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Old 13th April 2018, 16:48   #1
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Default The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650

Prologue

"For those who came in late"

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Originally Posted by v12 View Post
Nice pics Avi! Had a few questions on the top case and panniers :
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  • -
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mobike008 View Post
Why so many questions? Don't tell me you are considering selling your Z and buying a V?
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Originally Posted by v12 View Post
Haven't been able to ride the bike much in the last 2 months due to 2 main reasons - Dengue & Metro.
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Finally decided to sell it and buy something more comfortable that I can atleast use on the weekends. So let's see, once the confusion over the Bajaj-Kawasaki split is cleared - will decide on the Versys 650.
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Originally Posted by v12 View Post
So this is what has temporarily replaced the Z - 2013 KTM Duke 390. Just took delivery of it a few hours ago. A new ownership thread coming up soon.
The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-maxresdefault.jpg

The Versys 650 was inevitable - it was just a matter of time. It all started with a small test ride on the Triumph Tiger 2 years ago.I was with Odeen12 one day at the Triumph showroom when he had gone for his Speed Triple's (The Triumph Speed Triple burbles my socks off!) service. While we were waiting and admiring the bikes in the showroom, we were told instead of just sitting around, why not take a test ride of the Tiger. I was not very keen and was like "Yeah, whatever". I had been to the Triumph showroom before but never ever gave it a 2nd look. Probably because I had never ever thought that I would buy an Adventure motorcycle. I had seen read about them in auto magazines and always thought they looked ugly and are only meant to go off road.

Anyways no harm in trying it out while we were still waiting. It took me a few minutes to just get used to the Tiger, it was huge and the seating height was so tall. The Tiger's comfort just blew me away - it bought a smile on my face all through the 30 mins ride that I had - which even the Z800 couldn't manage. I was very much impressed and totally blown away with it. Although I hadn't decided on selling my Z then, something inside told me that this is going to be my next bike - IF I had the budgetThe size, the comfort, the sound, the equipment - it was worth the investment. But budget was the only constraint - at almost twice the cost of the Z or the Versys - I would have had to be crazy to buy it.

The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-picsart_041410.50.48.jpg

Then came the Versys 650 - which didn't look like a very attractive deal - Until our friendly moderator Mobike008 bought one and started posting regular updates on its comfort, long rides, standing rides etc. For its price, the Versys seemed perfect - it was like a mini Tiger (or Cub). The thread was getting too tempting - I don't remember how many times I have asked him to lock his thread and take it out of public view - but that didn't work either - the thread was too addictive and tempting.

Life then took a beautiful turn in 2016 when I decided to get married (as in actual marriage where a boy/man gets married to a girl/woman). Until then marriage for me was buying my dream bike (an inline 4 superbike). I realized I had to buy something comfortable if I wanted to travel anywhere with my better half. It was no way possible to do it on the Z800 - I remember promising her a first ride home on the Z800. We weren't even half way through, when I politely asked her to get off and take a rick home. Imagine - first ride!

Towards the end of 2016, while I was standing under my house, I just fainted. Went to the doctor, got some tests done and realised I had Dengue. Platelet levels had come down so I had to be admitted in the hospital. Had been there 2 days and Had some good time to think about what I really wanted - it was no doubt going to be an adventure bike - but which one? What options did I have - Tiger and Versys? A brand new Tiger was out of the picture completely. So it was a tie between the Versys and a pre-owned Tiger. I just couldn't make up my mind between the 2. So after getting discharged, I went back to the Triumph showroom for a test ride of the Tiger (and I hadn't ridden a Versys yet) - it was so much rejuvenating - as if my platelet levels were immediately back to normal). Almost made up my mind on a used Tiger and started making some enquiries.

There were hardly any used Tigers in the market (especially in Mumbai). The ones available outside Mumbai were priced at 10+ lakhs which meant I would have to additionally add some more to get it transferred + octroi + other expenses. Used motorcycle loans were available but the interest rates were high and the period was only for a total of 5 years from the initial purchase. So if the motorcycle was 2 years old - I would get the loan only for 3 years. Which would mean an higher EMI + higher interest rate.

Started to feel very disappointed but did not lose any hope - the Versys was still there. And that's when I came across a very nice video of Schumi comparing the Versys and the Tiger. That was just the thing I was looking for - If you could afford the Tiger (which in my case was no) should you still consider the Versys. That comparison almost nailed the decision (although the used Tiger was still wandering at the back of my mind)My hopes came up and I started reading all the Versys threads on the forum. Impressed further I decided to make up my mind, be practical and go for the Versys. Ordered 2 helmets - one for me and one for wife. Got protection sliders, rear spool sliders, Srivastha jack and also got myself added to the Versys WhatsApp group.

Jan 2017 I sold the Z800 and Bajaj-KTM decided to split from Kawasaki. This was real bad news for me. KTM dealers were told to put a hold on sale/service of all Kawasaki bikes. The only dealer in Mumbai - Kawasaki Palm Beach had shut down due to fraudulent activities. There were rumours of Kawasaki showroom / service center being setup within the suburbs - but no official word. After hearing stories of how people were duped after paying for their bikes - I did not want to take a risk until the official showroom was up. So Versys plans were put on hold.
The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-picsart_041405.24.55.png

In Feb I got married - I wanted to use the Z800 for my wedding - but it was already sold and wasn't available on my wedding day. The Versys hadn't come because of the Kawasaki-Bajaj split. But we still managed to get some bikes for the wedding - a big thanks to some real good friends - Arash (Shaman Triumph), Rahul (Odeen12), Phiroze and Karan. Really grateful to you guys for making this dream come true.
The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-psx_20180531_163740.jpg

Last edited by v12 : 31st May 2018 at 16:38.
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Old 13th April 2018, 21:03   #2
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Default re: The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650

Decisions....decisions..

