You're right ... might help future riders considering the KLR or other oversized and overweight 650 class bikes.
IMHO, no 650 class bike is well suited for a Women 5'2" ... and a lot of not so strong guys could have trouble too ... I know I did. I've known a few Women riding KLR's ... all are over 5' 9" and HELLA STRONG ... with BIG strong legs.
Unless the girlfriend is a Russian weight lifter she won't be happy when the KLR tips over ... or when it pins her to the ground. I once owned a '98 KLR ... and struggled picking it up when loaded in the dirt. During those years I could bench press 230 lbs. (5' 6", 150 lbs. back then).
No matter how low the KLR is ... it's just not right unless the rider is very experienced on heavy bikes and good in the dirt ... and I would include the iBMW in the NO column ... and it's twice the cost and around 40 lbs. heavier than the original KLR.
Discover 250's and don't look back.
There are several really good ones ... and none are as expensive as BMW's.
The Kawasaki KLX250 was mentioned above. I had one briefly as I sold it for a friend. Great little bike if you stay off the freeways. Look for Kawi in introduce a 300 version soon. (to fight off Honda's latest CRF250L)
Yamaha WR250R. Another really good one, but this one is quite expensive at around $8000 USD new. But has F.I. and more power and better suspension than most of the competition and is pretty tough and travel proven.
Honda CRF250L: This Thai built Honda (Honda have been in Thailand for over 20 years) is an all new model, just came out about a year ago. Folks rave about it. As a travel bike ... I would give it serious thought. Simple, fairly light, durable and affordable.
KLR250 or Super Sherpa 250: Both these older Kawasaki's are work horses and can do the job. Proven but not as modern as bikes listed above.
Yamaha XT250: Not available in street legal form everywhere but also a good choice if modified for travel.
Suzuki DRZ250: Not much known about this bike ... but it's a Suzuki ... so I'm betting its super good.
Why a 250?
A 250 will give the rider confidence. This is important for a lot of reasons, beyond the rider being only 5' 2". They'll have more FUN! Less stress!
If the 250 rider is traveling with a partner on a bigger bike ... well, he'll have to carry most of the gear and slow down a bit on big highways ... makes sense, right?
The old school nonsense about using the same bike to have common parts, IMO, no longer applies. Modern bikes are strong and reliable. I carry very few spare parts on my DR650 Suzuki beyond spare tubes, fork seals, spare master link, plugs and levers. That's it. 55,000 miles ... never a problem.
Besides, if the bike blows or has a serious issue ... you won't be rebuilding it on the side of the road anyway. You'll need to get to a shop for help and order needed parts.