Plain Jane with a great personality.
I have recently acquired a 2007 Vstrom 650. I have owned a few bikes and was hesitant about this one, because I had never quite got past her plain exterior. For me a bike is like a women. I need to have that initial attraction in order to initiate a relationship. That probably makes me sound shallow, but I'm convinced most of us operate that way, at least unconsciously. It's the same situation with the Vstrom. I had found all the reviews and articles singing her praises, from the sparkling engine to its comfort, but I just saw a plain Jane. But...I decided to buck my trend and lashed out, albeit tentatively, and purchased a 2007 non-abs Wee Vee in stunning red, in immaculate condition, with panniers, givi box and a whiz bang after-market windshield. We met in the garage and I must say all my fears about her looks began to surface, like a bad Chicko roll after riding a roller coaster. She's lucky the light was poor. I ummed and arghed, I scratched my chin and wiped the back of my neck, I looked under her skirt and checked out her face. Everything seemed in the right place. What to do? Then I thought, 'you only live once and it's only 5k, so what the hell. At least then I can cross the old girl off my bucket list'. I shook hands with her father, handed over the dowry and the new bride and I set off. I must say my initial Impressions were not positive. Seemed to tall, bit gangly, a bit flighty, a tad awkward. I was underwhelmed. I got home and thought ' What have I done' you know, like waking up next to the girl that looked delightful in the club and realising that the lighting made her look like Princess Fiona, but dawn brings Shrek. I sat there shaking my head. Oh, well, you live and you learn. It's a 5k lesson. Cheap in the long run, I mused. Yet over the next couple of days, then weeks, she really began to grow on me. The initial fears gave away to a kind of eager anticipation, a desire to be around her, to spend time with her. Like a plain Jane who grows more attractive the more you grow to know her, to fall in love with her personality, to look forward to seeing her, to finding yourself talking about her to others, to shopping for her...yep, I think I'm in love. The reviews were right, people: she ain't the prettiest, nor the fastest, nor does she have all the bling her cousins have, but by God, she is the girl for me. Fast off the mark, comfortable in the sack, nimble as a ballerina, and doesn't skull her fuel. And it's as if she knows all this and is just so damned grateful to be on a date she tries her darnedest to please her beau. And she does. Baby, I luv ya. And you will too. Go grab her sister and enjoy pure, unadulterated fun. Maybe, just maybe, this is a marriage that will do more than survive, it will thrive. August 26th 2017 Update: Recently purchased 2012 VStrom 650 with ABS. Really smooth through the gears, with plenty of get up and go. It's not gonna pull your arms out but will take most cars at the lights. Very comfortable seat and fantastic suspension just soaks up the bumps. The dash provides any and all important info, including time, temp, gear, fuel, etc. I get close to 500 kms with $20 and the ride is the best of all the bikes I've owned and I've owned a few! Sits on 110kms at 4500revs, which is fantastic. You sit nice and high and can see over most cars around you. Brakes superb and feels very planted in the road, especially round corners, which it takes as if on an invisible rail. Can't really fault it. Bullit proof engine, looks nice, fast enough, loads of accessories, plenty of spare parts and a worldwide fan club. Do yourself a favour and get one.
2006 model, suffers from the vstrom surging
I bought a second hand 2006 model with 24,000km. I had the throttle bodies synced and throttle position sensor adjusted. It suffers from the Vstrom surging (650 and 1000 suffer from it, google it). Apart from that, it is a very comfortable bike, gets to 110km easily and very smooth. Heaps of aftermarket parts for it. There are lots of forums as well. stromtooper.com and vstrom.info The surging seems to be a common problem due to running very lean in low revs.
Also, they have the fuel filter in the tank. Some years models have a non r...eplaceable filter that may require a new pump as well. I have just done the conversion to an external fuel filter so I can change it whenever I want to. Only certain year models can do the conversion as you have to drill a hole in the OEM filter housing in the tank. Don't know why Suzuki went with this type of pump/filter combination.
Test ride on v strom 650 cc
I don't own v strom , l have an 800cc Suzuki cruiser 2008 model , looking to buy a v strom 650 or 1000 .I have tried th e m both from local dealer , l think the 650 will be quick enough for me ,looks good have good rep , is a bit tall for me as l am only 5.10 but this looks good as a replacement for the cruiser. Will look for someone to buy my cruised as the dealer is not keen to trade .Why ? Bike perfect with 17000 ks but that's the way dealers are
Best allrounder, great bike.
I have a 2012 model 650 and love it. I purchased the bike second hand with 5000 k's and have just clicked over 12000. I have owned more bikes than I would care to remember. The V-strom is by far the best bike I have owned. My only gripe was the screen which buffeted me worse than my GS 800. I made up 2 brackets, moved the screen forward 50mm & lowered it the same and its perfect, no buffeting.