So, what happened next? This -> I bought a pre-worshipped KTM Duke 390 from a close friend. This was just going to be a temporary bike to fill in some gap while I decided what bike I really wanted. The Versys was the only option at that time - There were rumours that more adventures bikes will be launched at the end of 2017 - Suzuki VStrom, BMW F800, Duke 690 Adventure etc.



It was a very confusing year for me - believe it or not. My options were so wide and varied and impractical at the same time. It was a very serious battle between the mind and heart and the pocket playing devil between the both. There were times where I actually told myself that I don't need a bike. And there were timee when I was thinking of almost every bike in the market. You wouldn't believe but at one point even I told myself "Why not a car? A Baleno or a Vitara Brezza or a Polo TSI". But got a big NO from Mom since we already had 2 cars in the family.

The worst happened in the few months after marriage when dad decided to let go of the Corolla and buy a small car - Renault Kwid. The jokes on me wouldn't stop - so he sold a 4 cylinder 800 cc superbike for a 3 cylinder 800cc mini car - just because he got married. Hahhaha and it became worse when I bought a used Maruti 800 for my wife to learn driving. "so he sold a 4 cylinder 800 cc superbike for not one but TWO 3 cylinder 800cc mini car's". It was really hilarious.

Anyways these were the options that I considered during the last one year. The main criteria in mind was only comfort (both rider and pillion).

Kawasaki Z900 - Nice and sleek looking motorcycle. I loved the looks of the Z900 - a total contrast over the Z800. Once you have owned a inline 4 cylinder motorcycle - anything less is a compromise (no matter how much you comfort yourself). The Z900 looks very much like the Z1000. But loses out on the aggressiveness and the design philosophy of the Z800. No doubt it was lower and would have been easier to ride - but back seat was worse than the Z800. So Z900 was struck off the list.

Used Triumph Tiger 800 - Yes, it creeped back onto the list again. But again wasn't practical for my budget. And I had also just seen the comparison made my Schumi between the Versys and the Tiger. This video nailed my decision against the Tiger and made it more leaning towards the Versys.
The Tiger is an amazing machine and given the budget - I wouldn't have looked at any other motorcycle.

Triumph Street Triple S - The sound of an inline 4 (or even a 3) is very intoxicating. It makes you forget everything else - practicality, worries, budget - everything. My brother and me test rode the Tiger XRX and Street Triple S back to back a couple of months ago. And believe it or not - i started loving it more than the Tiger. It was such a light motorcycle, handled so well in traffic, easy to handle and maneuver - I felt I was riding my Duke (albeit more powerful).
Again, this was struck off too because it was not practical as a comfortable 2 seater.

Triumph Bonneville T120- I rode the Bonneville for a very short distance - just outside the showroom. I had my wife seated behind - and she was in love with it. Getting on and off the bike was very comfortable and the power it had was very much adequate. It was a very very comfortable 2 seater.
The only thing is I couldn't see myself paying 10+ lakhs for the Bonneville - so this was struck off too. But nevertheless less - one amazing bike.

2017 KTM Duke 390 - Surprised? I know, I was too. It was just one of those hot mornings when you are stuck in traffic that you relaised a small bike is so much better to use than a big bike. I had almost made up my mind to get the new Duke - almost to the extent that I started typing out a thread for it - but better sense prevailed

At the end of it all, I am really happy I took a break and considered all my options before finalising on the Versys.

Last edited by v12 : 6th May 2018 at 13:30.
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Old 13th April 2018, 21:07   #3
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Default re: The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650

FINALLY!!

So that was the whole story and now without boring and delaying you guys any further - I present to you - ゴジラ - my 2018 Kawasaki Versys 650. What's ゴジラ? That stands for Godzilla in the Japanese language. Yes, I have decided to retain the name from my Z800. Its huge, its green and it originated from Japan. Agreed it looks a bit different - but so did the real Godzilla in each of its series.

Test Drive and Booking Experience
The test drive experience when I first visited Anzen Kawasaki wasn't that great. Obviously after being treated like family in the neighbouring Triumph showroom, anything less would not be called a good experience. The second time i visited them, my brother was happy to see a known face around. We explained to him about our decision to buy a Versys a(till then it was still a confusion between the Versys and the Z900). But parked the Z900 thought aside since it wasn't practical. At first we were told that test drives were only within the compound - but they made an exception and allowed us to ride upto SantaCruz while one guy followed on a Z650. That was the first time that I rode the Versys - and believe me it was 2nd love at first sight (1st is still the Tiger, remember?). The seat height was tall and the view was amazing. The engine was smooth , muted and void of all vibrations. The suspension - that was the best part. I have ridden that stretch of the highway on practically all the motorcycles I have owned. The RX, Enfield, Pulsar 220, Z800 and Duke - until now it was the Enfield which provided the maximum comfort - especially the part of the flyovers where 2 slabs are connected. But when I rode the Versys over them - it was in a completely different league. My brother was riding pillion with me and he too found it very comfortable - and did not feel any bumps. This was the major contributing factor in making a decision - comfort. We came back to the showroom, took all the quotations and returned home.

