Kawasaki Versys Forum banner

1 - 20 of 36 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
18 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
hey everyone.

I'm lookin' into getting my second bike(currently own a drz400s). was originally looking at the newer Vstroms but they are very scarce around my area and the ones i did find i felt they didn't fit me as well as I thought when I sat on them. Then I saw the new versys and really liked the looks and features. so upon sitting on a 650 it fit me absolutely perfectly and I fell in love with the bike. I was thinking about getting the 1000 but it felt a bit wide for me(probably because I'm so accustomed to my DRZ and I commute daily and split lanes) I would like the extra power but I don't really need it as I don't have that urge to go crazy fast.

truth be told the main reason for the second bike is to replace my DRZ as a commuter and put it back to dirt oriented duty and light overnight moto-camping trips to locations that require some offroading. I need something with just a little more UMPH on the highway cause I'd like to be able to go on longer trips for maybe a few days at a time. The drz is fine up to 70-75 but is a little buzzy and gets blown around quite a bit by larger vehicles and trucks but the biggest problem is the seat kills my rear end after about an hour or so.

my commute is short, only 8 miles and I have to split lanes on the way home or my 10 minute commute home becomes a 30-45 minute(sometimes longer)commute in stop and go traffic. I also want to get into longer rides that could span over the course of a 3 day weekend(moto-camping/hotel/motel) I'm actually pretty happy with the power of the drz for the majority of riding I do it just comes up a little short on the highway on the top end and I'm a larger dude 275ish pounds last time I weighed myself. Also was lent a ninja 300 for about 9 months when I worked 30 miles away and up in the mountains and was happy on that bike for what it was. especially with it being a major gas sipper even when winding it out. I live in San Diego and I-8 has the longest continuous grade(gets steep in some places) in the US going out to the mountains then abruptly drops back into the desert.

so I know for sure it's going to be at least a 2015 or newer versys for me based on my current research. my only gripe for the 650 is the lack of center stand(didn't know how awesome they were til I tried the one on the 1000 at the dealership) even though it's not really a big deal for me not to have one. I would like the LT model(side cases would come off for commuting cause bike is really wide with them on) unless I can do better in the aftermarket I just like how stealthy the bike looks with them off.

do you think I'd be happy with 650 power or should I save some more money and find a 1000. I do prefer a more nimble bike but I'm sure the extra power would help on the highway. Are there any mandatory fixes/mods I should be researching?


anyways thanks in advance if you made it this far into my long winded new guy post haha

heres a pic of me on the DRZ from a moto-camping trip earlier this year
 

Attachments

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
7,849 Posts
:welcome:The 650 has enough power for me, but i am only 70 kg and not a big guy...anyway wait for inputs from member's on this post and we have a good bunch of experienced rides and gentlemen who might be able to direct you between the 650 and 1000V.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18 Posts
Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
thanks for the reply. I'm leaning more to the 650 simply on the fact when I sat on that brand new one in dealership it fit me like a well worn in glove. the killer fuel mileage/range and the fact that the ninja parallel twin motor is bulletproof.

also the stripped down nature of no rider modes appeals to me.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,280 Posts
Since you are coming from a DRZ the V-650 will have plenty of power for you.

I spent years on liter bikes and bigger. Also the hot rod FZ09.

My 2015 V-650 has plenty of power and is the one of the best handling street bikes I have owned.

You really can't go wrong with one.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
822 Posts
alright well pretty much settles it then I'll be looking for the 650
Aftermarket center stands, while not cheap, are available. I have a Hepco Becker on my '15.

Your choice of bikes should compliment each other quite well. I have '98 beat up KLR to go with my V. Works for me.

