Top 10s

Top 10 Adventure Motorcycles

If continent crossing ability and off-road prowess is your thing, an adventure motorcycle is what you need. Here are the 10 best

IN reality, any machine can be an adventure bike, almost every ride is an adventure after all. But for this piece we’re focussing on log-legged touring machines that have more than a hint of the off-road about them.

They are also all current models that you can go out and buy today and are not just limited to the 1000cc+ class. This list has something for everyone.

10. BMW G310 GS

Quick Specs

Price

£5,320

Engine

313cc

Weight

170kg

BHP

34bhp

It may be small but the G 310 GS is still a mini adventure machine. With 180mm suspension travel, tons of add-on extras and a grunty yet frugal single cylinder engine at its heart, it’s ideal if you don’t have lots of motorway miles planned.

9. Triumph Tiger 1200

Quick Specs

Price

£12,200

Engine

1215cc

Weight

242kg

BHP

139bhp

It may not be the most loved of Triumph’s range, but if a big-bore three-cylinder adventure bike is on you wishlist – there really is only one option! With WP electronic suspension and riding modes galore on offer on the top-spec versions, the Tiger 1200 is as happy off-road as it is on.

8. Suzuki V-Strom 650

Quick Specs

Price

£7,399

Engine

645cc

Weight

216kg

BHP

71bhp

If bang-per-buck is what you’re after, the V-Strom delivers. It’ll commute, tour, and scratch on a B-road. It’s also light enough that most would feel right at home taking the machine off-road with luggage. The bikes have been around for about 15-years already, and that 645cc engine even longer. Look up ‘bulletproof’ in the dictionary and there’ll be a picture of that V-Twin lump somewhere on the page.

7. Kawasaki Versys X 300 Adventure

Quick Specs

Price

£5,149

Engine

296cc

Weight

175kg

BHP

39bhp

Kawasaki has been building their baby ADV bike since 2017 as a stepping-stone on to the other bikes in adventure touring range. It borrows heavily on the styling of its bigger siblings and has all the road presence of a much larger bike.

The bike can be spec’d to your liking too, with addons like handguards, panniers and top box and even a fruity sounding Akrapovic end can.

The baby Kawasaki is also extremely good value, with a £1000 deposit on a Kawasaki finance PCP deal showing £100 p/m!

6. Ducati Multistrada Enduro

Quick Specs

Price

£17,755

Engine

1262cc

Weight

225kg (dry)

BHP

158bhp

The off-road variant of Ducati’s Multistrada joins the 1260cc club and becomes one of the most powerful off-road adventure motorcycles in the process. The Ducati also benefits from the Sachs Skyhook suspension system, meaning changes can be made on the fly and bike automatically adjusts to changing road conditions.

5. Honda CB500X

Quick Specs

Price

£6,069

Engine

471cc

Weight

197kg (dry)

BHP

47bhp

The lightweight and easy to ride CB500X stole the show at the press-launch of the new CB500 range earlier this year. The punchy engine, easy going ergonomics and capable chassis make it an ideal machine for pummelling the trails or the dual carriageway to work. It’ll also come with that fabled Honda reliability and build quality.

4. Triumph Tiger 800 XCA

Quick Specs

Price

£12,700

Engine

800cc

Weight

208kg (dry)

BHP

94bhp

The Triumph Tiger 800 is widely regarded as being the more capable off-road machine in the Triumph off-road line-up. Opting for the XCA version gets you the most hardcore adventure machine available from the Hinckley factory. The TFT dash is easy to read, riding modes are switchable on the fly and you can even select to include top-spec WP off-road suspension for a true rally-raid riding experience.

3. Kawasaki Versys 650

Quick Specs

Price

£7,249

Engine

649cc

Weight

217kg (dry)

BHP

68bhp

On paper the Versys 650 may look like an out and out touring machine, but with the addition of some off-road inspired rubber, it’s a capable off-road machine too. With 150mm of fork travel, 145mm of rear travel and 170mm of ground clearance it’ll easily handle a gravel fire-track or a gentle trail.

2. Triumph Tiger 900 Rally Pro

Quick Specs

Price

£13,100

Engine

888cc

Weight

201kg (dry)

BHP

94bhp

With its raft of electronics, a super-easy to read TFT, top-spec suspension, brakes and that new-for-2020 T-plane engine, the Triumph Tiger 900 Rally Pro is a fantastically capable off-road machine. It's relatively lightweight, in this company anyway, and do-it-all ability makes it the perfect choice for new and experienced off-road riders alike. 

If one thing is keeping it from the top spot it's the single-mindedness of the bike perhaps making it too focussed for comfortable on-road work of long distances. Not majorly, just slightly.

1. Honda CRF1100L Africa Twin

Quick Specs

Price

£13,049

Engine

1084cc

Weight

226kg

BHP

100bhp

While it may not have 150bhp + the new 2020 Africa Twin does have genuine all-round adventure capability. The new-look hides a lighter, leaner and more technologically advanced Africa Twin, with improved riding modes and a new electronic suspension system on some models.

Of all the bikes here it's the best mix of real-world appeal, off-road ability and it's not a 300kg behemoth that rules out being ridden off-road like some models are. 

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