The 2011 Honda NT700V ABS is a midsize, sport touring motorcycle that is also excellent for commuting. It offers enough comfort for long days in the saddle and well integrated storage for hauling luggage on a long tour. And it combines this with fairly sporty performance that won't disappoint when the road heads into twisty mountains and canyons. Honda markets the 2011 Honda NT700V ABS as a more affordable alternative to its large ST1300 sports touring bike for riders who want a comfortable bike for traveling and also need it to be a practical commuter. The NT700V offers most of the amenities of much larger sports touring machines. Its bodywork offers excellent wind protection. The windscreen can be adjusted for height through a range of eight inches, without tools. Moving the screen down requires just a simple one-handed push and can be easily accomplished at highway speeds. For most riders, adjusting the screen to a higher position will require two hands and is best done while the bike is stopped. The instrument panel is well-appointed and includes a fuel gauge. A trip computer calculates fuel range and consumption, though the display may be somewhat optimistic. Real-world fuel mileage will typically be around 50 mpg. The attractive bodywork includes two integrated storage compartments up front, one of which is lockable. There is an additional small storage area under the seat. The mirrors are mounted to the fairing and provide excellent visibility mostly free of vibration. At the sides, well-integrated tipover protectors should save the bodywork from most parking lot drops. They can be replaced should they sustain too much abuse.
But the most unique feature of the 2011 Honda NT700V ABS is the sleek side cases fully integrated into the bodywork. They are lockable and permanently attached to the bike. The cases are connected by a very innovative pass-though compartment. It measures eight inches high by six inches wide and will accommodate things up to 24 inches long. This makes it a great place to carry a tent or rolled-up sleeping pad when camping from the motorcycle. It is said to be very popular with Europeans stopping to pick up a baguette on the evening commute. Even with the generous storage, the side cases are narrower than the rear-view mirrors. Good news for people who ride where lane sharing is allowed.
The 2011 Honda NT700V ABS is built in Barcelona, Spain and has been a very popular bike in Europe for many years. It was first introduced to the U.S. for the 2010 model year. In Europe it is called the Deauville and has been sold in its current form since 2006. An earlier 650-cc carbureted version was introduced in 1998. Many Deauvilles have been ridden more than 100,000 miles. The bike is even used by some police departments. Final drive is by a quiet, clean, low-maintenance shaft arrangement. But the transmission shows its long heritage by only offering five gears. Brakes are a combined system where pressing the rear brake lever also applies some front brake. Anti-lock brakes are a standard feature of the 2011 Honda NT700V ABS. At a wet weight of 569 pounds this bike is somewhat heavier than most midsize motorcycles. With 60 horsepower it leans more toward sensible rather than exciting. But there aren't many other bikes that can realistically be called a midsize sport touring machine. Certainly nothing else offers the comfort and integrated luggage of a full size touring motorcycle like the Honda ST1300 in a smaller package that is still fun and much more practical for everyday riding.