How is this bike so dang good? - Kawasaki Versys Forum
 
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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-19-2010, 07:51 PM Thread Starter
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How is this bike so dang good?

I've owned lots of motorcycles. Ducati, BMW, Yamaha, Kawasaki, Honda, Suzuki, and Buell....I loved most all of them...especially my Ducati and Buells. All of the bikes I've owned previously (except my track mule Gixxer) have cost more than the Versys. Most have custom suspensions set up for my weight and riding style.

So, I picked up my '09 Versys last week. Took it out for a nice LONG ride today. Did 350 miles before I pulled in the driveway. Bike is completely stock. I've not even taken time to set the suspension up yet.

I'm just shocked at how good this little bike is. I was tossing it down some extreme twisty roads today. It was sure footed, stable, flickable, and provided I was spinning the engine in the 7k to 8k range it pulled pretty well too. Even managed to put a few more scuffs on the knee pucks.

Fuel injection is spot on. Never feels too lean (like most bikes do) and even when getting stuck in slow traffic the driveline doesn't have any "snatch" to it. It's smooth as silk.

I got stuck in a traffic jam with the temps hovering around 97 degrees. I was expecting the bike to cook me like a leather wrapped burrito, but it never did. Even when the fan came on I felt no heat from the engine.

The stock seat I have read so much about leaves something to be desired, but it's really not THAT awful. I stood up when I got a case of the sore butt or slid back to the passenger seat for a bit. I have bad knees, and even they didn't hurt to bad (not nearly as bad as on my old Gixxer 600).

This bike shouldn't work as good as it does, but Kawasaki seems to have sprinkled some magic dust on it or something. I'm just shocked that a bike I paid cash for, brand new, is as good as the Versys is.

The only real fault I can find with it is the wonky mirrors that like to readjust themselves at will. Brakes need a bit more bite to them, but HH pads and steel braided lines would probably fix that.
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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-19-2010, 08:21 PM
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A great bike - you will find it does a lot of things well. Easy mods to be found for the seat. For the price, I do not feel it has an equal.(imho)


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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-19-2010, 08:33 PM
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Congratulations on the new bike. I love my V more each time I ride it, as I am sure you will too. It's my daily commuter, weekend runner, and occassional tourer. I live in Central California and have taken it to the Bay Area for a couple of business trips, and that is where I notice the mirrors are really bad. Get really blurry at constant freeway speeds.
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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-19-2010, 09:00 PM
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I know what you mean. I got this bike right out of the box and other than having to adjust the chain, I haven't done anything to it and it's outstanding. Why can't they all be this good right out of the box?
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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-19-2010, 09:49 PM
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The best bike / Best forum =Best Ride.

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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-19-2010, 10:04 PM
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The best bike / Best forum =Best Ride.

+1


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Fishing and riding,doesn't get any better!!


2009 Lime green Versys
Baldwin reg. saddle w/lime grn. thread and gel insert
Hepco & Becker crash bars
Givi side carriers w/ E21's
Fenda Extenda
Motowerk foot peg lowering blocks & mirror extenders
cut tail fender
black lower panels
Mikesshields Gran Touring, clear
Alaskan Leather Pillion 1 buttpad (trip use only)
Sw-Motech 20mm riser

Versys gone..replace with Victory Hammer
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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-19-2010, 10:15 PM
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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-19-2010, 10:56 PM
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+1
No no no,
++1


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Aerodynamically sound since 1959. So says the good folk @ Lockheed, Atlanta GA.
The KLE 650 VERSYS: It can't replace the Love of a good woman but...
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My Bike is my solitude amongst the multitudes

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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-19-2010, 11:18 PM
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Best bang for the buck 600cc class bike. Versys is living her/his name...

for the V Team and All on the Forum...

