The Honda CTX700 is a cruiser motorcycle designed to be the perfect beginner’s bike.
The CTX700 came stock with forward foot controls, wide handlebars, a fairing, and a Dual Clutch Transmission that came with an automatic shifting feature.
It’s no wonder the CTX stands for Comfort Technology, and eXperience, but what are the common problems with the Honda CTX700?
Get Comfortable with your reading Tech and read on for another informative Motor and Wheels eXperience!
Table of Contents
1. Automatic Throttle Gets Stuck
Honda has a reputation for innovation, and the Dual-Clutch Transmission on the CTX700 proves the rule.
The Honda CTX700 came with an automatic shifting feature, but if the system fails in a particular way, the throttle could get stuck, and the bike would be stuck in motion.
Here’s an actual testimony of a CTX700 owner who experienced this problem:
My vehicle is a honda motorcycle with an automatic transmission (dct). When coming to full stop, the motorcycle normally goes into low idle, which disengages the clutch. On this occasion, the motorcycle stayed in high idle and tried to surge forward. I was able to stop the surge by using the hand brake. I pulled over to the side of the road, turned off the engine, and restarted the motorcycle. After restarting the engine i was not able to shift out of neutral. I believe that was because the idle was still too high. I had the motorcycle towed to the dealership and, after getting there, tried again and at that time i was able to shift out of neutral. I checked online (especially www. Ctx700forum. Com) and found that several other owners have had this problem. https://www.vindecoderz.com/EN/Honda/CTX700/2015/problems-complaints-defects
To better understand exactly how and why this terrifying scenario plays out, we first have to know how the Dual-Clutch Transmission works.
Simply put, the transmission utilizes a second clutch in an automatic mode, where the rider can shift through the bike’s six-gear transmission with the flick of a handlebar-mounted switch.
And it doesn’t stop there.
If you flip on automatic mode, the CTX700 will shift itself, just like an automatic car.
That’s right. The CTX700 comes standard with an updated version of the Dual-Clutch Transmission introduced on its big brother, the VFR1200F.
The DCT on the CTX700 uses heavy-duty large-diameter clutches, robust enough to handle the jolting automatic shuffle up and down the gears, especially during extended stints in city traffic.
The CTX700 automatic feature was made possible by regulating the bike’s CPU and allowing the rider to input various drive modes.
For example, the prerogative of the automatic drive mode is fuel economy, and it regulates your shifting to keep engine speeds in the 2,000 range. For instance, sport mode would favor the high RPM range, shifting according to the high-end spectrum, finding the gear where the most immediate power can be accessed while preventing engine spooling.
Ok, so now that you understand the regulation power the automatic shifter of your CTX700 has over your bike’s operation, let’s get into the details of this uncommon-yet-frightening-enough-to-mention problem with the Honda CTX700.
Not all CTX700s have the Dual-Clutch Transmission.
On some Honda CTX700’s that had it, the CPU puts the bike’s motor into low idle and disengages the clutch when the bike comes to a complete stop.
On a few rare but severe occasions, the transmission of the Honda CTX700 would stay in high idle, as the CPU would fail to throttle down the idle when the bike came to a stop.
When the bike stays in high revs, it tries to lurch forward.
A jolt like this happened to one CTX700 rider whose case I dug up. When the bike lurched forward, they claimed the rider could barely stop the cycle from leaping out of control by applying the hand brake long enough to buck the bike to the side of the road and kill the engine.
With hesitation in their nerves, I’m sure the rider then restarted the motorcycle. Now, they say, the bike was stuck in neutral, probably because the idle was too high for the flywheel to move.
The rider had the bike towed to the dealership, and once there, the bike was idling correctly and shifted fine to the point where the mechanics had no symptoms to troubleshoot to diagnose the issue.
Unfortunately, this wasn’t an isolated incident. There are multiple accounts of riders ripping CTX700s at highway speeds in the automatic setting for extended periods. When attempting to stop, engine braking doesn’t occur when the CTX700 rider releases the throttle.
In another incident in Ohio, a CTX rider says that the bike shifted itself into a higher idle, surging the cycle’s speed to 20mph and causing a parking lot accident.
As you can infer, this high idle incident is a severe problem. What’s the cause and the solution. Read the following section to find out.
HINT: It’s related to the next heading.
2. Transmission Stuck in Gear
This second section is related to the previous one; the issue is more commonly a minor manifestation of the same problem described above, so we’ve organized the negative CTX700 experiences into two sections.
Symptoms of a Honda CTX700 that’s stuck in gear:
- Abrupt stopping of CTX700’s engine while riding, significantly when RPMs drop.
- Transmission disengages from the engine.
- The motorcycle won’t start back up.
- Neutral light may or may not be indicated.
Troubleshooting steps to take on a Honda CTX700 before you assume it’s stuck in gear:
- Inspect battery voltage-13.0vdc
- Inspect the 30A main fuse
- Inspect the 15A sub fuse-the start of the starter circuit
- Inspect the starter relay per the owner’s manual’s instructions
- Inspect the starter circuit through the Kill/Run switch and the START PB per the manual’s instructions
- Inspect the starter control relay, removing it from the fuse block if necessary
- Inspect the kickstand switch per the owner’s manual instructions.
