride compared to the other bikes. Not only does it look boxy in comparison to its more sculpted opposition, but it feels so too. Out on the highway where roads were straight and the others were briskly making their way around Chandigarh highway traffic that was already moving  at a decent clip, the Harley really struggled to keep up to pace.

The Pan America's Revolution Max V-twin packs a strong 150PS punch and loves to be revved, but you really have to rev the bolts off the bike to extract the best performance. Even at low revs, with 128Nm of grunt, it lacks the shove of the other 1200cc bikes.  The engine kicks into party mode only around the 4,000rpm- 6,000rpm. This all isn't to say that the Harley feels sluggish in general, but it certainly does so in this company. When it came to dropping anchor quickly, you can feel a lot of the bike's weight shift to the front which could get quite unnerving at times, especially when you're giving it the stick. Even with its Michelin Scorcher running shoes on, which were developed for this bike, you'll really have to concentrate on what's around you the faster you ride, in order to slow down enough or even stop in time.

Up in the mountains when we swapped bikes yet again, the Harley came into its own of sorts, because there came a time when I got fed up of riding fast and took a step back to relax and enjoy the scenery. Cruising along at 60kmph in fifth with the engine rumbling along nicely while taking in the stunning sight of the snow-capped peaks around Zing Zing bar, I felt at peace with the Harley. I was done playing catching up with the pack after that, because I knew that the shoot location was not too far away. There was a bit of a mucky off-road patch with a small bridge and water crossing which I'm sure the rest must have gunned it through, but I just had to shift down to second and the Pan America made light work of it. Standing up to tackle rough terrain makes things a handling the Pan Am a lot easier but the bike still feels front heavy. I could literally feel the 245kg weight of the Harley creeping in the slower I went and especially so when I had to take a U-turn and head back in the opposite direction.

Off the road, the bike feels heavy on its feet and even though it has the same ground clearance as the Africa Twin, when you hit a hard bump it does tend to bottom out often having the longest wheelbase (1,580mm) of the bunch. While it weighs in at 245kg, which is 4kg less than the R 1250 GS, it doesn't mask its weight as efficiently. On this trip, it managed to clear all the obstacles that we subjected it to, just that it required more muscle to execute. Also, patches of sand were by far its worst enemy out here.

The Harley does come with a good amount of electronic aids that are a whole lot easier to sift through than the Honda. The list includes a 6-axis IMU, linked braking system, cornering ABS and even engine braking control. Then there's multiple customisable riding modes, heated grips, cruise control, cornering lights a TPMS, hill-hold feature and Bluetooth connectivity which is all pretty extensive. The Pan America 1250 Special gets kit like the spoke-wheels instead of the Standard variant's alloy wheels, along with crash guards, adaptive lights, metal bash plate, a steering damper and two additional customisable ride modes among other off-roady features which all sounds well and good, but it all doesn't quite seem to add up very well given the bike's character.

In a previous, stand-alone review, I've said that the Pan America 1250 has to be the most fun-to-ride Harley-Davidson bike in India, and I'll still stick by it. Because in truth, it is just that. It's not low to the ground or flashy with dollops of chrome and can be ridden almost anywhere. Just that in this company, the Harley comes across as a motorcycle that needs a quite a bit of work put into it if it is to match up evenly with the current form of competition.

Big kitty, big claws: the Triumph Tiger 1200 Rally Pro

I was a fan of the Tiger 1200 ever since I got a chance to ride it in Shimla just before it launched a couple of months ago. From paved gradients to rough off-road trails all set amongst a backdrop which had Mother Nature flaunting some of her finest work - there was always something about the hilly terrain that really brought the Tiger to life and once again, the Tiger did strut about with pride amongst this esteemed lot. All the alterations that Triumph have made to this bike over the older 1200 Explorer make the previous gen model feel like a dinosaur in comparison. Things like the T-plane crank engine with its new firing order and even the new tubular frame it sits within is a far cry from the old bike. It continues to be shaft driven, just like the BMW R 1250 GS - a motorcycle Triumph singled out in terms of its direct competition, and this was the first time that we'd be riding both bikes back-to-back which was much called for.

On well-paved surfaces, the 150PS spewing inline-triple cylinder motor doesn't fail to deliver on excitement but it's the mid and top end of the powerband where power delivery is strong. At low speeds, the engine has a tendency to stall easily which is a confidence killer, especially if you're off-road talking a really tricky patch. It happened to all five of us at some point on the ride. You'll definitely have to want to keep revs up at times like these, which is a contrast to the strong bottom-end performance of the big GS. But where the Triumph clearly sets itself apart from the BMW is in the ride and handling department. It doesn't comprise the tech wizardry makes up the R 1250s semi-active suspension system, and it does dip more under hard braking, but it just feels equally surefooted but more engaging to ride overall. You get to feel the thrill of a the slightly buzzy, yet responsive engine, the bike lets you feel small undulations while keeps the big ones at bay, you feel more feedback from the front end around corners, heck, you just feel all the more involved and are allowed to get in sync with this bike than you do with the R 1250 GS, and that's something I grew to appreciate with the Tiger 1200.

