It began with a KLR650…

20 05 2011

Kawasaki KLR650...

I used to ride motorcycles. I spent about 15yrs on various bikes. My favourite was the one shown above – a Kawasaki KLR650. Interestingly I think this bike got me started in online review posting that eventually morphed into blogging. Back in the day I hacked around with HTML to build some basic sites and put my KLR650 related reviews on them. I found two that I think are my very first online reviews. I don’t know why somebody took the trouble to copy them and rehost them on a new site as I think the products must no longer be available, but I guess it might have some historic/archival value to folks who are into that sort of thing.

KLR650 Reviews:

Sharon’s friend Laura wants to get a motorcycle and we went with her to look at them. I have to say I got a bit of stoke back for my old KLR650. They still make ’em and they are still a killer deal for a fun versatile bike. I kept all my expensive KLR650 accessories [ie. Ortlieb motorcycle panniers] because I figured one day I’d get another bike. We’ll see how my will power holds out…=-)



2 responses

20 05 2011

I sometimes miss my KLR650. It was so much fun to modify. But it wasn’t particularly good at anything. I didn’t like doing casual rides on it, although I did take it on several huge tours through the American West. My current motorcycle, a 2001 Yamaha FZ1 is so much more fun although it can’t go offroad. It has 120 rear wheel horsepower but it gets almost the same gas mileage! (46mpg on my last big tour and 44mpg commuting). It’s also a lot more comfortable and handles a lot better. (And don’t forget about aesthetics – the KLR was ugly and the new one is even uglier than it used to be).

If your friend wants something that can explore fire roads, I’d look at the Yamaha WR250R instead. Lighter weight and up to 70mpg. It can still handle highway speeds. If she doesn’t need offroad capabilities, I’d look at the Ninja 250 or any of the 650 twins from Kawasaki (ER6N, Versys, Ninja 650).

21 05 2011

@James – while I agree with you that the KLR650 is not as good at anything as mission specific bikes you can look at any bike you care to mention and find an area of weakness or something it can’t do. I guess where I differed from you is I enjoyed riding the KLR around town and for pleasure rides. My other favourite motorcycle was a Yamaha FZ750 or maybe that was a FRZ750 – anyways it was a sport touring bike and my only motorized transport during my university years. Obviously a much better machine for road riding, but I’d rather have a KLR than another bike like that.

We showed Laura a number of bikes including the Versys. I’m not sure what she’ll get.

BTW – what’s your take on the BMW GS800?

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