650 or 1000 - Kawasaki Versys Forum
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post #1 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-16-2017, 06:26 PM Thread Starter
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650 or 1000

I am going to purchase a Versys in the near future and trying to decide between a 650 and a 1000. I really would like to go with the 650 but I am concerned how it would handle 2 people as my wife would ride with me once in awhile but not always. I am wondering how the 650 would be power wise with a total of 400 lbs. The power issue is the only reason I would go with a 1000. But on the other hand I do not want to be underpowered with the 650 while riding 2 up. What are your thoughts on the 650 while riding 2 up ??
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post #2 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-16-2017, 07:03 PM
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I rode from the coast of BC up to the interior of BC with myself + GF + full top case and OEM side panniers. I wouldn't say there's a lack of power... It doesn't have as much grunt, but still pulls enough to pass going uphill with ease, I also got 60mpg going up and down the big hill climbs that are the Coquihalla highway.

If you're a speed demon who lusts for more power, the 650 might not be enough. If price and overall cost of ownership is an issue, the 650 has enough power to get the job done.


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post #3 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-16-2017, 07:43 PM
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I only went with the 650 due to the lighter weight of the bike compared to the 1000. I use it as my daily commuter - it's easier for me to push it around a parking lot. However, if I was a bigger person (I'm 5'7" tall, 160lbs), I would have gone with the 1000 without question. "There's no replacement for displacement."

Good luck with your decision.

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post #4 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-16-2017, 08:00 PM
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My wife rides with me on my 650 all the time, I hardly notice she's back there and no complaints on feeling cramped. The 1000 is great but at 5'-7" it's physically too big.

I'm 200 pounds and she's 115 and we ride with all three luggage pieces attached if that helps.
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post #5 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-16-2017, 08:01 PM
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See if your dealer will let you test ride both bikes so you can decide which to pick. My dealer offered me a test ride on my V-1000. I had sold my 09 to get an FJR thinking it would be better for my girl when we rode together. Well she was pissed she loved the 650 and hated the FJR. So when i took the test ride on the 1000 i took my girl. We got off the bike and she said now what. I said thats it it was only a test ride. She goes I think you should get it. So I did....
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post #6 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-16-2017, 08:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mountaineer View Post
I am going to purchase a Versys in the near future and trying to decide between a 650 and a 1000. I really would like to go with the 650 but I am concerned how it would handle 2 people as my wife would ride with me once in awhile but not always. I am wondering how the 650 would be power wise with a total of 400 lbs. The power issue is the only reason I would go with a 1000. But on the other hand I do not want to be underpowered with the 650 while riding 2 up. What are your thoughts on the 650 while riding 2 up ??
You'll have sufficient power, that is more than most cars, two up with the 650. The 1000 is a totally different beast with a lot more power and a larger size but also a lot more weight and cost. A top box is really nice to have with a passenger, as it functions as a back rest making them feel a lot more secure on the bike plus is handing for touring or commuting. For occasional/rare 2 up half day type trips the 650 is fine but if you are planning on some long distance trips with a lot of time in the saddle two up or frequent 2 up riding I would look at the 1000 or ideally a two up tour bike because of it's larger size frame and bigger, more comfortable rear seat.

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post #7 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-16-2017, 10:33 PM
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If it's only power your worried about you need to look at some dyno charts for both bikes-compare power to speed vrs weight of bikes loaded-I think the 650 would have enough power but will be at a higher RPM

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post #8 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-17-2017, 08:45 AM
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However, if I was a bigger person (I'm 5'7" tall, 160lbs), I would have gone with the 1000 without question. "There's no replacement for displacement."
As a bigger person, 6 foot and 320 pounds, the 1000cc is amazing as compared to my buzzing like a bee Suzuki V-Strom 650! I don't know if the 650's are as smooth and silky as my 1000, but the V1K really is the most awesome "sport tour" bike I have ever ridden. Is it a BMW 1200 smooth & silky? No, but close. And the full rpm spectrum of power Kawasaki put into this Ninja 1000 motor is applaudable.

My smaller dealers didn't have any test drive models, so I went with my logic and went big, the 1000cc... When I do 2up with my daughter or wife, I have no power concerns whatsoever when we hit the steeper mountain roads or headwinds that made my Suzuki 650 work for its speed.