The booking experience was very simple and straight forward. The bike was booked at Anzen Kawasaki on 24th Mar and delivered on 2nd April. I had insisted that I wanted a 2018 "manufactured" motorcycle and not a 2018 "model". And they had one in stock so delivery was very quick. I had also requested to be present during the unboxing.
The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-picsart_041407.18.53.jpg

Unbox Zindagi
The Kawasaki boxes / crates arrparked under Vakola flyover. This was a bit of a put off for me - all the bikes, from the Ninja 300 to the Mighty ZX10R were all stored here in the open. There is a huge possibility of these bikes being damaged due to rains or floods. Also possibility of damages because this is also used as a parking area for a lot of other vehicles. The place was also infested with a lot of rats and rodents - the thought of a rat/rodent inside a motorcycle box is very scary. Probably this is a temporary situation till they have their own godown / warehouse.

The crates stacked together. Guess which one is ours.
The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-picsart_041703.17.09.jpg

A ZX10R waiting for its lucky owner.
The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-picsart_041703.18.42.jpg

Making way for the Versys.
The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-picsart_041703.23.02.jpg

Hidden Tiger (or rather Cub).
The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-picsart_041703.23.49.jpg

This reminded me of the first song I dedicated to my wife on my wedding - "You look so beautiful in white". This was like "Yesterday, once more".
The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-picsart_041703.26.56.jpg

The bike was already fully assembled with the front wheel and the windshield.
The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-picsart_041711.22.29.jpg

The first step out of the crate.
The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-picsart_041711.24.13.jpg

Fitting the barbecue grille - which was subsequently removed.
The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-picsart_041711.26.09.jpg

1km only before it was placed in the crate.
The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-picsart_041711.27.53.jpg

BMW fuelling the Kawasaki. The bike was then tanked with almost 6-7 litres of fuel - very generous of Anzen.
The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-picsart_041711.29.24.jpg

We (wife and me) then headed to the showroom to take official delivery.
The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-picsart_041711.31.55.jpg

Khushiyon ki Delivery
I requested them not to get the bike washed since I would do this on my own. Somehow I don't like the idea of anyone else other than me washing my motorcycle. I don't get that 100% satisfaction.

The bike was covered at the showroom.
The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-picsart_042106.43.47.jpg

After completing the formalities, We were then handed over the keys of the bike with pictures taken and then shared on FB and Instagram - although I am part of neither. They also gave me a body cover, microfibre cloth and rear spools as complimentary. After completing all the formalities , we headed home.
The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-picsart_042107.21.14.jpg

Insurance and Registration was due to be done in a week which was very promptly done. Insurance took around 3 days whereas the RTO confirmation message came through in 5 days. I was in touch with the Anzen guys throughout this process and was happy to see their prompt response on all my questions. Reminded me of my previous experience with Kawasaki Palm Beach.

Overall completely satisfied with my test drive and booking experience. Thank you Anzen Kawasaki (Kyffin, Thomas, Abhishek)!

Last edited by v12 : 30th May 2018 at 19:22.
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Old 13th April 2018, 21:12   #4
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Default re: The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650

Accessories
The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-dsc00937.jpg

List of accessories fitted onto the bike.
The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-versy-accessories.png

Almost all of the accessories were ordered from UK through a close friend and brought to India by an office friend who was travelling. He was kind enough to get all the stuff in their original packing / box. I had almost 2 weeks before I could ride the bike due to pending insurance , registration and installation of the guards. Used this time to search some installation guides on YouTube. I was in 2 minds whether to get them fitted at the showroom / independent garage or do them myself. In the videos, the task seemed pretty straightforward as long as you have the right set of tools. Not the tool kit that comes with the bike - but a comprehensive set of tools. It was my first time that I was trying it and it did take me a couple of hours to get all of them fitted onto the bike. I would advise those who are buying a superbike and fitting accessories - do try fitting them on your own. It is really not very difficult and will you save a lot of money. I have listed down each of the accessories fitted in a separate post below.

List of accessories planned.
  • LED Turn Indicators - I don't plan to install any expensive indicators. The Duke 390 LED indicators look good and are very decently priced. Has anyone tried this out? Is it a direct fit or are there any modifications required?
  • LED Bulbs - The stock bulbs on the Versys are good for city riding - but out on the highways, you realize that they are not adequate especially where there are no streetlights. I am looking for a good alternate option (higher wattage bulbs or LED lights). I do not want to go for Aux lights. Any suggestions?
  • Givi BF04 Flange Kit - Read below to know why.

Useful Information on Versys accessories : During a recent Versys meetup, TeamBHPian CrazyDriver managed to compile a list of accessories used by different owners. Please click on the below links to view each of the posts.

