– Detailed 2018 CTX700N DCT Automatic Motorcycle Buyer’s Guide / Review: Specs, Accessories, Price, MPG + More! (CXT700NDJ) –
Today we’re going to go over all of the nitty-gritty details about the CTX700N, a model that was on hiatus last year and is now making its return for the 2018 motorcycle lineup from Honda. It’s easy to confuse Honda’s 700cc CTX models as the only thing that separates them in their model name is the “N” at the end of CTX700N versus the other CTX700 model. What’s the easiest way to decipher the two? It’s actually pretty easy, think of it this way… The “N” = Naked. The CTX700N is the naked bike version of the CTX700 that has more of a fairing and windshield whereas the CTX700N has none of that – it’s just you and the wind with nothing in between you two.
Lets’ get one of the most asked questions about any motorcycle out of the way first and that’s “Did they make any changes this year compared to last year’s model?”. 2018 CTX700N DCT Changes? Were there any changes on the 2018 CTX700N DCT VS 2017 / 2016 CTX700N DCT? Yes and no. First let’s answer why I put “2017 / 2016” in that previous sentence. Honda didn’t build a 2017 model but the average public isn’t 100% sure on which models skip a year in production etc so technically the last year of production for the CTX700N was 2016. Now, lets get to the real answer to that question on the changes and if there were any… One of the changes comes in the way of color options, last year Honda only offered CTX700N in ‘Light Silver Metallic’ whereas this year we have your standard black as a color option. The other change comes in the way of 2018 CTX700N model options. Ever since the CTX700N was introduced in 2014 you have had (2) model options: 1.) Manual clutch with a 6-speed transmission 2.) DCT automatic 6-speed transmission. That has changed for 2018 though and you only have (1) option on the CTX700N and that is with Honda’s fully automatic DCT transmission.
Cruisers… Cruiser styled motorcycles are everywhere. Here in the USA they fill that coveted #1 spot of the market-share for the motorcycle industry. And why not? Cruisers are a great choice for thousands of riders: the low seat heights, the relaxed riding positions, the rider-friendly power delivery. The only problem is that a lot of them start looking alike, and a lot of riders think a cruiser should be all about individuality. Well. Technically, the majority of us think any motorcycle should be about individuality but we’re talking about cruisers at the moment.
That’s where the Honda CTX700N comes in. Honda took the best parts of the cruiser idiom (laid-back seating, forward-set pegs, torque-rich twin-cylinder engine that you don’t have to rev for power) and put them together into one package. The low 28.3-inch seat height makes this a great choice for both urban riders who have to deal with stoplights and parking lots as well as anyone who likes a bike with a lower center of gravity. And there’s plenty of class-leading technology in this bike too. For example, the CTX700N comes with Honda’s automatic (DCT) transmission and Anti-lock Brake System (ABS).
- 2018 CTX700N DCT Price / MSRP: TBA
- 2018 CTX700N DCT MPG: 64 Miles Per Gallon
- 2018 CTX700N DCT HP: 46.9 horsepower @ 6,250 RPM
- 2018 CTX700N DCT TQ: 44.3 lb/ft torque @ 4,250 RPM
This is a bike specifically engineered to make motorcycling more approachable, affordable and fun than ever before. Thanks to a low seat height, riders can quickly get acclimated to life in the saddle. Honda’s acclaimed automatic Dual Clutch Transmission (DCT) provides either a fully automatic mode or the option of more active gear selection via “paddle-shift” type buttons on the handlebar, and the DCT version also comes with an Anti-lock Braking System (ABS). The 670cc parallel-twin engine features cylinders canted 62 degrees forward for enhanced weight distribution and a lower center of gravity for ease of handling. This smooth-running fuel-injected engine pumps out loads of low-end and midrange torque to simplify launching from stops even with the optional six-speed manual gearbox, and there’s enough power on tap for wherever the road may lead. Beneath the fuel tank cover there’s a handy glove box area, and the fuel is carried below. All in all, the CTX700N is an affordable, fun, friendly and comfortable bike that is perfect for everyday rides, weekend trips, two-up exploring or just about anything else you can dream up.
