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Thursday, July 31, 2014

Kawasaki Versys 650

The Kawasaki Versys 650, also known as the KLE650, is a middleweight motorcycle. It borrows design elements from dual-purpose bikes, standards, adventure-tourers and sportbikes; sharing characteristics of all, but not neatly fitting into any of those categories.  The name Versys is a portmanteau of the words versatile and system.  It was introduced by Kawasaki to the European and Canadian markets as a 2007 model and to the US market in 2008.  A California emissions compliant version was released in 2009. In 2010 new styling was applied to the headlight and farings and several functional changes made including enlarged mirrors and improved rubber engine mounts.
The Versys is based on the same platform as Kawasaki's other 650cc twin motorcycles, the Ninja 650R or ER6F and the ER-6n.  It shares the same electronics, engine, wheels, brakes and main frame as its siblings. Where it differs is in riding position, rear sub frame, suspension components, and engine tuning.
The Versys  650 cc liquid cooled, four-stroke, parallel-twin engine has been retuned for more bottom-end and mid-range torque.  This is achieved with different camshafts and fuel injection mapping.  These changes cause peak torque to occur at a lower engine speed and provide better throttle response in the 3,000 to 6,000 rpm range.  In addition a balance tube has been added between the exhaust headers to smooth out power delivery.  Power is 59.4 hp (44 kW) at 8,400 rpm, compared with the Ninja's 65.7 hp (49 kW) at 8,400 rpm.  Torque is 42lb·ft (57N·m), compared with the Ninja's 45.5lb·ft (61.7N·m).  Improving the engine's low and mid range response comes at the expense of a slight reduction in peak power however. The engine uses a 180 degree crankshaft.  This in turn requires an uneven firing interval (180 degrees, 540 degrees) which gives the engine note a distinctive "throbbing" sound at idle.
The suspension has greater vertical travel and more adjustability than the suspension on the ER-6 / Ninja 650R. On the front the thicker/stronger 41mm inverted front forks are externally adjustable for preload and rebound damping unlike the Ninja 650R/ER-6F's conventional and non adjustable forks. The right fork leg carries a damping cartridge while both legs contain springs. The rear shock absorber is adjustable for rebound damping.  Suspension preload is adjustable in the rear via a screw collar on the shock.  The rear shock/spring is directly connected, without linkages, to a non symmetrical, gull wing, aluminum swing arm instead of the more basic steel swing arm used on the Ninja and ER-6.
2008 Motorcycle of the Year Award by Motorcyclist Magazine.
2008 Best in Class "Allrounder class" award by Motor Cycle News
*General Bike Introduction, technical details and award is extracted from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kawasaki_Versys

A.      Accessories / customization
        i.            Gipro X-Type Gear Indicator – My review: I’ve used this since day 1 I purchase my bike and it never fail me after two years having it.  I strongly recommend even though the price is more to the expensive side.
      ii.            Boach Horn with relay – My review:  My personal opinion that every big biker should change their stock horn to a louder after market horn.  I use it mainly to chased away/scare dogs along the roads. 
    iii.            MRA Vario Touring Screen Windshield w Spoiler – My review: Since that this is a gift from the shop where I purchase my bike, I’m very happy with it without much complaint.  I simply love the adjustable spoiler as it can give me extra wind protection when I need it, put it down when it is too hot.
12V Socket with handle bar mount
     iv.            12V Socket c/w Wiring Kit + Motorcycle Mount – My review:  my main purpose of buying this is for my GPS and also to charge my phone when I’m doing a long distance touring. 
       v.            Pitbull 10mm Swingarm Spool – My review: simple and functioning product.  Good to have it when you have a paddock stand and during bike repair, servicing and wash.
Radiator grill

     vi.            Monster Energy Stainless Steel Radiator Grill – My review:  Not a real monster energy product.  It gives some protection from bugs and perhaps small pebbles had to does some modification as it vibrate too much and produce annoying sound.  Considering replacing it either with R&G or Evotech radiator grill.
Fender extender

   vii.            Pyramid Front Fender Extender – My review:  Functioning well in preventing your radiator from getting dirty from mud-splash and flying pebbles.
Barkbusters Hand guard
 viii.            Barkbuster Hand Guard with VPS cover – My review:  This will protect your brake and clutch level during a fall, it will also protect your hand when insects and cold wind during rain.  Must have item.

