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-   -   BMW 650gs V Suzuki 650 V-Strom (http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=199438)

Chocko 01-26-2007 01:26 AM

BMW 650gs V Suzuki 650 V-Strom
 
Hello all some time down the track I would like to buy a dual sports bike in the 650 class, I like both of these bikes both have pro's and con's for me the BM seat height is good for me as I only have short legs and I think it would be a bit better on dirt roads but the BM is also more expensive to buy and BM dearlers are far and few from where I live so I worry about servicing the bike.

Ok any feedback from owners of these bikes would be good maybe someone has owned both these bikes at sometime and have got a feeling which one was the best cheers.

Regards
Chocko.

PeterW 01-26-2007 02:45 AM

I've owned the older (carbed) F650 and currently have a DL650.
The FI F650's weren't as good as the carbed versions - which is why I don't own a BMW - couldn't see the point of spending big $ to get a bike that was worse than the one I already had.

If you have any riding experience, the DL 650 is probably a better bike.
Where it falls behind: Worse turning circle. No engine protection.

Turning circle only experience can deal with - not a big deal for me, but I could see it getting a new rider into trouble, engine protection is fixable - or ignorable - if you are only doing light off road rides. Everywhere else the DL is pretty much a clear winner, far better on road, far easier to ride off road - provided you aren't racing - and as far as I can tell it's more reliable as well.

I'm not saying the BMW is a bad bike, just that the DL is just far better value for money and will do everything the F will.

In theory the Dakar looks to be a far better off road bike - I'm unconvinced - provided you aren't doing extreme things (Paris/Dakar :evil) the DL is a really easy bike to ride offroad and is much less effort than the BMW. I found that not being as tired muscling the bike round more than made up for any weaknesses the DL might have.


Cheers
Pete

Oilhed 01-26-2007 03:33 AM

Never rode the V-Strom but I have ridden the BMW. It's a nice ride. A twin would be smoother. I have owned a KLR600 and would get a KLR650 before the F650GS. Even more so when the 2008 KLR arrives later this year.

KoolBreeze 01-26-2007 05:32 AM

with me I have to recognize that eventually they're going to go down. so equipped accordingly, which ride would one cringe less at laying over? :evil

KoolBreeze 01-26-2007 05:39 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by PeterW

In theory the Dakar looks to be a far better off road bike - I'm unconvinced - provided you aren't doing extreme things (Paris/Dakar :evil) the DL is a really easy bike to ride offroad and is much less effort than the BMW. I found that not being as tired muscling the bike round more than made up for any weaknesses the DL might have.


Cheers
Pete


if one sets up a dl650 enough wouldn't it's "off road" prowess be far more similar to say a f1150gs than the f650 dakar? I would think the f650 to be more off road oriented bike than the big beemer. (or the dl650)

but do dirt roads warrant a dakar? i would expect the dl650 to be the better choice there.

now to decide where to place the emphasis

Zapp22 01-26-2007 05:41 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by PeterW
I've owned the older (carbed) F650 and currently have a DL650.
The FI F650's weren't as good as the carbed versions - which is why I don't own a BMW - couldn't see the point of spending big $ to get a bike that was worse than the one I already had.

If you have any riding experience, the DL 650 is probably a better bike.
Where it falls behind: Worse turning circle. No engine protection.

Turning circle only experience can deal with - not a big deal for me, but I could see it getting a new rider into trouble, engine protection is fixable - or ignorable - if you are only doing light off road rides. Everywhere else the DL is pretty much a clear winner, far better on road, far easier to ride off road - provided you aren't racing - and as far as I can tell it's more reliable as well.

I'm not saying the BMW is a bad bike, just that the DL is just far better value for money and will do everything the F will.

In theory the Dakar looks to be a far better off road bike - I'm unconvinced - provided you aren't doing extreme things (Paris/Dakar :evil) the DL is a really easy bike to ride offroad and is much less effort than the BMW. I found that not being as tired muscling the bike round more than made up for any weaknesses the DL might have.


