HONDA X-ADV (2017 - 2021) Review

Highlights

  • An adventure scooter
  • DCT-equipped, with tall ride height
  • Honda build quality, low running costs

At a glance

Owners' reliability rating: 5 out of 5 (5/5)
Annual servicing cost: £170
Power: 53 bhp
Seat height: Medium (32.3 in / 820 mm)
Weight: High (525 lbs / 238 kg)

Prices

New N/A
Used £8,500 - £10,500

Overall rating

Next up: Ride & brakes
4 out of 5 (4/5)

The Honda X-ADV scooter has been a surprise success. Since its launch in 2017, over 7500 have been sold throughout Europe. Its funky look, practicality and fuel economy have made it a popular choice for all types of riders looking for a do-anything mode of transport that’s a little bit different.

Billed as an adventure scooter, Honda claim the X-ADV has off-road credentials, but with small wheels (17in front and 15in rear), minimal ground clearance and huge weight, its off-road abilities are seriously limited.

Where is does excel is its ability to tackle any type of road riding without fuss, while offering good fuel economy and decent weather protection.


 

Honda X-ADV updates for 2018

The X-ADV has undergone changes for 2018 largely centered around electronics and rider aids. The latest model features Honda Selectable Torque Control (HSTC) which is Honda’s torque/traction control.

There are two settings to choose from with default level two designed for road use, and with level one designed for off-road use and allows the rear wheel to spin more. You can also easily switch the torque/traction control off completely.

The 2018 version’s engine has also been given a 900rpm boost with the redline now at 7,500rpm meaning there are more revs to play with in each gear.

There is also a G (Gravel) button designed for off-road riding that gives additional engine braking, especially useful when going down hill off-road. It is the same system used on the Honda Africa Twin DCT models. 

Ride quality & brakes

Next up: Engine
4 out of 5 (4/5)

Despite the weighing 238kg the scooter handles well with neutral, balanced handling characteristics making light work of fast cornering. In fact, the X-ADV was incredibly easy to ride through the tight and twisty mountain roads of Sardinia.

Just sit back, get comfy and the X-ADV will go where you want it to - at no point do you have to wrestle it or put all your weight through a footboard to get it to turn. The tall stance of the X-ADV also meant there were no ground clearance issues, so you can really hustle through the corners. The suspension copes well with all but the harshest of bumps, and the brakes are strong and progressive.

Engine

Next up: Reliability
4 out of 5 (4/5)

The X-ADV is based on Honda's Integra, using the same 745cc parallel twin engine also found in the NC series. As a result the X-ADV produces 53bhp and uses Honda's Dual Clutch Transmission (DCT) system. There are two modes; Drive and Sport. Drive offers smooth predictable, power while Sport mode sharpens the throttle response and holds gears longer before changing up.

On top of these two modes you can also select gears manually using two buttons on the left handlebar. You can do this with the bike in automatic or manual mode, although in manual mode I found myself constantly hitting the rev limiter due to the X-ADV's short rev range. It felt much more natural to keep the bike in automatic mode and prod the gear change buttons whenever I felt necessary. The engine doesn't blow you away, but it offers brisk acceleration and is fun to fire out of corners.

Reliability & build quality

Next up: Value
5 out of 5 (5/5)

Honda has a legendary reputation for reliability and the NC-range of engines are incredibly under-stressed, so we can't imagine there'll be any reliability issues with the X-ADV.

We've got two Honda X-ADV owners' reviews on the site, with an overall score of 4.5 stars out of 5. There aren't any negative comments to refer to, though.

Value vs rivals

Next up: Equipment
3 out of 5 (3/5)

There's no getting away from the fact that the Honda X-ADV is an expensive piece of kit, but it's no more expensive than the maxi-scooter competition, and it's got an extra layer of fun compared to most of them.

At £9,599 when launched it was firmly in the territory of 'proper' adventure bikes such as the BMW F800GS and Suzuki V-Strom 1000, although in reality Honda's X-ADV is a very different proposition to any adventure bike.

With claimed economy of over 75mpg, it’s certainly frugal despite offering good performance. With its 13 litre fuel tank it has a theoretical range of well over 200 miles.

The 2018 models come in five different colours – Matt Bullet Silver, Matt Pearl Glare White, Grand Prix Red, Candy Chromosphere Red and Digital Silver Metallic. These all cost £9,959.

