Decisions, decisions - Kawasaki Versys Forum
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post #1 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-04-2012, 09:41 AM Thread Starter
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Decisions, decisions

Hi all. Been lurking here a bit as Iíve had my eye on a Versys and was looking for some feedback (Iím aware it may be a bit biased from this crowd ). Bear with me while I level set a bit.

Iíve had several bikes in the past Ė CBR600F4, VStrom DL650, gen 1 FZ1 and a FJR1300 (in that order). Iíve been without a bike for a few years but am ready to get back in the game. Obviously the majority of my bikes have been inline 4ís which are a lot of fun. I had the Vstrom for about 6 months and sold it because the V-twin, while torquey and powerful, just felt slow to me and I felt like I was shifting constantly because of the modest RPM range (not that I'm contantly winding it out). Most of my riding will be commuting (hello good gas mileage!) with some spirited jaunts here and there. This is nearly all highway @ 50mi round trip. Iím a good sized guy - 6í2Ē 250# and comfort is important. I donít plan on any long road trips at least not very often.

Finally, my main question is how to the parallel twin on the Versys compare to that of a Vstrom V-twin and an i4? From what Iíve read, it seems to fall somewhere in the middle with good low end and a bit higher range on the tach. Iíve just never ridden a bike with that engine type and Iím just not sure if itís gonna cause me to yawn to giggle. Iím an acceleration guy way more than speed. The Versys 1000 would probably be ideal if it was available here in the states

The bikes Iíve been considering are the gen II FZ1, FZ8, Kawi Z1000 and the Versys. I donít want anything with a lot of plastic/fairingsÖthey just get in the way and seem to be rock magnets.

Anyway, I realize this is very much subjective but any input, especially those that have owned i4 bikes before would be appreciated.

Joe

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post #2 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-04-2012, 10:17 AM
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All I can say is if Honda had the NC700X when I was looking at the Versys I would have gotten that for my mainly commuting riding.

I would love to see 70 MPG.

With that said. I haven't owned an i4 motorcycle. I love my Versys and the accessory options for aftermarket is great. The Versys community is great and diverse.

If you can try to test ride one it may help you make a decision. I didn't really look at other motorcycles when I bought the Versys. I loved the look and went based on that and by the price. Can you say bang for the buck. When I go buy a second bike the versys won't be a trade in it will stay right there next to the next motorcycle.

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post #3 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-04-2012, 10:23 AM
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My bike right before the Versys was a Wee-Strom but I sold it for the same reasons, it just wasn't what I wanted or needed. The Versys to me is far better handling,acceleration, agility,and FUN.
I put three times more miles on the Versys the first year than the year with the Strom and don't regret the change for a second.
I'm 6'1 220 lbs and it hauls me around just fine

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post #4 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-04-2012, 10:38 AM
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Since you are an acceleration guy I would not get a Versys as it is very similar in power delivery to the DL650. I bet the FZ8 would push all the right buttons for you.


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post #5 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-04-2012, 10:54 AM
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The V is super fun, but won't accelerate hard like the I4s. Light, flickable, torquey, with terrific MPG.

I had a similar problem and my solution was 2 bikes - the V and a GSXR1000. Face it, you need 2 bikes!

CJ
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post #6 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-04-2012, 11:06 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the feedback guys!

Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeV View Post
All I can say is if Honda had the NC700X when I was looking at the Versys I would have gotten that for my mainly commuting riding.
Yeah, was looking at that too but it won't be out for a bit still. I also wouldn't mind saving some coin by buying used bike and it'll be a while before one comes up

Quote:
Originally Posted by Frisco View Post
I had a similar problem and my solution was 2 bikes - the V and a GSXR1000. Face it, you need 2 bikes!
Tru dat. Have considered it but i just don't have room. The FJR is the closest I found to be a comfortable communter and sport bike all in one. Tooo much plastic though. Hell, I barely have room for one bike. Two car garage with three cars and an ATV makes things tough (I know, woe is me )

Joe

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post #7 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-04-2012, 01:16 PM
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Someone who drag-races his V posted that he does 12.x seconds for the 1/4 mile. According to Road&Track the Aston Martin Vantage S ($158K) does 12.7 while the V12 Vantage Coupe ($194K) does 12.5, and the Corvette Grand Sport ($68K) does 12.4.