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post #9 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-17-2017, 10:20 AM
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The only dealer I've ever ran across who wouldn't allow a test ride was HD............every one else (Indian included) allowed test rides. I personally would NOT buy a bike that they would not allow me to test ride.

The local Honda dealer sends a salesman along on another bike for the test ride. You have to follow him/her route but hey, I was riding a brand new Gold Wing trike.
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post #10 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-17-2017, 10:33 AM
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One comment was: "If you're a speed demon who lusts for more power, the 650 might not be enough." This pretty much sums up most of my adult riding career.

Recent bikes include: FZ1, Ninja 1000, Concours 14, FZ-09, and KTM 1190. All of these had arm stretching power. Do I miss it? Not as much as I thought I would.

I really enjoy the light handling and flick ability of the V-650. My wife does not like to ride so I am the only occupant and cannot address the 2 up question.

Also the 650 is cheaper to operate if you are on a budget. I average 55 mpg.

Good luck with your decision.
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post #11 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-17-2017, 02:46 PM
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I went with the 650 as I was (and still am) a newish rider and it was a good bit cheaper. It has done everything I have asked of it quite efficiently, however. After doing a few long rides at rather high speeds (80-90 mph sustained) I can say that I started to wonder if a 1000 would have been better suited.

For the time I am perfectly happy with the 650 and it handles day trips well. My last was a 200ish mile ride to the coast and then 180ish mile ride back.

Ultimately I got the versys to find out what kind of a rider I am and it turns out I am leaning to the "Sport Touring" segment =)

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post #12 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-17-2017, 04:20 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for all the input. I am going to try and find a dealer that has both and will let me test drive each. I know it is a totally different bike, but I used to have a V-Star 650 that was fine while riding solo. But every time I had a passenger I would wish I had a bigger bike ??
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post #13 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-17-2017, 04:47 PM
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Om my 650 when I have taken a passenger I did not notice much of a difference (I'm 198 lbs and she was 120 lbs). It is also important to know that the 650 in the V-Star is a VERY different beast then the 650 in the Versys.

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post #14 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-17-2017, 05:02 PM
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Heres a video of me 2-up on my 09 that had a 16T front sprocket on it. I was about 280lbs and my girl 115lbs. As you can see the bike handled well.....

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post #15 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-17-2017, 05:09 PM
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I went with the 650 as I was (and still am) a newish rider and it was a good bit cheaper. It has done everything I have asked of it quite efficiently, however. After doing a few long rides at rather high speeds (80-90 mph sustained) I can say that I started to wonder if a 1000 would have been better suited.

For the time I am perfectly happy with the 650 and it handles day trips well. My last was a 200ish mile ride to the coast and then 180ish mile ride back.

Ultimately I got the versys to find out what kind of a rider I am and it turns out I am leaning to the "Sport Touring" segment =)
You’ll be surprised how quick you catch on. I took a MSF class last December and started on a 2015 Honda NC700x. I traded that in 6 weeks later for a 2017 Versys 1000. 5 months later I bought a 2017 Concours. I currently have thhe V1k and the Concours and love them both. I have some upgrades on both. Both have been maintenance free. The V has about 3500 miles and the Concours has about 3200 miles.
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post #16 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-17-2017, 05:11 PM
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Heres a video of me 2-up on my 09 that had a 16T front sprocket on it. I was about 280lbs and my girl 115lbs. As you can see the bike handled well.....https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vuVU265p9d4
Is that the Ortega?
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post #17 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-17-2017, 05:30 PM
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Is that the Ortega?


Yep, Coming back from lunch at Tom's Farm....We met at the Mobil Station on Chapman then rode past Cooks Corner on the way to Ortega. Went the back roads to stay off the highway. Stopped by Hells Kitchen then past Lake Elsinore to Tom's Farm in Corona Hills. Then back the way we came. Its close by and a good road with not much traffic during the week..

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post #18 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-17-2017, 07:21 PM
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The 650 will have enough power for 2 up, but neither model is going to have an over abundance of passenger room. It might be worthwhile to take her with you to sit on one before you buy if carrying a passenger is a priority. The Versys is great, but there are far better 2 up bikes. Which is why I have a V650 and a Triumph Trophy.
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