A Guide for Prospective ST1300 Owners

General Information

The changes made between model years can be found under ModelYearChanges.

New ST1300 models are unveiled at the annual Honda dealer's show in September and usually start arriving at dealers in late January or early February.

Accessories

IDEA! Accessories listed as as being available in Europe are actually available everywhere in the world but North America. Some are imported by U.S. sellers or can be ordered from overseas sources.

Cruise Control. No cruise control is available from Honda. There are a number of aftermarket options. See CruiseControl for more information.

Stereo. Honda has an AM/FM radio available in Europe. Called the "RDS Radio," it eats up the entire left fairing pocket and adds a large control panel on the left handlebar. The price is pretty hefty, too: \xA3275 ($550) before shipping, and you still need to add speakers at \xA3109 ($215) or an Autocom system ($250-$500 depending on model). For just AM/FM, a Sony SRF-M37V Walkman ($35) and a good set of earbuds ($100) or an Autocom system would be a better alternative.

Top Case. A Hondaline top case is available in every market except North America. It is available to riders in North America from several sources. See HondalineTopCase for more information.

Brakes

Anti-Lock Braking System (ABS). The ST1300 is available as a model with ABS called the ST1300A. The merits of having ABS versus not having it are beyond the scope of this article, but Honda's systems are very well regarded.

Linked Braking System (LBS). All ST1300 models include a linked braking system which applies the font brake along with the rear and vice versa. Honda's system uses a system of delay and proportioning valves that apply a fraction of the braking force to the opposite wheel. At very low speeds, the amount of force applied to the opposite wheel is negligible. In stops from higher speeds, you'll notice that it helps minimize the amount of dive.

Comfort

Initial Adjustment. Unlike the bolt-upright, feet-forward position found on cruisers and some other touring bikes, the ST1300's riding position is slightly canted forward with feet below. This position requires the use of torso muscles to maintain, and it takes time for new owners to adjust and condition muscles that are largely unused otherwise. It will feel a bit unnatural at first, but after a few weeks of daily riding the muscles will be conditioned and the whole thing will become second nature.

Handling

Low Speed. The ST is very maneuverable in parking lot situations provided that it isn't treated as if it were a smaller bike. One good point is that once rolling faster than a crawl, a lot of the bike's weight disappears.

High Speed. A few have reported a weave at speeds in excess of 100 MPH, but these reports are inconsistent and apparently difficult to reproduce. At freeway speeds, the bike is known to become twitchy in the presence of dirty air coming off trucks.

Heat

Is it Hot? The issue of heat is very subjective. Many owners riding same-model-year STs in similar climes disagree on whether there is a heat problem. The ST is a large-displacement bike, and as such the engine will generate heat. Riders accustomed to air-cooled bikes with similar displacement will probably not find the heat a problem, as it is localized to a few small areas.

Remedies. In 2003, Honda added insulation to the lower side cowlings in order to control some of the heat coming from the exhaust pipes. In 2008, covers were added to the large holes in the sides of the frame, presumably for the same reason.

Seat

Comfort. Most stock seats aren't comfortable over the long haul. The ST is no exception.

Height. The seat height is adjustable from 30.4" to 31.7" in three steps. Additionally, there are three positions for the rear of the seat which change its slope.

-- MarkFeit - 23 Dec 2007
Topic revision: r2 - 12 Nov 2008, MarkFeit
This site is powered by FoswikiCopyright © by the contributing authors. All material on this collaboration platform is the property of the contributing authors.
Ideas, requests, problems regarding STWiki? Send feedback