Been thinking of switching from car to motorcycle but unsure of where to start? Let’s introduce you to a commuting favourite - the Honda NC750X.
Practicality, in the truest sense of the word, is hard to come by in motorcycling these days. Bikes have primarily been designed on a performance, styling, or even lifestyle basis, and for a new rider, that narrowness of focus can make choosing a motorcycle confusing and often intimidating.
But the practical philosophy is the driving force behind the Honda NC750X. For example, rather than take an existing motorcycle engine and repurpose it, Honda basically took the four-cylinder engine from its Fit/Jazz subcompact car and cut it in half. So instead of the usual motorcycle powerplant, which is designed for high power density and rpm, the NC750X parallel-twin engine’s forte is excellent efficiency at lower revs, as demonstrated by its comparatively low 6,500-rpm redline.
The engine design also allowed Honda to tilt the cylinders forward at a 55-degree angle, which provides numerous benefits: It permits a fairly low 31.6-inch seat height, which gives confidence to new riders; it allows for a cavernous 23-liter ignition-keyed storage space, big enough for a full-face helmet or a decent load of groceries, where the fuel tank normally sits; and the 3.8-gallon fuel tank can be relocated below the rider’s seat, so the NC750X DCT’s center of mass is kept very low to aid handling.
The NC750X DCT is agile, steering is light and neutral at all speeds despite its 493-pound wet weight and 60-inch wheelbase. Yet the chassis remains very stable in nearly all situations, and there’s good ground clearance before the footpeg tips touch down.
Braking from the single 320mm disc with twin-piston slide-pin caliper up front is adequate, but is much better and stronger when used in conjunction with the single rear 240mm disc and single-piston caliper.
Allowing you to tailor overall performance to suit conditions, there are four riding modes, Sport, Standard, Rain, and User, with User mode allowing you to individually configure power, throttle response, traction control, and engine-braking.
For complete control, the Honda Selectable Torque Control (HSTC) levels have been expanded, with refined traction management, and there’s still the choice of a manual, six-speed transmission (now with slipper clutch) or unique, six-speed Dual Clutch Transmission. And, for improved safety, the Emergency Stop Signal (ESS) system operates the rear hazards under hard braking conditions.
The Honda NC750X DCT delivers excellent fuel mileage and good performance to go with its convenient and cavernous keyed storage compartment and excellent automatic transmission. It’s one of the better deals in motorcycling, and it absolutely shouldn’t be overlooked.
Honda’s NC750X DCT is a value for those looking for a fuel-efficient, practical motorcycle.