Kawasaki Versys Forum banner
1 - 20 of 22 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
13 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm looking into picking up an x300 for short distance touring (2-4 hour legs, out to nearby lakes, towns, camping etc), and was wondering if anyone can comment on the bike's performance/ride quality with a pillion + luggage (likely side cases + top case)?

Originally I was looking at a 750 GS but can't get over the practicality/cost/simplicity of the Versys for this use case.

I've seen that the seat is very uncomfortable, so that would definitely be a first upgrade, but wondering if people are finding it suitable for riding with pillion + luggage for a few hours/day? (mostly back roads ~ 70-90kph, would usually try to avoid highways)

Thanks in advance.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Wow I hadn’t even thought about max load, but good call, today I learned about GVWR: Vx300 GVWR

So you are correct, the max load of the x300 is 397 lbs.

Oddly enough the 650 only seems to have 47lbs more load capacity (443 lbs) according to 2017 Kawasaki Versys 650 vs. Suzuki V-Strom 650

Then the 750 gs has 100 lbs more at 476 lbs, and the 310 gs a bit less at 387 lbs with a much softer suspension.

Luckily (in this context) we are indeed small people, at about 270 lbs combined, so that leaves us around 100lbs with some wiggle room, which isn’t much if you take gear and accessories into consideration. So from a weight perspective I guess it’s probably okay, probably just not so ideal, and am mainly wondering if it will be an unpleasantly boggy ride.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
201 Posts
Luckily (in this context) we are indeed small people, at about 270 lbs combined... , and am mainly wondering if it will be an unpleasantly boggy ride.
At 270# + riding gear + camping gear, I would be getting the correct rate springs that match your combined weight.
Another thing to consider is acceleration, loaded up like that I would be sticking to back roads and secondary highways, there's just not enough "instant-on" to get out of a bad situation if needed.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
349 Posts
I'll say this much what the manual says and what the bike will do are two different things.

First of all I ride two up with my wife and a backpack we easily exceed 400 pounds, I'm a big guy. We ride 80mph up the Columbia River Gorge with zero issues I can't even tell she's back there. Point of this story is that the rear spring has 5 preload settings and I left it on normal (3) the rear end didn't sag and everything was/is fine. Those next two preload notches are there for something. I would without a doubt throw 100 pounds of luggage and gear on the back plus my wife. My DR650 had a 6 gallon fuel tank huge steel panniers with steel racks that I kept full of camping gear including tents, hammers, axes, tools etc... and my wife rode on the back all the time. That bike was less capable of carrying a load than this one, it had like 10+ inches of progressive suspension travel, it was a giant dirt bike. I think you're good for days, live around Portland? We can make it weird and I'll let you ride on the back of the X so you can see lol. As far as "go when you need it..." you just gotta keep the bike spooled up in the revs all the time, that's the nature of the beast with the 300 X if you can't live with 9000 RPM at 80 mph don't buy the bike. A gentle cruising at 50-60mph is 6000 RPM it revs... Still vibrates 10 times less than my DR650 and is faster and more stable.

180097
 

Attachments

·
Registered
2017 Versys-X 300, 2020 Z900RS Cafe
Joined
·
65 Posts
In my experience of 2-up riding, with a certain amount of notice you can certainly move with the agility of a Civic. My girlfriend and I have taken several 2-to-3 hour trips on my baby versys with great success, and our overall weight with gear and garb is almost 500 lbs (~225kg). As long as you are not afraid of achieving Moto GP revs in strange places you can certainly pull into traffic and hold a pace of 75-80 mph (~120-130kmh) without fearing for your life. I will say if riding 2-up is your primary use of the bike, I would highly recommend a 650 Versys or V-strom (I am considering a Tenere 700 for this same purpose). But the baby versys is a shockingly capable bike that will be much more dirt compatible than bigger adventure bikes. Hope this helps you out and you find a bike you love!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
125 Posts
On last year's 12,000 mile Alaska trip I was very close to maximum recommended weight. Rode everything from very rough gravel to 80+ mph on freeway with no problems. Lots of time above 8000 rpm. Max setting on preload.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks everyone for the feedback. I'm hopefully going to pick one up, the more I read about it, the more I'm interested. It sounds like a really wonderful little bike.