Windshield
  • Pro-Spec Windshield Addons
  • AliExpress Windshield
  • Puig
  • MRA
  • Madstad

Luggage Sytsem
  • Coocase V36/V50 Top Case
  • Hepco 45L Explorer series aluminum Top Case
  • Hepco Becker 55L Junior Series Black
  • Hepco Becker Journey 42L Top Box
  • Hepco Becker Journey 52L series black
  • Hepco Becker Orbit 54L
  • Junior 40L/42L Top Case
  • Kawasaki OEM Luggage system
  • SW Motech Top Case
  • Treknride Top Case

Aux Lighting
  • Baja Designs Squadron Pro
  • Baja Designs Squadron Sport
  • Cyclops Optimus
  • Denali D4
  • Gold Runaway (Aliexpress)
  • Pandeyji lights
  • Redline Plus
  • Rigid D series
  • Rigid Industries

Kailashnj has "Srified" his Versys. That's the term used by most Versys owners who have installed accessories made by Mr Srivastha from Bangalore. A true genius who manufactures a list of accessories for the Versys at unbelievable prices compared to major brands.
Check Kailash's bike here :
  • Saddle Stay
  • Rear Rack and Top Case base plate
  • Swingarm Slider and Spools
  • Frame Slider and Fork Slider

Indrokneel has fitted his Juggernaut with the following accessories :
  • LED headlamp bulbs
  • Pilot lamps
  • Aux Light mounts
  • Aux Lights
  • Handlebar Risers

Last edited by v12 : 25th May 2018 at 15:14.
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Old 1st May 2018, 14:28   #5
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Default re: The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650

Review
Product : Givi ST602 Tank Lock bag
Sub-Product : Givi BF26 Flange


The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-photogrid_1525548222089.jpg

This whole set of the Tank Bag and Flange was gifted to me by a very close friend. It was ordered in the UK through motorcycleplanet.co.uk and delivered to me by an office friend.

Why do I need a tank bag? I used to always ride with a hydration pack and a waist pouch. Hydration pack for water and a waist pouch to keep my wallet, cash and mobile. It did use to get uncomfortable because you can feel the weight of the pouch on your waist. I wanted to ride light - and this waist pouch wasn't helping. And so I got a tail bag (reviewed below) - which I found useful because it took the weight away from my body. But accessing anything from the bag or even getting on/off the bike was getting very annoying and uncomfortable. You can try twisting and turning around to access the bag - but will result in a bad catch.

The only other option was a tank bag. I have always hated tank bags for the primary reason that they hang off the tank and can easily scratch it - especially the magnetic strap ones. But tank bags are extremely useful, handy and easily accessible compared to tail bags or panniers.

I read about the Givi ST602 first in Dkaile's Ninja 1000 thread. The best part I liked about this bag was it was not in contact with the tank at all. It was a universal bag which could be mounted onto a ring / flange which was bike specific.

What I like :
  • Perfect in size. Not too big. Not too small.
  • Top class quality - the quality of the bag, zipper, straps and handles - all were made of top class materials.
  • Can be used as a sling / shoulder bag.
  • Perfect to carry all that I need for a ride - Wallet, Mobile, Documents, Sun glasses etc
  • Slot for sliding in wires for headphones / charger while using a mobile charger.
  • The mobile holder is amazing - theft proof to some extent since the compartment is inside the bag. The plastic cover is touch screen friendly.
  • Fits very snugly and doesn't move around. Also very rigid once it is mounted and there is no movement.
  • Ease of usage - Snap on and Snap off. It doesn't come in the way of your mounting or unmounting the bike. Also it does not interfere with the ride / handling since it does not touch the handlebar on lock to lock turns.
  • Mobile holder makes a handlebar mounts redundant. However the drawback of the mobile holder is that during the day time, the phone tends to get overheated and there is no ventilation.

What I didn't like :
The only issue I had with this bag was the flange kit. Givi advertises the BF26 Flange as a 2015 Kawasaki Versys 650 specific one. However when I fitted it , the metal plate would not fit exactly into the ring. The fitting works in 2 phases - (1) the holes on the flange / plate should match with the holes on the fuel tank cover and (2) there are triangular extensions / cutouts which have to fit within each other. If these 2 fit together, the metal plate rests flat on the flange. Unfortunately, I don't know why - the BF26 does not have the triangular extensions / cutouts at the right place. So even though you can fit the plate and the bag - there is still a considerable distance between them. I should have gone by Dkaile's advise on the BF04 flange kit.

With triangular cutouts and inserts in place - the flange was a bit offset which caused the bag to tilt towards the right.

The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-20180428_1332112.jpg

The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-20180428_1345331.jpg

Anyways all's well that ends well. A friend who has the same bag / flange installed on his Versys helped me to get it fixed. Although the triangular cutouts do not fit perfectly, the plate and the bag stays in place. Will be ordering the BF04 flange kit that Dkaile has on his N1000.

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Last edited by v12 : 25th May 2018 at 00:02.
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Old 1st May 2018, 14:44   #6
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Default re: The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650

Review
Product : Nelson Rigg CL-1060-S Sport Tail Bag

The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-psx_20180422_2347462.jpg

The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-img_0002.jpg

The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-img_0004.jpg
The bag comes with 4 set of short straps which can be used to mount the bag to the rear seat (only 2 required) and one set of long straps Incase it needs to be mounted on the tail. It also came with a waterproof cover and the instruction manual.

The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-img_0005.jpg
Open the bag and it has a medium size main compartment which can be used to hold a first aid kit, clothes etc.