Riding alongside the icy cold Beas river it was easy to zone out and take it easy, watching the paraglide slowly descend from the heavens to the lush green field below, with the Tiger purring along peacefully at 3,000rpm while you're seated upright in the lap of comfort with the bike's low-set pegs. And when you want to snap back to reality, drop a gear, pick up the pace and the bike makes you feel alive once again. The Tiger 1200 isn't as quick as the Multistrada V4, it feels equally planted in the bends, which is commendable. Also the bike gets Brembo Stylema callipers which are amongst the best in the business. The amount of bite and feel you can get from these brakes is insane. The Tiger 1200s also get Magura master cylinders and the combination works in tandem really well.

Much like the others here, the Tiger 1200 comes with a slew of electronic aids like an IMU, optimised ABS, traction control, riding modes (out of which off-road pro mode was the best off the beaten path  because it allows you to switch ABS and traction control completely off), hill hold control, cornering lights, in addition to other tech aids. Off the road, this big kitty is ready to fight tooth and nail with the most suspension travel (200mm) at both ends than all the other four out here. 15 minutes with the Tiger 1200 Pro and you'll have a good understanding of the feats the bike is capable of. The suspension, like the brakes works predictably well and the longer you ride, the more your confidence builds up. and once you're in the zone, everything falls into place with this bike. Ride slow and the bike will stall. It still feels a bit more top-heavy compared to the Multistrada and the GS when you some to a halt abruptly or tip the bike over a little.

The Triumph Tiger 1200 Rally Pro isn't as easy or agile to manoeuver as the CRF1100L when things get tricky off-road. But this isn't a deal breaker by any standard, and I think that this is just something that you'll get used to when the more you ride it off-road. And it's pretty much the same logic for any bike. In a way, you could look at the Triumph as having some features of all the other four bikes which is laudable. But has it clawed its way up to the top and dethroned the mighty BMW R 1250 GS? I certainly think so, based on overall ride feel, but I'm sure not all will agree with me.

Everyone's a winner

All five big adventure bikes here are marvels of modern machinery that are capable of helping you in your quest for adventure. And at that they all hunt with prowess. It would be unfair to adjudge an out-and-out winner here, because each individual bike comes with its own set of charms and qualms.

When it comes to upping the ride tempo, nothing does it better in this company than the Multistrada V4 S. But off-the road, the Ducati leaves much to be desired. It's the most expensive bike in this comparison test and it comes filled to the brim with tech. but it's mostly tech that will aid you on your way on road. It's more of a sport-tourer than a full-blown ADV. And if creaming other road users in comfort and style is your scene, well, it makes perfect sense then.

The BMW R 1250 GS is configured to make your ride experience effortless and unintimidating. It's got the tech to justify its price tag whether you're comfortable riding on the road or off it. Although its electronics suite may be more than what you're looking for, its overall engineering as a whole is something to really appreciate.

The Harley-Davidson Pan America 1250 Special. Yes it is a capable bike, yes it will get you through the rough stuff. But not with the ease and convenience as that on offer from the other motorcycles we have out here today. It's an adventure-tourer that's not lacking capability, but it currently emphasises more on the 'long-haul' tourer aspect of it all.

I found the Honda Africa Twin Adventure Sports to be the most enjoyable motorcycle to ride off the road. Sure it isn't the most comfortable best on tarmac, and it may be the least powerful, but it's more than capable of keeping up with the rest, off it. And it feels built to take a bashing and it isn't as costly as the others here. That plus Honda reliability, never going to be a bad thing. Wish the switchgear and menus weren't so complicated though.

Neither is the Triumph Tiger 1200 Rally Pro as powerful and quick as the Multi V4, nor is it as effortless to ride as the GS, but It still is a very engaging big ADV motorcycle to ride and is more affordable than the other two which makes a compelling case for itself. It's not as light as the Honda or as heavy as the Harley. However it strikes a good balance between performance and usability besides being a hoot to ride.

Ultimately, you are the one who gets to decide who the winner is, based on your personal preference. Because each of the five out here are so unique and rewarding in their own way. For me, it's the Honda Africa Twin.

  • All the luggage you see on all the bikes, along with the crash guards and even some accessories on some of the bikes was provided by Givi India and the Bikenbiker motorcycle e-store. Click here to learn more about it.
Price (Ex-Delhi)
Starts Rs 20,45,000
Displacement
1254cc
Transmission
6-Speed
Max Power(ps)
136.00
Max Torque(Nm)
143.00
Mileage
21.05 Kmpl
Price (Ex-Delhi)
Starts Rs 18,99,000
Displacement
1158cc
Transmission
6-Speed
Max Power(ps)
172.00
Max Torque(Nm)
125.00
Mileage
15.38 Kmpl
Price (Ex-Delhi)
Starts Rs 16,90,000
Displacement
1252cc
Transmission
6-Speed
Max Power(ps)
152.00
Max Torque(Nm)
127.00
Mileage
18.28 Kmpl
Price (Ex-Delhi)
Starts Rs 16,01,500
Displacement
1083cc
Transmission
6-Speed
Max Power(ps)
99.25
Max Torque(Nm)
103.00
Mileage
-NA-
Price (Ex-Delhi)
Starts Rs 19,19,000
Displacement
1160cc
Transmission
6-Speed
Max Power(ps)
150.00
Max Torque(Nm)
130.00
Mileage
-NA-