CTX700N Features & Benefits (Quick Overview for those in a hurry)
- Sophisticated liquid-cooled SOHC eight-valve 670cc parallel-twin engine pumps out abundant torque in the low-end and midrange for easily accessible power.
- An impressively broad torque curve gives the CTX700N a linear and smooth power delivery.
- A relatively long engine stroke (80.0mm combined with a 73.0mm bore) and a high-inertia crankshaft are design elements that add to the CTX700N’s extremely tractable power characteristics.
- The 62-degree forward lean given to the cylinder assembly facilitates near-vertical mounting of the single 36mm throttle body for superior intake port positioning and shaping. In addition, special shaping to the combustion chambers further enhance engine combustion efficiency for clean burning and optimal power production.
- An engine balancer shaft quells vibration for smooth, comfortable operation, and rubber-mounted footrests add to rider comfort.
- Programmed Fuel Injection (PGM-FI) continuously monitors numerous variables to ensure the correct fuel mixture for existing riding and atmospheric conditions, thereby delivering optimal performance and remarkably crisp throttle response over a wide range of operating conditions.
- A large array of available accessories allows owners to add just the right combination of capabilities to suit individual preferences and expand their adventures.
- Open, roomy ergonomics position the rider in a well-balanced seating position for all-day comfort and fun.
- A remarkably low seat height of 28.3 inches helps instill rider confidence.
- Stout 41mm front fork provides 4.2 inches of travel, while the Pro-Link® rear suspension system delivers 4.3 inches of wheel travel.
- A rigid and compact diamond-shape steel frame, low center of gravity and plush suspension help make the CTX700N responsive, agile and enjoyable to ride all day.
- Fuel capacity of 3.27 gallons and great fuel efficiency give the CTX700N a long cruising range.
- Low seat height, along with the new Honda parallel-twin engine design, creates a very low center of gravity, making the CTX700N feel remarkably nimble and fun to ride.
- DCT model also features an Antilock Braking System (ABS) to provide full antilock functionality for secure braking action.
- CTX700N with DCT/ABS features a second-generation automatic six-speed Honda Dual Clutch Transmission that uses two hydraulically controlled clutches to deliver quick and smooth gear changes in a choice of three modes: Manual (MT), which allows the rider to shift gears using buttons, and two automatic (AT) modes—S for sport riding and D for everyday use.
Many of today’s riders – whether experienced, new to bikes or returning to two wheels – have broad expectations of motorcycling and look to expand their horizons on a machine that fits their lifestyle – not the other way round. They’re looking for something that enables and enhances their life. The CTX700 – based on the popular NC700S platform – is a new motorcycle designed to dovetail perfectly with just such desires.
- ‘C’ is for Comfort – this equates to driveability and easy cornering, low noise at speed, low seat height, stability and accessible ground reach.
- ‘T’ stands for Technology – a high-torque, low-friction engine with excellent fuel economy, Dual Clutch Transmission (DCT) gearbox, low center of gravity and standard-fit ABS.
- The ‘X’ is eXperience; smooth all-round performance – including acceleration and stopping – with a relaxed, cruiser-style riding position.
All three are key CTX ingredients for a fulfilling and enjoyable ride, whether simply for coffee, a day out or across an entire country.
Masanori Aoki, Large Project Leader, CTX series:
“The CTX700’s twin-cylinder engine, with its low center of gravity, delivers a high quality, easy-to-handle ride with an emphasis on low to medium speed torque. The bike combines ease of use with freedom of design, and because it sports our lightweight and compact Dual Clutch Transmission, it delivers a ride that is fun, comfortable and exhilarating – just what CTX700N is all about. Looking forward to a new era, we have taken up the challenge of developing bikes for the CTX Concept Series, bikes that will share the following distinctive characteristics: honest handling and feel, controllable performance and a powerful, horizontal design.”
