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Upgrade - Kawasaki VN900

Discussion in 'Bike Reviews, Questions and Suggestions' at netrider.net.au started by MLC, Dec 21, 2006.

  1. It's time to upgrade.

    I love my VT250C and have held on to it for 4 years because it has been such a great ride as my daily commuter to and from work but while I still need to get to and from work each day, I now also need to do frequent highway trips and I find a 250 just doesn't have enough grunt to maintain the speed limit with some of those country hills and head winds.

    After a long search for a suitable replacement I have tentatively settled on the Kawasaki VN900 as my choice of replacement. The price is reasonable. The look is good (though most of the chrome is plastic). The performance and handling is all that I am likely to need. It has good range (approx 300k on 18 litre tank) and felt pretty good on a test ride. I don't think I will be doing much lane splitting for a while though as it felt so much bigger (wider) than the VT250C. All being well I will probably pick one up mid January (don't want to pay rego each year this close to Xmas) but before making a final commitment, I would be interested to hear from other netriders who may have opinions or experiences related to the VN900.
  2. I had made pretty much the same decision, then went looking further.
    Have you looked at the Suzuki Boulevarde series? C50 or M50?
    I did, and made my choice straight away.
    The C50 is the full dresser sorta thing, while the M50 is a big twin muscle bike style. neither are sport bikes. The M50 is black/minor chrome, the C50 is a whole lotta chrome.

    But, Liquid Cooled, Shaft drive, and Fuel injection.
    Same power putput as VN900, and I got mine for 10k ride away! NEW!

    5 weeks later, I have done 2000kms, and no regrets at all.
    The more research I did, ie Motorcycle-Journal, motorcycle cruiser.com, etc, the M50 was a better bike for less money. It won all the mid size cruiser awards this year in the US.

    Have a look, PM me if you are really keen, I live in FTG, and you can have a proper look at one if you want.
  3. Thanks for that. I did go to have a look at what Suzuki had to offer at the FTG dealership but they didn't seem to be interested in serving me so after looking around the show room for 15 minutes including close inspection of a C50 in the show room I wandered back out.

    I am interested in the what you say about a Suzi 800 having the same power output as a Kwaka 900.

    I will do a little more research and may PM you if I would like to have a closer look.
  4. No worries - any time.
    Curious about the sales staff at BTX though, it is THEIR business, and they have a good reputation!.

    Have been on a few rides with guys on older VN800's, and the M50 leaves them for dead.

    I do like the styling on the VN900 though, it had the appearance of a much larger bike. The ground clearance is nothing startling on the 900 though, the boards are fold up types.

    I have debadged the m50, drilled the pipes, removed the centre baffle, removed the pillion seat, and I have braided front lines and an aftermarket ECU on order. Now I have 2000kms on it, it has changed dramatically in performance. (for the better). The M50 has a higher final drive ratio than the C50, but the C50 has a better seat. Numb bum sets in after 1 1/2 hrs on the M.

    PM me, and have a look. It may not be your cup of tea, so better to find out before you lay down the large bikkies.
  5. Mate i have the C50, have added the low back rest, some chrome bling bits from the states and removed the baffles. Have almost done 2000k and hey, its no where as powerful as the 12, but i love it. I should have gotten one long before i did. If you are interested in checking mine out also, i am happy to arrange something.
  6. Guys, thanks for your replies and offers. I gave BTX another go and took a c50 out for half an hour on Saturday. The guys at BTX were great and I must have just struck them on a bad day last time. The bike is as nice as it looks but ... The speedo was calabrated in MPH so it took me a long time to get it up to 100 :shock: :twisted:. Only kidding. Actually it was calibrated to MPH but I got no where near 100. I probably only got it to around 80/90 KPH. I found that there was a lot of vibration through the foot boards. I get a little too on my current bike but this was enough to become a noticable problem by the time I had been out for about 20 minutes.

    It's not underpowered and probably would have enough get up and go for my needs but it doesn't seem to have as much as the 900. And nor would I expect it to. The left hand mirror came loose shortly after leaving the dealer and I managed to scrape something (probably the foot boards) several times going up and down the mountain.

    As much as I would like to make a few customisations to whatever I get, and the C50 is definately cheaper so I have to give it serious consideration, I doubt that I will have the dollars to make anythging like the changes you guys are talking about.

    Thanks again for your offers. Not everyone would be so willing to let someone they don't know take their bike for a test ride.
  7. Thankyou for the thoughts.

    At 10k rideaway, there is not much else out there for those dollars.

    I have spent less than $400 on my M50, and added braided lines, a Fuel Processor, modded the seat, modded the exhaust and done some other minor changes.
    The m50 has greater ground clearance, and is lighter than the C50.
    I will be keeping it until I finish paying for it, so expect 2 yrs+ before I look for something else. Bigger - always bigger. LOL.

    Let us know what you decide on, things change all the time, with new models being added/subtracted. What was a good choice one year becomes less so the next year. I am in no position to tell anyone what they should ride! But I am sure enjoying mine!