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Honda GL1000

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Honda GL1000
Manufacturer Honda
Also called Goldwing
Production 75-79
Engine 1000cc
Sparkplug D8EA '75-79
Battery Y50-N18L-A '75-79
Front Tire 3.50-19 '75-79
Rear Tire 4.50-17 '75-79
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The Honda GL1000 is a motorcycle produced by Honda from 1975 to 1979.

After showing the world what it could do with the CB750 in 1969, Honda was ready to do it again in 1975. Honda had recently weathered a downturn following the retirement of its founder, Sochiro Honda, but when the GL1000 Gold Wing arrived that year, it had become clear that Honda was a leader (if not "the") in motorcycle technology.

Shaft-Driven and Silent

The GL1000 is powered by a water-cooled opposed four (flat four) engine that displaces 999cc. The camshafts of its flat-four engine were driven by cogged belts. The GL1000 came equipped with shaft drive, as opposed to being chain driven. This adds a level of smoothness, reduces maintenance, and avoids the problem of chain oil being slung everywhere. Most motorcycles made (by other companies) up to that point used a gas tank mounted in front of the rider, on top of the "backbone" of the bike. The GL1000 had a "faux" tank, that was nothing more than a cover for the electronics, and a housing for the air filter. The real tank was located between the two side covers for a lower center of gravity. It was rumored that the project design had been subcontracted to Porsche and that the original prototype had been fitted with an air-cooled flat-six like the famous Porsche 911 car. Interestingly enough the Gold Wing would eventually become a flat six with the GL1500.

The bare-bones version at 265 kg (584 pounds) was often dressed up with a fairing, saddlebags, luggage rack and box to increase the weight even more.

In the first five years of production, Honda sold almost 100,000 copies. The original Gold Wing has since grown to a 1100cc then 1200cc then 1500cc (six-cylinder) and then 1800cc with a talk of a 2000cc in the future.

In 1976, Honda sold a limited run of special GL1000s, badged as the GL1000 LTD. The LTD wasn't any different mechanically from the standard GL1000's. It featured gold pin striping, special LTD side cover badges, a chromed radiator guard and screen, a quilt patterned seat, gold anodized spoked wheels, a gold stamped GL1000 owners manual, and a leather key case. The LTD's fender is also slightly flared.

The 1975-1977 GL1000 engines had electric start, with a kick starter as a backup. The kick starter is geared very well, and actually doesn't require "kicking". The engine can be started using the "kick start" lever, using one's hand.

The 1978 model GL1000 added a small instrument panel to the top of the faux gas tank (where there was previously only a fuel gauge). The new gauge cluster included a voltage meter, and coolant temperature (which was previously on the tachometer). The exhaust was also changed to a chromed pipe with mufflers, as opposed to the "horseshoe" muffler design of the 75-77.

The 1979 model GL1000 has been termed by some as the "ugly duckling" though it is mechanically same to the 1978 model. Changes for 1979 were cosmetic. Rectangular turn signals replaced the previous round ones, control levers were changed from silver to black, and twin-bulb taillight with CBX-type ribbed lenses replaced the single-bulb unit.



1975

1975 Honda GL1000K0
1975 Honda GL1000 in Candy Blue Green
1975 Honda GL1000 in Candy Blue Green
1975 Honda GL1000 in Candy Blue Green
1975 Honda GL1000 in Candy Blue Green
1975 Honda GL1000 in Candy Blue Green
1975 Honda GL1000 in Candy Blue Green
1975 Honda GL1000 in Candy Blue Green
1975 Honda GL1000 in Candy Blue Green
1975 Honda GL1000 in Candy Blue Green
1975 Honda GL1000 in Candy Blue Green
1975 Honda GL1000 in Candy Blue Green
1975 Honda GL1000 in Candy Blue Green



GL1000K0 - The GL1000 Gold Wing was introduced in 1975 with two available colors: Candy Antares Red and Candy Blue Green. Fairings, common on newer Gold Wings, were an add-on accessory. The side cover decal reads "Gold Wing GL1000" The face of the instruments was dark green. The exhaust system was black with a solid chrome shield and chrome tailpipe. The spoke wheels had aluminum rims. The SOHC engine displaced 999cc and had only two valves per cylinder. The engine was an opposed four cylinder similar to the BMW. Interestingly, it also duplicated the BMW by incorporating a shaft drive. The transmission was a five-speed. The frame serial number began GL1-1000012 while the engine serial number began GL1E-1000001.