- Turn the ignition key on to listen for fuel pump activation and any clunking noise. Fuel pump activation is a sign that the problem isn’t electronic or fuel-system related. The clunking sound is the linear relays searching for neutral, indicating that your CTX700 is stuck in gear.
- Once the bike is on, inspect the shift indicator display. If the collection goes from showing a neutral symbol to indicating a specific gear, it’s a good sign that your bike was stuck in the indicated gear and is not presently in neutral.
How to fix a Honda CTX700 that’s stuck in gear:
- Put your CTX700 on the center stand and flick the ignition switch into the on position.
- Roll the rear wheel backward slowly. As you do, you’ll hear the bike downshift. Pause as the bike shifts, then continue to roll, and you’ll hear the motorcycle’s gearbox downshift again. Continues to move the CTX700’s rear-wheel back until the bike has finished downshifting.
- Press the start button, and the bike should start right up!
3. Faulty Starter Relay Switch
In 2015, Honda recalled 47,168 units, including myriad Honda CTX700s. The recall was in response to an issue with the starter relay switch—Honda incorrectly applied the sealant on the starter relays of affected CTX700s.
Honda’s incorrect sealant application had the potential to interfere with an affected CTX700’s electrical system, causing electrical failure that, sometimes, resulted in a loss of power.
Loss of electrical power is a risky business. Besides the apparent threats wire-harness-failure presents, there’s the severe and fatal risk of a crash.
Oversights like this happen in all brand motorcycle factories, though; Honda produces a lot of bikes, and a few marks are bound to get missed from time to time.
The important thing is how proactive a motorcycle brand is in responding.
Historically, Honda is one of the most proactive moto-brands when it comes to handling factory oversights, and this incorrectly sealed starter relay was no different.
The Big-Japanese-4 motorcycle brand took action by issuing an official recall.
Honda sent prompt notice of the faulty relay seals to owners of CTX700 they suspected might be affected.
They supplied repair kits and replacement components to Honda Motorcycle dealerships worldwide and instructed them to replace the starter relay on the house, free.
If your CTX700 is experiencing a failing starter relay, including electronic failure and power loss, your local Honda dealer can run your VIN.
It’s possible that the previous owner of your CTX700 never took it in for repair during the recall, but that won’t stop the dealership from slapping in a new Starter Relay unit and getting your Honda CTX700 back on the road.
General Pros and Cons for Honda CTX700
Here are some pros and cons of the Honda CTX700:
Below are some outstanding qualities of the CTX700 bike:
- The CTX700 is powered by a single overhead camshaft on a 670cc engine of Honda-signature parallel-twin design.
- Its 62 degrees forward tilt gives the CTX700 a low center of gravity, contributing to its smooth handling.
- The Honda CTX700’s undersquare motor has programmed fuel injection with a distinct timing profile on each cylinder to combine with this bike’s tuning and provide powerful torque delivery to the low-mid-speed ranges.
- Using a 270-degree crank gives the Honda CTX700 the desirable V-twin vibration.
- Honda delivered a balanced motor on the CTX700, using a uniaxial primary balancer to counter the crankshaft.
- The Honda CTX700 dropped one of the lowest fuel consumption figures in the industry; due to the limited number of moving engine components, the CTX700 gets 79 Miles to the Gallon.
- The unique engine of the CTX700 has automatic features.
- The unique motor of the CTX700 also had water hoses that were 30% shorter than average, resulting in faster coolant travel time.
- Honda’s engineering department equipped the CTX700 with a roller rocker arm fabricated from lightweight aluminum, effectively reducing friction.
- The pistons of the CTX700 are coated in resin.
Here are common issues with the CTX700:
Automatic Throttle Gets Stuck
Transmission Stuck in Gear
Faulty Starter Relay Switch
What Do the Reviews Say about the Honda CTX700?
The idea behind the CTXs is to introduce new riders to motorcycling and bring back former ones, who these days care more about comfort, fuel efficiency and fun than maximum power. They’re also meant to appeal to experienced riders who are seeking some practical everyday transportation for themselves or a mate. At just 28.3 inches, their seats are accessibly low and their cruiserish forward-mounted footpegs and high, wide beach-style handlebars have a relaxed feel. Canting the engine forward 62 degrees helps give them a low center of gravity for better handling, and the available DCT eliminates the potential showstopper of having to shift gears for a new rider, who may never have even done so in a car. Toss in nimble handling, great brakes and low weight, and you have a blend of cruiser and sporty handling that’s all about Comfort, Technology and the riding eXperience—CTX.https://ridermagazine.com/2013/09/03/2014-honda-ctx700-road-test-review/
What’s the Resale Value on a Honda CTX700?
ⓘ The information in this article is based on data from National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) recall reports, consumer complaints submitted to the NHTSA, reliability ratings from J.D. Power, auto review and rating sites such as Edmunds, specialist forums, etc. We analyzed this data to provide insights into the best and worst years for these vehicle models.