The roll-out of Apple’s car infotainment system alternative, CarPlay, has been gradual. Some car manufacturers support it while others don’t. Up until now, CarPlay was a luxury only reserved for cars, but motorcycles are now getting in on the action. The Honda Gold Wing will be the first motorcycle to integrate Apple’s platform.
Accessing CarPlay on the Gold Wing motorcycle will be similar to how it’s normally done in cars. Just plug in your iPhone via a Lightning cable in the trunk at the front of the bike. The only major difference will be that riders will be required to connect a Bluetooth headset, be it one built through a helmet or a standalone unit. Once you meet the requirements, the familiar CarPlay interface will appear on the 7-inch display in the middle of the Gold Wing’s instrument cluster.
Using CarPlay on the Gold Wing is a different story. The Gold Wing’s display doesn’t have touch capabilities, so you’ll have to use a directional pad on the left handlebar to navigate through apps and menus. It’ll be slightly odder than swiping through the CarPlay interface, but since it has the familiar grid of icons and menus found in iOS, it shouldn’t be too difficult navigating through it with the directional pad.
Unfortunately, it doesn’t have Android Auto. Honda told Road Show that this was due to Google’s decision to focus on four-wheel cars.
In terms of performance, the Gold Wing is equipped with a liquid-cooled flat engine and adaptive suspension. There will also be an available seven-speed automatic dual clutch transmission if that’s more of your thing.
The Gold Wing will start at $23,500 and go up from there depending on the engine variant or features that are added.