The bike is economical (3.5 liters/hundred according to computer) has a great riding position for me and plenty of torque. I have owned bikes with dou...
Probably Best Bike Out There
I think the DL-650 V-Strom it is one of the best bike out there.
The bike is dull, ugly and has not much power but it makes up by being very comfortable, large tank, can do a bit of off road, has ABS, it's very stable, has all the right features for the long run and most important a bullet proof engine!
I got my bike at 1500Km's and I plan to keep it for at least 200.000km's.
It is not a cheap bike, at least not compared to the DR650 but will make up for the bullet proof engine. Adding extras will cost at least $2000.
Simply Fabulous Allrounder bike!
This bike is fast, responsive, handles beautifully and sounds just fantastic.
And better still it doesn't cost a bomb either.
I particularly like the large fuel tank, the easy to read instrumentation and the great torque range of the engine. Whether it's ticking along at 3000-4000 RPM or screaming at the redline of 10000, the engine delivers smooth power.
The ABS adds to the safety of the bike and a learner certified version is available.
It's hard to find anything wrong with this bike - hence it was rated in a number of magazines as the be...
45 years riding, 'Strom is a great bike!
On my third 'Strom, put over 180 000 kms, 50 000 off pavement, from Labardor, Canada to Honduras, Central America - twice. Not one problem. I've owned BMW's and other bikes. The DL 650 isn't a perfect bike, but it's the perfect bike for me. I'd also add that every model improvement addressed the minor issues with the model before - and the new 2018 model seems to be the best of all . . .
who needs a beemer?
97,000km mostly on dirt and still going strong. Front sprocket one tooth bigger is perfect for me. I give it a hard time every time. Replaced sprocket seal due to dirt riding. Got some dirty juice and had to dismantle fuel pump to flush it out. Did it myself, carefully! Not planning to replace it anytime soon as engine still quiet and doesn't use oil. Half price of anything comparable, but I haven't been passed by one yet!
It's a keeper
I have the 2012 model 650 and it has now done 60,000km. I recently put it on the dyno and it was showing 70 HP which is about 2 to 3 HP more than quoted when new. I do have a DNA air filter fitted and my standard pipe has been opened up considerably but I was still pretty happy with the dyno result after 60k.
The bike has never ever given a problem except 3 weeks after purchase I noticed a lower engine mount was broken. Brisbane Virginia dealer was not interested when I told them so I bought a hi tensile bolt from a bolt supply joint for $...
Great for road use, handles well, good on fuel, comfortable on long trips, plenty of power for the size. I found the 650 was a better ride than the 1000..
Bad pionts, ABS in my opinion is dangerous on dirt or gravel roads and the rims are increadably soft. I wrote both back and front rims off by simply riding down a gravel road (bike hasn't even done 1000klm's) Suzuki also don't like paying up for waranties. Other than that the bike is a great ride.
comfort, fuel economy,
ABS brakes, rims, Sukuki waranty claims
Great bike for all occasions
Had my wee storm since new in 2007. It has done it all from commuting, touring and the bush. Fuel economy is excellent and riding position good. I have added crash bars, hand protection and heated gripes. Mine has just hit 40,000 kms with no mechanical or electrical issues.
I changed the windscreen for a smaller unit to reduce buffeting and increased the front sprocket by one tooth. The bike is so good that I can't bring myself to upgrade. I have dropped it in the bush a couple of times at low speed with no problems.
Price, reliable, parts availability.
A truly Great Bike
I have now done 7000ks on my 2012 vstrom 650 including more the 600ks in a day more than once. I have had many large touring bikes over the last 47 years including a Goldwing and the previous model vstrom 1000 and I can say with authority the 2012 650 vstrom is a very special machine.
Bullet proof handling comfort and reliability.
What a great bike
Got my 2012 model at a bargain price and couldnt believe my luck ... ive been in the biking scene forever and had hundreds of bikes and this is "the" best all round bike ive ever had [ it really is that good ] it handles , comfortable [ one and two up ] smooth with no vibes, excellent on fuel, ..went touring around norther france and then camping up scotland ..it just did everything with ease ...i love it ..
Services every 3,500mls is a pain
One great bike!
One great bike! I have bought the 2008 model with ABS. Its very economical, seating position is very comfortable. I have put 62,000Km in 2 years, riding from sunny days to freezing cold thunderstorm, never let me down. The ABS kicks in when needed, giving some feedback to your left foot (rear brake) and generally you can just feel it acting, this is good as it gives you a sense of how much to modulate braking. It is incredibly stable, I have hit pot holes while leaning on a corner and it just kept going, as if nothing had happened.
Just about everything.
The screen could be a little bit better, mounting get noisy after a while.