NONE of these are what anyone would call "slow", and a V is a helluva lot cheaper! Yes - there're quicker bikes, but...?

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post #8 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-04-2012, 01:58 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fasteddiecopeman View Post
Someone who drag-races his V posted that he does 12.x seconds for the 1/4 mile. According to Road&Track the Aston Martin Vantage S ($158K) does 12.7 while the V12 Vantage Coupe ($194K) does 12.5, and the Corvette Grand Sport ($68K) does 12.4.

NONE of these are what anyone would call "slow", and a V is a helluva lot cheaper! Yes - there're quicker bikes, but...?
True! I had a BMW Z4 M coupe for a while which was and expensive toy that wasn't quite as exhilarating as a fast bike.

I just don't want to feel like I'm constantly shifting like on the strom. On the FZ1, around town it was pretty much first and second gear, MAYBE thrid without really pushing RPM's anywhere near redline. With the Vstrom it was at least third and sometimes fourth gear. I already have that with my ATV

Joe

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post #9 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-04-2012, 02:51 PM
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I don't think you'll be shifting all that much were you on a V... The power band is so wide that unless you're in the tightest of twisties, you don't need to shift much at all (unless you just flat WANT to ;D)

2008 Versys - 37k miles
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post #10 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-04-2012, 02:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JRE View Post
Hi all. Been lurking here a bit as I’ve had my eye on a Versys and was looking for some feedback (I’m aware it may be a bit biased from this crowd ). Bear with me while I level set a bit.

I’ve had several bikes in the past – CBR600F4, VStrom DL650, gen 1 FZ1 and a FJR1300 (in that order). I’ve been without a bike for a few years but am ready to get back in the game. Obviously the majority of my bikes have been inline 4’s which are a lot of fun. I had the Vstrom for about 6 months and sold it because the V-twin, while torquey and powerful, just felt slow to me and I felt like I was shifting constantly because of the modest RPM range (not that I'm contantly winding it out). Most of my riding will be commuting (hello good gas mileage!) with some spirited jaunts here and there. This is nearly all highway @ 50mi round trip. I’m a good sized guy - 6’2” 250# and comfort is important. I don’t plan on any long road trips at least not very often.

Finally, my main question is how to the parallel twin on the Versys compare to that of a Vstrom V-twin and an i4? From what I’ve read, it seems to fall somewhere in the middle with good low end and a bit higher range on the tach. I’ve just never ridden a bike with that engine type and I’m just not sure if it’s gonna cause me to yawn to giggle. I’m an acceleration guy way more than speed. The Versys 1000 would probably be ideal if it was available here in the states

The bikes I’ve been considering are the gen II FZ1, FZ8, Kawi Z1000 and the Versys. I don’t want anything with a lot of plastic/fairings…they just get in the way and seem to be rock magnets.

Anyway, I realize this is very much subjective but any input, especially those that have owned i4 bikes before would be appreciated.
The video comparisons on yourtube done by MCN praise the Versys engine as the best of the bunch in the test. Much, much, more linear torque curve than an I4, which tend to be peaky (especially the 600s) with max torque coming on much lower down in the rev range. Red line at 10,500 but not much happens after 9500 so you'll want to shift there. Obviously less top end peak HP than a I4 though too.

With SW-Motech engine bars installed the Versys is pretty much indestructible in a slow low side or tip over. The bars prevent any delicate parts or fairing from touching the pavement. Hand guards can be helpful too.


Last edited by twowheels; 04-04-2012 at 02:56 PM.
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post #11 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-04-2012, 03:03 PM Thread Starter
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Wow, WTH happened there, he just slid out? Road is dry, he wasn't going very fast so I'm not quite sure what precipitated the fall.

Joe

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post #12 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-04-2012, 03:37 PM
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Originally Posted by twowheels View Post
The video comparisons on yourtube done by MCN praise the Versys engine as the best of the bunch in the test. Much, much, more linear torque curve than an I4, which tend to be peaky (especially the 600s) with max torque coming on much lower down in the rev range. Red line at 10,500 but not much happens after 9500 so you'll want to shift there. Obviously less top end peak HP than a I4 though too.

