Versys true power numbers - Kawasaki Versys Forum
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post #1 of 30 (permalink) Old 06-11-2009, 08:20 AM Thread Starter
 
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Versys true power numbers

Hello everyone I had gotten a response in a previous thread that the versys hp and tourqe numbers are right about where my EX 500 is. I am curious if anyone else has come to the V from a 500 and did you notice a change in power.

Thanks Chris
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post #2 of 30 (permalink) Old 06-11-2009, 09:43 AM
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Very different rides


That's my 500 on the right, behind the Ninja 250 that my buddy Al was riding at the time.

I traded my 500 for the Vee. I wish that I'd kept it in addition to the Vee instead. I loved riding that bike!
The Vee has about, I think, 12 more horsepower than the 500. However, the 500 was lighter and had a totally different power band. The fun really started on the 500 around 8,000 rpms. From there up to about 10,500, the thing ran like a scalded dog. When I'd hit the throttle in 5th or 6th gear, it would be fairly quick as it ran up the scale, but when it reached a point beyond 7,500 rpms, it would seem like an afterburner kicked in. It was definitely quicker through the quarter mile and had a slightly higher top end as well. I'd say it was close to a second faster through the quarter. Some of that gain was because it was a lot easier to come off the line without doing a wheelie, but also due to lighter weight, and the acceleration when I was 'on the cam'. The Ninja handled like a flat-tracker on dirt - I could easily break the back end loose and slide it sideways through a high speed turn. The 500 was a ticket magnet, simply because it was so fun to run fast. I loved the feeling that the bike gave when it hit the cam and took off.
Of course, straight line acceleration is just part of the fun of riding. The Vee has strong, smooth power from around 2,500 rpms right on up the scale to red line. I rarely take it past 7 or 8 thousand, simply because of the torque that lets you kick butt no matter where you are on the scale. Of course, it is a bit stronger above 5,000, but you don't get the 'four barrel kicking in' sensation that was there on the 500. What it does is let you snake through the twisties at a very good clip without worrying about playing the gears in the middle of a turn. It's not as easy to flat track on dirt - it has a much higher center of gravity and shorter wheel base - but the taller suspension lets you rock out on dirt in a way that would have quickly trashed the 500. The 500 set low enough that I had to really be careful to watch for protruding rocks while riding dirt. The belly fairing would sometimes drag when crossing into a parking lot - had to watch that too.
The Vee isn't as fast in the quarter mile, but on the other hand, it's a ball to wheelie. The smooth torque makes it easy to do roll-on wheelies in first that you can carry for a long distance. In second, I have to put my weight back a bit further, but again, it's ready to skywalk if I want.
What it came down to for me when deciding to trade was that the Vee offered a lot more aftermarket goodies for touring. I like to travel and it was hard to pack much gear on the 500. I also like the tire options a lot better on the Vee - the 500 ran a small tire and the swingarm was too tight to put a bigger skin on it.
They are both awesome bikes. The 500 isn't for everybody, since it is a 'retro' style ride - the styling is still the same as when it was introduced in the 80s for the most part. Though the 500 is quicker through the quarter mile, the Vee may have the advantage through paved twisties because of the smooth power delivery, but that is apples and oranges.
One other thing, for me (I'm 6'5"), the Vee is a lot more comfortable. The upright riding position and comfortable seat (after I did the mods on the seat) make 500 or 600 mile days easy. The 500 would always leave my shoulders aching at the end of a long ride - I guess the leaning ride position caused that.
I miss the 500 though - man, that thing was fun to ride fast!



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post #3 of 30 (permalink) Old 06-11-2009, 10:45 AM
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That was my post you're referring to. All I can tell you is that a quick search turned up hp ratings for the Vee of 61, 59.4 and 58. I found one source listing the EX500 at 59.1 although you need to remember that this bike has been made forever and it's likely that there may have been some changes throughout it's 20 year production run.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kawasaki_Ninja_500R

Again, 1/4 mile times are very similar. I would agree with the previous poster in that the Vee has more torque and the EX500 needs more RPM. I still say that the biggest difference between the bikes are the vastly different ergonomics. Just don't go trading your EX500 due to some erroneous assumption that it's going to be way faster 'cause it's a 650 vs. 500. Just not the case.

Dave

2008 Versys, 2008 ZX6R, 2006 EX500, 2002 KLR650
2010 KTM 300XCW, 2007 KTM 200XC, 2006 KTM 200 XC,
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post #4 of 30 (permalink) Old 06-11-2009, 10:54 AM
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by the numbers....