Oh, and welcome aboard.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
9,197 Posts
Welcome From Canada

:welcome:https://www.kawasakiversys.com/forums/5-member-introductions/205361-valuable-links-wizard-member-intro.html
I came from a DRZ400S also, had a Corbin seat on it, yes my biggest complaint was it should have had a sixth gear, if set for street riding it sucked off road, I have had a 07 Versys , now a 2015 Versys , I didn't like the side cases and bought the Givi Trekker cases,plus Givi top case, many things, including some helmets will not fit in the Kawasaki cases.As to a center stand, don't miss it at all, I have a prop stand that I can get either the front or rear wheel in the air to plug a tire or lube the chain, about 1 minute and it weighs nothing.
As to power , I weigh 90 KG and I carry roughly 20 KG , this bike will do 130 KM/HR all day,
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,236 Posts
Welcome aboard!

I think you'll find the V650 perfect for your mix of uses. For commuting and traffic it is nimble. For highway touring it is heavy enough and powerful enough. I commute half highway half city streets, about 15 miles each way. I go off road a few times each year. I love solo moto-camping, the more remote the better. The V650 does it all well.

As to mods, the common ones are aftermarket seat (or FastEddie's front shim method), larger windshield, crash bars or frame sliders, foot peg lowering, handle bar risers, and lots of electronic stuff like USB outlets etc.

The stock seat is not very comfortable for many of us. I'm 5'10" tall, so the riding position was a bit too leaned forward for me, which made the seat uncomfortable, plus the seat slopes forward, so I tended to slide into the tank a lot. I put on a Sargent brand seat (there are several other brands well liked by forum members here) which is much more comfortable. Handlebar risers also helped a lot with the riding position and I am very comfortable for all day rides now.

The foot pegs are in a fairly sporty position. I liked them until I bruised the meniscus in one knee, so now I have foot peg lowering blocks which lower the pegs by an inch or so. Much more comfortable and I wish I'd done it sooner.

The stock windshield is pretty good but I put on a Madstad which is better at highway speeds.

For off-road you should consider crash bars and possibly a skid plate depending on how adventurous your rides are. Frame sliders for sure if you don't get crash bars, just in case. Also, a good radiator guard to protect against kicked up stones if you'll be on dirt roads or trails.

Small micro sized front LED turn signals are well worth the investment. The factory front turn signals will hit the ground in any tip over at all, and then the expensive plastic fairing gets cracked. R&G Racing brand is what I put on.

Factory tires are marginal. I am maybe a bit over zealous about having good tires on my vehicles, but were I to do it again I'd swap out the OEM tires on day 1. I waited until about 1500 miles.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,236 Posts
Oh yeah, the side cases. The factory cases are both excellent and terrible at the same time.

They mount/dismount super easily. They are color matched to the bike, and keyed to your ignition key. They seem reasonably strong to carry weight, and mine have survived a couple of parking lot tip-overs with just minor scuffs. I use mine all the time.

The terrible part is the internal shape. Due to the sloped styling they won't hold rectangular objects well. A largish briefcase won't fit. I have a soft shoulder bag for work and I have to take out my tablet to squish the bag in! Groceries can be awkward to fit in. The cases are a good size but the wrong shape for me.

If I could do it over again, I'd get aftermarket cases. The factory cases are not cheap, so the additional cost of going aftermarket from the beginning is not much really. I'd get something rectangular and top loading. Several good options are out there.

The factory top box is very good though. It is made by GIVI. You can buy the exact same box but without the color panel matched to your bike. Aftermarket it comes in black or silver, and may be cheaper than from Kawi even though it is identical except for color.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
168 Posts
I use my 2017 Versys 650 LT primarily for commuting, but I also like taking it for a run now and again. My last bike was a BMW F800ST, and while I initially felt the loss in HP and torque, I was also thankful for it. I really feel like I have more control, especially in traffic. The ST had a slightly twitchy throttle, and the Versys is nice and smooth by comparison. My commute is a lot like yours, minus the lane splitting. This bike is perfect for it. It also does just fine on the highway, upward of a 75 MPH speed limit.

