2018 Honda Gold Wing Milestone Models
10/25/2017 1:00:00 AM
1975 GL1000 GOLD WING
Designed with the simple but audacious objective to be the best motorcycle ever built, the original Gold Wing wasn't intended specifically as a touring model, although customers regularly embraced it for that purpose, outfitting their GLs with aftermarket luggage and front fairings. This, in turn, inspired the Gold Wing’s future direction: long-distance touring.
- 999cc liquid-cooled, horizontally opposed four-cylinder engine
- 647 lb. curb weight
- Electric / kick start
- Dual shocks with adjustable preload and 3.4 in. travel
- Tubular-steel full-cradle frame
- $2,899 MSRP
1980 GL1100 GOLD WING INTERSTATE
Honda’s all-new follow-up model established what would become a regular practice with milestone Gold Wings, growing the model significantly. In addition to its larger engine, the motorcycle had a longer wheelbase, more room for rider/passenger, and increased fuel capacity (though it was actually lighter). Taking a lead from Honda customers, Honda also added a touring-specific Interstate version, though a naked version was still offered as well. The Interstate came factory-installed fairing and luggage and other touring-focused features.
- 1,085cc engine with added torque
- Electronic ignition
- Air-assisted suspension
- Audio system
1982 GL1100 GOLD WING ASPENCADE
Capitalizing on the successful reception of the Gold Wing Interstate, Honda added an Aspencade version (named after the popular New Mexico motorcycle rally), which introduced the concept of luxury touring, with a larger seat, additional storage, and a special paint scheme.
- LCD instrumentation
- Onboard air compressor
- Passenger backrest
- 702 lb. dry weight
- Optional CB radio
1984 GL1200 GOLD WING INTERSTATE
The 1984 Gold Wing was once again larger, its engine growing by 97cc and offering more power and torque. The swingarm and wheelbase were lengthened as well, and improved handling and comfort were made possible via a stiffer frame, repositioned engine, and smaller wheels, along with a longer wheelbase and swingarm.
- 1,182cc engine
- Automotive-style instrument panel
1988 GL1500 GOLD WING
For 1988, as the Gold Wing underwent what at the time was the most comprehensive model development in Honda’s history, its new engine growing two cylinders and achieving power and smoothness for which it would become renowned. The chassis was new as well, redefining the limits for handling and comfort on a touring motorcycle. Also of note were the increased fuel capacity, improved brakes, and seamless fairing. Production was in the USA, from Honda’s Ohio plant.
- 1,520cc horizontally opposed flat-six engine
- New, smoother transmission
2001 GL1800 GOLD WING
Developed under Masanori Aoki, the sensational GL1800 brought fuel injection, an aluminum twin-spar frame, and optional ABS braking, and its 20 patents were a hint at the extensive technological innovations. This next-generation GL featured an engine that was 312cc larger than that of its predecessor, but it also had an added a fun factor, attaining sport-like acceleration and handling. In 2006, Honda introduced a Gold Wing model with navigation and the world’s first motorcycle airbag.
- 1,832cc liquid-cooled, horizontally opposed six-cylinder engine
- Programmed fuel injection (PGM-FI)
- Extruded aluminum twin-spar frame
- 45mm telescopic cartridge fork with anti-dive system
- Pro Arm® single-sided swingarm; Pro-Link® shock with computer-controlled spring-preload adjustment