Back in 1988, Honda and HRC were riding high on their win of the grueling and prestigious Paris-Dakar rally. Eager to capitalize on their success, the brains at Honda put together the first Africa Twin 650.
This craigslist seller claims to have imported 2 directly from Japan, and is offering them for sale on Craigslist in the Austin, TX area.
Rare in the US, these Africa bikes are known for bulletproof reliability and a dual-sport go-anywhere ride-ability. Though significantly smaller displacement (and lacking HRC race tuning), the 650 twins are torquey in the low end but have more staying power and comfort at cruising RPMs that the similarly-sized thumper XRs. The 56hp on offer from this v-twin wont leave your teeth in the back of your head, but it should be plenty torquey to attack seek grades and pull at freeway speeds.
Long-travel front Showa forks and a pro-link rear with a modern mono-shock setup should keep things planted no matter the riding surface.
Seller says that the nicer of the two they have on offer, serial number 329, shows an accurate 16000km (just under 10k mi), and is ready for a new chain and shoes, which will be completed before transfer to a new owner.
These bikes appear to be in good-to-excellent condition, though are not blemish free, with the topcoat showing some cracking. Overall though, the HRC livery and foxeye headlamp combo look great and will stand out on any ride. Our favorite element is probably the extra brake fairing on the front disc. Matched with a Thunderbirds-esqe fender, it gives the bike an unmistakably period touch, without looking dated.
$6500 seems reasonable assuming these are in the mechanical shape the seller claims, and you’d be hard-pressed to get more JDM bike for your buck.
XRV 650 Africa Twin