I got the LT, because I need to fit stuff on the bike and it seemed a bit more cost effective to just get the package that came with side cases. As others have mentioned, they're OK. I took my Givi Maxia 52L topcase off my ST and plopped it on the Versys.

I've had this bike for about six months, and absolutely love it as both a commuter and a weekend asphalt fun machine. I've ridden it in the high heat of summer, through a couple of rain storms on the highway, and in what we Southerners call "cold." It's handled it all pretty well. All that said, I'm starting to think about things that would make it a little more comfortable. Specifically, I'm looking into a peg lowering kit and the Sargent Low seat. The latter, I hope, will bring my heels closer to the ground when I'm sitting in traffic, on a cambered road, and only one foot can touch the ground.

If you haven't had a chance to take one for a test ride. Go for it.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
19,433 Posts
:welcome: aboard!

We have a fellow on site who is 300+ pounds, presently on a V1000, but rode a V650 for years BEFORE the V1000 - handle is "weljo".
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18 Posts
Aftermarket center stands, while not cheap, are available. I have a Hepco Becker on my '15.

Your choice of bikes should compliment each other quite well. I have '98 beat up KLR to go with my V. Works for me.

Oh, and welcome aboard.
thanks!

:welcome:
I came from a DRZ400S also, had a Corbin seat on it, yes my biggest complaint was it should have had a sixth gear, if set for street riding it sucked off road, I have had a 07 Versys , now a 2015 Versys , I didn't like the side cases and bought the Givi Trekker cases,plus Givi top case, many things, including some helmets will not fit in the Kawasaki cases.As to a center stand, don't miss it at all, I have a prop stand that I can get either the front or rear wheel in the air to plug a tire or lube the chain, about 1 minute and it weighs nothing.
As to power , I weigh 90 KG and I carry roughly 20 KG , this bike will do 130 KM/HR all day,
thanks for the link. whats your issue with the LT cases? is it worth getting a sturdier set of cases? i have a paddock stand already. might spring for a pit bull front and rear since my trackside one feels sketchy sometimes

Welcome aboard!

I think you'll find the V650 perfect for your mix of uses. For commuting and traffic it is nimble. For highway touring it is heavy enough and powerful enough. I commute half highway half city streets, about 15 miles each way. I go off road a few times each year. I love solo moto-camping, the more remote the better. The V650 does it all well.

As to mods, the common ones are aftermarket seat (or FastEddie's front shim method), larger windshield, crash bars or frame sliders, foot peg lowering, handle bar risers, and lots of electronic stuff like USB outlets etc.

The stock seat is not very comfortable for many of us. I'm 5'10" tall, so the riding position was a bit too leaned forward for me, which made the seat uncomfortable, plus the seat slopes forward, so I tended to slide into the tank a lot. I put on a Sargent brand seat (there are several other brands well liked by forum members here) which is much more comfortable. Handlebar risers also helped a lot with the riding position and I am very comfortable for all day rides now.

The foot pegs are in a fairly sporty position. I liked them until I bruised the meniscus in one knee, so now I have foot peg lowering blocks which lower the pegs by an inch or so. Much more comfortable and I wish I'd done it sooner.

The stock windshield is pretty good but I put on a Madstad which is better at highway speeds.

For off-road you should consider crash bars and possibly a skid plate depending on how adventurous your rides are. Frame sliders for sure if you don't get crash bars, just in case. Also, a good radiator guard to protect against kicked up stones if you'll be on dirt roads or trails.

Small micro sized front LED turn signals are well worth the investment. The factory front turn signals will hit the ground in any tip over at all, and then the expensive plastic fairing gets cracked. R&G Racing brand is what I put on.

Factory tires are marginal. I am maybe a bit over zealous about having good tires on my vehicles, but were I to do it again I'd swap out the OEM tires on day 1. I waited until about 1500 miles.

i dont plan on much off-roading for this bike besides graded dirt roads but i do plan on crash bars and smaller front signals from my current research at the moment. I'm in so cal so lots of mountain roads. seat wise ill give the stock one a chance.