The naked CTX700N blends the best of attributes of both cruiser and street motorcycles. The laid-back, feet-forward riding style and low seat height of a cruiser combine with the lightweight feel, ground clearance and agile handling of a street bike.
Add a characterful, torque-laden parallel twin-cylinder engine – equipped as standard with Honda’s second-generation six-speed DCT gearbox – and the result is a motorcycle with easygoing, all-round capability.
It’s stylish, too. The CTX700N – wearing a svelte nose cowl – injects a sense of freedom and space into any ride. It’s fitted as standard with ABS and there’s a whole range of dedicated Honda Genuine Accessories ready for an owner to further personalize their CTX.
Unique in every respect – and the forerunner of a completely fresh range from Honda – the CTX700N opens up new avenues of two-wheeled adventure and experience. It’s also A2 licence-friendly (overseas), affordable and easy to ride and, in every respect, a pleasure to own.
The Automatic Dual Clutch Transmission (DCT) for the CTX700 and CTX700N represents smart technologies with broad appeal, particularly for riders new to motorcycling. Among the general driving population in the USA, the role of the manual transmission is vanishing. While clutch manipulation and manual shifting are second nature to experienced motorcycle riders, some potential new riders find that mastering these steps can be intimidating at first—enough to cause them to walk away from the sport before they’ve even begun. But Automatic DCT can solve that dilemma for such riders.
Styling & Chassis
For Honda’s development team styling inspiration was drawn from a number of areas, including the ‘Horizontal Dynamic’ of Honda’s GL1800 Gold Wing. ‘Front Massive’ mass centralization gives the CTX700N muscular and powerful lines with each part’s functionality boldly emphasized.
Blacked-out radiator covers, side covers and pivot plates tie-in with the engine and promote a strong, mechanical feel. The ‘V’ shaped multi-reflector headlight is tightly flanked by its nose fairing, lending a unique frontal signature crowned smartly by the instrument cluster.
The diamond steel frame is both compact and strong. A new rear subframe design delivers the 28.3 inch seat height – 2.7 inches lower than the NC700S – and together with the engine’s forward-canted cylinders ensures a low center of gravity. Rake is set at a 27° 40’ (a little more relaxed than the 27° of the NC700S) with trail of 114mm and 60.2 in. wheelbase; front/rear weight distribution is 49.5/50.5. The CTX700N curb weight comes in at 478 lbs.
The low seat height, low center of gravity plus forward-set footpegs and steering geometry create a nimble-handling motorcycle with good ground clearance that’s also relaxing to ride thanks to cruiser ergonomics. The 3.27 gallon steel fuel tank is in the standard position and covered by bodywork that includes a small storage compartment for a wallet or phone. Both speedometer and tachometer are digital, with an LCD bar graph for fuel and digital clock.
Plush and well damped the 41mm front forks, Pro-Link rear linkage and Honda Multi-Action System (HMAS) shock iron out road imperfections but also give a solid sense of connection to the road. The rear 240mm wavy disc and large-diameter 2-piston caliper complements the front 320mm wavy disc and 2-piston caliper: 2-channel ABS guarantees safe and consistent stopping in adverse weather conditions. High-pressure die-cast aluminium wheels – 17-inch x 3.5-inch front and 17 x 4.5-inch rear – feature a ‘Y’ shaped spoke pattern and wear 120/70 ZR17 and 160/60 ZR17 tires.
The CTX700N features the Honda Ignition Security System (HISS), an effective anti-theft set-up. If the ID chip embedded in the motorcycle’s key and the ID in the Engine Control Unit (ECU) do not match, the engine will not start. Sadly, at this time this feature is not available in the USA. With this electronic inter-lock system, the engine will only fire when one of the keys with the correct ID chip is used. Also, even if attempts are made to hot-wire the engine, or substitute the ignition switch module because it’s the ECU that’s in control the engine will not start.
