What Year GoldWing To Avoid [Must Read Before Buying]

For more than 40 years, the Gold Wing motorcycles have exhibited a supreme level of Honda’s flagship luxury and performance.

However, there are a few Gold Wing models, that despite their style and convenience are avoided due to their certain shortcomings.

Let’s take a look at the reasons causing GoldWing years to avoid.

What Year Goldwing to Avoid?


1. 1978 GoldWing

Honda Gold Wing experimented with evolution in its touring bikes resulting in the 1978 released GL1000s.

The new carburetors, exhaust, and camshafts made GL1000s more like a vintage bike with increased nostalgia rather than facilitating everyday rides.

Problems and Highlights:

The 999cc boxer engine of GL1000s produces 61.2 lbs-ft torque and 78 hp power. The flat 4-engine design of this bike is an excellent option for riders who want affordability. 

The 31.9 inches changed-out seat offers an uncomfortable riding position and the blockage inside the fuel inlet screen leads to a restricted flow of fuel.

The idle fuel jet and internal fuel circuit are also prone to get blocked causing an overly lean mixture.

To fix the fuel blockage issue, blow compressed air through the main and reserve circuit. Take the fuel cap off and you must hear the equal volumes of air flow through each circuit.

If they are not equal then it indicates the restricted flow of fuel into the carb. 

The actuating arm on GL1000s wears out causing pump output and pressure to decline. To find it, read Honda’s manual to test for minimum volume and pressure.

This problem requires rework and replacement of the worn-out pump. The faulty gas caps restrict venting, leading to a pressure vacuum that prevents fuel flow.

The simple carbs problems in this model are due to big vacuum leakage and cracks in intake rubbers. To fix the vacuum leak use new intake o-rings check for the signs of cracks in the intake rubber and replace it.

The sticky vacuum throttle sides of this bike require carb bore and slides to get polished regularly. The bike’s idle speed is set to high oscillation.

Keep the idle speed at 950-1000 RPMs and don’t go beyond this idle speed to prevent the activation of progression circuits in carbs.

2. GL1200 GoldWing

Dropped on Honda’s 10th anniversary, the 3rd generation, 1985 released GL1200 with its SOHC, 11822 cc, engine, and ultra-luxurious cruise control gives a sophisticated ride.

Yet the experimental manufacturing of GL1200 in 1983-1987 still brought some serious ignition problems.

Problems and Highlights:

The bike faces recurrent charging and stator wiring harnesses, overheating, and failure issues.

The electrical resistance between the stator’s five-pin wiring in the connectors causes heat build-up that eventually melts the plastic connector block, leading to stator issues.

To combat this, Honda issued a limited lifetime warranty for the stator’s replacement. The 1984 models have serious rear wheel problems that do not let them fit properly into the brackets.

3. GL1500 Gold Wing

The GL1500 is a comfortable motorcycle with a better engine design and has a strong appeal for short riders. It is lighter and quieter. Yet the models from 1988 are better to avoid.

Problems and Highlights:

Produced during 1988-2000, the six-cylinder bike with flat 6-engine designs provides plenty of 100 hp power and 110 ft-lbs torque that significantly outperforms the earlier models.

The hydraulic tappets make it less complex and eliminate the maintenance requirements.

However, the GL1500 from the same year has a carburetor instead of fuel injection and the bike does not handle it well at low speeds.

The GL1500 faces expensive gear shifting issues where the first and second gear miss out and the fourth gear pops out causing rough and problematic shifting.

This happens due to the bike’s floorboards rubbing against the heel and toe shifter and causing stomping on the heel shifter. GL1500 shifting issues settle down by using a shifter shaft that prevents the shifter from wearing out and keeping it more precise.

With GL1500 drive in moderate throttle to avoid gear popping up from one into another.

4. 2001 GoldWing

The GL1800 comprises a few improved features of its ancestors, the bike with its 1833 cc engine, 7-speed Dual Clutch Transmission, and significantly enhanced ease-of-use is a magnificent tourer. 

However, the lack of a backrest in these bikes causes the rider to sink in and the shorter windscreen causes too much windblast.

Problems and Highlights:

Honda recalled GL1800 due to a defect in the bike frame, an issue that continued from 2001-2004. The defective frame was prone to folding and breakage.

A minor fault in design leads to this error, affecting the quality and performance.

The GL1800’s starter uses a one-way starter mechanism to activate and it fails to work. The starter initially cranks the bike over after four to five button machines and gets worse down the road.

The starter just spins upon pressing without turning over the engine.

The lack of maintenance in the back of the motor limits the oil flow and causes starting issues. To fix the starter issue, clean the grim using engine oil to clear the fuel flow.

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Reference Links:

Honda Gold Wing | Wikipedia 

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