demo'd an X-300 yesterday... - Kawasaki Versys Forum
2017+ Kawasaki Versys-X 300 Reviews Write a review of your new 2017+ Kawasaki Versys-X 300 and share your thoughts with other community members. Be sure to let us know what you love and what changes you would make.

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  • 1 Post By fasteddiecopeman
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-11-2017, 02:05 PM Thread Starter
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demo'd an X-300 yesterday...

As I had some things to do a few miles S of my "Kawi dealer" yesterday, I dropped in to see WHEN they'd have an X-300 for a demo ride. Imagine my surprise to see one w/ a "DEMO ME!" sign hanging over a mirror.

Went inside to chat w/ the owner and asked when I could trial it. He mentioned a 'demo-day' this coming Saturday, then said "How about right now?" I demurred, saying I had stuff to do first, but that I'd check back once the weather improves (MAJOR flooding already happening here, but the forecast is for the WORST flooding in over 200 years the next few days!!!), and left for my 'duties'.

At about 1320 hrs I was finished, so mounted-up, heading N, then remembered that I could drop in to the cycle shop, and, MAYBE, trial-it, so that became my destination.

Got there in a few minutes, parked the GREEN HORNET TOO, went inside to ask IF the ride was still available - YES - so we headed out to 'plate' it, then I headed out to a road up a hill to a local ski-area, full of twisties to try it out.

First - the clutch is so light that it feels like it's not connected, and the seat, while high, is LOWER than on the 650s, but (initially) felt like a brick. As I rode w/out really looking at the tach I felt a good hit of power, than checking the revs noticed that once I was over about 5,000 it pulled pretty good, not at all as I expected from a 300cc 385# bike w/ about 30HP. That is - until I remembered that BOTH my '62 Triumph Thunderbird and my '79 Yamaha SR500 each weighed about the same, and EACH w/ about 30HP also!

It felt light, agile, and was easy to get into a rhythm of left-right-left thru the closely spaced turns, w/ enough power to pass the few vehicles I overtook on that road, and GOOD brakes when I needed them (ABS, of course!). I headed back to the shop, down that same hill/ road, and the seat was seemingly getting a bit 'softer' as I rode (it had only 25 kms on the odometer when I started the ride), so it might 'break-in' to where it doesn't need to be replaced.

The instruments are good, including a radiator temp gauge as well as a gear indicator - both welcome! - and trip computor as in my 650LT.

All-in-all - as I told the shop owner - I could see owning one of these. It has reasonable power, felt light and maneuverable, the suspension appeared to be pretty good (I went thru a pot-hole that SHOULD have caused the forks to 'bottom', but they didn't), and it certainly has "presence". During the ride I got it up to 115 km/hr (72 mph) and there was certainly "more" there, so it's not a slouch.

And here's a pic of it 'snuggling-up' to the leader of the pack....

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'08 V - BIG RED - AZ, '15 V650LT - the GREEN HORNET TOO - BC, and ('09 V - the GREEN HORNET - recently deceased..
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Last edited by fasteddiecopeman; 05-11-2017 at 02:09 PM.
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-11-2017, 04:51 PM
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Nice review. The X-300 looks a little wimpy next to the 650LT. The X-300 really needs engine guards, skid plate, and some small panniers to make it look a bit beefier. The more I think about this bike I wish it had a few more cc's/hp, somewhere in the 450 range.
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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-21-2017, 02:33 PM Thread Starter
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demo'd a KTM 390 Duke yesterday...

Dropped by "my" Kawi dealer yesterday about 1430, and lo-and-behold - a KTM demo day, w/ open-slots for the 1500 ride, and the 390 Duke was included, so I signed-up!

MOTORCYCLIST had a KTM 390 for a long-term test, and they just returned it, writing a 'do NOT buy' report, due MANY issues w/ it....

HOWEVER, I had a fun little 30 minutes: LOADS of power, good handling and brakes, felt 'comfy' altho' the footpegs were quite high, and (in the 80F weather) lots of airflow. As I said - FUN!
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-21-2017, 06:27 PM
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Fasteddiecopeman

I have not test ridden the X300, but i looked at one at the local dealership. Standing beside the bike and pressing down on the seat with both hands,and all my weight, the seat squished very little. Sitting on the bike the seat felt as you said, like a brick. You stated that the seat seemed to get softer as you rode it. Maybe it will be softer and more comfortable once it gets broken in. I've noticed that corbin seats as well as mustang (my favorite seat on my harleys) are alot more comfortable once they are broken in. Can someone that owns the X300 give us some feed back on this?
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-22-2017, 08:23 AM
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I haven't personally sat on an X-300, but have a lot of seat time on bikes.

My finding is that seats the are squishy and comfortable for 10 mile rides suck big time after a few hours in the saddle because you sink to the seat pan over time.

Seats that are uncomfortable for 10 mile rides are all day comfortable because they slowly form to you but never lose support.

Of course some seats never work for me which makes it hard to spend the money. At least Harley lets you demo the seats before you purchase.
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-22-2017, 10:18 AM
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Originally Posted by fasteddiecopeman View Post
Dropped by "my" Kawi dealer yesterday about 1430, and lo-and-behold - a KTM demo day, w/ open-slots for the 1500 ride, and the 390 Duke was included, so I signed-up!

MOTORCYCLIST had a KTM 390 for a long-term test, and they just returned it, writing a 'do NOT buy' report, due MANY issues w/ it....

HOWEVER, I had a fun little 30 minutes: LOADS of power, good handling and brakes, felt 'comfy' altho' the footpegs were quite high, and (in the 80F weather) lots of airflow. As I said - FUN!
When I was searching for a sub 400 lb bike in '15 to haul on work trips when ridingbwas out of the question, the 390 and 690 were on my list to try. I liked the 390, but my knees wouldn't tuck in behind the tank in my riding pants. The 690 would be the perfect bike to carry home a gallon of paint on.
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-23-2017, 09:19 AM
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I have 200 miles now on my X 300 and the seat has not softened at all! Put an Airhawk dual sport pad on it for a temporary fix. That helps but just a temporary fix until Seat Concepts releases custom seat as mentioned above in 30-60 days. Do love this bike !!!!
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-23-2017, 10:31 AM
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Originally Posted by katkwik View Post
I have 200 miles now on my X 300 and the seat has not softened at all! Put an Airhawk dual sport pad on it for a temporary fix. That helps but just a temporary fix until Seat Concepts releases custom seat as mentioned above in 30-60 days. Do love this bike !!!!
I recall how hard the seat was when demo riding a ninja 300 when they first came out, but sport bikes are supposed to have firm seats since you are moving around.
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-23-2017, 07:18 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by twowheeladdict View Post
I recall how hard the seat was when demo riding a ninja 300 when they first came out, but sport bikes are supposed to have firm seats since you are moving around.
Yeah - you're "moving around" BECAUSE the seat is hurtin' you...!

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'08 V - BIG RED - AZ, '15 V650LT - the GREEN HORNET TOO - BC, and ('09 V - the GREEN HORNET - recently deceased..
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