The only weakness - Kawasaki Versys Forum
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post #1 of 37 (permalink) Old 07-13-2014, 09:26 AM Thread Starter
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The only weakness

Coming up on two years of owning my 2012, which I purchased new. It sure as heck might be one of the best rounded bikes for general use. The one thing that keeps showing its face on just about every ride? Power, or the lack thereof. Outside of previous 650 thumper dual sports, (KLR, XRL), this is one of only a couple of street bikes I have owned with less than 100 bhp. Getting up to speed, rolling the throttle to either merge with traffic on the highway, or make quick passes on back country roads, is not cutting it. In the bike's defense, I did switch to a 44 tooth rear sprocket almost immediately. I didn't buy the Versys for Friday night drag strip bragging rights but, I also didn't think I would miss the instant availability of power I had with prior rides. I do. A lot.

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post #2 of 37 (permalink) Old 07-13-2014, 09:48 AM
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How much do you weigh Rick? The V has plenty of get up for what the bike is imo. But I'll help you out and get you setup with a friend who is selling his R1. I don't think you will lack for power anymore. :-)
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post #3 of 37 (permalink) Old 07-13-2014, 10:11 AM
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I never felt my Versys had a lack of power.
Just about right IMO.

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post #4 of 37 (permalink) Old 07-13-2014, 10:29 AM
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Can't say I noticed any lack of power (for reference, I'm 6', 240lbs), but it all depends on what you are used to. I moved from a KLR to the Versys, so suddenly it seemed like there was power everywhere. If I had moved from a V-Max to the Versys, I'd probably think it was weak.

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post #5 of 37 (permalink) Old 07-13-2014, 10:39 AM Thread Starter
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I'm 6'4, 220. I can ride it all day long. Been on a few multi day trips, and the bike performs flawlessly. I am not knocking the bike. It is a winner, right out of the box.
I think Dave nailed it. The Versys has power, just not what I am used to. I guess that's what I miss.

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post #6 of 37 (permalink) Old 07-13-2014, 11:04 AM
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You also have a VTX 1800C?

If you hop off of that and get on the Versys...yeah, I can see how the Versys might seem weak.

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post #7 of 37 (permalink) Old 07-13-2014, 11:58 AM Thread Starter
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Yeah. The VTX has a bit of torque to it...lol. I bought it new in 2009, and it has been the longest any bike has stayed in my stable. Really not much to replace that one with, and it still makes me say "Damn!" every time I ride it.
Other past bikes were inline or V4s....ZRX1200, VFR800, CB919...
Again, I am not trying to compare the Versys to them, because it's apples and oranges. Only solution would be to add another bike to the mix, which I told myself I wouldn't do. I just whittled the garage down to two, from eight, over the past couple of years. My wife is an enabler. "Just buy another one.", she says.

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post #8 of 37 (permalink) Old 07-13-2014, 02:49 PM
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That's the downside to the 44T rear. Just keep the Versys wound up tighter. It has plenty to spare above 6000 rpm as long as you are not passing a R1, it is relatively responsive.

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post #9 of 37 (permalink) Old 07-13-2014, 03:15 PM
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If you lug the V around like it has a 5k redline, it only aggravates the differences between your two bikes.
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post #10 of 37 (permalink) Old 07-13-2014, 04:34 PM
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It's your right hand that is the problem.

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post #11 of 37 (permalink) Old 07-13-2014, 05:20 PM
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I'll say again, the only time I've wanted more power out of the V is on the expressway, the E-way, as my buds in Michigan used to say. If I lived in a major metropolitan area, I don't think I'd ever want for power, but approaching 90 and beyond, the V is straining. Hence my desire for the V1K to be sold in the states.
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post #12 of 37 (permalink) Old 07-13-2014, 06:49 PM
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You have trouble getting a vehicle that will run 12 second quarter miles up to speed on the expressway? Sorry to hear that.
I've have seen 0-60 mph times anywhere from 3.6 to 4.8 seconds...(some seem too high, some seem too low)
Let her sing and row the gearbox, but it really doesn't take all that IMO. I, personally, love getting on freeways (that's what we call them in these parts) on my V (w/ 43t rear sprocket BTW) I am blasting by traffic at 85+ mph before I (or they!) know it....then I look for a "safe spot" in the fast lane, of course.
Passing? If I need to, I drop the girl down to 4th gear (or even 3rd if going slower) and I make it happen "like now." Works for me.
I, personally, want a bike that "is straining" above 90 mph because it helps me keep my license (even though I would not agree with that assessment...mine will cruise all day at 90 and still has some punch left...mine "strains" at 105-110 mph, but still pulls to 120 or so...I'm good with that). What's the VTX like at triple-digit speeds? "Smooth as hell and ready for more?"
Seriously, if you miss "lazy" 100+ hp performance/speed "a lot," a 650 twin is probably not the bike for you. I am surprised you say you like the bike as much as you do in that case. Seems like that would be "a hurdle" you would not get over.

