Honda CRF1000L-Problems

Now that these bikes are starting to hit US shores I thought it would be good to start tracking some of the owner-reported problems.  I heard they delayed the US launch to deal with many of them but I wanted to list what I've seen so far and ask others to include what they know.  It's very common for bike buyers to search for "problems with Honda CRF1000L" before they buy.


Known issues:

  • Corrosion:  spokes, bolts, fasteners
  • Buttons:  sticking/jamming
  • Spokes: corrosion, breaking (too thin?)
  • Heated grips:  not working or weak; possibly heat controller under seat
  • Rear rack coating:  scratches/mars easily
  • Sensor replacement:  some internal engine sensor had to be replaced (oil?)
  • Throttle control:  jerky in slow technical situations
  • Clutch cable: can pop out
  • Peg mounts popping off
  • Transmission sticking

Since I own one, I can add some insight

  • corrosion - haven't noticed anything, my bikes serial number 4xxxx so this might be the case, but dealers bike was 3x and had no problems either. Could be that there is just one patch that has faulty spokes etc.
  • buttons sicking: yep, happened to me too. I used hair-dryer to get rid of the water inside the housing. This happened after a really heavy rain storm. I have ridden in the rain before, but this happened when it was just pouring
  • heated grips: known issue, but I asked the dealer and he said that yes they had a problem with one bike out of 10. And the bike belongs to Honda Baltic. Technician found the problem fast and said that nothing major was actually wrong. I don't know what the issue was, he didn't clarify.  
  • rear rack - no problems there (my bike has been in day to day use since April, 7000km is on the clock)
  • sensor replacement - don't know, I haven't had problems
  • throttle control - no jerkiness. I rode friends 990 and they are about the same, maybe Honda is a little bit smoother. I was afraid that throttle is jerky and I'm happy that it's not.
  • clutch cable - haven't had any problem, but I read about it in facebook

I will add another thing:

  • RNS - I had my remote changed because it didn't work after first rain. And now after the same storm that made my SET button sticky, the RNS doesn't work either. I don't believe that Tony form RNS send me another faulty unit, I think the dealer messed up something when it was installed. I think the water can get in. I don't have any spare time right now to take the bike apart, but I will. Probably to take the RNS Tripmaster off for good.


Overall I really like the bike. Me and my friend both are n00bs in the adv world and learning to ride off-road. I have a youtube channel and I try to upload atleast once a week.

Must of my riding is with my mate who has KTM 990 Adventure

Welcome to the forum, iSlander!  Loved your video I saw in Instagram.  That AT sure is a popular bike now!  I hope to do another project bike with that one soon.

Thank you :) AT is very popular :)

So I heard some disconcerting things about the AT today from an industry guy who really knows bikes and rides well. I wish I'd taken notes.

First of all and relative to this thread, he says of the five or so AT's at the Touratech Rally last weekend, two of them "broke." He meant it had something to do with the transmissions. He said another AT broke its skid plate and punctured its engine case! That's why you want a decent after market plate!

Aside from that he likes the bike. He owns one (forgot to mention). But... He says "it's no 990 I can tell you that."

He said that both bikes obviously require some work on opening up the intakes, suspension and ergonomics but even still he found himself a quarter mile is so behind an aging 950 (carbureted) ADV in no time!

He said the power is very smooth and linear though. Not a weak bike by any means but that a 990 or 1190 rider isn't going to be making a step up.

He said the seat sucks and hopes that Seat Concepts and or Renazco are working to fix that.

He also mentioned the catalytic converter being in the way of having hit foot squarely on the pegs when standing.

The main gist wasn't that it sucks because he does like it; just that it has its limitations. I'd love for him to write a review for us.

All those comments on Facebook are great but are essentially gone in a day or two as it falls out of people's feeds. That's why I started an online forum, so discussions are more lasting as well as searchable.

The bike in the above video is mine...still in the shop. The dealer and Honda Canada have no idea what the issue is... I'm pushing for a new bike.

The first 1000km were excellent and I was really happy with the bike. The DCT took some getting used to but once I got some miles on it I was very impressed. Despite what you may think, the dual clutch set up works extremely well in the dirt. I'm really bummed that it's sitting in the shop while the short Canadian riding season ticks away.


Thanks for posting up.  Im sure they'll sort it out.  I've heard quite a few credible voices say great things about this bike.

Lance Gines posted today that he's having some serious issues with the peg mounts and sounds like he's throwing in the towel.  Hope they get this fixed quickly...


