We might be biased
I like my 690; it does everything I want it to do and weighs the same as the DRZ 400. Yes it's more expensive, but most other bikes in it's engine class and that are near it in power output are usually 80-100 lbs heavier. You can't easily remove 80 lbs from a bike like a F650 Sertao or a KLR.
So the the 2012 $9,600 I paid for my 690 is for a bike that makes more power than others in it's engine class, is a bit smoother running (from my experience), and has the lowest weight in it's engine class. Those are all things that aftermarket can't really address, so for me it was worth the price premium.
That being said aftermarket parts and OEM parts for the 690 are quite expensive, the bike is expensive, BUT there's not much else out there that can really compare this against due to the specs.
Another thing I always like to mention is my 2012 690 enduro makes more horsepower than my old 650 v-strom and weighs about 160 lbs less, and has the suspension and handling characteristics to hit the quad/single track in the mountains after riding across the state on the interstate at 75 mph.