The 670cc liquid-cooled 8-valve SOHC parallel twin-cylinder engine powering the CTX700N was designed from the outset to deliver outstanding bottom-end and mid-range torque – the rpm area many riders use the most on the road – with superb fuel efficiency.
It’s a compact unit, weighing 148.4 pounds with cylinders canted 61.20’ forward helping to lower the center of gravity. Bore and stroke is 73mm x 80mm, compression ratio 10.7:1 and power output of 46.9 horsepower that arrives at 6,250 RPM, with very healthy peak torque of 44.3 lb/ft delivered at just 4,750 RPM. The engine’s power and torque curves are strong right off the bottom and through the middle rpm ranges – just what’s needed for cruiser duty.
A 270° crank phase gives an uneven firing order and characterful engine feel, while a uniaxial primary balancer, and differing valve timings from different cam profiles on each cylinder, allow a satisfying ‘throb’ to reach the rider.
Lightweight aluminium roller rocker arms are used in the valve train and a special resin coating on the pistons reduces frictional losses. The PGM-FI electronic fuel injection system employs a single 36mm throttle body-feeding a branched intake. The CTX700N is rated at 64 MPG which means a fuel tank range of over 200 miles.
Creating a compact cooling system drive for the water pump is taken off the camshaft and the balancer shaft drives the oil pump. The exhaust ports are consolidated within the engine so only one exhaust pipe and one catalytic converter are needed. The three-way catalytic converter is close-coupled for efficient processing of exhaust emissions – this design lets combustion gases pass through the catalyst while still very hot, improving efficiency and making it possible to use a smaller, lighter catalytic converter.
Dual Clutch Transmission (DCT = Automatic Motorcycle)
Honda’s second-generation DCT gearbox offers a real-world riding advantage and convenience. A world first for motorcycles when launched on the VFR1200F in 2010, DCT provides a unique combination of direct riding feel and ease of use, making it a natural fit for the CTX700N.
Engineered specifically for the CTX, this new-generation Honda DCT is very light and compact, which helps to create an overall powerplant that’s light and space-efficient. The clutch plates and shafts are scaled specifically to this engine’s power output, the hydraulic circuit is more efficient in design and the overall layout has been repackaged to place the two clutches on either side of the primary gear, thereby reducing overall length. And even though it is an automatic transmission, this DCT delivers admirable fuel efficiency—as much as 61 mpg estimated fuel economy—as a result of its excellent transmission efficiency.
As dual-clutch terminology implies, Honda’s Automatic DCT system indeed incorporates two clutches: one for start-up and 1st, 3rd and 5th gears, and another for 2nd, 4th and 6th, with the mainshaft for each clutch located inside the other for compact packaging. Each clutch is independently controlled by its own electro-hydraulic circuit. By preselecting the next gear using the clutch not currently driving the motorcycle, this system delivers swift, smooth and seamless gearshifts. When a gear change occurs, the system pre-selects the target gear using the clutch not currently in use. The first clutch is electronically disengaged as, simultaneously, the second clutch engages. And this smooth nature feels reassuring to the operator and aids passenger comfort while providing ease of operation.
The result is a consistent, fast and seamless gear change. Furthermore, as the twin clutches transfer drive from one gear to the next with minimal interruption of the drive to the rear wheel, any gear change shock and pitching of the machine is minimized, making the change feel direct as well as smooth.
Three modes of operation are available. MT mode gives full manual control, allowing the rider to shift with the handlebar trigger control buttons. Automatic D mode is ideal for city and highway riding, and achieves optimum fuel efficiency. Automatic S mode is sportier and the ECU lets the engine rev a little higher before shifting up, giving greater performance. It also shifts down sooner when decelerating for extra engine braking.
