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The 2024 Honda XR650L
The 2024 Honda XR650L (Honda/)


In continual production for 31 years, the XR650L is as bulletproof as they come.$6,999 MSRP leaves room in the budget for mods—or for the cost of shipping the bike to Tibet for the round-the-world ride it deserves.Air-cooled and carbureted for convenient DIY trailside repairs.


37-inch seat height is tall by any standard.Cramped riding position.Small gas tank limits range.What, no kickstarter?


The XR650L represents adventure motorcycling in its purest form. Honda’s dual-purpose workhorse has three decades of proven reliability behind it, and still has a place in our hearts.


It would have been around 1990, when an employee of American Honda’s R&D department showed up at the Cycle World Trek—an annual industry ride hosted by the magazine’s advertising department—aboard a Frankenstein motorcycle with some familiar hardware. It had an XR600 dirt bike chassis that had been fitted with the electric-start motor from Honda’s “pre-ADV” NX650. After CW staffers rode the thing, they were convinced that it wasn’t just a Honda employee’s weekend passion project; they were sure it was nothing less than the prototype for a future production model.

Two years later, Honda officially unveiled the XR650L as a 1993 model, now one of the longest-running, little-changed models in all of motorcycling. Thirty-one years of production have made the XR650L an air-cooled, carbureted anachronism. For some, the XR-L is a nostalgia trip—they can’t look at it without remembering the XR600R, which found unlikely racing success in the hands of the great Scott Summers. For others, it has timeless appeal. As a simple, utilitarian, dead-reliable single, it’s the bike they want to ride around the world. Who can blame them? If you’re going to have a breakdown in the Nyainqêntanglha Mountains of Tibet, you’d probably choose to have it happen on an XR-L that you can coax back to life with a hammer, a tube of J-B Weld, and a couple spins of a nearby prayer wheel.

Last year marked 30 years of production of the trusty XR650L. It probably passed by with too little fanfare. We can only hope someone out there gave it the party it deserved; someone way out there, someone riding through the Tibetan Plateau with the classic thumper as their only company, their faith placed justifiably in decades-old Honda engineering.

As long as there are those who value simplicity over technical innovation, durability over preciousness, and functionality over frills, there will always be a need for a bike like the XR650L.

Updates for 2024

For 2024, the XR650L has new graphics: red and blue stripes on the tank replace the red and black ones of last year’s model.

Pricing and Variants

The Honda XR650L retails for $6,999.


The Honda XR650L is not the only simple, long-lived dual sport on the market. The Suzuki DR650S and the Kawasaki KLR650 have long been the XR-L’s main competition.

The Suzuki ($7,099) is about 20 pounds heavier than the XR and has 10.4 inches of ground clearance (compared to the XR650L’s 13 inches of ground clearance). The DR’s slight street bias has its benefits though: Compared to the XR-L’s 37-inch seat height, the DR is significantly more accessible with a 34.8-inch seat height and an optional lowering kit that brings it down to 33.2 inches.

In this group, the liquid-cooled fuel-injected KLR veers closer to ADV-lite than pure dual sport. While it’s about 115 pounds heavier than the XR-L full of fuel, part of that weight is down to its larger-capacity fuel tank (6.1 gallons versus 2.8 gallons). The KLR can be spec’d with ABS ($7,199) or without ($6,899) and includes an LCD display, fairing, and windscreen, which feel like luxuries compared to the bare-bones DR and XR. With 8.3 inches of ground clearance and a 34.3-inch seat height, the KLR is the most street-focused of the lot.

In sum, the XR650L is the most off-road-worthy of the bunch; it’s the lightest and has the most ground clearance, but also the tallest seat.

Compared to the competition, the big XR-L benefits from loads of ground clearance.
Compared to the competition, the big XR-L benefits from loads of ground clearance. (Honda/)

Powertrain: Engine, Transmission, and Performance

The XR650L uses a 644cc SOHC air-cooled single-cylinder that produced 34.05 hp at 6,120 rpm and 31.42 lb.-ft. of torque at 5,320 rpm when last on

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By: Cycle World Staff
Title: 2024 Honda XR650L
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Published Date: Wed, 13 Mar 2024 23:32:10 +0000

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Grunter—A Six-Figure Vincent Rapide Headlining Bonhams

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1938 Vincent Series-A Rapide Motorcycle
Countless motorcycle manufacturers popped up in the 1920s and ’30s in Britain, but somehow, none quite as cool as Vincent. High-end speed machines, combining old-school big-displacement twins, monochrome finishes and titillating names like Rapide and Black Shadow, a Vincent V-twin welcomes you into any roundtable of motorcycling, and it’s not hard to see why. A seat rarely opens at the Vincent Owners Club, even more so when you’re talking about an ultra-rare first-series Rapide.