Equipment

3 out of 5 (3/5)

ABS is standard, but there's no traction control on the X-ADV. The screen is adjustable, although tricky to operate on the move. You can just about fit a full face helmet under the seat, and the handguards will be a welcome addition in winter, plus they look cool. The huge dash is easy to read and provides plenty of information.

Changes for 2018 include two-stage traction control which is easily adjusted via a simple switch and can be turned off. It works well.

Specs

Engine size 745cc
Engine type liquid-cooled 8V parallel twin
Frame type Steel diamond
Fuel capacity 13.1 litres
Seat height 820mm
Bike weight 238kg
Front suspension -
Rear suspension Prolink with rear shock preload adjustment
Front brake -
Rear brake -
Front tyre size 120/70 R17
Rear tyre size 160/60 R15

Mpg, costs & insurance

Average fuel consumption -
Annual road tax £101
Annual service cost £170
New price -
Used price £8,500 - £10,500
Insurance group -
How much to insure?
Warranty term -

Top speed & performance

Max power 53 bhp
Max torque 50 ft-lb
Top speed -
1/4 mile acceleration -
Tank range -

Model history & versions

Model history

  • 2017: Model introduced
  • 2018: Minor updates to X-ADV

MCN Long term test reports

MCN Fleet: Waiting for the adventure to begin!

MCN Fleet: Waiting for the adventure to begin!

I first saw the Honda X-ADV in the flesh at the Carole Nash MCN London Motorcycle Show in February, it was swamped by interested punters and I was at the front of the queue itching to have a closer look. It’s an intriguing bike, designed by the same team as the Africa Twin it’s definitely got a rugg

Read the latest report

Owners' reviews for the HONDA X-ADV (2017 - 2021)

9 owners have reviewed their HONDA X-ADV (2017 - 2021) and rated it in a number of areas. Read what they have to say and what they like and dislike about the bike below.

Review your HONDA X-ADV (2017 - 2021)

Summary of owners' reviews

Overall rating: 4.7 out of 5 (4.7/5)
Ride quality & brakes: 4.8 out of 5 (4.8/5)
Engine: 4.6 out of 5 (4.6/5)
Reliability & build quality: 5 out of 5 (5/5)
Value vs rivals: 4.6 out of 5 (4.6/5)
Equipment: 4.3 out of 5 (4.3/5)
Annual servicing cost: £170
5 out of 5 Honda X-ADV 750J - scooter? Motorbike?
16 August 2022 by Ian Lewis

Year: 2018

Highly recommended. Put it in drive and enjoy excellent mpg, put it in sport and it's a beast. Comfortable and dependable. Such a flexible bike good over the bumps and general poor roads - just does a good job

Ride quality & brakes 5 out of 5

At last MoT the tester commented that the readings on the machine were the best he had ever seen. I guess the brakes are quite good, but seeing as my previous bike was a Kawasaki KH250 it's not a good comparison. Riding is quite good but I find the seat does give a numb backside after, say an hour, which appears to be a common complaint. Having running boards this does allow you to move around on the bike so not cramped at all.

Engine 4 out of 5

It's got DCT which makes life extremely easy. DCT does seem a little clunky at times which probably means it needs a reset. Engine is a 270 degree crank which makes for a distinct noise but is a little gruff for me and vibrates . However, it just proves it's a motorbike not a scooter especially with chain drive too.

Reliability & build quality 5 out of 5

Excellent build quality, no faults to date.

Value vs rivals 5 out of 5

Service bike myself, seems easy enough. Running costs are reasonable with 70 mpg being absolute lowest as I've seen over 100mpg on certain runs.

Equipment 4 out of 5

Missing a temperature gauge and fuel remaining (mileage to refuelling ) on dash. Dash is good with speedo being dominant large numbers. Don't know why a calendar is included on dash - maybe for when old age reallly bites?Adjustable screen is great, up in winter and down in summer. Rides like a good old fashioned naked bike with screen down.

Buying experience: Bought from dealer a year ago (2021). Had 2200 on clock, now 4000 so have done 1800 miles in the year. Paid £7495 as bike had Oxford hot-grips and a Honda carrier and box. Happy with this

4 out of 5
25 July 2022 by John

Year: 2018

Best features, ride quality, ease of riding. Worst features, uncomfortable when using footboards, difficult to mount and dismount.