Here are some numbers I've put togeather with a google search.


Ninja 500
0-60................... 3.76 sec
1/4 Mile............... 12.73 to 12.98 seconds
Horse power ......52
Torque ..........31ft-lbs

Versys
060 mph ....4.86 sec.
01/4 mile ....12.96 sec. @ 99.15 mph
Horse Power...... 60bhp
Torque ...........43ftlb

Pretty close in the quarter mile, but the 0-60 isn't even close. I don't know how accurate these numbers are, but its interesting.

I've never felt like I really needed any more power than what the versys has, quite an enjoyable bike.
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post #5 of 30 (permalink) Old 06-11-2009, 11:39 AM
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Here's another read;

http://www.sportrider.com/bikes/146_...500/index.html

...given the closeness of the 1/4 mile times and the weights, the hp HAS to be VERY close (albeit delivered differently).

I also think VeeWNC's post is very inciteful and provides a very useful comparison regarding these two bikes although I don't think there is a 12hp difference. Depending which figures you find, it's somewhere between 0-8hp and seeing as how the 1994+ EX500's weigh more and have very similar performance to the older 500's, I'd say the power was boosted along the way.

Dave

2008 Versys, 2008 ZX6R, 2006 EX500, 2002 KLR650
2010 KTM 300XCW, 2007 KTM 200XC, 2006 KTM 200 XC,
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post #6 of 30 (permalink) Old 06-11-2009, 12:14 PM
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Difference is in the take off

I'd love to be able to do a roll-on comparison of the two bike's performance. I'm pretty certain that the big difference in 0 to 60 times is due to how well the Ninja comes off the line in comparison to the Vee. On my acceleration runs with the Vee, I've had a lot of trouble keeping the wheel on the ground in 1st, even when putting as much weight as possible over the tank. With the Ninja, I'd just rev it up to about 9,000 and dump the clutch - and hang on. I think that if the two bikes did a roll-on, say from about 15 or 20 mph, that the Vee would probably hold its own pretty well.
Most of the reviews that I've read talk about how it's possible to get 50 mpg out of the Ninja. I often went over 60 when riding easy and when riding the straight loads in the South Carolina lowcountry, got close to 70 a couple of times. My Vee doesn't come close to that, but of course, I have panniers, crash bars, a pretty good tool kit, etc. on the Vee.

I got the low 50s horsepower figures from several reviews, including this one.
http://www.ninja500r.info/
It's slanted more towards the older models though - mine was an 08.

With either bike, you're getting a great bargain on a very well designed ride. I found it interesting that the 650 engine is supposed to be smaller and lighter than the 500.

I've thought about finding a used 500 to convert into a track bike or flattracker, just for fun.


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post #7 of 30 (permalink) Old 06-11-2009, 01:27 PM
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As I said; good post

If I was to guess based on all the info I've read to date, I'd suspect that the hp went from low 50's to high 50's over the 20 year model run while the bike's weight increased 15-20lbs to it's current configuration. I still say 2008 vs. 2008 would yield very similar hp figures from both bikes.

As far as a roll-on comparison goes: one is coming! The EX500 was my wife's before she got her ZX6 and we gave it to my son. He is only 18 and this would be his first streetbike, but he's an accomplished dirt bike racer and has been riding since he was 5. The only problem is I have about 60 lbs on him........maybe we'll have to do the roll-on/drag test a couple of times switching bikes.

Cheers,
Dave

2008 Versys, 2008 ZX6R, 2006 EX500, 2002 KLR650
2010 KTM 300XCW, 2007 KTM 200XC, 2006 KTM 200 XC,
2004 CRF250X, 2002 CRF150
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post #8 of 30 (permalink) Old 06-11-2009, 03:36 PM
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VeeWNc pretty much says it all. I had an EX500 and loved it (still miss it). But I'm 6'2" and the 500 really seemed small and crampy after long rides. The advantage I saw in the V was the much better, adjustable suspension, fuel injection, low maintenance, and insurance cost that was similar to the 500's. (By the way, insurance for the 650R would have been double the cost of coverage for the V). Both bikes have as much power as I need (for now) and I can wait another fraction of a sec. to make that 1/4 mile.
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post #9 of 30 (permalink) Old 06-11-2009, 05:30 PM
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Maximum power: 47 kW {64 PS} / 8,000 rpm
Maximum torque: 61 Nm {6.2 kgfm} / 6,800 rpm

