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Recently bought a new 2020 Versys 650. Perfect cycle for an old geezer like me! I had cycles thirty years ago and decided at 75 years old to get back into it. I have a question about shift points. The Kawasaki manual suggests shift points at a much lower speed than I would have expected. The chart reads 1 to 2 at 9 mph, 2 to 3 at 15 mph, 3 to 4 at 21 mph, 4 to 5 at 27 mph, and finally 5 to 6 at 34 mph. I always let the cycle rpm tell me when to shift and the Versys seems to like around 3,500 to 4,000 for just normal around city driving. I would appreciate any of you Versys 650 riders sharing you thoughts on this. Thanks
 

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Shift when you feel like shifting. In town I'll usually shift between 4,000-5,000. Normal riding I'll shift between 5,000-6,000. But its also fun to get near redline sometimes. These motors like to rev. Those shift charts in the manual are dumb.
 

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2021 Versys 650 LT
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I agree with the previous comment on the 4-6K being normal shifting. I rarely even glance & go strictly by sound & feel though. Great to hear your riding at 75! Have fun!
 

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I like to keep it full pinned and bang it off the rev limiter a few times when I miss a gear! But NORMALLY 4-6k rpm!
 

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I think those shift points are for when you are in the break in mode. Trying to stay under 4000 rpm. The bike is not real happy at those rpms. Ride it where it feels good to you.
 

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I think those shift points are for when you are in the break in mode. Trying to stay under 4000 rpm....
I believe that the "break in mode" is Kawi's way of trying to get you USED TO YOUR NEW RIDE, before you get riding it fast, and on wide open throttle!

AND I believe that the engine/trans are ALREADY broken-in. After all - Kawi runs each one at high revs (on the rev-limiter...?) before shipping them out.
 

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Once broken in 4-6K like others have said. But I like to burn fuel and let her ride into 8-9K as I move through 2nd-4th. She can get up and go.


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That does seem pretty low. I usually do it at around 6ish unless I am merging on the highway, then I let it run up.
 

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That does seem pretty low. I usually do it at around 6ish unless I am merging on the highway, then I let it run up.
As to post #1 , 100% agree. I have the flash so I can ride in 6th gear at 60 KM/ HR , however I run up around 4 to 6 K while accelerating ( passing I run 8K plus up to red line / rev limiter) . In town under light load and trying to be quiet I shift anywhere from 2000 to 3000.
 

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Recently bought a new 2020 Versys 650. Perfect cycle for an old geezer like me! I had cycles thirty years ago and decided at 75 years old to get back into it. I have a question about shift points. The Kawasaki manual suggests shift points at a much lower speed than I would have expected. The chart reads 1 to 2 at 9 mph, 2 to 3 at 15 mph, 3 to 4 at 21 mph, 4 to 5 at 27 mph, and finally 5 to 6 at 34 mph. I always let the cycle rpm tell me when to shift and the Versys seems to like around 3,500 to 4,000 for just normal around city driving. I would appreciate any of you Versys 650 riders sharing you thoughts on this. Thanks
In response to your inquiry (I’m just 5-years behind you, for starters), I think you answered your question when you said “I always let the cycle rpm tell me when to shift”. Manufacturers tend to be very conservative with their numbers, and almost we all, average 4k to 6k on city driving. But let’s keep the spirit of the game, and as a well a trained Orchestra Director, the rhythm is given by our guts and plain listening ability on the engine and circumstances need. And if we pay attention to good old Scotty Kilmer’s signature quote: REVV YOUR ENGINES!! for the occasional open road, Is because he wants to ensure you leave no carbon traces in you cylinders!!!
Good Ride to You All!!
 
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