My V Blog:
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Ride safe,
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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-20-2010, 02:43 AM
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+650 fellas

trackrider i feel you man,i had this thoughts also when i 1st bought the bike.
especially in a track with high quality asphalt you can see its full potential,middle band f the engine is pretty agressive and if your heart tells it you can make pretty decent times in small twisty preferably tracks!
yesterday a v-strom full un-stock came by me in traffic lights reving the throttle looking at me.i am an not a kid but i couldn resist
with the green light we hit the grip and the bikes were going side by side until 4th gear,5th gear i started to wave and 6th i was 30 meters in front of him till he lost me,the road was a 4 km straight line
the kawi engine is better cause you have a higher rpm band without loosing the torgue .parallel 650 is better than the v of suzuki.
i own the bike 2 years,i ride it daily and every day i find reasons to ride more,2 years later the bike still grows in my head.
i had a lot of bikes in the past but with versys i feel its made for me.i am a tall and heavy guy ,1.90 m 100+ kgr, and it serves me perfectly.the only real disadvantage is its only for me,i cant carry 2nd passenger without feeling uncomfortable.
kawasaki did a very good job this time and i plan to keep this bike as long as i have money for the gasoline
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post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-20-2010, 12:17 PM Thread Starter
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The idea of doing a track day on it has struck me. A track like TalledegaGP or even Barber would be lots of fun. Even JenningsGP would be entertaining.

I can't imagine a track like Road Atlanta or Road America being as fun as those reward high horsepower. First time I had my old Gixxer 600 at Road Atlanta and topped it out in 6th gear, I realized I didn't quite like going that fast. Speedo said 172mph, but that's not accurate. Probably more like 150 or so. Found my rear end did a fine job of sucking Alpinestars leather.
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post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-20-2010, 01:45 PM
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Originally Posted by Trackrider54 View Post
The idea of doing a track day on it has struck me. A track like TalledegaGP or even Barber would be lots of fun. Even JenningsGP would be entertaining.

I can't imagine a track like Road Atlanta or Road America being as fun as those reward high horsepower.
i agree, JGP and VIR would be fun. never ridden barber, but it's certainly nice and tight.

yet i disagree. i rode Road Atlanta on my HawkGT, which makes less power than the versys, and that back straight was really, really long for me. guys like you were flying by me like i was on a tricycle. i did my taxes back there. but it was great fun for the rest of the lap. going over the hill and under the bridge, t10 => t12, and onto the front straight... awesome. going uphill thru the esses, t1 => t5... awesome. the two rights at the top, before the back straight were fun too, though not as much as the esses and t12.

versys would be fun. it would do better than the hawk since it has more power and can deal better with the bumps in t10. and how cool would it be to pull a Miguel and pass people in t12 on such an ungainly looking bike?

In a world full of people, only some want to ride. Isn't that crazy?
Seal/CRAZY/misquoted


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post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-20-2010, 03:26 PM
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Kevrider,
By the look of your newly added maps....you ride to much


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Fishing and riding,doesn't get any better!!


2009 Lime green Versys
Baldwin reg. saddle w/lime grn. thread and gel insert
Hepco & Becker crash bars
Givi side carriers w/ E21's
Fenda Extenda
Motowerk foot peg lowering blocks & mirror extenders
cut tail fender
black lower panels
Mikesshields Gran Touring, clear
Alaskan Leather Pillion 1 buttpad (trip use only)
Sw-Motech 20mm riser

Versys gone..replace with Victory Hammer
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post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-20-2010, 04:26 PM
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LOL!!! maybe i used to, i so wish it were true today.

In a world full of people, only some want to ride. Isn't that crazy?
Seal/CRAZY/misquoted


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post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-20-2010, 09:13 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by kevrider View Post
i agree, JGP and VIR would be fun. never ridden barber, but it's certainly nice and tight.

yet i disagree. i rode Road Atlanta on my HawkGT, which makes less power than the versys, and that back straight was really, really long for me. guys like you were flying by me like i was on a tricycle. i did my taxes back there. but it was great fun for the rest of the lap. going over the hill and under the bridge, t10 => t12, and onto the front straight... awesome. going uphill thru the esses, t1 => t5... awesome. the two rights at the top, before the back straight were fun too, though not as much as the esses and t12.

versys would be fun. it would do better than the hawk since it has more power and can deal better with the bumps in t10. and how cool would it be to pull a Miguel and pass people in t12 on such an ungainly looking bike?
I've not ridden the new config at Road Atlanta, but you're right, that turn 6 & 7 complex would be a lot of fun.
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