Goldwing or CTX700? I usually take the CTX700! - Honda CTX700 Forum
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post #1 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-21-2019, 06:47 PM Thread Starter
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Talking Goldwing or CTX700? I usually take the CTX700!

I have owned several motorcycles. To be exact, I started with a Kawasaki Vulcan 900, and progressed to a 2006 Yamaha V-Star 1100, 2003 1500cc Honda Valkyrie, 2006 Honda Goldwing, 2014 Honda CTX1300, and finally a 2016 Honda Goldwing. I bought my wife a 2015 Honda CTX700 manual because she was riding the V-Star 1100 and it was just a bit too heavy for her. I put floorboards on it eventually, a low Corbin seat, and a 47 liter Givi Monokey trunk.

My opinion? It was the perfect "scooter" for her.

And then I rode it.

Are you kidding me? This was flat out the best riding (control and maneuverability) motorcycle I had ever ridden. I was amazed by the low center of gravity and control I had. Well, it was fun for riding around town, but compared to my 2016 Honda Goldwing, or any of the bikes I owned in the past, it still wasn't a "real" motorcycle.

And then I took a long trip on it.

I had to make a trip from Amarillo, TX to Brownsville, TX (distance = 800 miles). Boy, was this going to be "fun" I thought... I have enjoyed up to 7,500-mile trips on my Goldwing, but I knew this was going to be an 800 challenge. I got on the road and remembered why I liked her motorcycle so much. It was just plain fun. It had the power I needed (and then some), when I needed it. I can't get over how light it felt (in comparison to my big boy Goldwing at 950 lbs). How crazy was this? Interstate highway, some 75MPH and yes, even portions that were 80 and 85MPH speed limits. Could this bike pull it off and still be comfortable? Was it even safe on an 85MPH Interstate highway? Yes. And not only "yes", but a resounding absolutely! And, I had far more control than I had compared to the Goldwing. I enjoyed the trip, even though it was a long 800-mile one-day ride. It was enjoyable, just like my Goldwing. The one big difference I noticed was when I stopped for gas or stopped at red lights or whatever, I had complete control. I wasn't having to really check the road to make sure I was going to be level and so forth like I did on the Goldwing.

Time went on.

My wife and I would take big trips on the Goldwing (and we pull a trailer behind the bike). We took 2,500 - 7,500 mile trips and enjoyed every bit of them. But I never could get over how well her bike rode in comparison to my Goldwing. Yes, the Goldwing had far more features (XM radio, satellite weather, traffic, heated seats/grips, TPMS, and for sure, far more wind/rain protection (about 99% to be exact). But I did not have the maneuverability. I couldn't just turn on a dime like she could. When we rode together, she could just zoom around corners, or turn into a gas station at the last minute. Not me. I was stopping a bus. Curvy roads were fun, but I was careful and apprehensive with even a little gravel in a parking lot. Nothing seemingly phased her as she "outperformed" me. I hated the gravel, she could just carefully ride on it. Occasionally I would take her bike for a spin, and every time I did, I fell a little more in love with it.

So I finally decided, "You know, I could get a CTX1300 and have a great second bike with the excellent handling of my wife's CTX700." I did, and it wasn't. It wasn't a CTX700. Nowhere near. Again, more features I guess, but nothing I have ever ridden was like the 700. This year (2019), I traded in the CTX1300 for a used CTX700 with 900 miles on it. Yeah, I got cash back from this trade. The previous owner of this nice, white CTX700 obviously didn't ride much with less than 1,000 miles it. To match it out like my wife's, I put the wireless TPMS, floorboards, Corbin seat, and Givi Monokey 47 liter top case on it. Excuse me for saying so, but it is AWESOME!

I have had it for about a month. I have put almost 1,500 miles on it. I LOVE IT.

The fact is, unless there are weather factors to consider, I will always take the CTX700 over the Goldwing. I can't imagine a bike which provides better rain/wind protection than a Goldwing can - you barely get wet at all riding 55 mph in the rain. You get virtually no wind. So I can see the advantage of the wing when it is cold and rainy, and it is unquestionably the bike to choose in those conditions. All other things being equal, I will choose the CTX700.