1976

GL1000

GL1000'76 - The second year for the Gold Wing (GL1000 '76) was introduced in 1976 with two available colors: Candy Antares Red and Sulfur Yellow. Fairings, common on newer Gold Wings, were an add-on accessory. The side cover decal reads "Gold Wing GL1000" The face of the instruments changed to light green. The exhaust system was black with a solid chrome shield and chrome tailpipe. The spoke wheels had aluminum rims. The SOHC engine displaced 999cc and had only two valves per cylinder. The engine was an opposed four cylinder similar to the BMW. Interestingly, it also duplicated the BMW by incorporating a shaft drive. The transmission was a five-speed. The frame serial number began GL1-2001483 while the engine serial number began GL1E-2001422.

LTD

1976 Honda GL1000LTD Gold Wing LTD
1976 Honda GL1000 LTD in Brown
1976 Honda GL1000 LTD in Brown
1976 Honda GL1000 LTD in Brown
1976 Honda GL1000 LTD in Brown
1976 Honda GL1000 LTD in Brown
1976 Honda GL1000 LTD in Brown
1976 Honda GL1000 LTD in Brown
1976 Honda GL1000 LTD in Brown
1976 Honda GL1000 LTD in Brown
1976 Honda GL1000 LTD in Brown
1976 Honda GL1000 LTD in Brown
1976 Honda GL1000 LTD in Brown
1976 Honda GL1000 LTD in Brown
1976 Honda GL1000 LTD in Brown
1976 Honda GL1000 LTD in Brown



GL1000LTD'76 - In 1976 during the second year of the 1000cc Gold Wing, Honda released a Limited Edition which was called a GL1000LTD'76. It was available in only one color: Custom Candy Brown. The wheel rims were gold anodized and the spokes were plated a gold color. All emblems and striping were gold. The Radiator shroud was chrome plated and the saddle was dual contoured like the 1977 wing. A special tool kit with a leather type bag. The frame serial number began GL1-2035001 while the engine serial number began GL1E-2033474

1977

1977 Honda GL1000 Gold Wing



GL1000'77 - The third year for the Gold Wing (GL1000 '77) was introduced in 1977 with three available colors: Candy Antares Red, Candy Sirus Blue, and Black. Fairings, common on newer Gold Wings, were still an add-on accessory. The side cover decal reads "Gold Wing GL1000" The face of the instruments changed to black with green KPH markings. The exhaust system was black with a solid chrome shield and chrome tailpipe. The spoke wheels had aluminum rims. The handlebars were higher and recontoured than in the previous two years. The saddle had a dual contour. The SOHC engine displaced 999cc and had only two valves per cylinder. The engine was an opposed four cylinder similar to the BMW. Interestingly, it also duplicated the BMW by incorporating a shaft drive. The transmission was a five-speed. The frame serial number began GL1-3000001 while the engine serial number began GL1E-3000006


1978

1978 Honda GL1000 Gold Wing
1978 Honda GL1000 in Candy Grandeur Blue
1978 Honda GL1000 in Candy Grandeur Blue
1978 Honda GL1000 in Candy Grandeur Blue
1978 Honda GL1000 in Candy Grandeur Blue
1978 Honda GL1000 in Black
1978 Honda GL1000 in Black
1978 Honda GL1000 in Black
1978 Honda GL1000 in Black
1978 Honda GL1000 in Black
1978 Honda GL1000 in Black
1978 Honda GL1000 in Black
1978 Honda GL1000 in Black



GL1000'78 - The fourth year for the Gold Wing (GL1000 '78) was introduced in 1978 with three available colors: Candy Limited Maroon, Candy Grandeur Blue, and Black. Fairings, common on newer Gold Wings, were still an add-on accessory. The side cover decal reads "Gold Wing GL1000" The face of the instruments were black with red KPH markings. An instrument panel was added to the center pod. The exhaust system was new and solid chrome. The wheels now had five "spokes" and were silver comstar wheels. The SOHC engine displaced 999cc and had only two valves per cylinder. The engine was an opposed four cylinder similar to the BMW. Interestingly, it also duplicated the BMW by incorporating a shaft drive. The transmission was a five-speed. The frame serial number began GL1-4000001 while the engine serial number began GL1E-4000001

1979

1979 Honda GL1000 Gold Wing



GL1000'79 - The fifth (and last) year for the 1000cc Gold Wing (GL1000 '79) was introduced in 1979 with three available colors: Candy Limited Maroon, Candy Grandeur Blue, and Candy Burgundy. Fairings, common on newer Gold Wings, were still an add-on accessory. The side cover decal reads "Gold Wing GL1000" The face of the instruments were black with red KPH markings. As in the previous year an instrument panel was added to the center pod. The exhaust system was solid chrome. The turn signals were rectangular rather than round. The tail light had a ribbed lens and two bulbs. The control levers were black. The silver comstar wheels had five "spokes." The SOHC engine displaced 999cc and had only two valves per cylinder. The engine was an opposed four cylinder similar to the BMW. Interestingly, it also duplicated the BMW by incorporating a shaft drive. The transmission was a five-speed. The frame serial number began GL1-4100001 while the engine serial number began GL1E-4100001


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