View from the back
Alex is Graham’s 18-year-old son, who regularly tours with his dad on the back of the 2006 Gold Wing.
“I go away to Belgium with my dad a fair bit, so I do plenty of miles as a pillion. Dad’s Gold Wing is much better than his Harley — it’s more like a proper seat than just jumping around on the back on a pad. And when you hit a bump on the Harley it feels like you’re about to fall off; it’s hard to relax. On the Gold Wing, you just sit there and don’t need to do anything. There’s so much more room than on the Harley too — I often fall asleep on the Honda. The seat is quite high — I can see a fair bit over my dad’s head.
“The first thing I noticed about the new bike is the seat is a lot harder — but in a good way; it’s not uncomfortable over a short distance and I think it might be good over longer periods too — the old bike can get a bit hot at the back. And the new bike’s pillion seat is a bit higher than the old bike. I like the armrests, because they’re actually rests for your arms. And there’s a bit more overall room too.
“The DCT feels a lot smoother for me than my dad’s gearbox — there’s not the same clunk, especially between first and second gear. But the new bike’s suspension is a lot more bouncy. It reacts to bumps more — over really bumpy roads I’m actually coming right out of the seat, where on the old bike I’d just be sitting there. So for that reason, on balance, I think I’d choose the old bike to go for a long ride — it’s just a bit more relaxed.”