Versys vs Uly - Kawasaki Versys Forum
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post #1 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-22-2009, 10:44 PM Thread Starter
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Versys vs Uly

I see alot of comparisons of the Versys with the Vstrom, but was at the Harley dealer the other day and was checking out the Buell Uly xb12 and found it more like the Versys. I know there is a price point difference but this dealer is blowing out the 08 for 10,000. I have a new 09 V and took a test ride on the Uly. I liked it alot, more power, better suspension better brakes. Here in SoCal the V is a 7,800 bike pluse tax& lic. which may change as spring shows up.
Don't get me wrong, I really like the V I'm just talking here.
On ADV there is always a thread GS vs Uly which is better and I wonder if the guy's looking at the Buell ever look at the Versys.
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post #2 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-23-2009, 07:46 AM
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My 2 cents...

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Originally Posted by Hansom Bob View Post
I see alot of comparisons of the Versys with the Vstrom, but was at the Harley dealer the other day and was checking out the Buell Uly xb12 and found it more like the Versys. I know there is a price point difference but this dealer is blowing out the 08 for 10,000. I have a new 09 V and took a test ride on the Uly. I liked it alot, more power, better suspension better brakes. Here in SoCal the V is a 7,800 bike pluse tax& lic. which may change as spring shows up.
Don't get me wrong, I really like the V I'm just talking here.
On ADV there is always a thread GS vs Uly which is better and I wonder if the guy's looking at the Buell ever look at the Versys.
I went to a Buell open house demo day locally and I test rode every Buell model for about 25mi each. Even the Blast.

I can tell you that out of the Buell models the only that I could ever own would be a ULY, it is defenitely the better bike out of the Buell bunch. The Uly is the most comfortable and the one that produces the least amount of heat under the seat. It also felt very smooth and ran great.

Avoid that 1125, that new engine that Buell that came up with, it lost the Buell feel to the engine and it runs like grinding metals, not smooth engine at all, did not like that bike at all.

If you already own a V I don't think it would make sense to change mid stream.

I think the ULY is a bike meant to be better built and higher end, but still a harley product, you pay a lot of money for the little that you get. Those Buell have a cylinder under the seat that will cook your know what, it is not joke, the seat and that part of the frame does get too hot for comfort, and I only rode it for 25mi, I can't see me riding 2hrs with such a heat supply under my legs.

There is also the reliability factor, Harley and Buell are just not that reliable and to keep them reliable you do have to spend a lot of money on them, all the schedule maintenance and all that or else you loose the factor warranty which is a must when you own a harley/Buell.

I would not mind owning a Buell for the pride that goes with it, but mathematically it doesn't make sense. You can get similar pleasure and results owing a V and it will be much more cost effective and less headaches.

That is what I think...

Last edited by SVNET; 01-23-2009 at 07:50 AM.
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post #3 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-23-2009, 08:14 AM
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So many Bikes, so little money...

I love My V, but def see the appeal to the Uly. A little more power would certainly be nice for those long Highway stints.

How does it handle compared to the V? is it as "flickable"?
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post #4 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-23-2009, 10:21 AM Thread Starter
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The V handles outstanding as does the xb12. The difference is the Buell's suspension over harsh surface is way better. The V on smooth pavement is fine, not so on choppy old hwy. I'm not looking to buy a Buell, I just thought the V and the Uly are fun to compare because the frame specs are very close and it's what we do.
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post #5 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-23-2009, 12:06 PM
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Originally Posted by SVNET View Post
There is also the reliability factor, Harley and Buell are just not that reliable and to keep them reliable you do have to spend a lot of money on them, all the schedule maintenance and all that or else you loose the factor warranty which is a must when you own a harley/Buell.
First, there are laws in place to keep dealers/manufacturers from voiding your warranty. The burden of proof is on the manufacturer if service practices or modifications contributed to the failure being presented under warranty.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Magnuson-Moss_Warranty_Act

Second maintenance on Harley engines is dead simple and cheap. Oil changes, primary changes, primary chain adjustment, and belt adjustment are all they need. No valve adjustments. No coolant flushes. The entire EVO series of motors has been really reliable.

