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Anyone ride a Versys?

Discussion in 'Bike Reviews, Questions and Suggestions' started by Gronked, Mar 17, 2009.

  1. I'm way jumping the gun looking at a "full license" bike, but I have heard nothing but good reviews of the Versys. Just wondering what people's thoughts are on them, especially if anyone actually owns one.

    They apparently do everything well, tour, commute, highways, twisties etc. Are they user friendly for someone only been riding for around 12 months? And would they be a good step up from a Honda CBF250?

    Thanks in advance.

  2. I was about two days off getting one before I saw the price of the hornet. The Versys is a very underestimated bike in Australia.

    I rode one while in Italy a year ago and loved it.
  3. I ride an er6 which has the same engine but is a road bike rather than a road bike with dirt capability. Does all the things you mention. Very easy to ride. I didn't get a versys as I mainly ride on the road and I didn't need the extra suspension. The versys's competition is the Vstrom, which might be a better bike if you're into dual purpose bikes. But kawas are cooler.
  4. Haven't ridden one, but noticed you didn't mention you wanted to do any dirt/trails, etc. If you're not going offroad its a silly choice considering more appropriate competitors.
  5. How is it a silly choice? The Versys is more road than off road.

    It is on my list for an upgrade bike the only thing that would stop me is the colour, I have no idea why Kawa Aus made the decision to only import it in puke green, it is not even the Kawa racing green. The 2009 Versys is available in Europe in black which looks awesome, check out the Kawa UK site. Unfortunately Kawa Aus don't know when/if the 2009 model will be sold here.

    Take a look at the Yamaha TDM900 as well, that is currently top of my list.

  6. Because if you're not going to go offroad at all ever, they have a road version of the versys - er6n :p Which would be a superior road bike IMO (and also I guess in kawas opinion since they still make the er6n).

    edit: oops I meant er6f, although n too of course.
  7. Three things to consider with the Versys are (1) it's made in bluddy Thailand (if that kind of thing bothers you), (2) that stupid compact low slung exhaust relegates the Versys to light off-road work because you'd be avoiding anything larger than a puddle, and (3) that skull shaped headlight looks something horrid.

    If these three things don't bother you, then it appears to be an excellent choice for someone stepping up. The Versys engine is slightly detuned compared to the ER-6 N/F, but the Versys has a larger fuel tank.

    I'd also consider the 2008 Honda Transalp XL700V. 680cc V-Twin, Honda reliability, proper dual-purpose credentials, few thou more expensive though.

  8. Yeah I have seen the ER6, and it is on the list as well. IF I ever do anything off road it will be nothing full-on... I have never ridden offroad and to be honest would be doing alone, which I don't think it's a very wise idea, so it'll be 99% road use.

    All the reviews I have read says it really is more of an all road bike than dual purpose, but the higher suspension does not seem to adversely effect its performance on the pavement... apparently it does very well in twisty mountain roads. The upright riding position is supposed to make it a decent touring bike as well

    I have to agree on the colour though, I'm not a big fan of the green... I personally like the blue or red versions. I hope they do bring the '09 models in to the country, would be a shame to not see this bike again.

    The headlight doesn't unduly worry me, while it's not the prettiest thing you will ever see, it does give it character.

    I dunno, but from what I have heard because it is so versatile, for a guy who doesn't yet know what sort of riding I'll be doing, this reportedly does everything quite well :)
  9. it is a good choice. the main advantage is the improved suspension that will give better handling on dirt roads. the er6 is also pretty upright for touring and a bit cheaper (and this is reflected in the very basic suspension)
  10. Gronked, that's why I went for the KLE500 (predecessor to the Versys which actually has the official model number of KLE650) as my first bike as I did not know what I wanted and the for the money it was a no brainer. Plus I am tall so I have a very comfortable seating position.

    Having commuted for a year now on the KLE I am keen to stick with the high upright style, being able to see over cars and through the windscreen of SUV's makes a massive difference. So if you are going to commute then I would recommend this style of bike.

    The Versys has a differntly tuned engine to the ER6, not detuned. It is tuned for more low end torque with the result of a little less power. Again a great feature for commuting.

    It won MOTY in one of the top motorcycling mags in the US when it was launched a couple of years ago, first time a dual sport has ever done that, so can't be too bad.

    I agree that this is not an off road bike but then it is not meant to be, it has road wheels and tyres on it, baffle underneath and no bash plate. It is in the same style as the Ducatti Multistrada, Triumph Tiger 1050, Yamaha TDM900, etc., all very capable road touring bikes that you can take off road but only light stuff.

    Anyway, someone who is into sports bikes is never going to get the point of this style of bike, which is fair enough as these are not sports bikes.

  11. I used to think it did have a bash plate. Upon closer inspection .... it looks like the exhaust pipes would be taking a bashing!


    Adam, I must have been looking simply at the power and torque stats when I mentioned 'detune'. It appears from 3rd party dyno graphs that by lowering the compression ratio (and presumably other tinkering), the Versys dominates the ER-6 from 3000 to 6000 rpm, but from 7000 rpm the ER-6 dominates to a 11000 rpm redline. Makes sense.

    Versys: 10.6 : 1 compression, 47 kW @ 8000 rpm, 61 Nm @ 6800 rpm at crank.
    ER-6 N/F: 11.3 : 1 compression, 53 kW @ 8500 rpm, 66 Nm @ 7000 rpm at crank.

    Source: Kawasaki Australia.
  12. It looks way better in black or even silver:



    I am sure if these colours were an option here they would sell more of them!

  13. Get a VStrom 650 instead. Proven and popular - easy to ride and you will get far better re-sale price.
  14. Give the bike a look on youtube lots about the bike.
  15. I'd disagree with that... while test riding new bikes I had a go at both the Versys and the er6n, and preferred the Versys' engine tune and handling to the er6's. While the Versys isn't meant for offroad, it could handle light dirt / gravel duties ok, and would do a better job of soaking up typical Aussie backroad bumps.

    Having said that, the Versys is significantly more expensive than the er6n (at least when I was looking ~mid 2008) for not a big gain, plus you've got to contend with the 'unique' styling. :)