With SW-Motech engine bars installed the Versys is pretty much indestructible in a slow low side or tip over. The bars prevent any delicate parts or fairing from touching the pavement. Hand guards can be helpful too.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7bEDVpLvP_4





Ahhhh.. Heres a crash test..My bike had less damage than the beemer. Hepco Beckers for me.. I'm 6'2" 270 lbs the versys hauls my butt around easily

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post #13 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-04-2012, 04:31 PM
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Originally Posted by MikeV View Post
All I can say is if Honda had the NC700X when I was looking at the Versys I would have gotten that for my mainly commuting riding.

I would love to see 70 MPG.

With that said. I haven't owned an i4 motorcycle. I love my Versys and the accessory options for aftermarket is great. The Versys community is great and diverse.

If you can try to test ride one it may help you make a decision. I didn't really look at other motorcycles when I bought the Versys. I loved the look and went based on that and by the price. Can you say bang for the buck. When I go buy a second bike the versys won't be a trade in it will stay right there next to the next motorcycle.
That honda looks sweeett! great price too
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post #14 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-04-2012, 05:07 PM
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I think that 70MPG was in imperial MPG... U.S. would be less..

If I remember properly

2008 Versys - 37k miles
Givi - V35 Monokey Saddlebags - Large windscreen - Tail rack with v46 trunk
Speedy's - 1" Handlebar risers - Footpeg Lowering blocks
Osram 65W Bright replacements
Kawasaki Handguards
... And the all important gremlin bell, courtesy of my wife.
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post #15 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-04-2012, 07:22 PM
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Wow, WTH happened there, he just slid out? Road is dry, he wasn't going very fast so I'm not quite sure what precipitated the fall.
If I recall correctly, they think he hit a tar snake (asphalt crack sealer that gets slick when it gets too hot). Bummer!
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post #16 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-04-2012, 08:29 PM
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Yeah, was looking at that too but it won't be out for a bit still. I also wouldn't mind saving some coin by buying used bike and it'll be a while before one comes up
And the power is less than the Versys, which it sounds like isn't enough for you.

I might be opposite you: I've had 3 twins and 1 I4. The only one I didn't bond with was the 4, and the Versys is my favorite so far. But I'm not sure it would make you happy.

I guess if you're looking at used bikes you should be able to try one out and see. When you're commuting by bike, the long range really comes in handy. I've been going over 210 miles before my fuel light comes on, and my guess is I could get another 30 miles with the fuel warning on before empty. Most bikes I looked at won't go that far and would need to be filled up more frequently.

The 3 I4s you listed all sound fun. I think the range is less though.
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post #17 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-04-2012, 11:15 PM
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My two cents! The V is fun with awesome low end, and yes you shift alot in a commute. But if you liked the I4s don't compare Vtwin to I4s. Two different animals and you will not be happy. Go Z1000.





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post #18 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-05-2012, 09:23 AM Thread Starter
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My two cents! The V is fun with awesome low end, and yes you shift alot in a commute. But if you liked the I4s don't compare Vtwin to I4s. Two different animals and you will not be happy. Go Z1000.
I need to sit on the Z1000...most of the reviews I've read are glowing except for the part about having your nuts squished against the tank (seating position). A change of seat might fix that but I haven't looked that far into it. I'm not crazy about the plastic chin fairing. Gonna head to the local stealers to sit on a few bikes. Currently, none of the ones in the area actually have a Versys in stock (I'm loving the yellow/black).

Joe

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Last edited by JRE; 04-05-2012 at 09:30 AM.
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post #19 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-05-2012, 06:06 PM
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[QUOTE=JRE;193228]I need to sit on the Z1000...most of the reviews I've read are glowing except for the part about having your nuts squished against the tank (seating position). QUOTE]

The Z1000SX or as you call it Ninja 1000 does not squash any nuts but the seat is not that great in comparison to the stock versys seat but airhawk cushion solves my problems on longer rides.
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post #20 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-05-2012, 06:17 PM Thread Starter
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I sat on the Versys and the Z1000 at the dealer today (was surprised they had a Versys). The Versys is very upright and extremely comfortable...reminded me a lot of the Vstrom. The Z1000 has a nice riding position although less upright like the FZ1 (sat on one of those too).
Though I'm a relatively tall guy, the Versys would take some getting used to getting aboard. I banged my knee on the rear grab rail as I got on (the bike was close to the wall so I was being careful not to bump it or the bike next door). Keeping my eye out for some used ones relatively local. I did find a nice Z1000 pretty close by today...
http://dayton.craigslist.org/mcy/2941864617.html

Joe

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