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  #1  
Old 1 Aug 2010
mac1054's Avatar
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Kawasaki Versys - Advice please

Was having a look at one of these yesterday.

Anyone here riding one? I'd be interested in comments on how practical it is to cover both street and say 20% of the time on a forest service / dirt road.

Also, what aftermarket farkles did you add?

Love my 900 Custom but it only loves pavement.

Thanks? c?
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  #2  
Old 2 Aug 2010
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Really fun bike based on the test ride I did. Handles well, very neutral steering, spunky power, quite versatile. OK on mild forest tracks but Mud could cause problems unless you fit knobs. (very limited for front 17" tire)

Really a pure street bike or possibly a "bad road" bike. Bit heavy for off road but could be done if set up right. Great motor.

Good all round bike, lots of very happy owners doing all kinds of crazy mods on them. Check out ADV Rider Beasts forum, look for Versys thread. Tons of info, lots of pics.
Almost no one rides them here. (not macho enough I guess!?
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  #3  
Old 2 Aug 2010
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I'm a fan of these... 650 parrallel twin, Fuel injection.. Really easy to ride and plenty enough power. I used to sell them although they didn't sell too well.

Like Micky says though, it's a street bike but I dont think you would have problems with unsealed roads. It's comfortable and easy to ride. Not a bike you would really ride into the wilderness on though. The suspension is quite firm.

Another thing is that you can't overload them.. They wont actually sell you a back box for it because if you have a pillion and 2 small side panniers, a backbox overloads the subframe and could break..

If I was riding solo though, I wouldnt worry about it. I'd happily own one for commuting or Euro riding.


Maria41 on here has one... PM her.
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  #4  
Old 2 Aug 2010
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Hey there

Hi, I have one of those, 07 Versys.. Just took it round europe on a 3000 mile road trip, Panniers, top box and small seat pack, coped with everything I threw at it. Agree with the poster above about pillion and full luggage being too much for the rear subframe, luckily no one would dare go pillion with me . I did do a few miles of gravel tracks etc (mostly through campsites heh heh), it coped with those fine, I couldnt really test it, as off road riding is only something ive recently started getting into. There are plenty of U-tube videos showing it quite heavily off road.. I think its a 95% road bias though, to much plastic, underslung exhaust all work against its favour. That said if your only looking at 20% off road and consider some semi knobblies im sure it would be fine, my experience so far have been akin to riding a little mountain goat... it handled the alpine pass's as equally well as it sat at 85mph for a couple of hours on the motorways, all at 55mpg+ Standard farkles are rear hugger to protect the rather exposed rectifer, Pyramid fender extender for the front to protect the water cooled Rad, theres also various footpegs changes (lower, off road spikes etc).. and quite a few peoples tend to lower the seat as its leg length is better suited to 30inches+.. Most owners mess about changing the screen, spending $$$ before they realise that actually the standard is the best solution. Im 32" legs and find it more than comfatable.. I think its GWR is 386kgs, I only weigh 75kgs, and I add about 30kgs in luggage (including weight of panniers and top box), top box rack sits annoyingly high, so you get weave if its over loaded, Kawaski dont sell a pannier/top box combination rack as they advise against fitting both.. However Givi/sw motech do sell the combination.. Im on the hunt for a simple Alu pannier solution thats cheap. Overall its a good bike, and im looking to do some more touring later this year with a heavy off road bias (30%).. for that purpose im buying an old XT so I dont have to worry too much about the sound of splitting shiney when I drop it. Sorry for the waffle hope this helps! Oh this post also doubles as my intro post.. Hi Im Alan(Midgy) from Essex UK! EDIT - Stupid Forum took out all my page formatting, sorry for wall of text!
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  #5  
Old 2 Aug 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Midgy View Post
Hi, I have one of those, 07 Versys.. Just took it round europe on a 3000 mile road trip, Panniers, top box and small seat pack, coped with everything I threw at it. Agree with the poster above about pillion and full luggage being too much for the rear subframe, luckily no one would dare go pillion with me . I did do a few miles of gravel tracks etc (mostly through campsites heh heh), it coped with those fine, I couldnt really test it, as off road riding is only something ive recently started getting into. There are plenty of U-tube videos showing it quite heavily off road.. I think its a 95% road bias though, to much plastic, underslung exhaust all work against its favour. That said if your only looking at 20% off road and consider some semi knobblies im sure it would be fine, my experience so far have been akin to riding a little mountain goat... it handled the alpine pass's as equally well as it sat at 85mph for a couple of hours on the motorways, all at 55mpg+ Standard farkles are rear hugger to protect the rather exposed rectifer, Pyramid fender extender for the front to protect the water cooled Rad, theres also various footpegs changes (lower, off road spikes etc).. and quite a few peoples tend to lower the seat as its leg length is better suited to 30inches+.. Most owners mess about changing the screen, spending $$$ before they realise that actually the standard is the best solution. Im 32" legs and find it more than comfatable.. I think its GWR is 386kgs, I only weigh 75kgs, and I add about 30kgs in luggage (including weight of panniers and top box), top box rack sits annoyingly high, so you get weave if its over loaded, Kawaski dont sell a pannier/top box combination rack as they advise against fitting both.. However Givi/sw motech do sell the combination.. Im on the hunt for a simple Alu pannier solution thats cheap. Overall its a good bike, and im looking to do some more touring later this year with a heavy off road bias (30%).. for that purpose im buying an old XT so I dont have to worry too much about the sound of splitting shiney when I drop it. Sorry for the waffle hope this helps! Oh this post also doubles as my intro post.. Hi Im Alan(Midgy) from Essex UK! EDIT - Stupid Forum took out all my page formatting, sorry for wall of text!
welcome to the forum Alan..

fyi, theres a setting in the options to keep all your editing.
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1994 XR650L
2001 NX650 Dominator.

BMW Dealer Technician
Welder/Fabricator

Ushuaia - Colombia 2007/8
UK- South Africa 2010/11
India 2012
Yukon 2012
S.E Asia 2014
U.K - Magadan 2015
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  #6  
Old 2 Aug 2010
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VErsys

I've had a Versys for 2 years now and I love it.

It is a very capable bike both for touring on tarmac and through gravel roads. Although it is really a road bike. I don't know how it would handle on loose stuff (sand loose gravel, deep mud...). But I presume it may be possible to fit dual or off-road tyres on it?
It is incredibly well balanced. Last year we did a 3500 miles round trip from London to Tallin, back via Stokholm etc...

On many occasions I have had the back wheel sliding and skidding (I don't have ABS) but I never felt it was going down or that I was loosing control.

This year we went to costwold and did some of the very narrow single lanes mountains roads. Some of those had some incredibly steep and very narrow hair pin turns. I found those very challenging on such heavy machine, at first, but the bike was just superb. You just throw it in the extremely tight corners, keep the throttle open and there she goes.
The more I push myself and the bike, the safer I feel with it. It is an incredibly easy bike to ride, very forgiving, keen at anything you throw at her. I just love riding it!

I did not do any mods on the bike, except lowering it. In term of lugagge a bag strapped at the back is good. (I travel light). aS mentioned above, the standard wind screen is good.

Enjoy the V, you won't regret it!
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  #7  
Old 2 Aug 2010
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Just wanted to says thanks to all that took the time to reply to my questions. The feedback / comments are very much appreciated. Now to make some decisions....
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