Worth upgrading over ex650r? - Kawasaki Versys Forum
 
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-29-2012, 07:00 PM Thread Starter
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Worth upgrading over ex650r?

So I was at the ticket to ride this weekend and had a chance to finally sit on a Versys. I liked it, A LOT. I had the more leg room I've been wanting, what seemed like much more visibility, what felt like easier turn/leaning, and the style is awesome while not causing strangers to shelve me in with the local squids. Sadly, it rained all morning so we couldn't ride anything, but I sat a lot of bikes I never see locally, so worth it.

I'm looking to start doing some day touring, maybe 2-up if I can convince the wife. The Versys seat looks like it may help in convincing the wife better than my 07 ninja. I do worry about the lack of wind protection on the Versys, though a vario will be bought asap. The Ninja has been leaving my feet numb, hand numb, and legs cramped after an hour. If I go with the Versys, highway pegs will slow be on the short list.

Question is, is the Versys worth upgrading to for my usage? I could just get some 1" drop pegs on the Ninja, get the seat Spencerized, and try to stretch more on the highway. Problem is, I don't wanna spend several hundred and end up still worse off that with the Versys. Conversely, I don't wanna turn over the Ninja and lose a grand, for no big improvement over if I just nodded my Ninja, and maybe much worse wind protection on the highway.

Anyway, is been looking at a 2010+ either this or next fall, hopefully for under $4k.

I appreciate your comments on my dilemma.
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-29-2012, 07:12 PM
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After owning a Suzi Z400SM and spending a LOT of money trying to make it a more highway friendly bike than it was, it was stolen. I got the money back from the insurance, and wound up buying a 2011 Versys. It is worlds more comfortable than the Z400sm. Apples and oranges to compare the 2, maybe- But what I wanted was a nimble city street bike with an upright tall riding position that could allow me 2 hours of highway riding in comfort. This is exactly what i got with the Versys. So if what you're saying is that you desire a more comfortable and 2up friendly bike than your Ninja- I say go for it. Besides- you're already well versed with the motor, right? Plus if you enjoy the additional legroom you can always increase it even further with Speedy's peg lowering kit...


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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-29-2012, 07:19 PM
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If your happy with the engine in the 650r but like the Versys Ergos more, i'd say its a great upgrade!

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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-29-2012, 08:28 PM
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I went from an 08 Ninja 650R which I loved to an '11 Versys that I love more.

Compared to the EX650, the Versys is more comfortable, slower, less buzzy, better suspension (but like the Ninja needs to be upgraded), more stable in crosswinds (to be fair the EX650 had top rack and usually top case as well), more buffeting in headwinds.
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-29-2012, 08:58 PM
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it's not really an upgrade, more of a horizontal move. same motor, same chassis....

the seat is painful, you'll have to address that. your wife will not appreciate it as delivered.

you'll probably want to lower the footpegs on the versys, just as you would on the ninja.

In a world full of people, only some want to ride. Isn't that crazy?
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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-29-2012, 10:10 PM
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Originally Posted by kevrider View Post
the seat is painful, you'll have to address that. your wife will not appreciate it as delivered.
The stock seat isn't like a nice aftermarket one, but I think it's a little nicer than the EX650. Couldn't say about the pillion part.
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-30-2012, 03:52 AM
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wind protection? just swap to a taller screen and you're mostly protected from the wind on the upper body.

about the seat, this is what i am using.



while it is nothing compared to spencer, sargent or corbin but it is cheap and it helps slightly. i get what i paid anyway.

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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-30-2012, 12:09 PM
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Originally Posted by andrewhtf View Post
wind protection? just swap to a taller screen and you're mostly protected from the wind on the upper body.

about the seat, this is what i am using.



while it is nothing compared to spencer, sargent or corbin but it is cheap and it helps slightly. i get what i paid anyway.
...and, just WHAT are you using???

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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-30-2012, 02:45 PM
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...and, just WHAT are you using???
I have no idea what that is, but it looks like something I skinned in my youth
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-30-2012, 03:04 PM
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The versys has better wind protection than the Ninja, at least with an after market shield like the Givi touring model. Even in stock form it has slightly more wind protection. Long range comfort is vastly superior. The engine has more grunt in the low to mid range.

For touring or two up I would recommend installing a Givi or similar top box. This will provide a back rest for your passenger and make them feel a lot more secure on the bike. The stock seat is not bad IMO, never tried the passenger part.
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post #11 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-30-2012, 06:45 PM
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Originally Posted by twowheels View Post
The engine has more grunt in the low to mid range.
i thought that was a function of sprockets, taller gearing on the ninja, which would be easily changed.

really, if you change bikes, it should be for the riding position. for everything else the differences aren't very dramatic. the shortcomings for one sound a lot like the shortcomings for the other. if you want something more significantly different, think wee strom.

In a world full of people, only some want to ride. Isn't that crazy?
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post #12 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-30-2012, 10:33 PM
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The Versys and Ninja 650 have different engines. Actually they are the same engines with different camshafts and differently programmed ECU. The Versys engine is tuned to produce more grunt further down the RPM range while the Ninja 650 engine is tuned for max HP at the top end. The Versys feels more powerful at part throttle but if you shift at max RPMs the Ninja engine will be slightly faster. IMO the V's engine is better suited to general street riding.
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post #13 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-30-2012, 11:53 PM
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Originally Posted by twowheels View Post
The Versys and Ninja 650 have different engines. Actually they are the same engines with different camshafts and differently programmed ECU.
IIRC the Versys also has lower compression. Thicker head gasket? Different pistons? Hard for me to imagine the block or heads differ.

The gearing seems identical to me, though I could be wrong.

Blue Ridge Performance use a Versys camshaft in their EX650 race engines. The exhaust cam I think. So it's not like you need to change all the bits that are different to get a faster bike.
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post #14 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-01-2012, 09:03 AM Thread Starter
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Last I heard, BRP was using a Ninja intake cam and a Versys intake cam in the exhaust. I believe I read a post where he recently switched to two Ninja intake cams. I dunno if the two have diff compression though.

I really do like the position on the Versys. I was looking at lowering pegs and rubber pegs for the Ninja, but costs get so high I may as well just upgrade. The position is the main thing. Every time I sit the Ninja I put my feet out and think "one inch down and forward would be PERFECT" at least until I need to stretch after an hour.

I also wanna seat the bandit 1250 just to try it. The Ninja has not had power issues for me, I'm a little worried about merging into 80mph traffic with 2 people though.

One nice benefit is my arrow full exhaust and PCV+autotune will move right from the Ninja to Versys.

EDIT: looked it up, the Ninja is higher compression. Can anyone verify head gasket is the difference?

Last edited by mostholycerebus; 05-01-2012 at 09:55 AM.
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