The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-img_0006.jpg
There is a mesh pocket under the lid (almost the size of the lid) which can be used to store documents. Above that there is also a small pen / pencil holder.

The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-img_0007.jpg
The storage space of 16 litres which can be vertically expanded to 22 litres is good enough for a short ride (day ride). I tried fitting my L size LS2 Atmos helmet faving either sides but the lid would not close. If you are looking to fit a full face helmet or carry more luggage - they do have the CL-1060-ST Sport Touring tail bag with a 25/33 litre capacity.

Hope this review helps. Nelson Rigg bags are also available at L.A.Bs (Lazy Ass Bikers) in Andheri East, Mumbai.

Last edited by v12 : 1st May 2018 at 15:54.
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Old 1st May 2018, 14:49   #7
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Default re: The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650

Puig R12 Frame Sliders

The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-dsc010222.jpg

These were bought from Amazon (Germany) through team-bhpian Amansac. I am not sure if this can be considered as a fault - but I believe frame sliders are meant to protect the motorcycle frame in the event of a fall. They stick out wide and are supposed to be the first part to touch ground and take impact of the hit. However in the case or the Puig sliders, I believe it's useless. The indicators which are mounted inside the fairing stick out a bit more than the sliders and are the first ones to hit the ground. The result - the indicators take a part of the fairing too when they break. Since I had already bought them, I am using them for now and will upgrade to a proper crash guard (like the Hepco Becker ones).

The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-dsc01031.jpg

Last edited by v12 : 6th May 2018 at 15:47.
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Puig Front Fork Sliders

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I had initially ordered them from Conquestcarbon.com (UK) when there was just 1 piece left. But that too got sold off after I ordered it so it was cancelled and the amount was promptly refunded back. Since it was not available anywhere else in UK, I ordered them from Ultimate Auto Impex, SantaCruz, Mumbai.
The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-dsc010212.jpg

Last edited by v12 : 6th May 2018 at 17:30.
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Evotech Radiator Guard - bought from Conquestcarbon (UK).

A Radiator Guard is a must for the kind of roads we ride on. There were a couple of options to chose from - there are local Indian ones available as well as Chinese ones too. Compared to the R&G, Evotech and other branded products - these were a steal. They cost nearly half the price and are equally affective. Most of the local / Chinese guards are stainless steel ones with the "Versys" inscription whereas the branded ones were powder coated. I had almost opted to get some local / stainless steel ones - but since this is a one time investment I went for the Evotech guard.

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Old 1st May 2018, 14:54   #10
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Default re: The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650

Givi SR4114 Top Case Rack and M5 Base Plate - Initially I did not have any plans of installing a luggage system (topcase or panniers) on the Versys - but since I was getting a lot of stuff from the UK, I decided to order the rear rack at least. Choosing on a luggage system was not very difficult - but not very easy too. Did some research and found out that the Givi Monokey series come with a good variety of topcase which can double up as side panniers. Obviously these were expensive - so for the time being, I ordered only the rear rack and the base plate. The rear rack was a Givi SR4114 which would be a direct fit on the 2015+ Versys 650. The base plate chosen was the M5 which could accommodate most of their Monokey Top Cases (which could double up as panniers). I don't intend to do any long rides immediately where I would need a topcase, but better to be prepared with one.

Fitting the rack and the base plate was a simple affair. All the instructions are available in the Guide as well as on YouTube. The only thing you need to be careful is that you don't lose any of the hole caps because they do not provide extra ones. Also ensure that you keep a soft cloth on the bike while fitting the rack because a slight slip can cause a big scratch on the bodywork.

The racks are fitted on the rear grabrails. Ensure you don't lose the holder caps of the grab rail.
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Keep a soft cloth on the tail to prevent scratches if the rack or tool slips.
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The holes to mount the baseplate to the rack. These holes come with a set of hole caps - a good touch so it hides everything.
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The baseplate fitted with the holecaps in place.
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Default re: The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650

Overall Looks
It is clearly evident that the Versys 650 is a tall motorcycle. The front fairing with the twin headlights carrier over from their sports bike lineage combined with its tall size give it a proper sports tourer look. Introducing the green color was the best decision that India Kawasaki made - initially it was only available in black. Kawasaki offers the Versys 650 in the international markets in various other colours - white, red and even a camouflage green. Wonder what's stopping them from introducing those colours here - I am sure they would sell in good numbers. Not everyone wants their Kawasaki in Kawasaki racing green - IKM, please take note.

Some detailed pictures explaining the features - I know all these would have been covered in various reviews but thought of listing them here to for everyone's benefit.