Oh yeah, the side cases. The factory cases are both excellent and terrible at the same time.

They mount/dismount super easily. They are color matched to the bike, and keyed to your ignition key. They seem reasonably strong to carry weight, and mine have survived a couple of parking lot tip-overs with just minor scuffs. I use mine all the time.

The terrible part is the internal shape. Due to the sloped styling they won't hold rectangular objects well. A largish briefcase won't fit. I have a soft shoulder bag for work and I have to take out my tablet to squish the bag in! Groceries can be awkward to fit in. The cases are a good size but the wrong shape for me.

If I could do it over again, I'd get aftermarket cases. The factory cases are not cheap, so the additional cost of going aftermarket from the beginning is not much really. I'd get something rectangular and top loading. Several good options are out there.

The factory top box is very good though. It is made by GIVI. You can buy the exact same box but without the color panel matched to your bike. Aftermarket it comes in black or silver, and may be cheaper than from Kawi even though it is identical except for color.
good to know. im torn on that cause im not convinced on the shape but love the look of not having the racks when the stock ones are removed

I use my 2017 Versys 650 LT primarily for commuting, but I also like taking it for a run now and again. My last bike was a BMW F800ST, and while I initially felt the loss in HP and torque, I was also thankful for it. I really feel like I have more control, especially in traffic. The ST had a slightly twitchy throttle, and the Versys is nice and smooth by comparison. My commute is a lot like yours, minus the lane splitting. This bike is perfect for it. It also does just fine on the highway, upward of a 75 MPH speed limit.

I got the LT, because I need to fit stuff on the bike and it seemed a bit more cost effective to just get the package that came with side cases. As others have mentioned, they're OK. I took my Givi Maxia 52L topcase off my ST and plopped it on the Versys.

I've had this bike for about six months, and absolutely love it as both a commuter and a weekend asphalt fun machine. I've ridden it in the high heat of summer, through a couple of rain storms on the highway, and in what we Southerners call "cold." It's handled it all pretty well. All that said, I'm starting to think about things that would make it a little more comfortable. Specifically, I'm looking into a peg lowering kit and the Sargent Low seat. The latter, I hope, will bring my heels closer to the ground when I'm sitting in traffic, on a cambered road, and only one foot can touch the ground.

If you haven't had a chance to take one for a test ride. Go for it.
good info. i want to but none of local dealers have a used one or a demo one to test. will when i get a chance though.

:welcome: aboard!

We have a fellow on site who is 300+ pounds, presently on a V1000, but rode a V650 for years BEFORE the V1000 - handle is "weljo".
ok ill look up his posts thanks. also are you the same fast eddie on youtube? if so ive seen a few of your vids and i like the channel. was turned onto your vids from a guy here in san diego that i ride with occasionally


FYI this post needs to be left as is, too many legit posts getting moderated and need a explanation why. Onewizard
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
well I made a long post replying to all the messages but i dont think it worked so ill reply to them all separately
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
Aftermarket center stands, while not cheap, are available. I have a Hepco Becker on my '15.

Your choice of bikes should compliment each other quite well. I have '98 beat up KLR to go with my V. Works for me.

Oh, and welcome aboard.
from the research I've done so far im thinkin of avoiding the center stands. i have a paddock stand but will probably spring for a nice pitbull front and rear set.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
:welcome:
I came from a DRZ400S also, had a Corbin seat on it, yes my biggest complaint was it should have had a sixth gear, if set for street riding it sucked off road, I have had a 07 Versys , now a 2015 Versys , I didn't like the side cases and bought the Givi Trekker cases,plus Givi top case, many things, including some helmets will not fit in the Kawasaki cases.As to a center stand, don't miss it at all, I have a prop stand that I can get either the front or rear wheel in the air to plug a tire or lube the chain, about 1 minute and it weighs nothing.
As to power , I weigh 90 KG and I carry roughly 20 KG , this bike will do 130 KM/HR all day,
thanks for the link. yea the drz would be perfect with a 6th gear. would be cool if they re-released it like kawi did the klx and add FI. sounds like aftermarket boxes are the way to go. i like the rectangular boxes better than the styled ones. however i like how clean the bike looks when you remove the stock cases not having a rack system.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
Oh yeah, the side cases. The factory cases are both excellent and terrible at the same time.

