Honda reveals new, affordable CTX700 motorcycle with auto transmission, ABS

Honda has unveiled an all-new motorcycle line for 2014, the midsized CTX series. These new 670-cc models split conventional classifications to offer an automatic transmission and antilock brakes in an affordable bike that is well-suited to newer riders and those seeking a motorcycle with the latest features for a budget price..

The CTX family essentially extends the clever packaging from the NC700X adventure bike to a new configuration that is equal parts modern standard and cruiser. The initial CTX bikes share engine from the NC700X, although other displacements will be added in the future.

The naked-style CTX700N starts at just $6,999, with the CTX700ND priced at $7,999 including the dual-clutch automatic and antilock brakes—features certain to make inexperienced riders feel more at home. Disc brakes are used front and rear. The auto tranny can be left in set-and-forget mode or controlled through paddle shifters, similar in principle to set-ups in many performance-oriented cars. The instrument panel is a wide digital display.

The NC700X impressed us with its massive storage chamber where the gas tank traditionally goes. Like a larger scooter, its cargo compartment can hold a helmet. The CTX has what's termed a glove box in the same location. It's not quite as spacious, but it looks handy. The seat height is a low 28.6 inches, making it better suited to shorter riders than the tall NC700X with its 32.6-inch seat height. (See our first ride of the NC700X.)