Welcome to Netrider ... Connecting Riders!

Interested in talking motorbikes with a terrific community of riders?
Signup (it's quick and free) to join the discussions and access the full suite of tools and information that Netrider has to offer.

Choosing between 2 bikes based on accident avoidance

Discussion in 'Bike Reviews, Questions and Suggestions' started by damz, Feb 10, 2011.

  1. I've narrowed my choices down to two different bikes to see out the next 8 months of LAMs restrictions, an RVF400 or an SV650S.

    The former is apparently about 162kg dry weight, 4 piston dual front disc brakes and a 1335mm wheelbase. 15 years old. Finding a well cared for example has proved very hard to do, so it's safe to assume significant wear and tear on components.

    The latter, around 172kg dry weight, dual 290mm disc brakes on front, and 1430mm wheelbase. 1-2 yrs old. Virtually in as-new condition. Slightly wider tyre on rear, same front tyre.

    Which would be the better choice for being able to brake in a shorter distance and/or avoid potentially lethal situations? I realise that rider skill is paramount and perceiving hazards equally vital, but when it comes down to it, I want to have the best chances of avoiding a crash.

    Does the extra weight and length of the SV make it worse at braking - enough to negate the newer design and less wear of the components? I know the RVF was engineered to be best-in-class in its day while the SV is not quite as much of an ambitious bike but has the overall standard been raised by enough to offset that?

    From riding both I feel like the RVF is more nimble, but surprisingly not by that much considering how much bigger the SV is. Braking, I couldn't really go hard while test riding but both seem sort of the same with a firm pull on the lever. Centre of gravity seems higher on the SV, and riding position is a bit more upright.

    Reason: I had a car pull out in front of me on my zx2r (4cyl) and although I hit the brakes I ended up flying over the bonnet. So I know first hand how little time and distance there is to stop or avoid in emergency situations.
  2. won't make a huge amount of difference.

    i'd personally get the ER-5 kawasaki or GS500 suzuki.

    also, if in your case the car was directly there, then no bike, no matter how good the brakes, could avoid it and stop in time.

    it's about perceiving the hazards and if you see a car in the side street use your lane, show them you're there and slow down a little. be ready for an exit.
  3. Either will be able to stop quicker than you can so it makes zero difference.
  4. Doesn't matter what you buy you're braking performance is still going to be less than most cars on the road.

    All you can really do is try and avoid the need to emergency brake in the first place, and that comes down to being able to read the road and ride at an appropriate speed to ensure you always have enough space around you. The proof is in how few Police or Paramedic motorcycles ever slam into the side/back of other vehicles.
  5. Cheers all, I sort of guessed that might be the general response... I suppose what I really want, and what I can't have, is the assurance that if all hell breaks loose I have every possible advantage in my favour.
    RE: the ER5 and GS500, Im not into naked bikes. If I was I'd get a CB400.

    Re: Police and Ambo's - they have lots of visibility and drivers being on their best behaviour in their favour. If I mention that an off duty cop was the culprit who drove out in front of me at speed without looking, it'll perhaps show that even they are very fallible. I reckon we just dont hear about cop's accidents unless someone dies (based on how my accident was almost 'covered up').
  6. Hard to say without knowing the RVF disc size and the swept area of both systems. On specs, it would seem to favour the RVF BUT, it depends a LOT on the quality and condition of the components. The Suzuki is definitely built down to a price in regard to components. You can probably improve either with different (better) pad compounds or even whole systems.

    Longer wheelbase would make the SV a little more stable in hard braking.
  7. #7 ResmeN, Feb 10, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 13, 2015
  8. Which is ironic given the ABS version of the CB400 gives most riders a definite advantage in braking.

    As for Police/Ambo bikes my point was that they have a high level of training, and seem to have a lot more self control than many riders out there (at least when on duty).
  9. If you're worried about crashing, get a car.

    Buy the one that rocks your world & learn how to e brake.
  10. GS500F is faired. just saying.
  11. The SV650 has a great reputation , I would reccomend it highly. cant say much about the other.

  12. I owned an SV650S and rode yak's rvf400 back to back with it. How it was learner legal I'll never know, power output was almost identical.

    Your ability to brake is 10x more significant than what type of bike you're on. That said purely because the riding position is more extreme on the RVF you might have better chances of stopping purely because more weight is over the front.