Cheers
Pete


Said a mouthful there. I ride an uncorked tagged BRP, and lately been swapping out and riding my son's DRZ more [the more I ride and tweak the more impressed I am]. BUT.... when I really contemplate long rides into strange territory, combining "getting there" on slab and then exploring off the beaten path on non-paved, etc, I'll take the DL650 in a heartbeat.
It is seriously a "low fatigue" kind of ride.

And, as Pete's post implies, if you are not trying to do stunts or set land speed records, patiently picking your way through some very gnarly stuff is quite doable with the WeeStrom. Maybe I'm lucky, but with a 16T countersprocket and a very pliable FI/throttle, I can ease through steep rocky paths, up erosion ditches, across rock outcroppings, through gravel [ugggh], etc with a good bit of finesse. [mine has well-used bashplate and crashbars, knobby tires, etc]

i know nothing about F650...but the weestrom is more capable than I am.

z

Disco Stu 01-26-2007 05:57 AM

I have a DL650 and my fiance has an F650GS that I occasionally ride. We've only been riding for about 4 months and don't have any off-road experience.

manuvering the two around the garage and the drive, the BMW feels more nimble. It definately has a shorter turning radius if you can turn the handlbars full lock.

On the go, I much prefer the feel of the V Strom. with some foreward movement, it feels more stable to me. From an acceleration thing, the VStrom seems more quick to me, but if you get the BMW up in the 4,000+ rpm range it'll keep up just fine.

You really need to sit on both and see how they fit your body style. Both my fiance and I have the same inseem, but I can flatfoot the V-Strom and she can't. But she can on the BMW, which has a more narrow profile. On the other hand, the VStrom controls seem just right for me, but sitting on the BMW it feels like I'm right against the handlebars. The only way that I can make a full lock turn at slow speeds is to move my ass all the way to the back of the seat to make room for the handlebars and my elbows.

PeterW 01-26-2007 02:52 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by KoolBreeze

but do dirt roads warrant a dakar? i would expect the dl650 to be the better choice there.

now to decide where to place the emphasis

A DL will never have a 21" front wheel, ground clearance, spoked rims and a frame running under the engine to protect it.

I ride with Dakar's and 1200GS's on nasty dirt tracks - I have no trouble going the same places they do - but ABS is a clear winner for them - they go faster because they know they can stop, and I suspect their suspension is a bit better than mine. Ground clearance hasn't been an issue, and so far neither has the rims or engine protection.

I'd rate the DL as the bike to get if you plan on being able to ride to work on Monday for sure - it's 50% of the effort for 90% of the "go-fast" - and I do know a DL 650 can go a lot faster than I ride - I've seen one do it.

I suspect doing some suspension work on a DL 650 will get it up very close to the GS's - they'll still have more power, but they carry a big weight penalty.

I just did some suspension work on my DL - so I'll know for sure on that next time I go riding with them :evil .

Cheers
Pete

Chocko 01-27-2007 04:00 PM

Likes like the V-Strom is the bike of choice if the seat is a bit high I could always get some of the padding removed I say comfort wise the bike should still ride ok cheers.:D

Regards
Chocko.

gregbenner 01-28-2007 09:44 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by PeterW
I ride with Dakar's and 1200GS's on nasty dirt tracks - I have no trouble going the same places they do - but ABS is a clear winner for them - they go faster because they know they can stop, Pete

I have never heard of someone going faster in the dirt due to ABS. Everone I know turns it off in the dirt? Both my F650 and 12GS has a switch for this purpose(?)

I just sold my 01 F650, currently have a 12GS and a Wee with TKC knobbies and bash plates. I generally agree with the other responses.

The Wee has quite a bit more power than the F650. For me, much nicer on the pavement. For off road, they are both pretty heavy.


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