I purchased a non abs model new in 2008 and have been completely happy with the bikes performance. Have toured throughout NSW and it is a hoot on Thunderbolts Way with its excellent ground clearance in corners and strong engine. The bike has been fitted with Hepco and Becker engine bars and centre stand, together with a givi top box and suzuki hand guards to to improve touring performance. Highly recommended if you cannot afford a BMW GS1200.
Fabulous engine, very comfortable riding position, economical and heap of accessories available to enhance touring
Should come with a centre stand and have found access to airfilter is difficult.
I have travelled 13000kms in six months and had no problems at all. I rarely carry a pillion so the power is more than adequate. Original tyres are probably good for another couple of thousand kms especially the front. This is a very comfortable touring bike whose touring range is limited only by those who you ride with. The looks grow on you but remain strange compared to the norm. The bike is roomy and comfortable for those days where you spend all day in the saddle,a sheep skin helps here. I have added heated grips and a power outlet and...a Hepco Becker centre stand to make my v strom a very comfortable long distance tourer. Comfortable riding position. Excellent fuel economy up to 25km/L at legal speed limit. Good touring range. Great value for money. plenty of after market stuff available. Light weight. Easy to load, good luggage rack. Good fun in the twisties even on original tyres. Fantastic headlights. Air filter access is a pain. Lack of standard centre stand.
Beats spending heaps more dollars buying a new bmw, and, you probably get more fun out of it as well.
after reading other ratings I probrably did what most other guys did, added crashbars,centre stand,bark busters,changed the fitting for the screen,put different brackets on,bash plate on and the most important thing that I did was to lower the bike by dropping the back by three quarters of an inch (brackets from aussie bikers)(called dog bones-check em out), lowered the font forks same and it turned it into the best handling bike I,ve had in ye...
Love my bike and owned it for 18 months now and done 30,000km on it.If i had to replace it I would struggle to pick anything else. I run Michelin Road Pilot 2 tyres on mine and still travel dirt roads. I also commute 100km every day I have to go into the office with the bike and it has never missed a beat. Got nearly 25,000km out of last back tyre.
Great all round bike.cheap to run fun to ride anywhere. Good riding position. Very good screen when set up properly. Great headlights for night riding.
Seat is to wide, very top heavy they should take a hint from BMW and put the tank under the seat. Lots of plastic very easily damaged. Screen could be a hole lot easier to adjust with some thought from Suzuki
Great bike I have a 07 and done over 20,000 klm and love the bike more and more every day.Have just completed a 3500klm trip to Townsville and back and did some off road. I could not fault the Vstrom. It is a fantastic all round bike.
Great performance, cornering and touring capability. fuel range.
not much - could be better off road
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Questions & Answers
I need help guys I own a 650xt 2018 and my misses finds the passenger seat very uncomfortable, I don’t mind my seat so what are the options what have you guys done, I was considering getting a passenger air hawk cushion or a complete touring seat which won’t be cheap or get my standard seat redone, and if none of those work maybe just change the misses.
What is the ABS system like on dirt roads and steep inclines. Thanks Al.
Not bad on dirt roads, its not intrusive and you don't really notice the ABS. Unfortunately the same cannot be said for steep inclines when going downhill on gravel. I have had a couple of scares on gravel which has caused me to lose confidence when descending and I tend to be a bit more cautious these days - probably a good thing. The bike is a 2017 XT version fitted with Shinko 805's which are great for gravel though can be slippery in wet and smooth conditions. .. Nick
Thanks for that Nick, I am using Heidenau Scouts on my F650 GS which are brilliant on both surfaces. I need to upgrade my bike but don't like the idea of ABS on our mountain dirt roads. Someone has suggested, tongue in cheek, that I would only need to remove the ABS fuse. Food for thought. cheers Al.
I have had issues on steeper gravel roads once and so I made the modification found on vstrom.info website. https://www.vstrom.info/Smf/index.php/topic,8792.0.html
It took about 2-3 hours to do it properly and mount a handlebar switch. The cost was about $10 all up. I can switch on/off on the fly at any speed. The ABS light will come on when switched off and go off when switched back on. It works perfectly. I found that placing the switch on the left side of the handlebar worked best as your left hand is generally freer than right hand to operate the switch on the go.
I'm using Pirelli Scorpion Rally STR tyres. They are really a great tire for the V-Strom, grippy on road and pretty damn good on gravel inspiring confidence. Not fantastic on soft sand though.
I am looking at getting a brand Strom 650xt just need to know can I cruise at 110ks 2 up for long distances I wheigh 90kgs and my girlfriend is around 55kgs
Yes very much so I have the lams bike and can do 160 km on the track.
The other thing is they go round corners very well.
I am 54 years old and prefer comfort. The bike is fantastic for one up, I do 900-1200km a day, no problem. It could do two up but you'd probably get sick of noise and vibrations. Get a 1000 V-Strom. Get some cruise control device as well.
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