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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Yep. Looking for the Frame number to begin my Maintenance history on the owner's manual, found out that my bike was not made in Japan, but in Thailand. :surprise:
Now, I always ask myself the question; how does quality change? My guess is, not at all. It is all the same standards. I'd be more worried if they stayed in Japan but slashed quality (cheaper materials, less rigorous QA, etc.) to control production costs...like we've (sort of) done here in America, but they moved their bike assembly to a place of cheaper labor costs and outsourced parts from abroad.
Yeah, I know this is very old news...
Here is the link I found:
UPDATED: Kawasaki To Move Large-displacement Motorcycle Production To Thailand | Sport Rider
 

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2007-2009 Versys 650 were made in Japan

2010-2017 Versys 650 are made in Thailand.

Yes, my 2007 is of much better quality than your 2016, as it was made at Kawasaki's Akashi Works factory in Japan! :D
 

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Dude you're breaking my heart!
checked for where my mk 3 was made, when i do a vin check it tells me Made in Japan Frame/ VIN - JKAL******* and so on.
Makes me very cautious, I lived for 2 years in Osaka, I know first hand how good their quality control is and how much they appreciate excellence.
Thais however tend to work on " Thai -time" as my good buddy (who lives in Thaliand) likes to say...
dark days ahead...
 

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Dude you're breaking my heart!
checked for where my mk 3 was made, when i do a vin check it tells me Made in Japan Frame/ VIN - JKAL******* and so on.
Makes me very cautious, I lived for 2 years in Osaka, I know first hand how good their quality control is and how much they appreciate excellence.
Thais however tend to work on " Thai -time" as my good buddy (who lives in Thaliand) likes to say...
dark days ahead...
Look at your VIN's 11th character. It should be a "D", indicating that your 2016 Versys 650 was made in Thailand.


Character # 11 indicates the vehicle’s assembly plant:

A = Akashi Works, Kawasaki Heavy Industries, Akashi, Japan

B = Kawasaki Motors Manufacturing Corp., Lincoln, Nebraska / Kymco for Kawasaki, Taiwan

C = Kawasaki Motors Corp., Philippines

D = Kawasaki Motors Enterprise Co. Ltd., Thailand

G = MODENAS, Malaysia

K = P.T. Kawasaki Motor Indonesia, Jakarta, Indonesia

9 = Kawasaki Motors of Brazil Ltd. (KMB) Manaus, Amazonas
 

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Well I want to get to the bottom of this
I went here

https://vindecoder.eu/kawasaki

put in the VIN and got this

Manufacturer:
Kawasaki Heavy Industries Ltd
Manufacturer Address:
1-1 Kawasaki Cho.
673 Akashi City
Japan
Product Type:
Motorcycle
Make:
Kawasaki
Check Digit:
0
Model Year:
2016
Plant Country:
Japan
Sequential Number:
A*****
 

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No! You're looking at the VIN's 1st character which denotes the manufacturer's country of origin.

You need to look at your VIN's 11th character to know where it was manufactured.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I didn't have to decode any VIN numbers. The label clearly says "Made in Thailand". And my "11th Character" is a "D".

Now, I don't agree with Invader on the lesser quality of Thailand or any other country where Japanese products are assembled. The quality is not established and maintained by the Thai and their "Thai time". It is controlled by the Japanese. Also, Kawasaki motorcycles are designed and engineered in Japan. I drive a 2005 Toyota Tacoma, built in Texas, and it has been a great, Japanese bullet-proof quality vehicle that has never broken anything and after >140K miles, still drives like new. Again, Japanese quality, regardless where manufacture.
I have a Yamaha guitar, made in Taiwan. It is 28 years old and it is still like new and sounding...like a true Yamaha guitar. Same Japanese quality.
 

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If we're bringing up guitars, quite often you see the Mexican, Thai, or Chinese versions of the same guitar. Those are lower quality parts and workmanship compared to the "American Standard" models (using Fender as an example here, but PRS, Martin etc.. also do the same). Easiest way to see the difference is pick an open string and see how long the resonance lasts. In the cheaper models it dampens out quickly while the "standard" models hold the resonance much longer due to the materials used.

I doubt that really applies to motorcycles. If the parts are coming from the same place, and it's just assembly I expect there wouldn't be any real end-result differences except needing to tighten a few things.
 

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I agree with Invader.
I also drive an older model German made / assembled car (amazingly durable and reliable).
I'm very happy with 11th A V :)
 

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The plant in Japan does not seem to own a torque wrench. I picture a lady smoking a cigarette, fingers clenched on the trigger of a 1/2 drive impact, spinning on front sprocket-nuts all day. She grins as she pulls the trigger, and swears in Japanese at the thought of needed to set the torque.

To say your bike is somehow 'better' cause it came from Japan?

Huh.
 

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My Thai 2014 just went past the 60,000km mark and it has yet to break something that is not considered a wear item. So far it has been a gas and oil kind of bike.

In my industry country of origin means nothing, a product is designed to a specification and it has to meet the same standards no matter where it was made. As simple as that. China, Mexico, Malaysia, the end product is indistinguishable if the label is removed.
 

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The plant in Japan does not seem to own a torque wrench. I picture a lady smoking a cigarette, fingers clenched on the trigger of a 1/2 drive impact, spinning on front sprocket-nuts all day. She grins as she pulls the trigger, and swears in Japanese at the thought of needed to set the torque.

To say your bike is somehow 'better' cause it came from Japan?

Huh.
It just tends to stick a bit after it's originally installed, which is normal... I cracked her loose with a single swift crank of the breaker bar with extension pipe with right hand, while supporting extended socket with left hand, and with padded stud across rear wheel.

Any other whimpy/poorly equipped/unskilled/unstable Thai built Versys owners will come around crying about the same "problem".
 
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