Our little sons and daughters, at a certain age, delight in trying on their parents’ clothes, trying on our clothes as a mimicry. “I’m ready to go to work with you,” says the son, swimming positively in a jacket and tie, his feet splashing in your best dress shoes. You’re being silly, of course, but there’s an underlying desire to be you, to try out those daily responsibilities that seem so much cooler than school. (Then, of course, they become teenagers.)
It is not too difficult to see the Kawasaki Versys 650 and the Suzuki V-Strom 650 in the same way. Like smaller versions of larger motorcycles, literally in the sense that there are 1,000cc examples of both in their respective lineups and figuratively in the broader motorcycle scheme, from Aprilia’s sleek Caponord to the brutal BMW’s R1200GS Adventure, exist to offer smaller, lighter, less expensive entry points to this ever-growing category. It is true that they fit better with clothes, but there is still something charming about a twin 650cc motorcycle trying on the outfit of a large motorcycle for the outdoors.
However: Welcome, children. Now put our Cole Haans back on and hang those jackets where you found them. Suzuki V-Strom 650XT © Motorcyclist
This is a semi-obvious motorcycle pairing, one we made three years later. Suzuki It gave the V-Strom a bite and a fold for the 2012 model year. Back then, the Wee Strom got a new, smoother-shaped body, engine tuning to take the 645 90-degree V-twin engine. cc to Gladius specification (now SFV650), revised instruments, and a thicker, taller saddle. Its aluminum beam frame, semi-off-road wheel combination (a 19-inch front leads to a 17-inch rear, in now conventional large dual sport widths), high-mount single exhaust (on the right), and exposed underneath of the bits are classic V-Strom elements. Because the smallest Strom was always the best seller, Suzuki was careful not to stray too far from a winning formula. AD
Today, the V-Strom exists in three basic packages: Basic, Adventure, and XT, all with standard ABS. For the essential Wee, the Adventure adds aluminum panniers on excruciatingly wide racks that combine for 82 liters of storage, plus a small wind deflector on the windshield, center stand, and a “crash” bar on each lower flank. For the XT, keep all that Adventure stuff but substitute the wire-spoke wheels for the cast aluminum items; Their center flange design with inner nipple allows them to operate without a tube. When you’re done, prepare to pay $ 10,399, which is $ 1,850 more than the base V-Strom 650 ($ 350 of that comes from the wheels) and, too, a good deal.
Kawasaki did a lot more for the 2015 Versys 650. In case you missed our First Ride review in the April issue, note that the Versys now has a completely new bodywork following the Ninja sports bike silhouette, updated suspension, minor adjustments to engine and exhaust system provided. to unleash more power and, finally, greatly improved brake components. ABS is standard on both the base Versys and LT, which include Kawasaki’s 28-liter hard quick-release bags (each) that are ignition-tight and color-matched. Also part of the updates: a new windshield that adjusts without tools and a larger half-gallon fuel tank, now at a generous 5.5 gallons. Shout the deal horn: The entry-level Versys, with ABS, costs $ 7,999, while the LT, which adds saddlebags and hand guards, costs just $ 8,699.
You can’t go wrong looking at these motorcycles together and wondering if they’re really on the same wavelength. The V-Strom looks like a world traveler’s part, now that it has true spoked wheels and rugged looking metal panniers. A tall sports bike is how you would describe the Versys, although it has only a hint of adventure bike to the styling, especially the tall, narrow fairing, long-travel suspension, and …