I have heard both sides of the argument for the F650GS. Some say it is too much and some have started on it and love it. I guess it comes down to the rider being able to exercise self restraint AND being a quick learner.
On the scooter forum I read a long term biker was thinking of swapping out his MP3 for a Mana. He was all set to do it when he got cold feet. Nothing to do with the bike but the fact the dealers were falling over themselves to give him the bike at cost. Seems it has not really caught on in America. Worth thinking about if resale values are of concern to you (if not it is a killer deal). As far as performance he posted some comments about that. I will look them up later but off the top of my head I think he said that even though on paper it has less performance than a Shiver (Shiva?) it outperformed it on the track. Being in the optimal gearing ratio all the time has its advantages. Could you start out on a Mana? Yes you could. Is it the best idea, probably not but others have started on more powerful bikes and survived. And not having to worry about gears is a big advantage when starting out, especially in city riding. I guess it comes down to you and how comfortable you are on a bike.