The front fairing is a complete transformation from the vertically stacked assembly that came with the previous generation.
The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-dsc01014.jpg

The continuity of the stickering across panels - I love this. I am not sure if you have observed this - but I believe this design theme started off decades ago on Italian bikes - especially Aprilia and Bimota. Then made its way to the Japanese bikes and now also visible on Indian bikes like the new Pulsar RS200. I am happy that Kawasaki used the Versys name for this continuity and not "Kawasaki".
The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-psx_20180513_164246.jpg

"Your's can go faster, but mine can go further and everywhere" given the 21 litre fuel tank that can easily manage a range of 400kms and the soft road capability that can take you everywhere (well almost).
The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-psx_20180513_164637.jpg


What seats? These are sofa sets. Extremely well padded and comfortable for short as well as long rides. The hump at the back also aides in providing some support for the riders lower back. The riding position is also very upright with the correct angle for a very comfortable posture.
The pillion seat is extremely comfortable - as approved by my wife and younger brother - within seconds of sitting on it.
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Mounting onto those seats is like planning to climb Mount Everest. You have to setup at Base Camp (find a higher ground to make the climb easy), then do weather checks (check if the rider is ready to balance), and then start the ascent with the probable aide of a Sherpa (a friend or anyone willing to lend a hand). Climb one step and swing your leg over and you have reached the summit.
The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-psx_20180513_165917.jpg

The grabrails which also double up as racks for panniers and topcases are long and feel very sturdy to hold. A very comforting thing to hold when you are riding pillion. It is as important as the side railing on an escalator - you feel so unsafe and uncomfortable if you are not holding onto anything while ascending or descending. The good part is that these grabrails are not too behind (like the KTM ones) - which give the impression that the pillion is handcuffed to the motorcycle. But they are at body level so you can hold them with your elbows almost straight.

Like I mentioned above, the grabrails double up as pannier mounts for OE Kawasaki panniers and for any after market topcase rack / mount.
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The tail light is a typical LED one which I believe is similar to the ones seen on the Ninja 1000, Versys 1000. It would have been great if Kawasaki had a V formation lighting like the one on th Z800.
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The indicators are typical bulb ones - wish they were the LED ones like the new Duke.
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The rear mudguard is typically huge but I feel it could have been better designed.
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Coming to the comfort - the Versys owes it to these 2 major components.
(1) The Showa's Separate Function Forks - sounds very funky and techie. But it's basic function is to allow you to adjust the damping and pre-load. Need to read this up in detail somewhere - but as of now I am very happy with the stock settings.
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(2) The rear monoshock - the exposed shock look better in green than black, red or even white. Unfortunately , if you have observed very clearly- these are not of the same colour as the KRG. Anyways that's not what we wanted to discuss, right? So the comfort on these springs in stock setup is amazing. But I am not sure if the settings for this are dependent on the weight being carried (pillion or/and pannier or/and topcase).
The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-psx_20180513_234802.jpg

Next is the windshield. It's a clear screen windshield which is designed to protect the rider from windblast after a certain amount of speed. I doubt I will touch that "certain" speed - but nevertheless a very useful equipment. The best part is that it can be operated directly by hand without the use of any tools and if your hands are long enough, you don't need to get off your bike to adjust them.
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I am not sure how many of the Versys riders have experienced this - but riding the Versys or any adventure bike, it's difficult to get a judgement of the front wheel in traffic. Visibility of the road too is somewhat of an issue since you are not able to view the road immediately ahead of you (especially when you are following a vehicle closely enough to read its bumper sticker).


MVA rules state that the number plate must be mounted on a plate - which looks very ugly on a Versys or any assembled superbike. Ugly is not the word - horrendous. Reason why now the number plate is taken off and stickers mounted on the front mudguard.
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The front mudguard is beautifully designed and has this triangular cut on the sides - probably to allow the muck from the tyre to get onto the front fairing - making it look like you have done some off roading. The mudguard is quite long and I am wondering if it needs a fender extender or not.
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Cockpit and Controls
The handlebar is mounted quite high - look at the size of the handlebar risers. The first view you get when you have perched on the seat is that of the hooded speedometer - which helps you to read it even in direct sunlight.
The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-dsc01025.jpg

The main Speedo unit comprises of
- an analogue tachometer which also houses the checklight and the oil light
- a digital speedometer which also houses the clock, odometer, trip meter, gear indicator and fuel guage. I would have preferred the Ninja 650 unit to this outdated one. Also in an era where a KTM Duke 390 provides a color TFT screen with a host of information - this one looks very outdated.
The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-dsc01036.jpg

On the extreme right and left of the unit there are circular provisions made for a Gear Indicator and a power outlet (which are available as an accessory). The new Versys, however comes with a gear inidicator on the digital console.
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Swingarm showing the tyre pressure
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Engine and Radiator Shroud (also can be seen the Denso twin horns)
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Last edited by v12 : 30th May 2018 at 19:12.
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Default re: The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650

Riding the Versys
It's been almost 2 months that I got the bike - and it's done almost 1000 Kms. I had to wait for around 2 weekends to get the RC book and insurance and hence did not ride much.

Once all the documents were received, did 2 rides to Lonavala, 1 to Charoti and 1 to Igatpuri. I know these are not very long rides compared to what other riders have done - but weekends are the only time I get to ride and need to be back to spend time with family. Hence I don't do very long rides. I think it is a good enough mileage to pen down some observations I have about the Versy.

What I like :
  • Comfortable seating
  • High ground clearance - This coupled with an excellent suspension allows you to tackle speed breakers without slowing down or breaking your back.
  • Best suspension setup I have experienced yet - I haven't tried tweaking the setup yet because the stock settings seem so perfect.
  • Power delivery - The Versys has a very good midrange - allows you to cruise at around 80-100 all day long.
  • No heating issues - I haven't felt much heating in the bike even while riding in heavy traffic. There is some amount of heat on the lower side where the exhaust is there - but its not as bad as the KTM or the Z800.
  • Fuel tank capacity and mileage - 21 Litres tank and ~500 kms range means less refueling. Also less chances of using adulterated fuels outside the city. In the 4 rides that I have done, the best mileage I got was 31 kmpl.
  • I have a slight back problem due to which I need to take break and get off the bike very hour for a few minutes. But with the Versys I don't need to do it very often - it's pretty easy to just stand a ride for a few seconds to take your rear off the seat.
  • Tool-Less adjustments : The windshield and the rear suspension which would need to be adjusted frequently can be done so without any tools.