The 4.86 second 0-60 mph and 1/4 mile elapsed time and trap speed do not represent the Versys' true performance. As stated in the test: "although the clutch did not fade, launching the Versys during the 1/4 mile testing proved a challenge. If launch rpm were too low, the engine would bog, and if too high, would result in an instantaneous wheelie. Granted, drag racing was never intended to be one of this motorcycle's strong suits, but I do wish that the results of this testing could have been a better reflection of the parallel's twin performance."

http://www.mcnews.com/mcn/model_eval...versystest.pdf

"The engine re-tuning (compared to Ninja 650R) results in 59.4 hp at 8400 rpm on the Area P-No Limits Dynojet dyno, down 5 ponies from the 650R's 65.7 hp at 8600 rpm. The Ninja also offers bigger torque numbers (45.5 to 42.0 ft-lbs), but it can't match the wonderfully flat and consistent curve of the Versys. Torque output from the retuned engine is almost identical from 3800 rpm all the way to 8100 rpm. It also crosses the 40 ft-lb. mark by 5800 rpm, while the peakier Ninja has to wait until almost 6500 revs."

http://www.motorcycle.com/manufactur...est-71476.html

Last edited by invader; 06-11-2009 at 05:45 PM.
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post #10 of 30 (permalink) Old 06-11-2009, 10:43 PM
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Good stuff!

I can't wait to hear the results of the roll-on comparisons. I've tried several times to get a good launch with the Vee, but still haven't had any more success than the testers in the posts above had. It's a wheelie monster in first. Hey, I'd like to do a dirt-drag with the two bikes on a smooth dirt road. Bet the Vee would run away with that one.

One other major difference in the two bikes is that the 500 has a carbureted engine, while the Vee has fuel injection. However, the carburetors on the 500 were so dependable that I never gave them much thought. It sure is a lot different than the old Amal carbs on the Brit bikes that I started out on. With those, I spent more time trying to sync the carbs than I did riding.

Something else that I've noticed is that it's nearly impossible to get an accurate reading for top speed and quarter mile times without having some sort of timing lights or radar involved. I asked a patrolman to hit me with radar on the Ninja as I rode by at exactly 55 mph. He told me that the reading on his radar showed that I was doing 51 mph. I saw 129 on the speedometer twice, but with the inaccuracy, it was probably closer to 120.

The rear wheel on the Ninja was something that I just never got to like - it was simply too narrow. I didn't realize how narrow it looked until I had my buddy swap bikes with me for a while. From the rear, the Ninja looked a bit like a scooter. If they would just widen the swingarm a little to accept a Vee-sized tire, it would make the bike look a lot better and maybe handle a bit better too - but that's just a guess.


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post #11 of 30 (permalink) Old 06-11-2009, 11:15 PM Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for all of the replies. The problem I have with the 500 is that I am 5'11 with a 32" inseam and I have lower back problems I find on the 500 my seat to footpeg ratio is very close which causes my hamstrings to tighten. I need a bike to stretch out on a little bit. I was looking at the V-strom too but the versys is so much bettter looking to me. I do not plan on doing a lot of off road riding but light touring/camping.

Chris
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post #12 of 30 (permalink) Old 06-12-2009, 12:42 PM
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Chris,

Go with the Versys. I've experience on the 500, and 650R. The Versys is the best option over the 500, ER6-f and ER6-n, for making in to a light tour bike.

Also the Versys corners better than the 500. I was looking at the SV650, or a 650R. However, a demo ride in the Versys changed my mind.

Maloy





Quote:
Originally Posted by chris1157 View Post
Thanks for all of the replies. The problem I have with the 500 is that I am 5'11 with a 32" inseam and I have lower back problems I find on the 500 my seat to footpeg ratio is very close which causes my hamstrings to tighten. I need a bike to stretch out on a little bit. I was looking at the V-strom too but the versys is so much bettter looking to me. I do not plan on doing a lot of off road riding but light touring/camping.

Chris
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post #13 of 30 (permalink) Old 06-12-2009, 01:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chris1157 View Post
Thanks for all of the replies. The problem I have with the 500 is that I am 5'11 with a 32" inseam and I have lower back problems I find on the 500 my seat to footpeg ratio is very close which causes my hamstrings to tighten. I need a bike to stretch out on a little bit. I was looking at the V-strom too but the versys is so much bettter looking to me. I do not plan on doing a lot of off road riding but light touring/camping.

Chris
You will need Speedy's foot peg lowering blocks. For all its height the peg to seat ratio is tight. I added highway pegs so I can stretch out on the road. Oh... and I have only a 29" inseam...

