Join Date: Mar 2019
Location: North East Illinois USA
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Following up on a thread I started … picked up the 2019 Versys 1000 SE LT+ in early March 2020. So far no regrets (but a few things that need to be taken care of!). Have ~2K mikes on it so far.
The bike rides like a dream, very smooth even over really nasty roads. Adjustable electronic suspension can be changed on the fly. Cruise control is really nice and works well on flat roads but does wander a bit going up/down hills. Comparing to the Versys 650 the bike is quite a bit wider and provides better wind protection. There is also more heat that comes off the motor (not bad – just there). Between the heat and wind protection I was able to ride with temperatures just above freezing whereas, suited up the same way on the Versys 650 was good to about 40F (just not as hardcore as some of you!)
The motor is so smooth and pulls good even at very low revs. Averaging around 43MPG. Can get better when riding slower on county roads but it’s crazy how low the MPG can drop when doing 80MPH into a stiff head wind and slight elevation rise (saw instantaneous readings in the very high 20’s). On the other hand doing 80MPH into a stiff head wind is nothing for the 1000 Versys. Never owned a liter bike before so the power came as quite a surprise. It’s definitely fast but is so smooth that it didn’t seem that fast, until you look at the spedo – yikes! This thing puts out ~118HP, can’t even imagine what those 180HP bikes would be like.
Kind of undecided on the quick shift. Makes the shifter very spongy – weird until you get used to it. Not sure the added complexity is worth it. There is definitely buffeting on my helmet even with the screen set to max height. Have a Puig windscreen on order – will see how that works out. The bike is big and tall (again – never owned a bike this big before) so its taken a while to get used to it. Need to lift my leg really high to get it over the bike. Sometimes I don’t quite make it! Handles well but nowhere as confidence inspiring as the Versys 650. Even with the weight, I was surprised at how the wind can push it around. Was riding with 30MPH sustained winds with higher gusts (at a right angle to the bike) and definitely got slapped around but still felt in control at all times. Lots to learn on the display and controls. Took a while to remember how to do all the settings (and what they are for). Another minor thing is the side cases rattle but there may be some simple fixes for that.
Did have one tense moment, merging onto an expressway (speed limit 70MPH – everyone does 80MPH plus), behind a driver that forgot where the gas pedal was and traffic bearing down on the lanes we were merging onto. To make things more interesting there were very high winds at a right angle to the bike. I hammered the throttle and started making my way around the slower vehicle and crossed into an adjacent lane. Just as I got into the next lane, around 80MPH under hard acceleration, the bike got into a high speed wobble. Nothing serious and damped out quickly but still was disconcerting for me. Never ever had a hint of speed wobble on the Versys 650. Definitely need to spend time on experimenting with suspension settings. For what it’s worth the bike was set to ROAD mode, single rider preload.
As many others warned, the seat (for me) just does not work! Had the same issues with the Versys 650. Forward slope and very hard. Appears my “bottom” and Kawasaki seats are just incompatible. Doing a lot of standing on the pegs after a half hour of riding. Too bad, it really limits time in the saddle. Tried the Air Hawk but it didn’t help. Need a bucket seat like from Terry or somewhere else.
So overall, no regrets. Once a new seat is in place and get the suspension settings sorted out, should be good to go.