What I didn't like :
  • Poor headlights - why cant any motorcycle manufacturer provide better headlights on their products. Advertised as an Adventure Tourer which will be used by many to places where there is no lighting - they Versys should have come with some better headlights. LED is what a lot of newer motorcycles moving to. Even the turn signals are normal bulbs and not clearly visible from far. How hard would it be for Kawasaki to install LED headlights and indicators on the Versys?
  • Poor Horn - Very squeaky single horn.
  • Lack of some basic features - Being an adventure motorcycle, I feel the Versys should have come standard with a 12V socket, main stand and stronger foot pegs. I did try climbing onto the bike (Tiger style) by mounting on the foot pegs while on side stand. It was a bit scary, I felt like the bike would tip over. Did it twice and had no confidence at all. Probably the side stand is not designed to take the weight of the rider while mounting.
  • Exhaust note is a total disappointment. On the date of the delivery, I told my wife to be prepared for the disappointment. And the very same moment, I was told by Kyffin (from Anzen) that I would be disappointed with the sound - especially after coming from a Z800 with aftermarket exhaust.
First Ride - Lonavala - where else!
This was supposed to be a ride with a small group - a GSX1000 and a Tiger - but ended up as a solo ride. I was using the tail bag and found it very difficult to send my leg all over it while trying to get off and on. I did try stepping on the footpeg and climb onto the bike (like the Tiger) - but that process was not confidence inspiring at all. Both the times I tried it , I felt that the bike would topple on the left or the side stand will give way. To avoid this, at many places I rode standing instead of taking a break. Felt nice and free when I stood and rode - people around look at you as if you have lost it. But I felt good. However the next day, I had several back, shoulder, leg and arm pain. I believe I wasn't doing it right - probably also because I was holding the handle too hard and putting a lot of weight on it and riding. Need to improve on it

Bike being warmed up early morning
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@Khandala
The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-dsc00922.jpg

I finally got to use my Bell RS-1 that I had bought almost a year ago.
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9.05 kms @ 235 Kms = ~26kmpl
The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-picsart_051207.29.37.jpg

2nd Ride - where else? Lonavala
The second ride was planned for a lot of other places but Lonavala. But being the closest and fastest - everyone voted for it. I had Odeen12, and 2 other friends from the Triumph group. Since I was in break-in period, I had to keep the revs below 4000 rpm so I was riding around 80-90. The best part was that at those speeds, the Versys felt so controllable and I felt very confident at those speeds. The same on the Z800 was a very scary experience. I believe it's the characteristics of the engines on each of the bikes - one is meant to sprint across and the other one is to cruise around.

This time I was using the Givi tank bag and believe me or not - I feel everyone who does long rides should try this bag out. It is so convenient - everything you need during a ride can fit into this bag. For short breakfast rides - all you need is your mobile, wallet, documents, camera, goggles - which very easily fits into this small tank bag. You don't have to dig into your pockets of your jacket and jeans to search for something cos everything is where it needs to be. You have a goggles holder, a document holder, a mobile holder - what more do you want. The bag does not hamper your view of the Speedo or come in the way of the handlebar too. It's only during lock to lock turns that it would touch so you would need to be careful. Otherwise this is really an amazing product. This is a perfect bag - probably of I need to carry more luggage , I may opt for the ST603. However for now, the only plan is to go for the BF04 flange kit.

Warm up time again.
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Meeting up with Odeen12 and his Speed Triple.... Oops sorry the GSXR100 has replaced the Speed.
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The rides -.2017 Suzuki GSXR1000 and 2015 Street Triple with Arrows and the 2017 Street Triple RS
The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-psx_20180512_195209.jpg

Kamat Green House and Kawasaki Green Bike
The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-psx_20180512_200702.jpg

Versys @ Lonavala
The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-psx_20180512_200553.jpg

10.44 kms @ 230.8 Kms = ~22.10mpl
The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-picsart_052502.07.26.jpg


3rd Ride - No, not Lonavala. Charoti
.
Having done Lonavala a zillion times, this time the ride was to Charoti. I have never been to Charoti before - but had heard that the roads were beautiful. And is a favourite of many superbikes since they can actually open up their machines on those roads. The only problem with this stretch is the traffic jam at the Ghodbunder junction - which is a real pain. Once you cross the bridge - the roads are smooth open. 3 lane highways on either sides means you have your own lane to ride.

I loved the Versys on these roads - nothing about the suspension or anything. But it's general comfort - did not feel any stress or fatigue in the ride to Charoti. So much that I never took a single break in the 2.5 hour ride.

The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-psx_20180520_151322.jpg

Japs waiting for the Brits to arrive
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The Axis and the Allies
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Bikes @ Ahura
The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-psx_20180520_144514.jpg

A total of 244 Kms and the Versys had used up only 7.8 litres. An amazing mileage of 31 kmpl.