     ix.            Hepco & Becker Crash Bar – My review:  This is a very good set and functional engine protection.  Must have item.
       x.            Scottoiler V-System c/w Dual Injector kit – My review:  This is a automatic chain lubricant system.  On a long touring, I just fill up the lub-canister, set a drop per minute and ride for 1000km before I refill it again.  Recommended for a frequent tourer.
     xi.            Headlamp protector – My review:  Protected my headlight from damage twice already. One from hitting bird and second is from a bike fall. 
   xii.            SuperSprox Sprockets set (Front 15 Rear 47) – My review:  A nice looking and light weight sprocket set. 
 xiii.            Waterproof 2x8W Heavy Duty Low Profile 3-Channel LED Strobe Light System – My review:  This strobe light is very useful during a motorcycle convoy or during a solo ride.  Car/truck always fails to notice you but with this bright light, they will think twice.
 xiv.            R&G Rear Shock Tube Cover – My review: A very simple product that cover your rear shock from dirt. 
Hepco Becker engine guard 

   xv.            R&G Front Fork Protector – My review:  I can’t say anything much about this except that it looks neat and I bet it will function well as all the R&G products.
Triboseat for pillion rider. 

 xvi.            TRIBO SEAT – My review:  I bought this for my pillion rider, to prevent her from slipping when I accelerate or braking.
xvii.            KOSO Super Slim Style Volt Meter Blue Back Light – My review:  I would say that a voltmeter is a must have item on bike especially if you installed spot light, store light and other electrical accessories.  With this, I can monitor the electrical current that regulate through my bike.
xviii.            BMC Air Filter – My review:  After market air filter… throttle felt lighter… and cleaning air filter is easier.
 xix.            Mini-Strobe light system – My review: Some should be asking why do I have so many strobe lights on my bike.  This is only a small strobe or a daytime running light.  The power consumption is low compared to my strobe bar.
   xx.            Waterproof DC 12V 12W HID White LED Spotlight (780-870 Lumens) – My review: A cheap and functional spotlight that I frequently use on my night ride back to Miri from Sibu.  A useful daytime running light too.
 xxi.            Pro Taper Pillow Handlebar Grip Black/Grey/Black – My review:  Less handle bar vibration and felt much softer and comfortable compared to stock.
xxii.            LeoVince SBK Underbody EVOII Slip-On exhaust – My review:  I bought this from a friend (used item/second hand).  I simply love it, not too loud and fuel consumption is not affected too much.
B.     Maintenance
Servicing of any vehicle plays a very important role in ensuring that engine run smoothly and minimizing its wear and tear.  I have recorded every single service of my Versys 650 since 5 Mar 2012 until 9 February 2014.  To date my Versys has undergo, 13 general servicing of oil and filter change.  For the first 5,000km or the break in period, I’m using Shell Advance AX5 15W40 (mineral) motor oil (Price RM22/liter).  At this period I’ve made 4 oils and filter change to ensure that the hard break in processed run smoothly. 
After 5,000km, I change my motor oil to Castrol Power 15W-40 (price RM28/liter), a semi-synthetic oil.  I’m using this oil for 19,000km and it felt just fine.  This is cheap oil and it provides good protection for every 2,500-3,000km of change interval.  When my Versys reaching 27,000km on the ODO, I decided to change to MOTUL 5100 15W50 Technosynthese Ester motor oil for a much smoother ride and better protection. 
To date, I have spent a total amount of RM1, 283 for service (RM648 for filter and RM635 for oil).  The average oil change interval is calculated at 2,336km.  Based on the data above, the cost of servicing a Versys is calculated at RM0.04/km (all oil change are DIY at home)
Other than general servicing, replacement of wear and tear parts such as drive train and tire.  So far (ODO 30,000km) I have replaced worn out 2 sets of tire including the stock Dunlop (mileage 12,299km front & 7,850km rear [with pillion rider]) and Pirelli Scorpion Trail (mileage 12,164km front & 10,972km rear[no pillion rider as she is a rider now]).  Currently I’m using new Bridgestone BATTLAX T30F.  The data suggest that cost of tire for my Versys is RM0.11/km.

C.     Fuel consumption
Table below is showing my Versys 650 fuel consumption recorded since March 2012 till March 2014.  The average fuel consumption mention by Kawasaki for Versys 650 is around 22km/l.  Looking at my records, my Versys is doing quite well with average fuel economy of 21.84km per liter of petrol. 
Fuel Economy
21.84 km/L
17.06 km/L
33.41 km/L
Distance between fillups
211.68 km
54.00 km
430.00 km
Fillup Costs
RM 20.65
RM 5.70
RM 43.55
Cost per distance
RM 0.10 /km
RM 0.05 /km
RM 0.25 /km
Fuel Price
RON 95 (2012)
RM 1.90 /L
RON 95 (2013)
RM 2.10 /L
RON 97
RM 2.70 /L
Data recorded since Mar’2012 until Mar’2014    (ODOMETER from 0 km to 30,554 km
Posted by
from: http://3369adventure.blogspot.com/2014/03/a-honest-review-of-my-2012-kawasaki.html

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