In either D or S mode DCT offers immediate manual intervention if required – the rider simply selects the required gear using the up and down shift triggers. At an appropriate time DCT seamlessly reverts back to automatic mode, depending on throttle angle, vehicle speed and gear position.
Furthermore, in “D” mode, the DCT system detects variations in rider input typical to certain environments, from busy urban streets to mountain switchbacks, and adapts its gear change schedule accordingly to create an extra level of riding compatibility.
This new-generation DCT also has a new level of sophistication: a “learning function” allows the ECU (engine control unit) to detect variations in operational patterns in different riding environments, from city streets to mountain passes and more. With continued riding under given circumstances, the DCT “learns” and adapts to these patterns by performing the most appropriate shift actions—automatically—to create a whole new level of riding compatibility.
The CTX700N DCT model also comes with Honda’s Antilock Braking System (ABS). This system appeals to all riders, but particularly to new riders. Additionally, ABS has full anti-lock functionality; should the system detect either wheel is about to lock up, ABS momentarily reduces the hydraulic pressure being applied to the relevant brake, helping ensure secure braking.
With extra benefits such as durability (as the gears cannot be damaged by missing a gear), impossibility of stalling, low stress urban riding, and reduced rider fatigue, DCT has seen increasing acceptance in the market ever since day one of its introduction.
- Honda Genuine Accessories
Tall Windscreen (cowl version only), Heated Grips, Heated Grips Attachment, Saddlebags, Saddlebag Stay, Saddlebag Panel (color-matched), Rear Carrier, Backrest, Backrest Bracket, Sub Harness, Accessory Socket, Chrome Master Cylinder Cover, Chrome License Plate Frame.
- Accessory Warranty: Because we’re so confident in the quality of each of our Honda Genuine Accessories, we’re pleased to offer one of the best warranties in the industry. One-year warranty begins on the day accessories are purchased by the customer.
Honda CTX700N Development
With the CTX700 and CTX700N, Honda introduced an advanced category of motorcycles that incorporates unique levels of comfort, advanced technology, and an exceptional riding experience—hence the name CTX: Comfort, Technology and eXperience.
These 700s are just the first in a whole new family of CTX products that will be rolled out in the future. CTX models open up brand-new options and a distinctive riding experience for long-time riders, those re-entering the sport and entry-market buyers as well.
How can these CTX motorcycles deliver a riding experience that’s new and unmatched in today’s already-diverse market? Picture this: These bikes blend the best of both the cruiser realm and the world of sport bikes. More specifically, the CTX700 and CTX700N offer the relaxed cadence of a cruiser with open and roomy feet-forward ergonomics, plush comfort, a remarkably low seat and engine traits that emphasize a broad powerband, loads of torque and an engaging power pulse. In addition, like a sport bike, the CTXs place a priority on a lightweight feel, agile handling, plentiful cornering clearance and nimble low-speed handling. Moreover, toss in a set of optional bags on the faired CTX700 and you’ve added touring capabilities as well. Add to all this the option of a simple-to-operate Honda automatic Dual Clutch Transmission (DCT), and you have an especially easygoing ride that’s fun for short hops around town, long trips and everything in between. Perhaps best of all, with a base price of $6999 for the CTX700N and $7499 for the faired CTX700, with $7599 for the CTX700N DCT-ABS and $8099 for the CTX700 DCT-ABS these bikes are highly affordable yet they come full of all the quality you expect from Honda.
The novel design of the CTX700 and CTX700N is readily recognized: horizontally oriented lines give these urban roadsters a distinctive appearance, one that is complemented by functional advantages. Sharing much of the same basic platform as the much-praised NC700X, the CTX models place a premium on lightweight handling and roomy ergonomics that translate into day-long comfort. One important element that sets them apart from the NC700X is a newly designed rear subframe—a change that helps bring seat height down to a reassuringly low 28.3 inches. This lowered seat works in concert with a signature forward-canted twin-cylinder engine to further reduce the bike’s center of gravity (CG), which makes the CTX700 models especially maneuverable and nimble handling, with a remarkably responsive feel.