1938 Vincent Series-A Rapide Motorcycle

One of just 79 built, the Series-A Rapide represents Vincent’s first foray into V-twins—an endeavor that established Vincent as the superbike of the day. There are faster Vincents, and on occasion more valuable ones, but the rarity and significance of the Series-A Rapide is hard to overstate. As such, this restored 1938 Rapide highlights Bonhams’ upcoming Spring Stafford Sale with an estimated hammer price of $300,854 to $350,997.

While Vincent didn’t pioneer the V-twin, their execution is at least worthy of an honorable mention. Philip Vincent’s start in motorcycles echoes many of his peers of the era, becoming interested in bikes at a young age and crafting a few ‘specials’ of his own design in the late 1920s. At age 20, Vincent filed a patent for a cantilevered rear suspension design, and with backing from his family, he purchased the financially troubled HRD brand from Howard R Davies in 1928.

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By: Dean Larson
Title: Grunter—A Six-Figure Vincent Rapide Headlining Bonhams
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Published Date: Sat, 13 Apr 2024 17:00:38 +0000

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Fast Tubes

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1969 Rennmax BN3Photo: Ian Welsh
1969 Rennmax BN3
Photo: Ian WelshIt can’t be denied that the world of motor racing, both contemporary and historic, is saturated with egos. Some would say that it’s all really driven by egos, and that is sometimes directly connected to the size of the wallet. Perhaps without such egos we wouldn’t have motor racing at all.

So egos are certainly important, but there is something else that’s behind so many involved in motor racing and, in particular, historic motor sport. I am referring of course to the passion that many have for the sport. A passion that is so strong in some that it outweighs the need for podium finishes and is certainly far stronger than whatever shekels may influence others.

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The post Fast Tubes appeared first on Sports Car Digest.

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By: SportsCarDigest
Title: Fast Tubes
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Published Date: Thu, 11 Apr 2024 06:59:17 +0000

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Gordon Murray Automotive’s new T.50 production line

Gordon Murray 02 jpg

Premium British vehicle manufacturer Gordon Murray Automotive (GMA) has announced a strategic move of its T.50 supercar production to the company’s newly-built Group headquarters at Highams Park, Surrey. The new site has already taken over manufacturing of the GMA T.50 supercar from its previous production facility at Dunsfold Park. This decision will see T.50 manufacturing benefit from a wealth of efficiencies, while enabling the business to streamline carbon fiber monocoque production for T.33 prototypes and future models at Dunsfold Park. Used for development, testing and homologation-related crash testing, the monocoques will now be produced on-site, accelerating the supercar’s pre-production processes.



GMA advances T.50 production to new Highams Park HQ to streamline future model manufacturingMove sees the continuation of T.50 customer car production at new multi-million-pound facilityDecision enables dedicated T.33 prototype monocoque production at GMA’s Dunsfold Park siteHighams Park will continue to build the T.50, ahead of producing the T.50s, T.33, and T.33 Spider

State of the art

Building the new Gordon Murray Group HQ at Highams Park near the village of Windlesham saw investment of more than £50 million, and the creation of a broad range of specialized job roles to support full scale production. The new campus will be the Group’s global headquarters – home to a purpose-built 4,300 square meter Vehicle Production Centre, and the Gordon Murray Heritage collection. The site also features a specially-designed Vehicle Dynamics Test Road, used for final validation and pre-delivery checks of new GMA supercars – all set in 54 acres of beautiful English parkland. For customers opting to take delivery of their cars from Highams Park, the new HQ offers the ideal setting at its dedicated Driving Perfection Customer Centre, where owners can specify, set-up, and take delivery of their GMA supercar.

 GMARead More


By: Rex McAfee
Title: Gordon Murray Automotive’s new T.50 production line
Sourced From:
Published Date: Thu, 11 Apr 2024 15:42:33 +0000

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