Why did Honda stop making the ST1300? (Explained!)

Honda stopped ST1300 production mainly due to stricter emissions regulations and declining sales. As emissions standards tightened in the late 2010s, updating the ST1300 to comply would have necessitated major changes.

With sport touring sales falling, Honda chose to halt ST1300 production rather than re-engineer its powertrain.

Diminished global demand plus the 2008 recession made the business case to continue the ST1300 weaker.

Competition from other brands also ate into ST1300 sales over its final years.

As a technologically advanced model when introduced, the ST1300 aged over time without significant updates.

The latest sport touring motorcycles offered more innovation and tempted ST1300 loyalists.

While still respected, the ST1300 was not Honda’s top seller. This made continuing production harder to justify.

After 14 strong years, Honda felt the time was right for the ST1300’s discontinuation and to invest in other models with greater growth prospects.

ST1300’s Discontinuation: Declining Sales

The ST1300 enjoyed strong initial sales after its introduction in 2003, appealing to long-distance touring riders with its blend of power, handling, and comfort.

However, sales began declining yearly as intense competition emerged in the sport touring segment from bikes like Yamaha’s FJR1300 and Kawasaki’s Concours 14.

By 2009, ST1300 sales ranked behind those models, and the aging platform failed to attract new sports touring buyers.

As adventure touring motorcycles surged in popularity in the 2010s, attracting younger riders, Honda noted declining sales of the conventional sport touring models like the ST1300.

Development Costs

With Honda facing pressure to meet tightening emissions regulations worldwide, the Japanese firm likely deemed the ST1300 too costly to upgrade to Euro 4 emissions standards after its 10-year production run.

Developing a cleaner, more advanced powertrain would have cut too far into the ST1300’s already small profit margins for continued production to make business sense.

Competition

The ST1300’s lack of traction control, adjustable windscreen height, and standard locking hard side cases put it behind rivals like the tech-laden FJR1300ES.

As performance sport touring bikes evolved more touring capability and amenities, the ST1300’s features stale in comparison.

Honda understood a successor would need major upgrades to compete.

Why did Honda stop making the ST1300?

What replaced the Honda ST1300?

After discontinuing the ST1300, Honda did not directly replace it with a new model. The closest replacement in Honda’s lineup is the NT1100 which launched for overseas markets in 2021.

The NT1100 features a 1084cc parallel twin engine and many modern amenities focused on sport touring.

However, the NT1100 has not been announced for the US market yet.

With the ST1300’s discontinuation, Honda shifted sport touring offerings to the CBR1100XX Blackbird last sold in 2007, and the high-end Gold Wing tourer.

The midsize sport touring segment remains open for Honda to potentially re-enter with a new model to succeed the ST1300.

For now, Honda no longer has a direct competitor in the category the ST1300 formerly occupied.

The ST1300’s discontinuation left a gap in Honda’s range that many hoped a true successor would fill.

Does Honda still make the ST1300?

No, Honda ceased production of the ST1300 sport touring motorcycle in 2016 after a 14-year run. The ST1300 was introduced in 2002 as a replacement for the ST1100 and aimed to be a high-performance long-distance tourer.

The motorcycle was sold in the US from 2003 to 2016 before the ST1300’s discontinuation.

Over its lifespan, the ST1300 earned a reputation for being a comfortable, reliable, and technologically advanced touring bike.

It featured a 1261cc V4 engine, anti-lock brakes, and shaft drive. Read the article linked for more Honda ST1300 Specs.

The ST1300 saw only minor updates over the years, including a larger windscreen and standard saddlebags introduced in 2009.

New emissions regulations coupled with declining sales ultimately led Honda to halt ST1300 production in 2016 without a direct replacement.

However, the ST1300 enjoyed a long production run and established itself as one of Honda’s most renowned touring motorcycles over the past two decades.

What years did Honda make the ST1300?

  • The ST1300 was first unveiled as a prototype at the Tokyo Motor Show in 2001.
  • Production officially began in early 2002 for the 2003 model year.
  • The ST1300 was sold in the United States and Canada as a 2003 model in late 2002.
  • It was sold concurrently in Europe and Australia from 2003 onward.
  • The first major update occurred in 2009 with a larger windscreen and standard saddlebags added. In our opinion, the 2009 ST1300 is the model that gives the buyer the most value for their money.
  • Minor styling and color changes occurred over the years but the core ST1300 remained relatively unchanged.
  • 2016 Honda announced that ST1300 would cease production after a 14-year model run.
  • 2016 was the year of the ST1300’s discontinuation. Production ended in late 2016.

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