New-thinking Engine Design
Originally introduced in the NC700X, this liquid-cooled parallel-twin-cylinder 670cc engine with four valves per cylinder was designed to be especially rider-friendly. Engine performance is especially accessible in typical street-riding conditions, which makes these CTX models an especially good match for new riders as well as those who enjoy riding at a relaxing pace at the bottom end of the tachometer.
Using relatively long-stroke SOHC architecture with a bore and stroke of 73mm by 80mm, plus specially shaped combustion chambers, this smooth-running, fuel-efficient and compact engine is also remarkably fun to use. To aid handling, the cylinders cant forward with a pronounced 62-degree lean angle to lower the CG, a move that contributes significantly to agility and responsive feel.
A compact PGM-FI electronic fuel injection system features just one 36mm throttle body that feeds a single, branched intake port to charge both cylinders within the cylinder head. To create a more compact cooling system, the water pump drive is taken off the camshaft. The balancer shaft drives the oil pump. The exhaust ports are consolidated within the engine so only one exhaust pipe and one catalytic converter are needed—another smart idea that helps create a more compact package—and the three-way catalytic converter is close-coupled for efficient processing of exhaust emissions. This design lets combustion gases pass through the catalyst while the gases are still very hot, which improves efficiency and makes it possible to use a smaller, lighter catalytic converter.
Other technical highlights include sophisticated and lightweight aluminum roller rocker arms in the valve train and a special low-friction resin coating on the pistons to reduce frictional losses and boost fuel efficiency. The engine produces its peak power output at 6250 rpm, but more importantly, the strong torque spread peaks at a readily accessible 4750 rpm, with a broad spread throughout the rev range.
A Chassis Designed for Relaxed Riding
The rigid and compact diamond-shape steel frame carries over the same steering geometry dimensions as the NC700X (27.7 degrees of rake, 4.4 inches of trail), albeit with a pinch less wheelbase: 60.2 inches versus 60.6 inches. Also, the previously mentioned new rear subframe is not only positioned for reduced seat height, it’s also lighter as well. Up front, the stout 41mm fork delivers a comfy 4.2 inches of travel, while the single-shock Pro-Link® rear suspension delivers 4.3 inches of travel. All in all, the overall chassis package does an excellent job of balancing agility and responsiveness along with a reassuringly solid feel. Whether you’re navigating busy city streets or enjoying a twisty country road, both CTXs are easy-going riding partners. For longer trips, the fairing with windshield on the CTX700 adds to rider comfort by diverting the wind, creating a still-air pocket for the rider and reducing fatigue when compared against its counterpart – the CTX700N.
Overall, the CTX700N and CTX700 offer an ideal blend of handling, versatility and performance for tackling whatever the day’s agenda may hold. The unique styling adds a new level of diversity to the Honda lineup, and their easy-to-operate features—especially in the DCT version—could open the door to a whole new segment of riding enthusiasts.
|670cc liquid-cooled parallel-twin
|SOHC; four valves per cyclinder
|Bore x Stroke
|73.0mm x 80.0mm
|PGM-FI; 36mm throttle body
|Digital transistorized w/ electronic advance
|Automatic DCT six-speed
|(2) multiplate wet
|41mm telescopic fork; 4.2 in. travel
|Pro-Link® single shock; 4.3 in. travel
|Single 320mm disc w/ two-piston caliper; ABS
|Single 240mm disc w/ single-piston caliper; ABS
|Rake (Caster Angle)
|114mm (4.5 in.)
*Includes all standard equipment, required fluids and full tank of fuel—ready to ride. Meets current EPA standards. Models sold in California meet current CARB standards and may differ slightly due to emissions equipment.