Two-Up Riding Capability - Kawasaki Versys Forum
 
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-02-2009, 11:20 AM Thread Starter
 
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Two-Up Riding Capability

I currently have a BMW R1150RT that is for sale. I want to replace it with a smaller bike and have been considering either a Versys or VStrom 650. I have no riding experience with either. My question is about the capability of the Versys when riding with a passenger. My wife will ride with me occassionally, but only for day trips or short local jaunts. How does the Versys do in the areas of power and comfort? Would I need a different seat? I've read many glowing reports about the V being a fun and capable machine, but these all seem to be from solo riders. Any input would be much appreciated.
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-02-2009, 11:51 AM
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I did a 2500 trip, slightly geared up and fully loaded, with my g/friend ( 120lb'r/5ft,) 500 miles at a time, m/way and mountains, no problem for both of us. Power remained nippy and handles slightly better in the rear in fact.

much Taller/bigger pillions might be a little too high in the wind blast/knees high but for a day trip, even that should be no problem. 200+ miles to a tank is nice too.

Make some or buy a tribo seat to stop them sliding is worth dowing even on short trips.

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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-02-2009, 12:59 PM Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for the reply. Sounds like the V did just fine. If I get one I would plan to add side bags and a top case. My wife likes the security of having the topcase to lean back on, so it would be in the plan for extras. She's 5'6" and about 135 (who knows for sure!) so I think her size on the bike would work fine. I can only get her to go out for short rides at this point so your trip is way more than I would expect for us.
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-02-2009, 01:21 PM Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for the reply. Sounds like the V did just fine. If I get one I would plan to add side bags and a top case. My wife likes the security of having the topcase to lean back on, so it would be in the plan for extras. She's 5'6" and about 135 (who knows for sure!) so I think her size on the bike would work fine. I can only get her to go out for short rides at this point so your trip is way more than I would expect for us.
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-02-2009, 01:35 PM
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Yep, she likes the box too. Should be okay at that size/weight - heres a pic to gauge knee position at 5ft.



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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-02-2009, 02:05 PM
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There is no doubt that the V-Strom has roomier and more comfortable passenger accommodations, but the Versys seems to be comfy enough for my passengers (I don't have a regular passenger, only occasional short trips). Do a search for "Machog two-up", he takes MacWife on many trips and she swears it's more comfy than the ST1300 he had before the V.

If you will be riding mostly solo, the Versys should definitely work. If you are planning on taking longer trips, maybe you should take your wife to try both bikes when you test ride them? That will certainly give both of you a better feel for how those bikes work for two-up trips.

Gustavo


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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-02-2009, 02:16 PM
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I took a 5'8" friend for a full day's ride and she was fine...it was her first ride out of the neighborhood. She did real well and the bike was fine. It would help if I had about two more inches of inseam when stopped, but it was all good. I did forget to add air to the rear tire though...kind of started cupping. I was about 250lbs and she is about 140lbs.

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I bought a motorcycle because my wife said that I couldn't! Now I have two and she still says I can't have another one!
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Sounds like a challenge to me!

Now I have four!
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-02-2009, 03:46 PM Thread Starter
 
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Good info from everyone. Thanks for the pics, 133bhp. They really help me get a feel for the seating arrangement. As suggested, I think it would be good to go to the dealer and sit on one with my wife. My local Kawasaki shop has a green one that I've looked at.
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-03-2009, 10:16 AM
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Macwife is about 125 and 5'7" and she finds it a great bike for two up riding. She won't ride without a topbox (i.e. backrest) and I did invest in Speedy's extended passenger footpegs (www.motowerk.com). We've been all over the mountains in CO with no problems.

Go for it you won't be disappointed.

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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-04-2009, 06:24 PM
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I've done 3k miles in week and a half with a passenger, no issues what so ever...
though like machog I lowered the passenger pegs, and I added a sheepskin to keep her soft hiney soft.


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post #11 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-04-2009, 07:58 PM
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I have a Corbin seat on my versys, with an aluminum top case and side cases. My wife is about 5'6". She doesn't like either seat (granted, she's not an enthusiastic passenger to begin with, so she doesn't ride often.) She likes the fact that she sits high on the Versys, and can see better than on my Triumph Sprint, but the original and Corbin seats are both more narrow in the back than the Corbin on my Sprint, and not as comfortable for her. Her longest ride on the Versys was probably about an hour and a half (with the Corbin seat) and she was hurting pretty bad by the time she got off.

As far as handling and power, the Versys is adequate, though it could use a little more torque for taking off from a dead stop two up. It does fine at highway speeds with a passenger though. Don't expect it to be as good with a passenger as your Beemer though.

The real beauty of the Versys is it's handling when riding solo. With the wide bars and light weight, the handling is incredible. Better than any bike I've ridden except perhaps the MV Agusta Bruta, le. I've also ridden the V-Strom, which has a much softer suspension and is much more sluggish in the handling department.
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post #12 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-06-2009, 12:35 PM Thread Starter
 
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My wife is more of a reluctant rider as well. She does like the seat on my RT when she does go along. I'd probably be riding 95% of the time solo anyway, so I'm the one that would appreciate the performance of the bike. The Beemer is a horse, I'll have to say. Lots of torque and plenty of power when you crank it open. I haven't ridden a Vstrom, just have been able to sit on one. It does seem to fit me a bit better than the Versys.
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post #13 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-06-2009, 05:35 PM
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Having ridden both the Versys and V-Strom, my suggestion would be this...If the vast majority of your riding is on pavement the Versys is a no brainer. If you like to go on dirt roads and trails, the V-Strom suspension is better suited to that. Either bike should be really good for long distance riding. They have very similar riding positions. I took my Versys to Yellowstone and back (from Kansas City) in 7 and a half days, and remained comfortable the entire trip. I did add highway pegs to it, a throttle lock, and the Corbin (the stock seat stinks for long distance) and with those 3 things I could have easily done a 1,000 mile day had I wanted to really push it.

Between Yellowstone and Jackson Hole we took a few awful roads in construction areas, the longest stretch was about 12 miles. They said bikes had been wiping out left and right on that stretch, so be careful. The Versys did fine on that stretch, which included fairly good size exposed rocks, and in other places 4 inch deep dust with deeper tire ruts, so it is capable of handling that sort of thing, but I suspect the very soft front suspension on the V-Strom may have done even better on that stretch.

I was not a fan of the V-Strom's handling on the highway, though in all fairness, I did go directly from riding the Versus to the Strom, so that probably wasn't fair to the V-Strom.

I assume you've also looked at the BMW F 650 GS (the one with the 800cc detuned twn motor.) I hear that's a lot of bike for the money, though more expensive than the Versus or Wee-Strom. The resale is probably a lot better. I've been seeing what slightly used Versys are going for and it makes me sick. Luckily I plan to keep mine a long time.
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post #14 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-06-2009, 06:06 PM
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I roll around 235 pounds .....literally roll , and my wife is no spring chicken anymore , any large couples out there have opinions on 2 and a half -up riding with a Verseys ??

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