Ride quality & brakes 5 out of 5
Engine 4 out of 5
Reliability & build quality 5 out of 5
Value vs rivals 3 out of 5
Equipment 4 out of 5
5 out of 5
25 July 2022 by Kyle

Year: 2021

Smooth, grunty engine with lovely sounding exhaust Excellent comfort from the seat Good windscreen with no buffering

Ride quality & brakes 4 out of 5
Engine 5 out of 5

78mpg average

Reliability & build quality 5 out of 5
Value vs rivals 5 out of 5

Just had minor Honda yearly service so far

Equipment 4 out of 5

No cruise control or heated grips

5 out of 5 Touring revelation
12 September 2021 by Michael French

Year: 2020

Annual servicing cost: £168

Amazing machine for big miles!! Installed the optional footpeges not for off road, but for miles, and it transformed my touring completely! I do not know any other bike you can ride feet forward to upright/slightly backwards and anything in between, and this is before I mention the fuel economy! I have other, some say more exciting bikes, but for touring or commuting the X-ADV is unbeatable.

Ride quality & brakes 5 out of 5

Very comfortable ride and brakes are top quality. I do not expect sportbike handling from this heavy automatic machine, but it does not handle like a scooter either.

Engine 4 out of 5

It would benefit from a supercharger. Not quite as exciting as my other bikes but torque is plentiful, and this is what you really need for town and touring.

Reliability & build quality 5 out of 5

Build quality is superb, all components are top drawer and feel premium, no issues whatsoever.

Value vs rivals 5 out of 5

Yes, it is based on NC750 so you expect (and you get) excellent running costs. Servicing is very reasonable, and fuel is consumed only just.

Equipment 4 out of 5

I installed Honda heated grips, touring screen, "weather flaps", spot lights, Michelin Road 4 tyres and full Givi luggage system. Now it makes sense as a touring bike. I would expect at least heated grips as standard for this kind of money, but alas, it was all extra.

Buying experience: Bought from Hatfields of Crowthorne - they are very friendly people!

5 out of 5 Have a go
12 May 2021 by G fowler

Version: New x-adv

Year: 2021

The ride and handling and gear ratio works very well

Ride quality & brakes 5 out of 5

As extra wheel base very good on uneven surfaces and bumps do not get the jolt that used to happen on nc750x brakes are good Linked so no real dive under braking Turning is good do not feel the weight By fitting the break on left hand side make control very with the DCT also the new seat make it easy to put feet down Getting on and off bike suggest putting foot on running board then can put foot through

Engine 5 out of 5

With the extra power and gearing on DCT and engine management great for getting around town and relaxing the motorway and with auto Box all you need to do is look where your going And can get a good setting on screen easy control

Reliability & build quality 5 out of 5

Looks like very good and panels join line up no rubbing of rattle from bike

Value vs rivals 5 out of 5

Was not sure about sitting position and foot position now done 400 miles is working out ok only which, they had fitted the foot pegs as standard as show on photo and review

Equipment 4 out of 5

Equipment. Was good only negative was why have they not fitted correct software so I can use my I phone and not fitted foot pegs for standing up as photo in review

Buying experience: Was very good from doubles getting the bike ready

4 out of 5 My batbike
18 April 2021 by Alan

Version: 745xadv 21

Year: 2021

When i picked the bike up from the dealership for the first time its was a lot Better ride than i was expecting it goes round the twistys quite well lovely bike to ride Very Comfortable riding position heated grips and cruise control should have been standard on this type of bike Honda have mist a trick here Honda genuine accessories are way to expensive But dont let that put you off the bike There's Plenty of after market stuff available to buy a lot cheaper for the adv

Ride quality & brakes 4 out of 5
Engine 4 out of 5

It Goes a lot better than you think That dct gearbox is a peach I'm getting 71mpg avg so far not bad at all

Reliability & build quality 5 out of 5
Value vs rivals 4 out of 5
Equipment 4 out of 5

Really like it so far pleased i bought one time will tell in the next review

Buying experience: Dealership

5 out of 5 Best everyday motorcycle (IMO)
18 April 2021 by Roger the magnificent

Year: 2018

This is a motorcycle for everyday riders. If you want, comfort, weather protection, carrying ability, great handling, great brakes, fantastic fuel economy, easy to clean, easy to fuel, keyless, sounds great, great head lights this bike has no equal. The DCT is fun to use, forget manual, leave in drive and overuse to either use more engine braking or a brisk overtake. Swap to sport maybe, it's a button press! This bike only limitation is that it's tall.

