Second motorcycle advice sought
August 16, 2010 at 11:36 pm #4176OggiParticipant
Hi all: Would really appreciate your thoughts on the following.
For the past two years I have been riding (and very much enjoying) a 2009 Ninja 250. Brilliant bike. I am now looking for a second bike not because I have outgrown the 250. I believe it is a great bike to have around town. But I am 6’2 and the bike is a bit too small for me. Particularly I feel the weight on my wrists. I also feel it in my lower back which is not in the greatest of shapes to start with. It is also not a bike to travel on for a long ride. I did a 220 miles ride on it once and walking was quite difficult afterward
So, time for an upgrade. I am looking for a bike that will give me a relatively vertical sitting position yet be more sporty-looking. I do not want a cruiser as I feel more in control on a sport or sport-touring bike.
The question is which one to go for. I have narrowed it down (if you can call it that) to 5 (five) bikes. I realize they are very different, but…
The five finalists are (in no particular order): Yamaha FZ-6R; Ninja 650R; Suzuki SV650SF; Kawasaki Versys 650; and the Suzuki V-Strom DL650.
As you can see, I am not looking for an aggressive bike but really a sort of an all-in-one with emphasis on functionality and comfort of ride (even for tall guys).
Any and all thoughts would be highly welcome,
Cheers.August 17, 2010 at 12:48 am #28108eonParticipant
The Versys and VStrom have been on my candidate list for some time so I can comment on what I know about them (this is all 2nd hand knowledge though). Both are great bikes with glowing reviews and are frequently lumped together in the same category but in reality there are some differences. The Versys feels more like a sport bike (due to I believe the smaller front wheel) so it has sharper handling than the VStrom. But that larger front wheel gives the VStrom more of an edge if you ever want to go off road as you have more options to fit knobblies on the larger wheel. The VStrom is not exactly an off road bike but it excels as a long distance tourer. Both bikes can easily handle forest service roads due to the increased ground clearance but I would think twice before taking either off road.
If you look around you should be able to get a good deal on either bike from dealerships. Suzuki did not bring any new stock into the US in 2010 (but are bringing more in 2011) as dealers were struggling to get rid of 2009 stock. The Versys had a facelift and minor upgrades for 2010 which means you can get great deal on a 2009 model if you can find one.
Your other candidates look to be more in the sporty end of things so there are others who can comment on the relevant merits of those.August 17, 2010 at 1:41 am #28109AParticipantAugust 17, 2010 at 3:28 am #28110JtownJJAParticipant
I agree with Eon in recommending the Vstrom or the Versys, based one what you said you are looking for and what I have read about them. The Vstrom is definitely one I would consider myself for a second bike, but the Versys sits too high for my shorter legs. Sounds like it may be just right for you, though.
I’m not sure what your budget is like, but similar to the Vstrom is the Honda NT700V, which I think would be even more in tune with what you are looking for in the way of comfort, but perhaps not so much in the way of sporty looks. Of course it comes with a higher price tag, but along with that you trade in the chain drive for the lower-maintenance shaft drive. One other bike you may consider is the belt-drive BMW F800ST, yet, it’s price is even a bit higher.
Sometimes, I think deciding on a 2nd bike will be even harder then choosing the first one, because at that point, you are more educated on what’s out there, and what the pros and cons of each model are. I know I keep a list of my preferred 2nd bikes, and at this point, I can’t narrow it down to less than 12 models! The Vstrom, NT700V, and F800ST are all on that list. Oh, and I didn’t mention bikes like the Triumph Street Triple R, a light, sporty, comfortable bike I recently had the chance to demo ride… https://www.bestbeginnermotorcycles.com/forum/forum/3980/first-demo-ride-experienceAugust 17, 2010 at 5:33 am #28115romaloParticipant
I bought the Street Triple R and love it. It has upright riding position fairly light weight and engine with a growl. I rode the monster, aprili shiver and the triumph one after the other. The street triple was so easy to ride and a blast! The shiver was a great ride also. Found the monster a bit tight since I’m 6’4″
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