    You are right, the RVF is a best in its class sort of bike designed for performance, the SV is a budget bike in comparison.

    The RVF would be more suited to spirited riding, the SV would be better for commuting/touring/allround duties.

    Go for whichever gives you more smiles-per-mile.
  13. I say the SV because of the longer wheelbase makes it easier to brake harder.

    Arent there SVs with ABS available?
  14. More good points made, the main thing I'd just toss into the mix is I'm not really in love with either bike... Or any lams legal bike. The rvf is about the closest to what I actually want (daytona 675) but the age of them is a worry and the overinflated price of them sucks when I can see loads of much newer and better sport bikes for sale for less (r6's and cbr600rr's etc).
    The sv is annoying that it isn't fully faired, and also the restricted ecu makes it pretty bloody anemic. However if I had one I would get an unrestricted ecu on ebay for 'track use'. Oh yeah and the ABS on the SV650s isnt available onthe LAMs ones as far as Im aware..
    The gs500f is way too heavy and it seems obvious to me that Suzuki deliberately made it look awkward so that it wouldn't steal any shine from the gsxr range. I realize the sv is also a pretty gawky looking thing but at least it's not trying to be a gsxr.

    Tough decisions... Maybe I just wait till October and get the 675. But then I'll be jumping on a bike with 4x more hp than anything I've ever ridden and without much practice for almost a year. This is what's wrong with the whole lams setup, why not just allow those over 25 with lots of driving experience to get onto a real bike sooner?
  15. Get an MZ TS250 and learn to survive without any brakes at all :twisted:.
  16. You wrote one bike off but because you have driving experience you should have a bigger bike?

    The SV or the RVF are fast bikes, if you can outride them in the next 8 months you are a very good rider.

    The SV has aftermarket full fairings available. I owned a SV1000 with them.
  17. If you're going to crash again, get the SV for better parts availability.

    If not, get the RVF because it's a screaming V4.

    For the amount of time you're planning to have whatever you decide on, I don't think it really matters a whole lot other than maybe resale value, if not how easily it will re-sell.
  18. Vertical C - Let me know next time you're coming down my street and I'll drive a turbo STi Liberty out at full speed without warning in front of you and see how well you fare.

    My point was that the LAMs creates a stupid double economy of bikes: ugly, old and mostly naked bikes for learners... at about 3x the price of what they're worth. I honestly wouldn't have wanted to get straight onto a 600+cc supersport bike on my L's, but by the time I got my P's I could hold my own amongst guys on the old pac hwy. So yes, I think that once the P test is done, and IF there is a lot of general road experience, I do think it should be open to whatever bike. I'd also support a 'buy any bike you want but you have to fit a throttle restrictor' kind of arrangment. Of course, idiots would remove them, but make it a $10K fine and bike confiscation if caught and let them suffer.

    My other thing is - Im not out there trying to break speed records, I just feel like riding a moto is something that should fulfil wants, not needs. As in, nobody needs an R1 or Duc 1048 to commute, etc, they buy them both for the object of desire, and the power. So Im not chasing power so much as I want to own and enjoy a beautiful machine, something that makes you look back at it after a ride and smile... and LAMs bikes aint that.

    Wayne: yeah Im not PLANNING to crash again, if I do get put into a situation like the last time I'll be hanging up the helmet I think.
  19. You didn't say, or I missed which LAMs state you're in.

    Look throught the list of bikes that apply to you, because it's a pretty diverse one, and think a bit more outside the square.

    Some of the torquey and sometimes light twins and singles are pretty lively thanks to lots of torque relative to mild horsepower outputs.

    Things like a Ducati Monster 620 and some of the bigger single roadies or Motards can commute and carve up the streets brilliantly. There was a Sachs 650 Roadster on here recently, which would be a neat little beast to get around on. Also they're not out there and for sale in the thousands like the more popular models. Not that they aren't any good, but when there's 110 of the same model you're selling on Bikesales, you'll sometimes struggle to bargain hard because a buyer has so many others to choose from (great if you're buying to keep for a while though).
  20. +10,000,000

    Bikes are for better or worse approximately 18 hojillion times more dependant on the rider's skill, technique, foresight and intuition than a car.

    If I get time I can dig up an old ABS vs non-ABS study which uses a range of different rider skills (everyone from professional racers to fresh learner-riders); it's a great demonstration of the effect rider skill and proficiency has on braking distance in dry, wet and tricky conditions.