Ride quality & brakes 5 out of 5

XADV expensive? Go ride one, the ride quality is really good, much better that anything else in the NC range. Honda spent some proper money on the suspension. The brakes are radial calipers from the Africa Twin, the brake pads are simple to change and they work very well. Comfort is great, I have the off-road pegs also do lots of options for feet position. I can ride all day and still feel fine.

Engine 5 out of 5

750 twin, 270 crank, sounds fine! Only 54bhp but torque everywhere. The DCT is programmed really well, not much beats you off the line. Ultimately 54bhp and 235kg means that top speed is around 100mph (Speedo says 110mph+) but you can cruise at 90mph and still get 60mpg.

Reliability & build quality 5 out of 5

Scooters and this are expensive? There's a good reason, they're designed to be used everyday. They don't need a heated garage and pampering. They don't corrode, are easy to clean, easy to maintain, this bike comes with a centre stand, screen that works, hand guards that are all extra on other bikes.

Value vs rivals 5 out of 5

It's a twin with a single throttle body and a low low limit. Servicing is cheap and easy.

Equipment 5 out of 5

Comes with hand guards, centre stand, good screen, great mirrors, great instruments, ace switch gear, big grab rails. Mine came with the Honda heated grips, which I use ALL the time. I fitted aftermarket off-road pegs also. Tyre choice is limited, Bridgestone or Pirelli primarily, but they are both great so no problem?

Buying experience: Bought mine with 2k miles for £7199. An absolute bargain? From a dealer Thunderroad, two shops in Wales, both brilliant, one in England I haven't been too.

5 out of 5 Best of the best!
07 January 2020 by Luis Silveira

Year: 2017

It´s the best bike to do everything!

Ride quality & brakes 5 out of 5
Engine 5 out of 5
Reliability & build quality 5 out of 5
Value vs rivals 5 out of 5
Equipment 5 out of 5
4 out of 5 Honda X-ADV Owners Review
27 October 2017 by Steve L

Year: 2017

Never owned anything that provides so much joy day in day out. The only reason for no 5th star is Honda's missed trick of using a belt final drive instead of a chain. Should be on all of their NC range.

Ride quality & brakes 5 out of 5

Very comfortable around town with a brilliant adjustable screen for faster roads. Good quality running gear and great brakes make it feel modern and safe. Feels like a step forward compared to the current crop of scooters.

Engine 5 out of 5

I love the lazy power delivery of the NCs. If you're into high revving sports bikes you won't like it but as an everyday steed it's a perfect power delivery... smooth but with some character, punchy with very little effort, and frugal without even trying to be. The multi mode DCT gearbox is what attracted me to the NC range to begin with. It is brilliant on the X-ADV and really suits the use the bike will be put to. Much nicer to ride than a CVT scooter.

Reliability & build quality 5 out of 5

Early days for the X-ADV yet but the platform it's built on is bullet proof. The X-ADV looks and feels like a step up in quality compared to the other NCs.

Value vs rivals 4 out of 5

Great on fuel. (80mpg with a not especially steady hand). Expensive to buy initially but it's a do-anything, go most places bike and makes you feel a bit special as it's such a rare sight on the road. Combine that with its premium feel and suddenly it's good value. Much more fun that the premium scooters, which are more expensive.

Equipment 5 out of 5

Nice all round standard spec but add Honda's heated grips (which are integrated into the dash display) and a rear rack/box (not Honda's standard 'adventure' style box... I've fitted a Givi rack with a 52 litre Maxia box) and you have what I think is the perfect all round bike... ride it every day of the year to work like a scooter, tour on it at sensible speeds like a conventional motor bike, and have fun at the weekends... it'll do everything but don't expect a track day bike if that's your thing. A belt drive instead of a chain would make it perfect for me and I've never come close to saying that about any bike previously.

Buying experience: Bought brand new on a PCP for the advertised price but with a £750 Honda contribution to the finance, which makes it almost 0% over 3 years. Added Honda heated grips, wind deflectors and fancy foot plates and later fitted the Givi rack to accommodate my Givi box, which is much better looking and performing than the standard square Honda box.

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