Steve

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post #14 of 30 (permalink) Old 06-13-2009, 10:51 PM Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for the info on the seat to peg ratio. I am going to go sit on the Versys this weekend and see how the cockpit feels. I hope that with the lowering pegs I can be comfortable on long rides. Also I hear the seat is not the greatest either. I have put handlebar risers and dogbones on my 500 but the seat height still kills my lower back. Anyone experience this on the V.

Thanks
Chris
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post #15 of 30 (permalink) Old 06-14-2009, 01:28 AM
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As mentioned above, launching the Versys is a bit tricky due to the chassis geometry and tall CG. Forget the drag strip, in the real world the Versys is faster (not to mention handles much better, and therefore easier to ride faster on interesting roads). I used to race lightweight twins (EX500 and GS500), in combined practice we'd literally get run over by the SV650 supersports (first gen) and the Versys makes similar power, but at lower rpm. It's "only" a 650, yet many seem to think it's still geared too low and it works just as well (maybe even better) with taller gearing. I think that says a lot about usable power vs. spec sheets.

Chris, I have similar measurements, the seat was too low for my taste, so I modified it to be flat and about an inch taller compared to the lowest part of the stock seat. This gives you better legroom as well as more comfort because you are not constantly sliding forward.

Gustavo


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post #16 of 30 (permalink) Old 06-14-2009, 07:27 AM
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I'm 6'3" w/36" inseam and I thought the stock legroom was adequate, but since the speedy peg kit was only $45, I figured it was worth a gamble. I now highly recommend it.....comfy ergos.

As for the true HP and torque stats, I personally don't care if its 60 or 600, I just go by seat of the pants....this bike has incredible get up and go for a 650. I rolled it on in third gear for the first time yesterday and thought I was on my Honda 919 (traded for Versy)
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post #17 of 30 (permalink) Old 06-15-2009, 10:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lonerockz View Post
You will need Speedy's foot peg lowering blocks. For all its height the peg to seat ratio is tight. I added highway pegs so I can stretch out on the road. Oh... and I have only a 29" inseam...
Disagree 100% unless you are over 6'2". The pegs are perfect stock for anyone under that height. Have you ever sat on a Gixxer or SVS or CBR? The Versys is nothing like those. In fact the Ninja 250 and 500 are tighter.

Oh and the dynos I have been able to find on the Versys (56 to 58 hp) confirmed exactly what I have been feeling all along. My SVS pulls much harder throughout the power band than my Versys. I dont really care since I didnt buy the thing for its speed. I have other bikes for that with almost twice the power at the same weight.

ST1300, Versys, SV650S

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post #18 of 30 (permalink) Old 06-15-2009, 10:58 AM
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#1) I hope I didn't come across as been negative towards the Versys: I think it's a GREAT bike. My intent was simply to suggest that the biggest difference between the Versys and the EX500 is ergonomics and there isn't much of a performance difference. I will stand by that comment.

#2) I too (along with many others) find the Versys seat to footpeg space cramped. It really depends what you're used too; Compared to the ZX6, there's lots of room....compared to a KLR, not so much. I have bad knees, so it's an issue although I'm still riding mine stock so far.

#3) The latest test between a Gladius and ER6N showed a slight performance advantage to the Kawi. Figures on the Wee Strom vs. Versys are also very close. I don't think the performance difference between the Suzuki V twin and the Kawasaki parallel twin ought to be big enough to sway someone in either direction.

Cheers,
Dave

2008 Versys, 2008 ZX6R, 2006 EX500, 2002 KLR650
2010 KTM 300XCW, 2007 KTM 200XC, 2006 KTM 200 XC,
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post #19 of 30 (permalink) Old 06-18-2009, 02:29 PM
 
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My GF missed her 500 Ninja we sold a couple years ago. Since selling that I bought a couple CRF230Ls for us to ride on plus a Versys for myself.

I bought her a 2009 Ninja 500 a couple days ago. I always liked her other 500. Anyway I really love this little Ninja. It definately out accelerates the V and has a little more in the top end and is just fun as Hell. I'm thinking about trading in my V for a 500. Strange , huh?

I had the V up to an indicated 127 mph yesterday. With the speedo error that calulates to an honest 114 or so. That was about all she'd do.
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post #20 of 30 (permalink) Old 06-18-2009, 03:39 PM
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I'm sorry, but that's just sad. The Ninja 500 out runs the Versys? I admit, I wouldn't have believed it before this
thread. I really like my Versys, but man, that's just sad...



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