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Old 10-05-2012, 08:34 PM   #75
Gnarly Adventurer
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Joined: Dec 2008
Location: The Great White North
Oddometer: 334
Originally Posted by Johnny Tarr View Post
Ok, so the options appear to be:

1. Get a KLR and dirtify it, or
2. Get a DR and streetify it.

So, here are some more questions for you guys.

How much would each of the above cost me? I'm probably going to replace the seat either way, so you can leave that cost off of the suzuki, which as I understand is a mandatory upgrade for it.

I know neither bike is any good for two-up, but if I HAD to, which would be better?

I noticed that the KLR seems more suited to carrying a bunch of luggage. Is it far enough ahead in this catagory to be worth factoring this into my choice?

Though I come from an atv trail riding background, I'm a complete newbie at dirt riding two wheelers. The suzuki is significantly lighter, but several people in this thread and others say they ride their KLRs in single tracks. As a newbie, will I be able to?

The DR, by way of having a lot less plastic, looks to be less sensitive to being dropped. I am expecting to drop my bike on the trails. Can the KLR survive drops, and if not, how hard would it be to add that protection?

I've never owned anything oil cooled like the DR. Is that an advantage or disadvantage? Can anyone elaborate on this for me please?

I'd love to, but the local dealer doesn't allow test rides on anything but cruisers.

Edit: I am buying used, for those who have commented on that. I just keep mentioning dealers because its the easiest way for me to get up close with the bikes.

Trust your instincts. The KLR is exactly as you found it, huge and heavy. Be aware of anybody claiming the KLR is as good as a DR or DRZ off road . Its not. I owned and '08 KLR and traded up to a DR650.

As a noob off road rider the DR650 and DRZ400 will be much more forgiving and 3 times as crash worthy. The DR and DRZ are also easier to work on than the 08+ KLR.

Look at it this way. If you are looking at Hiway and gravel roads the KLR is fine.

If you are planning on any offroad trails at all go DR650 or smaller. Maybe just look for a good used 250 dual purpose or DRZ400 and flog it for a year. You will know right away if you are an offroad guy or not.
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