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USD forks indeed.
We have them up here this year. Haven't seen one on the road but the local dealer has an orange one out front. Looks really tall but has average seat height. The gauges are the one dial minimalist variety but it is a sharp-looking bike.
 

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i also notice the ZX series inspired swingarm... very nice, very nice...

it's kind of an ugly duckling really, but it seems feature rich...
 

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Considering it's NEW FOR 2008, very hard to find parts for it. I would wait a year or two before purchasing it to see how market reacts to it (I'm doing the same thing for Windows Vista.)
 

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Discussion Starter #7
nasfaw said:
Considering it's NEW FOR 2008, very hard to find parts for it. I would wait a year or two before purchasing it to see how market reacts to it (I'm doing the same thing for Windows Vista.)
Well it was introduced in Canada and overseas last year. It was my understanding that it's quite a nice bike:

www.kawasaki.co.uk/versys/default.asp?Sub=47F70EE0
 

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I had a test ride on the Versys a couple months back and it was a blast. Noticeably more torque than the EX500 and the riding position is very similar to a dirt bike. The windscreen does a great job of blocking the wind and no buffeting. I was able to get the front wheel up in 1st and 2nd gears partially due the fact that the bike sits up so high I think. The instrumentation was nice too. It has a fuel gauge, clock, dual trip meters as well as the speedo and tach.
The quality of components on the Versys is notably better than the Ninja 650R and it is more fun to ride. I was very disappointed the the 650R. It really did nothing for me. The way I have my EX500 tuned is way more fun than the stock 650R.
So to summarize I highly recommend the new Versys. I am considering one for my next bike as it is a tie for the most fun bike I have ever ridden. I just have to keep my eyes open for a good used one...
 

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IMHO that front end is butt ugly. Maybe it takes some getting used to.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
It's funny how people either hate the look of the bike or like it quite a bit; not a lot of in-betweens. Reminds me of the attitude with the Suzuki V-Strom, which I also like.
 

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Lochlyn Deckard said:
It's funny how people either hate the look of the bike or like it quite a bit; not a lot of in-betweens. Reminds me of the attitude with the Suzuki V-Strom, which I also like.
Same here

It looks like an alien, has no fairings, is 6kg heavier than the EX I.E. It's light, has a 650 engine, lots of suspension travel and an has a belly exhaust. It's the perfect bike for me ;D

I love that ride, it's a serious contender for my next machine.. If I ever change my EX that is ;)

Over here, the price difference between the VERsatile SYStem (Ver-sys) and the 650 is 300$ only..

It's aimed directly at the V-Strom 650
 

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Yup it is a direct competitior in the adventure touring class to the V-strom, the BMW GS650, Buell ullysies and a host of other bikes, which are all butt ugly too. these bikes arn't about the looks, its all about functionality, and from reading the specs it's pretty much full of functional.

The big questions That i would like know is

1) how much can the electrical handle (GPS, extra lights, heated equiptment, all that long distance all year ride in any weather while playing on your laptop and charging your cellphone at the same time electrical stuff
2)Max weight it can handle
3)fuel range
4)did the designers plan for luggage? (saddle bag mounts, rear rack etc...)
5)How does it handle off road, one of the KLR's downfalls is that it isn't great on road, the Ullyssies isn't that competant off road, it is really hard to find a bike that is good at both. Somehow BMW manages to find that happy medium though
6)Maintenance, how far apart are the minor and major service intervals, for a long haul adventure bike, like this is aiming to be the longer the service intervals are the better. being a very close relative of the 650R I would assume that they are similar or the same.

I have a bunch more questions, but that's off the top of my head. personally if you are going to bu a bike for adventure touring like this is intended to be i would just go with the BMW GS650, it has a proven track record and you can get parts worldwide with little problem.
 

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It doesn't look like a centerstand will work. To bad that's almost a show stopper for me. All good questions. The same ones I'm asking
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Some of the stuff I've come across for luggage and accessories:

www.kawasaki.co.uk/versys/default.asp?Sub=6543773

www.kawasaki.ca/accessories/index.php?mid=116

www.givi.co.uk/per_la_tua_moto.asp?co_id=18313&lang=en

I doubt that the bike is really meant for any serious off road driving; especially with the position on the muffler. Although I guess the Ulysses has it there as well.

I've been following some of the forums about the 2008 KLR 650 and it's been redesigned. Most of the reviews are saying it's a much better bike on the highway than its predecessor. The new fairing apparently also gives much better protection from the wind. But it's still 35 inches in seat height. I'm 5'11" and I still can't quite flat foot the bike. I wish it was lower. The Versys is 33.1 inches.

I'm a big fan of the BMW F 650 GS but again a lot of people hate them. It's got a seat height at 30.7 inches. I thought it used to be much more expensive but it's about $7100. Still it's about $2000 more than the KLR 650 and $200 more than the Versys. BMW dealers are few and far between. The two nearest to my home are both about 2 hours away. I always figured that the maintenance costs and parts costs would always be higher for anything BMW over a Japanese bike. Maybe that's wrong. But it seems like a lot of the BMW things are over priced.

I forgot to add that there's an extensive thread about the Versys here:

www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=180447&highlight=versys
 

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you are right they are overpriced, but the parts sales network is there, especially if you travel overseas. Their parts are available everywhere from south africa to prudhoe bay alaska and everywhere in between, most of the dealerships are in major cities though. Plus they are more than willing to ship to any adress around the world. the other main advantage is that teh bike is pretty simple and straight forward and can pretty much be disasembled and rebuilt with the tools in the tool bag that comes with the bike. Plus the reliability factor is there, they just keep going and going
 

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I dunno thought it seemed more like SV650 competition than V-Strom, and for that matter the SV650 costs less- although the Versys definitely has the better suspension. Seems like some version of the 650 Ninja engine. What kind of MPG does the 650 Ninja get? Five gallon tank should give the Versys some range.
 

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Rider got 43-48 MPG on the 650R.

650R, everytime I sit on it, make me think, "this fits me."

Still have no ridden one yet though. Thinking it might replace the 500.
 

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Yeh the 650r is the sv650 fighter, not this bike, this is a dual sport with an empahsys on street, just like the vstrom
 
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