I know this is an old thread... but I just noticed cracks in both the handles on my '08. It's like the plastic shrunk and split toward the front of the handles. I don't use them for tie-downs, although I do have top and side racks.
At least I'm no the only one, and I don't plan on worrying too much about it.
'08 Versys.. Givi rear rack, JCW trunk and E21's, Givi shield, Madstad bracket, Speedy peg and mirror brackets, lowering kit, SC Seat, R1 Shock.. other stuff. '09 KLX250 setup for singletrack. 2011 Xterra, '80 CJ-7
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