@Holeshot thanks for the offer, were I nearby I would have loved to take you up on the offer haha. Unfortunately all the local kawasaki dealers don't stock the 300 for some reason. Love the DR 650 though, what a classic beaut.

The only thing that does concern me is how high revving this bike is, but I'll just have to wait and see how it is when I find one to test ride.

Thanks again all, if I do end up with one and going on some rides I'll be sure to report back.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
349 Posts
The revving takes some getting used to not gonna lie. 6000 is getting on the low side of where I downshift to get the revs back up lol. The 40hp is at 11,500 the bike chugs at 3000. It's all mental though just need to readjust your thinking the bike is capable of it. These new 250 4 cylinders coming out have redlines of like 15,500-18,000 RPM. I'll never buy another single though and a lot of the other 300-500cc similar bikes are singles. I couldn't feel my hands after a 100 miles on the highway on that DR because of the big single. The VX only feels "frantic" at highway speeds over 70mph in my opinion. Revving through gears feels natural and exciting, 80mph sustained 9000ish RPM it does feel a little sewing machine like. At 45-70 sustained speeds the bike is very tame and reasonable.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,464 Posts
That DR 650 looks like a nice bike. I like the fact that it is air-cooled, and that it has a simple engine. I got recently the KLX 230, air-cooled, and 2-valves engine, and it is so great. Adjusting the valves does not require any shims, etc. I prefer it to my crf250 for my off-road 'suicide' adventures.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
349 Posts
The DR was a huge dirt bike. It's a fun idea I guess just not for me. It was bad on the highway and very heavy offroad. It would go anywhere with enough arm/leg strength and time but the weight was unmanageable on real off-road excursions I like to say it was a 50/50 bike half as good as any dirt bike out there and half as good as any street bike out there which means it was mediocre to bad at both. I thought I was building something that was going to be a mild mannered standard on the road and a rock jumping dirt machine off-road. The aerodynamics were horrible on road and the weight was an issue off-road I believe it weighed 460-480 pounds when it was all said and done. That bike taught me how important weight is and that I really prefer something more 80-20 70-30 street - dirt. Hence the VX.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,464 Posts
I cannot understand why people use those heavy bikes off-road. what is the point? I had this discussion in the Tiger 800 forum; if one is riding off-road the Tiger, even the off-road version (XC), one has a suicide wish. if that thing fall on you, you either die immediately or go to a hospital. all that 'adventure' bikes' fad is a marketing scam. at least, Kawasaki does not call Versys 1000 an adventure bike, but rather a sport-touring bike. unless one is doing some motocross racing, a small cc dirt bike does much better the job required; and if you crash at least you can lift it up. I have 2 off-road bikes, crf250 and klx230 and I go through very challenging mountain tracks without any issues. why would I need more power between my legs? as an extension of my d.ck?

I was attracted to the Tenere 700, which is a beautiful bike, but I thought why should I be getting it? my lighter bikes will perform on off-road much better, and my Versys 1000 is so much better on-road; it is like riding a Cadillac. I can understand that V3 can be used for some bad roads when the need arises, but it is not and never will be an off-road bike.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
349 Posts
I just want something that I can drive down a forrest road to get to some river camping or a gravel road at someones house... You ever ride a street bike with pilot powers over a river rock driveway? It's like balancing a broom on your nose on a unicycle. The VX will get you to the campsite.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13 Posts
Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Welp, the Versys is here! And I've mounted the Alaska 36L cases and even the ginormous 58L outback trekker top case. While our luggage was really not loaded at all (basically just some day at the lake gear), I have to say I absolutely love my Versys. It's such a practical and wonderful machine. Will definitely be posting some images soon!

We just did a quick day ride, around 120km, never went on the highway but it was very smooth and comfy cruising around the 70kmh mark through the back roads and did not feel very sluggish. I do have to imagine that being pinned on the highway will be somewhat buzzy. Incredibly happy with the choice nonetheless. I'd say the combined payload was 360lbs and the Versys had no issue whatsoever.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
20,751 Posts
You've found out what MOST of us have discovered after buying our Vs....
 
1 - 20 of 22 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top