I think my review should end this way. In the garage, I have my 2016 Honda Goldwing with all the bells and whistles. Next to it, my Honda CTX700. Do I ride the Goldwing or CTX today? I think I will take the CTX700, again.
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post #2 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-04-2020, 01:53 PM
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It would be very interesting to hear your opinion vs the 18+ Goldwings. I'm looking at stepping up and I was surprised how nimble it was. Never rode a pre 18 so can't compare.
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post #3 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-04-2020, 02:14 PM
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Cool Yea & Amen!

I didn't come to the CTX from a latter day GoldWing, but your observations pretty much mirror my own, especially with doing the Yelvington 3.0 trike conversion (sadly for you all, no longer available!) and now, the Russell DayLong recently added (very much available!)

At age 75, this is very likely my last ride, but even if I was at 55 once again, methinks that this would be my last ride as well.
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post #4 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-04-2020, 02:46 PM
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How true. As a former Goldwing, ST1300, Pacific Coast and CB360 owner, I can say I have had my fair share of motorcycle experiences. Each bike exceeded in its mission. However, the CTX 700 DCT exceeds in several missions at the same time. Low speed handling ck, High speed cruising ck, Excellent low end performance and fuel economy ck, Attractive styling ck, luggage storage options ck, low center of gravity for fuel tank and engine ck, stylish design ck., cutting edge technology in the DCT transmission ck. and finally all this for under $10,000 new. An automotive bullseye! Enjoy your excellent choice!

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post #5 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-04-2020, 04:34 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by T-Rex View Post
It would be very interesting to hear your opinion vs the 18+ Goldwings. I'm looking at stepping up and I was surprised how nimble it was. Never rode a pre 18 so can't compare.
Well, I finally have the answer! Several have asked me my thoughts on comparing the 2018 Goldwing with the CTX700. Obviously, there is no true comparison because there is a lot of difference between a CTX700 and a Goldwing DCT. We all know that, but that isn't what people are asking - they asking how the bikes compare as far as maneuverability and ease of riding.

On November 9th, 2019, I found a great deal on one of the remaining 2018 Honda Goldwings. I traded in my 2016 Goldwing for this new one. As of today, February 4th, 2020, I have 10,045 miles on it (bought it new with 2 miles on it). I have ridden it in all sorts of weather and road conditions with the exception of hot weather. I rode it on one 6-hour trip where it rained the whole way. From straight highways to the Twisted Sisters around Leakey, TX, and Arkansas' sort of mountains. Since I now live in the Hill Country in Texas where some of the best curvy roads exist in Texas, and unfortunately, heavy traffic in Austin, I have a pretty good perspective over the last 10,000 miles in my view. It is just an opinion, but it is something for others to consider if they choose to hear.

The 2018 Honda Goldwing's DCT is utterly amazing, and I cannot compare the bike as a whole to the old Goldwing... the ride being so much better, it is like a different bike and not like riding a Goldwing. It is in its own class. Phenomenal maneuverability; doesn't feel like a passenger is on the back at all. Holy smokes! It is clear they dropped the weight really, really low. It glides around corners and curves, and is exceptionally easy to handle at slow speeds (less than 5 mph even) in parking lots. I am continually amazed at how I don't have to put a foot down until the bike is completely stopped, and I am not putting feet down at very low speeds when I maneuver in parking lots. There is plenty of power in Economy Mode, Touring Mode increases that power and is great for city riding in traffic, and rain mode is awesome in the rain! I do not like Sport mode - reminds me of riding a Hyabusa. Way too much power for me; just too dern aggressive.

Also, my wife didn't like the stock OEM seat, and I could only handle it for 3-4 hours. I replaced it with an Ultimate Seat (their seats are now plug and play for heat and work with original equipment). After replacing the seat, which was only a medium complaint for me, I have only one other complaint - that dern parking brake! It takes a while to get used to not taking off with the parking brake engaged and burning up the pad some. It is easily adjustable to tighten it back up and getting it to lock the bike in place, but it didn't take me long to do it again. Honda should have made it to where the bike could not be placed in drive if the parking brake was engaged. There is an aftermarket fix for it, I think for $60 or so, but just like you can't put it in gear if the kickstand is down, they should have disabled the transmission if the parking brake was on.

