New Member from Arkansas - Kawasaki Versys Forum
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 08-23-2018, 02:29 PM Thread Starter
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New Member from Arkansas

Good afternoon,

I join this forum following some quite unfortunate circumstances. My beloved 02 Honda Interceptor was stolen from the office parking lot on Monday afternoon. Devastated, I immediately start researching what my replacement bike will be . I am a long time Kawasaki fan and have been interested in the Versys so I think I will give it a shot and would appreciate some input from your valuable knowledge in making my decision.

A little bio, I commute daily from Benton to Little Rock about 70 miles round trip with 80% of it being interstate @ 75-85 mph. I thought the Interceptor was perfect for this job as the engine was very under-stressed at these speeds. The only drawbacks were poor gas mileage and a low vantage point compared to the sea of RAM 2500s I ride thru every day.

With that being said, I'm a huge fan of Kawasaki for the durability and maintenance ease they have provided me in the past. My question now is which version of the Versys would best fit the bill and if there are any known pitfalls to look out for while shopping in the used market.

thanks!
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 08-23-2018, 05:09 PM
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Sorry to hear about your Interceptor. I cannot stand anyone who feels they should take something that isn't theirs.

As for the Versys, I think you need to contemplate the differences in power from a sport bike to a ADV-style bike. IMO, my 650 does great for traveling and interstates. I weigh about 175 lbs and 5'9". The longest I've gone was a 2500 mile trip in 8 days and the Versys was amazing!

Surprisingly, I think the Versys handles extremely well considering you're sitting higher. Took me a while to get used to being able to run the RPM's higher than my cruiser bikes but now that I'm pretty comfortable with it I love riding it.

As with any new bike purchase prepare for some modifications. The first thing I'd invest in is a new seat as the stock one is rough. Then luggage as you require. Other than that I think the Versys is going to stay in my stable for a very long time!
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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 08-23-2018, 09:18 PM
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2015 Concours 14 ABS, 2014 Versys 650 ABS, 2006 Vulcan 500 (sold)
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 08-24-2018, 06:33 AM
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 08-24-2018, 04:28 PM
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 08-24-2018, 09:47 PM
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Welcome, and sorry about having your bike stolen. The silver lining is that you can replace it with a Versys. You didn't mention which Versys, unless my eyesight is worse than I think, meaning you have the opportunity to replace your stolen machine with the 650 twin or the 1000 many cylinders. Of the two, I prefer the 650 for its lighter weight. It handles highway speeds without effort and returns good fuel mileage while doing it.

I will say that I swapped the stock rear sprocket for a 43 tooth version and appreciate the lower rpm at cruising speed (70-75) and the improved speedometer accuracy - it's within 1/2 mph when compared with my Garmin GPS. And because I'm "inseam challenged" (29") I installed the Moto Werk rear suspension lowering block and also lowered the fork tubes as recommended.

Now I can flat foot and still sit high enough that I don't feel intimidated by GOATs (Grossly Oversized American Trucks) any more than I do on any other bike I've owned or ridden. All in all, a very good motorcycle. It's not perfect but very little is, and it gives you freedom to farkle the daylights out of the machine if you desire.

Arion

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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 08-25-2018, 10:33 AM
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Welcome, and sorry about the theft!

Like you, I commute 80 miles/day round trip almost entirely on highways. With the stock gearing my '14 Versys 650 gets about 48mpg, which seems lower than others have reported, but again, it's ALL at ~ 75mph and a steady 6000 rpm. I plan to swap the rear sprocket when it wears out, as Arion suggested.

Same sea of trucks here in the KC metro. The 650 does fine. On a rare occasion I click down to 5th to accelerate. That said, you won't confuse it for the Interceptor's v-four (I downsized from an '02 Bandit 1200). Do I miss the horsepower? Yes. Do I "need" it? No. The 1000 solves that problem, but costs you in MPG.

The seat is adequate for my commute, but I'd replace it if I took longer trips.

Enjoy choosing!
Rob in 'KC
'14 Versys 650, 20K miles
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