Highway performance - Kawasaki Versys Forum
 
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 05-30-2018, 06:26 AM Thread Starter
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Highway performance

Hey folks,

So after having an old 94 Ninja ZX600 ( freaking loved that thing) and an 04 SV650, I went to the Versys (2015) for something I could take to work (50 miles). The ergonomics definitely fit the bill, my knees are at angles that are healthy for normal human beings!

However when on interstate around 75-80 MPH, I feel like the Versys is sort of unstable. I get knocked around and buffeted by the wind more than I expected, especially with a larger windshield (Puig sport tourer I believe). On my previous sport bikes, I feel like I wasn't bothered by the wind so much.

Is it due to my windshield, or is this because of the 'tall'/high CG nature of the bike? Is there anything I can do to help with this? Or is the Versys pretty good in this regard and I just have unrealistic expectations

2015 Versys 650
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 05-30-2018, 06:41 AM
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Originally Posted by sternman318 View Post

Is it due to my windshield, or is this because of the 'tall'/high CG nature of the bike? Is there anything I can do to help with this? Or is the Versys pretty good in this regard and I just have unrealistic expectations

I'd say yes, yes and yes!

Depending on what your body type is, how you sit in the seat, etc...sounds to me like you're going to have to do some adjusting/trial and error to find your sweet spot.

I'm 5'9" with a 31" inseam. To me the stock screen up high is perfect and I have the Sargent seat. I tend to be a sloucher and don't feel a lot of buffeting. I think sitting up higher definitely will make you catch a little more wind.

So, experiment and adjust things. Maybe a different windscreen? Lower the bike a bit. Also, I'll suggest to check your helmet. If you have a more racing helmet then maybe a touring helmet would be better?

Overall, IMO, this motorcycle is awesome! Any extra wind I get is minimal compared to all of the other top qualities of the Versys!
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 05-30-2018, 06:56 AM
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The only shortcoming I find my '15 Versys to have is on the highway (especially when wearing the side bags, which are rather large Shad SH36s). Not short on power, but it does get pushed around a bit more than, say my buddie's Super Tenere. My V is, of course, almost 100 pounds lighter and just as tall, so it could be that. Are you talking about the bike being pushed around, or you being beat up by wind?
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 05-30-2018, 07:05 AM
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I think the short wheelbase, height, and flat sides makes it more susceptible to cross winds and dirty air from nearby traffic, made worse if you're running a top case. I've never had an issue in clean air, and haven't done much highway work with my Gen3, but I've had to wrestle with it more than with prior bikes in side winds blowing across open farmland.

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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 05-30-2018, 07:19 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Devilsfan View Post
So, experiment and adjust things. Maybe a different windscreen? Lower the bike a bit. Also, I'll suggest to check your helmet. If you have a more racing helmet then maybe a touring helmet would be better?
I'll have to look into lowering the bike, I wasn't aware that was an option really. And my helmet is certainly not optimal, but I'm dealing more with the bike as a whole... I'm well aware my helmet sucks haha.

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Are you talking about the bike being pushed around, or you being beat up by wind?
A bit of both. It seems the susceptibility for cross-winds comes with the territory on this bike, which might be a lot of what I'm concerned with. I suppose looking into lowering the bike would help with this (and even at 6'1", sometimes coming to a stop requires a little footwork haha, so lowering would be nice).

2015 Versys 650
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 05-30-2018, 09:58 AM
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I had a CTX700 (that I just sold) but I rode that for 3 years. The only time there was wind buffeting on that thing for me was cross winds. You could get blown around on the CTX and it sits low.
My point, IMO, it's part of the cycling experience. Obviously some heavier bikes will handle the side winds better but for the weight and positioning of the Versys, I guess you should expect some of the cross winds to smack you around a little!
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 05-30-2018, 12:00 PM
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...Is there anything I can do to help with this? Or is the Versys pretty good in this regard and I just have unrealistic expectations
Outside of raising the front of my seat(s) on all three V 650s, in aprox. 145,xxx miles of riding them (BTW - I'm about 5'9", 31" inseam, 200# in full gear), MANY of those miles on LON-N-N-G trips, I really haven't noticed being moved around by winds....

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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 05-30-2018, 03:26 PM
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