I've ridden the Victory Cross Country before and going from it to the Versys will feel like going from a Motorhome to a compact car. While the Victory is supremely comfortable on the highway it also weighs in at over twice the weight of the Versys with only a minimally more powerful engine.
The gear ratios of the Versys will initially seem low because you are used to a low RPM VTwin engine that cruises at ~2000 rpm and red lines at ~5000 rpm. The Versys engine only starts to come alive above 5000 RPM and does not like to be ridden at speeds less than 4000 rpm. It functions best from 5000 rpm to 8000 rpm. You will likely need to get used to keeping the revs at a much higher level that you are used to on the Victory, this is not a flaw in the gearing but the way the engine/transmission was designed for peak operational efficiency.
Hard to predict life expectancy but water cooled engines usually last longer than air cooled engines due to greater thermal stability. As long as proper maintenance is performed including valve adjustments, throttle body syncs, oil changes, filter cleanings, etc. I would assume it will last as least as long as the Victory engine.
Motorcycle seats take some adaption. Any new seat will initially seem painful as the pressure points on your posterior will change. I would suggest riding the bike for a while before deciding if you need a new seat.
Well my Vic has aprox 100hp and will be long out of site before this Versys gets in top gear. Absolutely no power comparison.
With minimal changes the Vic 106 can make some very impressive power.
As for weight.......more like a transport truck to a Smart car.
My Vic has 91,000km on it and will double or triple that mileage with ease before any wear is evident.
I was always under the impression that a piston will only go up and down so many times before rings or cylinder wall is worn out. Cam chains and cam shafts spinning at warp nine will wear at extream rates compared to a big loping VTwin. Valves opening and closing at 3 times the rate of a car or big mc motor will wear valve guides and seals.
Don't get me wrong . I figured as much when I bought the Versys.
Over the years I noticed that most bikes cruised the Hwy at 1/2 redline. Big cruisers or sport bikes. Didn't matter. If the red line was 14k the Hwy rpm would be (aprox) half. That puts the Versys x300 prime speed for longevity at 50 mph. Not saying it will not run at red line all day. But I bet if you could ask the engineers at Kawasaki what speed the bikes expected cruise was they would say 50-55 mph.
Another thing that I notice and by what you said .......the Versys works best between 4-8k And that's what I noticed. But I read that there is a big boost in power close to red line. But not mine. It seems to loose its will to rev past eight grand.
The seat is beyond hard. I have an idea on how to adjust the foam witch will make it softer to sit on. My 59 year old ass has gotten very used to sitting on a big soft cushy cruiser seat.
Again....don't get me wrong ... I really like the bike. It's a blast to rev the snot out of it. Sounds like a F1 car. Runs the twisties at crazy speeds with ease. It feels so lite and flickable..
The motor reminds me of the Honda CB175 twin I rode to high school. Lots of noise with little go.
I read and watched lots of YouTube vids that said the brakes were just ok. But mine are very touchy. Lots of bite. Impressive to say the least.