2021 Kawasaki KLX 300 SM.

Discussion in 'Thumpers' started by dlmarquez, Dec 16, 2020.

  1. dlmarquez

    dlmarquez dlm

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    #1
  2. dlmarquez

    dlmarquez dlm

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    upload_2020-12-16_16-17-43.jpeg
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  3. ex250mike

    ex250mike Long timer

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    Its good to see an affordable SM again.
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  4. dowlf

    dowlf Adventurer

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    I picked mine up today. Love the bike so far. First thing I did when I got home was take my jigsaw to the rear fender for a free tail tidy.

    klx300sm.jpg
    #4
  5. jon_l

    jon_l Long timer

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    I have been considering this bike for a gravel road / back road (everything except highway) bike. Like the larger front disc, lower seat height. Wish ABS was an option.

    Has anyone found 60/40 to 70/30 road/off road tire choices in 110-70 and 130-70? Probably 110-80, 130-80 would work?
    #5
  6. gehart

    gehart Been here awhile

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    I have Shinko 705's on my 2014 500x. I consider them 70/30 road/off road tires. don't know if they have the correct size for KLX 300 sm.
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  7. jon_l

    jon_l Long timer

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    Correct size is 110-70 and 130-70

    1st tires I looked at were the 705s.
    #7
  8. dowlf

    dowlf Adventurer

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    After 200 miles on it so far I am in love with this bike. The perfect bike for back roads and getting around town. Haven't had it up to highway speeds yet, trying to take it easy during the break-in period. I'm old fashion so I did the first oil change after 100 miles, was really easy. I used the trick of a little grease inside the case to get the spring to hold long enough to get the filter in place, worked like a charm. In this pic you can see I cleaned up the fender with my jigsaw, works perfectly, I can't see paying a lot for a custom tail tidy.

    klx300sm_01.jpg
    #8
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  9. Sid Post

    Sid Post Middle aged rider

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    Tempting me as well though, I'm thinking a Husqvarna Svartpilien 401 might be a slightly better option.

    The demo KLX-300SM I tested at the Kawasaki Demo Tour was really nice and easy to ride on the street. That front brake grabs a lot harder than my tired 2007 KLX-250S but, is easy to modulate when you get used to it, or put another way, don't go from needing a good handful on a tired heavily used motorcycle to this one!
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  10. jon_l

    jon_l Long timer

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    I have been considering either the CRF300 Rally, or this KLX300SM. The latter would need tires suited to gravel and two-track, but not an off-road bike. And a larger fuel tank.

    It looks like Honda 300s are all presold and none will likely be available in 2021. The nearest Kaw dealer has 2 SMs in-bound due to arrive west-coast end of May, both green (I'd prefer blue).

    Sucks that showrooms are closed due to Covid, so a pig-in-a-poke scenario.
    #10
  11. Sid Post

    Sid Post Middle aged rider

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    FWIW, I think the SuperMoto is a great option for anyone not doing real tough off-road work. If you can live with 1" less suspension travel and ground clearance or the ability to roll over larger downed limbs and similar, the SuperMoto has a lot going for it. With a 31" inseam, I easily put both feet down on the KLX-300SM so, that is a big advantage for many and especially for newer riders IMHO.

    The biggest drawback with the Honda is the poorer quality suspension. I'd much rather fit a larger gas tank (assuming I needed one) than taking my suspension off and sending it off to be reworked.

    I terms of color, the green ones should be pretty easy to find but, the color changes, if you want to go that route, aren't going to be too hard. A front fender and side panels are easy swaps for color updates.
    #11
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  12. jon_l

    jon_l Long timer

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    Thanks @Sid Post

    I don't care at all about the small loss of ground clearance, nor worry about clearance for the 300mm front disc. Shock on the red bike, and fuel cell on the green one are manageable.

    The valve check intervals and lack of ABS are holding me back.

    A few years ago, I rented a KLX250SM for 4 days of touring on Vancouver Island. With sport-bike tires, it sucked in deep gravel, but was just fine everywhere else.
    #12
  13. southwade

    southwade Long timer

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  14. Sid Post

    Sid Post Middle aged rider

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    ABS to me has much less value on a lightweight motorcycle. The MSF Basic course is a much better value IMHO. While that 300mm front rotor is going to be a problem for someone that grabs a handful of brake during a panic stop, it really has awesome control so panicking and grabbing a handful of brake to me is similar to a total lack of throttle control. I should note I have decades of riding behind me so, my personal view may not align well for newer riders.

    Regarding valve checks, for most riders, they don't occur frequently and generally are a bigger issue to talk about than they are in real life, at least with modern Japanese options.

    And yes, 17" tires, especially those meant for supermotos, are going to be terrible in deep sand or loose gravel however, that's not what supermotos were designed for either! Most of the Harley's would suck in loose gravel or deep sand too! ;)
    #14
  15. Sid Post

    Sid Post Middle aged rider

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    Sounds like tons of fun! I really enjoyed my KLX300SM demo and imagine a multiday tour in various parts of Canada on one would be awesome!
    #15
  16. southwade

    southwade Long timer

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    I agree with this heartily. Even with my 6'2" 245lbs body, I can grab ridiculous amount of front brake and it hauls to a stop pretty damn quickly with little to no fuss. I have yet to make the front slip on pavement. On dirt and gravel it's sketchy, yes... but any bike with street rubber is gonna have sketchy front brake on a loose surface.
    #16
  17. Motonirvana

    Motonirvana Can't make this shit up

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    Do you happen to know what the valve clearance check/adjust interval is for the KLX300SM?
    #17
  18. southwade

    southwade Long timer

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    Lucky for you I have my manual right here on my desk... it's every 12,000 miles.
    #18
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  19. jon_l

    jon_l Long timer

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  20. southwade

    southwade Long timer

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