They mount/dismount super easily. They are color matched to the bike, and keyed to your ignition key. They seem reasonably strong to carry weight, and mine have survived a couple of parking lot tip-overs with just minor scuffs. I use mine all the time.

The terrible part is the internal shape. Due to the sloped styling they won't hold rectangular objects well. A largish briefcase won't fit. I have a soft shoulder bag for work and I have to take out my tablet to squish the bag in! Groceries can be awkward to fit in. The cases are a good size but the wrong shape for me.

If I could do it over again, I'd get aftermarket cases. The factory cases are not cheap, so the additional cost of going aftermarket from the beginning is not much really. I'd get something rectangular and top loading. Several good options are out there.

The factory top box is very good though. It is made by GIVI. You can buy the exact same box but without the color panel matched to your bike. Aftermarket it comes in black or silver, and may be cheaper than from Kawi even though it is identical except for color.
yea i think i may go the route of aftermarket side cases. definitely gonna go with a crash bar and lower profile blinkers. not really gonna offroad this bike aside from graded and semi maintained dirt roads but i like crash bars.

will give the stock seat a chance before trying aftermarket. so many ideas for upgrades
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
I use my 2017 Versys 650 LT primarily for commuting, but I also like taking it for a run now and again. My last bike was a BMW F800ST, and while I initially felt the loss in HP and torque, I was also thankful for it. I really feel like I have more control, especially in traffic. The ST had a slightly twitchy throttle, and the Versys is nice and smooth by comparison. My commute is a lot like yours, minus the lane splitting. This bike is perfect for it. It also does just fine on the highway, upward of a 75 MPH speed limit.

I got the LT, because I need to fit stuff on the bike and it seemed a bit more cost effective to just get the package that came with side cases. As others have mentioned, they're OK. I took my Givi Maxia 52L topcase off my ST and plopped it on the Versys.

I've had this bike for about six months, and absolutely love it as both a commuter and a weekend asphalt fun machine. I've ridden it in the high heat of summer, through a couple of rain storms on the highway, and in what we Southerners call "cold." It's handled it all pretty well. All that said, I'm starting to think about things that would make it a little more comfortable. Specifically, I'm looking into a peg lowering kit and the Sargent Low seat. The latter, I hope, will bring my heels closer to the ground when I'm sitting in traffic, on a cambered road, and only one foot can touch the ground.

If you haven't had a chance to take one for a test ride. Go for it.

sounds like ill be happy with the power of this bike. looks like ill need to look into the peg lower after getting some miles on one of these when i eventually get one
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
168 Posts
sounds like ill be happy with the power of this bike. looks like ill need to look into the peg lower after getting some miles on one of these when i eventually get one
I didn't feel the need for the peg lowering kit until my first day trip when I felt cramped enough that, to stretch my legs, I pushed myself back on the seat until my butt was nearly on the pillion. That was the only surprise on this bike. I expected more leg room. With that said, bear in mind that I'm kind of a unicorn of a woman who has a 32" or 33' inseam. YMMV.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
19,433 Posts
...ok ill look up his posts thanks. also are you the same fast eddie on youtube? if so ive seen a few of your vids and i like the channel. was turned onto your vids from a guy here in san diego that i ride with occasionally....
Nope, not me. I don't 'do' videos as it takes a different 'mindset' compared w/ taking photographs.
 
1 - 20 of 36 Posts
Top