It's been six years since we ran good news involving the Honda Gold Wing, and that news was merely supposition: a Honda patent suggested company engineers toying with a four-cylinder hybrid motor wedged in a Gold Wing frame. It appears Honda will justify the intermission next month by introducing a brand-new Gold Wing at a media event in October, followed by a worldwide reveal for the legendary cruiser at the EICMA show in Milan in November. Leaked images appearing on European sites MaxxMoto and Oliepeil reveal major changes for the current model, now on sale for 16 years. What's more, those four-cylinder hybrid rumors might come true.
A sharper, more contoured front end hides one of three major changes: the switch to hub-center steering via a Hossack-like front fork, akin to BMW's Duolever setup. Instead of the present cartridge fork, the handlebars connect to a semi-active suspension unit featuring a single spring-shock unit behind the front fairing. The suspension sits atop a cast aluminum tube running down to a simple aluminum wishbone that straddles the front wheel. The design benefits include a lighter front end, greater steering precision and lean angles, while eliminating fork dive and flex.