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Old 01-27-2009, 12:12 PM   #1
Off the grid OP
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If you were going to buy a NEW 650 thumper what would you buy?

80% road (but a TON of miles in general, like 15-20k a year)
15% dirt
5% snow

I need:

Bulletproof reliability
Good gas mileage
Carrying capacity/hard cases
Some sort of wind breakage

I know, I know....KLR.

Any other ideas?
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Old 01-27-2009, 12:20 PM   #2
Reposado1800
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NO KLR.

DR650SE all the way.
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Old 01-27-2009, 12:44 PM   #3
sellmeyer
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I'm not sure the KLR is your best choice if you want longevity and good gass mileage. The KLR is reliable to a point; once YOU spend a couple of years riding a KLR at your suggested annual rate, wouldn't reliability take a hit and wouldn't you need to tear into the KLR engine and start replacing stuff?


My vote, based on your criteria, is for the BMW F650GS. In spite of minor some differences in the production cycles, you can go with a 2001-2007 model year without suffering or gaining anything significant over another from that range. Depending on your configuration and riding style, expect 55-70MPG on an engine that will last a lot longer than one from a KLR.

I promise you that if you are patient and can travel to pickup a bike, you'll find one in the states for as little as $4000 within six weeks. If you have a higher budget, its quite easy to find a winner rather quickly.

-Good luck.


BTW, check out F650.com for more info about this bike. Look for info about the GS, not the funduro
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Old 01-27-2009, 01:07 PM   #4
bacon
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I went for thr BMW Dakar
Great on the freeway for a thumpper anyway.
Gteat gas milage better than the others IMHO.
And I like the looks vain I know but I do.
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Old 01-27-2009, 01:19 PM   #5
crazybrit
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bacon
I went for thr BMW Dakar
Great on the freeway for a thumpper anyway.
Gteat gas milage better than the others IMHO.
And I like the looks vain I know but I do.
F650. It is much smoother on pavement than a KLR/DR, better 80mph cruiser . More comfortable. The best or close to the best gas mileage of any 650 thumper.

Not sure you need the Dakar model unless your dirt %age is going to be more jeep trails and less gravel roads.
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Old 01-27-2009, 01:23 PM   #6
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690 Ftw
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Old 01-27-2009, 01:24 PM   #7
Seth S
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There are 5 KTM 690 models to choose from (690 is really a 650 engine). These include the SMC, the Enduro R, The Duke, the SM, and the Enduro (E). They are all fuel injected, proving to be very reliable, and a hoot to ride. Quite a bit more expensive then a KLR but a lot more bike by comparison.

Then you have the Suzuki DR650, the KLR650, and ahhh I have it:


you just described a Suzuki V-strom 650. Good gas mileage, good reliability, 80% road, 15% mild trail, 5% snow. My vote is for the V strom....reasonable price too.
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Old 01-27-2009, 01:25 PM   #8
crazybrit
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Truckin_Thumper
690 Ftw
Whats ftw? Do you mean 690 enduro? For 80% street 15% dirt and 15,000+ miles per year????? Killer bike if it was closer to 50/50 dirt/street. SMC maybe if you want to put some hooligan into your street %age ;-)

All the new LC4s have only been out for a year+ (ok, closer to 3 if you consider the 690SMR) and as such there is no way you could currently assert with any confidence that it would be "bulletproof reliable" for 15k-20k per year for multiple years.

Jury is also out on how well the self-supporting subframe/tank works for hard cases. Anyone got tens of thousands of miles with them installed yet? No wind protection (stock) either though you could fab something.

All in all, not really a good choice IMO.

Seth is right, DL650 is a good choice, but the OP did specifically say 'thumper'. If it's easy gravel it would be my choice as used they cheap and much better on pavement than a F650.

crazybrit screwed with this post 01-27-2009 at 01:34 PM
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Old 01-27-2009, 01:29 PM   #9
Jolly705
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BMW X or KTM 690. The motors are so much stronger than a KLR or DR. If money is tight than the Jap bikes are great.
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Old 01-27-2009, 01:42 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sellmeyer
I'm not sure the KLR is your best choice if you want longevity and good gass mileage. The KLR is reliable to a point; once YOU spend a couple of years riding a KLR at your suggested annual rate, wouldn't reliability take a hit and wouldn't you need to tear into the KLR engine and start replacing stuff?

bullshit
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Old 01-27-2009, 02:01 PM   #11
Off the grid OP
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Thanks for the suggestions folks, let me state that I have no problem in riding the piss out of a bike for 2-3 years than trading it in for another new model. I did my time of tinkering/repairing, I want something new.

That said, I am also a poor bastard (saving for a house) and currently a 1-bike guy. The Wee is too pricey for me, I want around 6k out the door.
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Old 01-27-2009, 02:21 PM   #12
crazybrit
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Off the grid
The Wee is too pricey for me, I want around 6k out the door.
Well this eliminates the 690 LC4, the F650 and most everything else interesting

KLR, DR, XR-L. I have to say, I really question the wisdom of paying new price for a bike that has been unchanged for several years (modulo makeup/pig makeover for the 2008 KLR).

If you are so cost constrained, why not open your search to consider a nice used low-mileage well-farkled model? There are lots of odd-folks who farkle and fondle the crap out of a new bike, barely ride it and then move onto their next project.
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Old 01-27-2009, 02:28 PM   #13
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Bmw

You can find a low mile gs650f for small money. Sounds like the perfect fit for what you are looking for. I had one and it is great on the road very comfortable, plenty of power and can take easy off road trips. It also has a TON of options for travel bags and add-ons.
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Old 01-27-2009, 02:31 PM   #14
rob feature
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crazybrit

If you are so cost constrained, why not open your search to consider a nice used low-mileage well-farkled model? There are lots of odd-folks who farkle and fondle the crap out of a new bike, barely ride it and then move onto their next project.


Gets you well into Weestrom/F650 territory. I think I'd probably lean more toward the Wee as it'll be mostly road (it ain't a thumper tho).
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Old 01-27-2009, 02:35 PM   #15
Off the grid OP
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I should mention that I am a big fucking bastard at 6'3" 290lbs.

I have heard that the F-series BMWs were absolute pigs in the dirt and woefully underpowered.

Also...I would consider a KTM or Husky, but see my part about "finicky maintaintence" and I am not too sure about how well a high-strung dirtbike pedigree machine like a KTM or Husky would hold up under the amount of miles that I put on a bike in a year.
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