4th Ride - Igatpuri
Like Charoti, Igatpuri was a first ride for me. I had been there by car, but this was the first time I was riding. The original plan was to ride to Pawana lake with my younger brother - but then ended up with friends at Manas Resort. The ride was good - but I prefer the roads to Charoti and Lonavala somehow. I felt the Igatpuri route needs a lot of concentration since the roads are a bit narrow and you have a lot of heavy vehicle traffic. As usual the weather was good while going - but too hot on the way back. We took almost 3-4 breaks in some shade to stretch and hydrate ourselves. But it was a nice ride overall. We kept interchanging our rides in between - the Duke felt like a small pocket rocket after riding the Versys.

The customary warm up pic.
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The GSX and Striple
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The bikes @ Manas Resort
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Some more pics
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Last edited by v12 : 30th May 2018 at 19:17.
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Default re: The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650

First Service

The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-picsart_051208.20.28.jpg

The first service was due in a month or 1000 kms.- whichever earlier. I was hoping to cover 1000 Kms before the first service - but that didn't happen. Anyways took an appointment for a weekday (weekends were full) and got the service done. A normal service - engine oil and oil filter change, chain clean and lube, wash and polish along with checking all the throttle, clutch settings and brake pads - normally comes up to around 4 hours (related discussion here). However I requested only for the oil, oil filter change and checking the brake pads. Washing the bike and cleaning / lubing the chain is something I would prefer doing myself. The whole service was completed within 2 hours and below is the breakup of the service cost.

Bike : Kawasaki
Model : Versys 650
Year : 2018
Service Interval as per manufacturer (kms/year) : 1000 Kms or 1 month

1st Service Cost : Rs. 5159/-
Odometer Reading : 550 kms
Breakup :
Oil Filter - 640.63
Engine Oil (1.8l) - 1276.78
Labour - 2400
GST (Parts and Services) - 842
Name / Address of the Service Center : Anzen Kawasaki, Mumbai
Other comments / Expenses Incurred : The service center was very prompt in booking an appointment for the service. Since it was a weekday, I requested for an early appointment so I didn't have to miss work. I reached the showroom at around 9:15 and the service in charge reached almost the same time. I was asked if I was facing any problems in the bike or if I had any questions regarding the service. The only request I had was to check the coolant level and a slight sound from the brake pads. And most importantly to be very careful while handling the bike - I give a scratch less bike and expect a scratch less bike in return. All duly noted and after opening the job card the bike was immediately taken into the service bay. Customers are not allowed to enter the service bay but can view their bikes being serviced through the glass door. A few minutes into the service, I noticed the person who opened my job card speaking to someone and then came up to me to assure me "I have asked someone else to work on your bike and I have asked him to be very careful while handling your bike". It really felt very assuring and he didn't have to inform me about it. But that did take away a bit of my tension. The service was completed and I received my bike back intact - no scratches, no grease or oil marks, no finger prints etc. You may think that I am being too paranoid - but I am very particular about these things. Totally impressed with their service and dedication.

Thank you Kevin Fernandes and Faisal!

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Default re: The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650

About the Versys
The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650-psx_20180520_141217.jpg

The Versys gets its name from 2 words - Versatile System. Trust the Japanese to come up with a unique name by combining their values. Toyota had coined up the name Qualis by combining 2 of their values - Quality and Service. Anyways coming back to the Versys, it is also known as the KLE650 (codename) in various markets. It was a motorcycle designed to be a cross between the Kawasaki KLR650 which was their dual purpose motorcycle and the Kawasaki Ninja 650 which was their sports bike. The combination made way for one of the most successful Adventure Tourer motorcycles.

Indian History
The Versys 650 was launched in India in Dec 2015. Until then the only other Adventure motorcycle available in India was the Triumph Tiger. However at a price of around 15 lakhs (Mumbai OTR), it was way out of the reach for most people. The Versys, at almost half the price, was a steal. It was initially launched in Matt black but after a year Kawasaki got in the green color as well and thereon the refreshed models too (cosmetically). The Versys was a hit in the market - it was based on the tries tested and proven Ninja 650 - but it had more comfort, better equipment (adjustable suspension) and more importantly ABS.

As of now, the Versys 650 is the most VFM Adventure Tourer in the Indian market. The only other competition the Versys had was the Benelli 600GT which was cheaper by more than a lakh and came with a 4 cylinder engine and luggage set. But the bike flopped - leaving the Versys as the king of the under 10 lakh segment. However, the Versys is now going to face a tough competition with its direct competitor - the Suzuki VStrom 650 which is due to be launched next month.

http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/superb...ing-india.html (Kawasaki Versys 650 - Coming to India?)

http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/superb...-6-6-lakh.html (Kawasaki Versys 650 launched at Rs. 6.6 lakh)

http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/superb...-50-lakhs.html (2018 Kawasaki Versys 650 launched at Rs. 6.50 lakhs)

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Default re: The return of Godzilla - My Kawasaki Versys 650

Versys Online
If you are planning to buy a Versys, do go through the Versys ownership threads on Team-BHP. There are some detailed ownership reviews which will help you make your decisions. Caution : Each thread is more addictive than the other.

Last edited by GTO : 2nd June 2018 at 09:54. Reason: PM'ing
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