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post #13 of 37 (permalink) Old 07-13-2014, 07:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rick View Post
I just whittled the garage down to two, from eight, over the past couple of years. My wife is an enabler. "Just buy another one.", she says.
I need your wife to talk to mine...

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post #14 of 37 (permalink) Old 07-13-2014, 07:17 PM
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Quote:
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Yeah. The VTX has a bit of torque to it...lol. I bought it new in 2009, and it has been the longest any bike has stayed in my stable. Really not much to replace that one with, and it still makes me say "Damn!" every time I ride it.
Other past bikes were inline or V4s....ZRX1200, VFR800, CB919...
If you can't get up to speed and merge onto a freeway faster on your Versys than you can on that 750+ pound VTX, something is amiss.

Now as for those four-cylinders, that's a different matter.

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post #15 of 37 (permalink) Old 07-13-2014, 08:28 PM Thread Starter
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Some of you are missing my point, and I apologize if I wasn't clearer. I did not say that the Versys can't get up to speed, or can't pass cars. It just can't do it at the rate I am used to. I don't know any of your histories with previous bikes but, for anyone to say that the V is just as easy to sprint an on-ramp as a ZRX1200 or similar, I would have question your experience. As far as the VTX, again, if you haven't felt one accelerate that 750 lbs, you need to test ride
A Toyota Corolla will do the speed limit on any highway in the US. So will Challenger SRT.

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post #16 of 37 (permalink) Old 07-13-2014, 08:53 PM
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250cc doesn't have the power of 650 twin!

650 V twin doesn't have the power of 4 banger!

44t rear milktoast! LOL







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post #17 of 37 (permalink) Old 07-13-2014, 09:08 PM
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I've never had issues with power on my V - it's more than enough (I'm 200 lbs for reference). However, I did ride my nephew's 650 GSXR last week, and when you can hit 90+ in 2nd gear, you've got a little power under you. I thought I may die on some of those winding country roads in NC.
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post #18 of 37 (permalink) Old 07-13-2014, 10:05 PM
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Touche RockyMoto. When I first came to the V, I was coming from a KLR650, my very first and only bike at the time. The V was crazy fast for a while, and wholly more steady and powerful than the KLR, and the first time I was actually looking for more power was quite a while after I initially got the thing. But stories of speed I kept hearing from fellow crotch rocketish riders lead me to believe that there was indeed the high speed power I was looking for. I always tell people, 0-100, My Versys can keep up with damn near anything, but after that, she's stressin' her legs; I don't feel that's an unfair comparison. I don't think anyone would deny that a Ninja 1000, or even a ZX-14R, will flat out kill our 650 in nearly every speed category, not to diminish the 650, they're just different creatures.
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post #19 of 37 (permalink) Old 07-13-2014, 10:22 PM
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Quote:
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Some of you are missing my point, and I apologize if I wasn't clearer. I did not say that the Versys can't get up to speed, or can't pass cars. It just can't do it at the rate I am used to. I don't know any of your histories with previous bikes but, for anyone to say that the V is just as easy to sprint an on-ramp as a ZRX1200 or similar, I would have question your experience. As far as the VTX, again, if you haven't felt one accelerate that 750 lbs, you need to test ride
A Toyota Corolla will do the speed limit on any highway in the US. So will Challenger SRT.
Torque is deceiving. Your head snaps back in fifth and you think it means the bike is much faster, but that's not the case.
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post #20 of 37 (permalink) Old 07-13-2014, 10:33 PM
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I'm 6'4" close to 300 lbs and run 15/46 sprockets and it is zippy
Have bought both 15T and 16T front sprockets... maybe 16T is not going to cut the mustard for me... will let you know in a week when I put new chain on.
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