Well, I could go on for hours about what I am now convinced is the perfect bike. I no longer fear getting older to the point I won't be able to handle it. I am quite confident I will be able to - though I may be too weak at some point to pick it up if it does fall over! For now, I am still in good shape and shouldn't have to worry about that for 20 years hopefully. As for my old Goldwing... it did worry me that one day soon it would be too much to handle at slow speeds with a passenger.

So... what is my final answer?

I love my CTX700, but I have only ridden it one time since November 9th, and it was out of necessity. I love my CTX700 and wouldn't trade it for the world, but I am going to sell it. It has all the bells and whistles, Corbin seat, Monokey 47L trunk, saddlebags, and footboards. Probably everything but heated grips - and I love my CTX700. But now, with the 2018 Honda Goldwing, what is the point - I don't see a tremendous advantage in the handling, perhaps a slight advantage goes to the CTX700 for its light weight, but all of the power and goodies (like Apple CarPlay so everything, including opening the garage door, is by voice command), makes up for it. There isn't a big enough difference to me.

Final answer - I love my CTX700 but I see no advantage over the 2018 Goldwing as far as handling... perhaps a slight one, but everything else on the Goldwing that adds to the ride makes up for the slight advantage the CTX700 can give.

Just the opinion of one rider, age 50 in relatively great health, and unfortunately, always "on call", so the Goldwing's AppleCarplay allowing me to read (well, listen to text messages), reply to them, or send and receive new text messages by voice alone adds another crucial aspect. But the question will be the handling or maneuverability as compared to the CTX. I have found no significant advantage. The 2018+ Goldwings are not the Goldwings of the past.

Oh, and I am averaging 44.5 or 45 MPG consistently... that isn't as good as the CTX, but it ain't bad either. The only other complaint I have about the 2018 Goldwing - I can't stay off the thing!!! Haha, great problem to have.

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Last edited by BB09862; 02-04-2020 at 04:43 PM. Reason: typo
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post #6 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-05-2020, 08:53 AM
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You have given a great report, I'm sure it will create some excitement on this forum. One of our bikes is a 2015 CTX DCT, I think it is a great bike, very easy to handle and it delivers a good ride.

Ride it if you can, mod it if you can't!
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post #7 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-05-2020, 11:46 AM
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IMO the 2018 and forward Goldwings are the finest touring motorcycles ever made. Rides better than a luxury vehicle. Handles close to a sport-tourer. Remarkably reliable.
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post #8 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-05-2020, 12:19 PM
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BB09862. Soooo what I hear you saying is IF you want a Motorcycle with DCT, and can't afford a newer model Goldwing... That a CTX700 would be your close second choice.
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post #9 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-06-2020, 10:24 AM
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Now throw the wife on the CTX and compare with a Goldwing.

I adore my CTX- and I am a guy used to extreme machines like choppers and sport bikes. The CTX is the most 'normal' motorcycle I've ever had and it's in my top two or three bikes I've ever owned.

But it does let me down with a passenger. It takes two people to reveal a chink in the CTX's armor. It is solidly a middleweight cruiser with touring aspirations. Whereas the Goldwing is a heavyweight tourer from the get go. The middling size of the CTX powerplant really shows it's skipping leg day at the gym when you haul another human around on the highway.
Around town and on back roads the motor is sufficient for two if unremarkable. But then the suspension's shortcomings take center stage. The CTX has a bargain basement suspension that just can't cope with a couple Americans that eat like....Americans. I have three cranks of the preload dialed in to cope and it helps. But like all preload adjustments, the more you dial for weight the less you dial for ride quality.

It's kind of apples and oranges. The CTX is a low cost, mid-range bike meant to do low cost, mid-range things. And I think the CTX exceeds all expectations for what it is. Honda did an amazing job of hiding the low cost of the machine. But once you start pushing the boundaries of what the bike was intended to do, you find those cost cutting measures....such as the cheap suspension and total lack of factory aftermarket.

As an aside, William Cralle your center stand makes me moist. Where can I get one and how hard was it to mount?

Last edited by TheSollyLama; 02-06-2020 at 01:50 PM.
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post #10 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-07-2020, 03:12 AM
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As an aside, William Cralle your center stand makes me moist. Where can I get one and how hard was it to mount?
I should have stopped one post earlier
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