Two days ago I test drove two bikes: Buell XB9SX and the Versys. I'm planning on purchasing the Versys as it seems like it will be a great all around bike, but the Buell was one of the best feeling bikes I've ever been on. I felt really connected to the bike and it did just what I wanted to do. Given the similarities I would imagine that the Uly was similar feeling. The Uly is out of my price range at this time.

The Versys is the smoothest bike I've been on ... which is good and bad. I ride a Sportster now and the V-twin cadence and low end punch are a blast, but when it runs out of steam at 5k RPM, it's kind of a let down. I like to feel and hear the mechanical beast beneath me. First on my list for the Versys is exhaust as it's too quiet! The Buell's have a nice throaty sound, still pretty quiet, but midrange heavy like when a Honda motor with VTEC hit's the engagement point.

I don't think you see a lot of comparisons between the Uly and the Versys as they are priced pretty far apart. Based partly on the cost, Buell, Harley, BMW, and Triumph are the premium brands analogous to Cadillac, Lincoln, BMW, Jaguar, etc. You don't see a lot of comparisons of a 3-series to a Honda Civic.
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post #6 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-23-2009, 12:57 PM
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I fell in love with the Uly when I first was looking at bikes. Sat on one and it was a perfect fit for my height. The only problem was cost haha. I think eventually I will still get one. The sound still sticks to me. Where I live there are bikes coming through all the time and we had 5 Uly then two 1125's come though and man, the rumble was a great feeling.
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post #7 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-23-2009, 08:13 PM
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I took a demo ride on a Ulysses last year.
What I liked:
  • riding position
  • handling
  • torque
What I didn't like:
  • vibration (especially through the foot pegs)
  • no fuel gauge

I decided after the test ride that I was no longer interested in buying one. To further reinforce my decision, I've heard that the fan is always on and quite noisy in warmer weather. It was cold when I took the demo ride so I didn't get to experience this first hand.
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post #8 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-25-2009, 06:30 PM
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Well I have BOTH, And they are both Great Bike !!! as well as on old R100GS & Vstrom.
The Versys is a baby brother to the Uly. The comparison of each is as follows.

Uly: Light weight Touring bike, more of a highway bike, the fatser you go the more stable, Too much heat when above 90 degrees, Torque is fansatic, It never wants to go home, Ride all day with no problems, shifts great, , Low seat is more comfy then standard, Parts are very reasonable, brakes are so-so on my 06.................pick-up a used one for $6,500.00 - Negative: parts are cheap, heat in summer, Brakes, ****ty kick stand on my 06, minor vibration at stop signs.

Versys; Fanatstic 650 with follwing issues; Notchy transmission; Rattle / buzz up front, Seat sucks (trying to rebuild), Dropped / lowered pegs are worth their wgt, ...........pick-up a used one for $5,500.00......
See they are almost the same price so do you want the Asian reliability or the Character of a "Tractor Engine" between your legs.
Both are Great !!!
PS neither bike is good for dirt or gravel, tires are too wide, though the Versys has a much better steering geometry and I travel 1,200 mile on dirt roads. Trying Avon Distanzas on my Versys. The Uly sucks in gravel !!
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post #9 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-25-2009, 07:18 PM
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Originally Posted by jpenney View Post
(...) Based partly on the cost, Buell, Harley, BMW, and Triumph are the premium brands analogous to Cadillac, Lincoln, BMW, Jaguar, etc. You don't see a lot of comparisons of a 3-series to a Honda Civic.
Are you suggesting that the Versys compares to the Civic

Guess it's time to put neons on my Versys and start wearing baseball caps backwards

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post #10 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-25-2009, 10:02 PM
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Originally Posted by charlesleblanc View Post
Are you suggesting that the Versys compares to the Civic

Guess it's time to put neons on my Versys and start wearing baseball caps backwards
Must be a big hat to go over a helmet!
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post #11 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-25-2009, 10:12 PM
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Must be a big hat to go over a helmet!
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post #12 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-25-2009, 10:36 PM
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OMG BEAR!!!! Where do you dig up stuff like that!!!