I am very sad to say that my love affair with the Honda CRF1000 is all but over. This bike rides like a dream on road and off, has an amazing engine and suspension and over all is very comfortable. But you cannot build an Adventure/ dual sport bike with foot pegs mounts that are such a disaster and expect to have success. I am completely unconfident to ride it off road after the peg mount snapped of on a very low speed low intensity impact. The replacement part is very complicated and expensive and impossible to make a field repair too. I must say that Carl's Cycle Sales and Honda North America did take care of the issue and cudos to them. I hope that Honda redesigns this part and makes it available to the owners. Until then be very careful when riding the twisties as the pegs will drag easily and the dirt as the mounts are not durable

I was close to purchasing this bike, now I'm glad I located my '12 990. I will however be paying close attn to them in the field. All bikes that are subject to the beatings we put them through are going to have some issues, you really have to keep up on maintenance.. Good luck to all the new AT owners out there I'd sure like to ride one.

Funny, everyone seems to want to say this but "can't."


It's "too controversial."  Thus goes the adv press machine.


The reality is that there are quite a few people, industry people, who think this AT is a turd.  The term "caveat emptor" comes to mind.  You the rider really have to be on your toes and be able to read between the lines.


The fact is we really want to say this bike is great.  But as an educated group of people we need to resist this type of bs marketing.  Any industry press who dares to call it like they see it will be forever banished from covering any new bike or farkle ever again.  That's the reality.


So let me give you a peek behind the curtain to some chatter on the new Africa Twin unearthed by IBAR's Jeff Gast.  Another guy (insider) I spoke to recently called it a "twin cylinder KLR."









" the frame looks like it was pressed in Russia by a steel wind up toy company."

"Guy in our group got one. First ride out with him he got a flat. I'm like ok patch it no big deal. No center stand. It's an "option" he said. I look at the Honda kinda like the super 10. You want to think it's a KTM or BMW, but really it's like a Honda shadow to a Harley. It's close.. but it's not.."

The bike in the above video is mine...still in the shop. The dealer and Honda Canada have no idea what the issue is... I'm pushing for a new bike.

The first 1000km were excellent and I was really happy with the bike. The DCT took some getting used to but once I got some miles on it I was very impressed. Despite what you may think, the dual clutch set up works extremely well in the dirt. I'm really bummed that it's sitting in the shop while the short Canadian riding season ticks away.



No luck....didn't you have a issue with the 1190 when you first bought one of those also??

Edited by KAG

No luck....didn't you have a issue with the 1190 when you first bought one of those also??


Yeah, I bought the bike used (from a reputable dealer) and the previous owner didn't know or maybe didn't care about the airbox issue. The top end was toast.  It did get replaced under warranty; KTM was awesome to deal with.


Another insider tip just in...


Apparently this will replace the Africa Twin......sources inside Honda Japan. They acknowledge the Africa Twin was a disaster.

I just hope people understand that some instances get repeated, handed down, friend of a friend of a friend deal when they do their research. 20 people may post about the same guy and not realise it or the same guy will post his frustration in 20 forums! I was trying to find a way of enlightening without petrifying but I couldn't come up with anything better than you already posted.

I remember back when I was thinking about getting a KTM 950 and read up on it in forums. I actually walked away from a deal thinking I was buying a disaster. 3 weeks later I did end up getting it and happy I did. 115k later I still love it only to find out the guy who sold it to me did so because he was afraid it would be a money pit and supposedly regrets it.

All the things people talked about either were minor unless you paid someone to adjust your mirrors or never materialized. The fuel and water pumps were subject to a short life span but the water pump was upgraded. Mine lasted 45k on the 04 but only 8k on the 06. The fuel pump is the same unit used in 80% or more of the Japanese motorcycles. My Honda pump died at 22k, the same as my 950. The kickstand location is a joke.

In over 35 years, there has always been one or more Honda's in my garage and of those only one was a money pit for me, an '83 XR350R but my '84 XR200R was bullet proof. You never know, 20 years from now it could be a cult bike like my Transalp or the original AT. On second thought, I doubt it, the original AT was pretty much the Godfather of Adv bikes and that thing is cool!

I don't own a AT, and I honestly still have to find a dealer that lets me try one, but I read a lot of italian magazines and they all agree on one point: The stock plastic panniers are GARBAGE. Thin plastic, stupid locks.


During a test, the AT fell from the side stand, and the lower corner of the left pannier was DESTROYED. During that same test, after some light, dusty offroad, the locks of said panniers stopped working, due to the aforementioned sand.

And keep in mind, we aren't talking DUNES, we're talking DUSTY TRAIL.

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