Friday, May 20, 2022
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2022 CFMOTO 800MT (launch ride)

CFMOTO’s first full powered motorcycle, the 800MT, has landed in Australia and Exhaust Notes Australia went along for the ride as part of its local media launch. It gave us a chance to put the adventure bike through its paces on both the bitumen and dirt.

Our test route would see us head to Victoria, navigating from Altona, down the freeway, testing the lane splitting ability of the 800MT through some nice twisty roads, including the 65km Jamieson Road stretch.

The adventure would then continue off road, on some well rutted fire trails as we made our way to the Wood Point Pub for some good food and great beverages. It marked the end of day one testing CFMOTO’s new ride.

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The 800MT is designed for adventure touring and comes in two variants; the entry level Sport and range topping Touring (which we tested). It’s powered by a KTM 790 engine producing 70kW of power and 77Nm of torque.

The 799cc liquid-cooled DOHC inline twin cylinder is matched to a ride by wire electronic throttle to deliver more accurate and linear power. The Touring model also utilises a bi-directional quick shifter as standard kit.

2022 CFMOTO 800MT
2022 CFMOTO 800MT

The 800MT Touring also boasts a host of other impressive features, including heated grips, a heated seat, cruise control (up to 120km/h), two selectable riding modes (Sport and Rain), and a full LED lighting package.

There’s handguards and protection bars too (we tested these and they work well), and spoke wheels. A centre stand and aluminium bash plate complete the package. A 7.0-inch full colour TFT display features Bluetooth connectivity.

It’s easy to read and navigate, and houses all the rider info that you might require (it does take a little getting used to). The 825mm seat height also hits the sweet spot, making it comfortable when sitting on the bitumen and easy to stand on the foot pegs when off road.

KYB upside-down front suspension with adjustable preload, rebound and dampening finds a home on the front of the 800MT, while on the rear are KYB units that feature adjustable preload and rebound.

There is 190mm of ground clearance and 19-inch Maxxis tubeless tyres are fitted standard on the front, with 17-inch rubber on the rear. For our test, the CFMOTO 800MT rode on optional Pirelli STR tyres.

2022 CFMOTO 800MT
2022 CFMOTO 800MT

While generally a more off road focused tyre, the Pirelli’s performed exceptionally well on the tarmac as well, and may be worth serious thought if you’re considering purchasing an 800MT. It certainly adds to the solid overall package on offer from this adventure bike.

Suspension on the road was soft and felt planted without being overly firm. The ride is quite comfortable, especially in open sweeping bends. The handlebars and controls are within easy reach and the leg distance to the foot pegs is spot on.

We did have issue with the windscreen though. Although it’s adjustable, there did seem to be some excessive head buffeting that may require a slight rethink from the bike maker. While it’s not a total game changer, it was definitely annoying.

That aside, the braking package works well, even when pushed hard. It occurs to us that this bike may be the perfect way for budding adventure riders, like yours truly, to explore the off road, with a good, user friendly package. It really is that good an all-rounder.

That theory continued to develop on day two of the test, which kicked off with a creek crossing, before more dirt tracks in very cold temps. The heated grips and seat were put to use and performed well, and were very much appreciated.

2022 CFMOTO 800MT
2022 CFMOTO 800MT

We also found our way back to the tarmac and again had the opportunity to ride the 800MT on some great roads, including Black Spur. All-in-all the CFMOTO 800MT is a well equipped and great value adventure touring proposition.

And while it’s not without fault as the bike still has a couple of teething issues, the brand is committed to fixing these. It’s an extremely versatile motorcycle, and a great entry point into adventure bike riding.

Pricing for the Sport starts at $12,990 ride away, while the Touring kicks off from $14,490 ride away. The 2022 CFMOTO 800MT is backed by 3-year warranty.

Our test bikes were provided by CFMOTO as part of a two-day media launch. To find out more about the 2022 CFMOTO 800MT, contact your local CFMOTO dealer.

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Andrew Jenkin
Andrew Jenkin
Andrew Jenkin is a motoring enthusiast, with a passion for two and four wheels. It's pretty much a given there'll be at least two motorbikes in his garage and he needs no excuses to hit the open road. Andrew grew up reading magazines like Street Machine and Heavy Duty and has a love for all things performance.

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