About Triumph being a premium brand, I have been looking around for a Sport Touring bike.

I was looking at the Triumph Sprint St and I was also looking at the Honda VFR800. The Canadian MSRP of the Triumph Sprint St is 1100$ less than the Honda (also the Sprint ST is lighter, more powerful and is supposed to have a better fuel economy)

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post #13 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-26-2009, 12:00 AM
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I want one of those Jack in the Box yellow dunce cap looking things for mine!

Japanese scientists have created a camera with such a fast shutter speed they now can photograph a woman with her mouth shut.
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post #14 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-26-2009, 02:30 AM
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Good quote

Quote:
Originally Posted by VerSteve View Post
Well I have BOTH, And they are both Great Bike !!! as well as on old R100GS & Vstrom.
The Versys is a baby brother to the Uly. The comparison of each is as follows.

Uly: Light weight Touring bike, more of a highway bike, the fatser you go the more stable, Too much heat when above 90 degrees, Torque is fansatic, It never wants to go home, Ride all day with no problems, shifts great, , Low seat is more comfy then standard, Parts are very reasonable, brakes are so-so on my 06.................pick-up a used one for $6,500.00 - Negative: parts are cheap, heat in summer, Brakes, ****ty kick stand on my 06, minor vibration at stop signs.

Versys; Fanatstic 650 with follwing issues; Notchy transmission; Rattle / buzz up front, Seat sucks (trying to rebuild), Dropped / lowered pegs are worth their wgt, ...........pick-up a used one for $5,500.00......
See they are almost the same price so do you want the Asian reliability or the Character of a "Tractor Engine" between your legs.
Both are Great !!!
PS neither bike is good for dirt or gravel, tires are too wide, though the Versys has a much better steering geometry and I travel 1,200 mile on dirt roads. Trying Avon Distanzas on my Versys. The Uly sucks in gravel !!
I never saw anybody put it like this before, this is great...

the Asian reliability or the Character of a "Tractor Engine" between your legs.

But the new 1100cc Buell sport bike has definitely lost the tractor feeling to the engine.

The new engine is liquid cool, but it still cooks the seat underneath you, just too much heat for my comfort...

Last edited by SVNET; 01-26-2009 at 02:32 AM.
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post #15 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-26-2009, 11:13 AM
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Originally Posted by charlesleblanc View Post
OMG BEAR!!!! Where do you dig up stuff like that!!!

About Triumph being a premium brand, I have been looking around for a Sport Touring bike.

I was looking at the Triumph Sprint St and I was also looking at the Honda VFR800. The Canadian MSRP of the Triumph Sprint St is 1100$ less than the Honda (also the Sprint ST is lighter, more powerful and is supposed to have a better fuel economy)
The hats are hilarious! In my view, Honda kind of straddles the line between regular and premium. But overall market perception does break and the Euro marks and Harley.
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post #16 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-26-2009, 11:24 AM
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Originally Posted by SVNET View Post
the Asian reliability or the Character of a "Tractor Engine" between your legs.
Have you bee on a recent Buell? They get a little hot but they are remarkably smooth running. There's definitely some shake at idle, but after riding the Versys and a Buell XB9 back to back, the vibration while underway isn't really that bad. The amazing difference is between the Buell and the Sportster. For being nearly the same engine, the Sportster is much more Tractor like.

I still don't buy the reliability argument. Manufacturing is at the point that there are really no junk bikes or motors. For a useless anecdote, my Dad's 1993 883 Sportster with headwork, drag pipes, and upgraded cams has over 100k. My Friends 2006 Star 650 is sitting in parts.
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post #17 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-26-2009, 11:28 AM
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If there was a Triumph 675 Enduro (a little Tiger) I'd be all over that. Character like the Uly but with a better motor than the V and high build quality.
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post #18 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-26-2009, 06:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by charlesleblanc View Post
OMG BEAR!!!! Where do you dig up stuff like that!!!

About Triumph being a premium brand, I have been looking around for a Sport Touring bike.

I was looking at the Triumph Sprint St and I was also looking at the Honda VFR800. The Canadian MSRP of the Triumph Sprint St is 1100$ less than the Honda (also the Sprint ST is lighter, more powerful and is supposed to have a better fuel economy)
Honestly, I saw an add for them in a sport bike magazine at work a couple of weeks ago. We were teasing one of our younger coworkers about them. He wants a bike. His generation is known for having a 'gansta' attitude with their hats all side ways & crap. I thought it was funny the topic came up in a thread here.

Quote:
Originally Posted by tomla View Post
If there was a Triumph 675 Enduro (a little Tiger) I'd be all over that. Character like the Uly but with a better motor than the V and high build quality.

Me too! I love the Tiger & a 'Cub' would be great!



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post #19 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-26-2009, 10:43 PM
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Originally Posted by VerSteve View Post
Well I have BOTH, And they are both Great Bike !!! as well as on old R100GS & Vstrom.
The Versys is a baby brother to the Uly. The comparison of each is as follows.
How would you compare the height of the Uly to the height of the Versys? I've sat on a Versys and could flat foot it ok. I also sat on a Uly XT and could flat foot that as well, but I've never sat on a plain Uly X.

Actually this brings up a good question, do you have an XT or an X?
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post #20 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-30-2009, 03:03 AM
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First, there are laws in place to keep dealers/manufacturers from voiding your warranty. The burden of proof is on the manufacturer if service practices or modifications contributed to the failure being presented under warranty.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Magnuson-Moss_Warranty_Act

Second maintenance on Harley engines is dead simple and cheap. Oil changes, primary changes, primary chain adjustment, and belt adjustment are all they need. No valve adjustments. No coolant flushes. The entire EVO series of motors has been really reliable.

Two days ago I test drove two bikes: Buell XB9SX and the Versys. I'm planning on purchasing the Versys as it seems like it will be a great all around bike, but the Buell was one of the best feeling bikes I've ever been on. I felt really connected to the bike and it did just what I wanted to do. Given the similarities I would imagine that the Uly was similar feeling. The Uly is out of my price range at this time.

The Versys is the smoothest bike I've been on ... which is good and bad. I ride a Sportster now and the V-twin cadence and low end punch are a blast, but when it runs out of steam at 5k RPM, it's kind of a let down. I like to feel and hear the mechanical beast beneath me. First on my list for the Versys is exhaust as it's too quiet! The Buell's have a nice throaty sound, still pretty quiet, but midrange heavy like when a Honda motor with VTEC hit's the engagement point.

I don't think you see a lot of comparisons between the Uly and the Versys as they are priced pretty far apart. Based partly on the cost, Buell, Harley, BMW, and Triumph are the premium brands analogous to Cadillac, Lincoln, BMW, Jaguar, etc. You don't see a lot of comparisons of a 3-series to a Honda Civic.
This is my second post here.

I am pleased to see that both sides of the fence are mentioned here. I already have an 07 Sportster and I think it is awesome. One of the reasons I bought it was because the maintainance was so simple and I could perform it without breaking the warranty.

Harley engines just don't get as hot as people say they do when you sit at idle. I spent about 3 hour stuck in traffic in Chicago on a day when the heat index was well over 100 degrees. The only hot item I felt was the part of the seat exposed to the sun and the top of my pants. The engine does get warm, but the heat is no different than a push lawn mower in the summer when you sit at a light.

I wonder what I will think of a Versys?
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