Anyone regret buying a KLR?

Discussion in 'Thumpers' started by Bullwinkle58, Apr 22, 2014.

  1. Bullwinkle58

    Bullwinkle58 Adventurer

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    The KLR appeals to me for the usual reasons, and I want to own one, but I'm concerned that after spending $2k in upgrades and a few thousand miles, I will want more power, more comfort, or more something. Then I will lose what I spent on mods plus depreciation in order to upgrade. (I will be buying used).

    It seems like a lot of people trade up to a BMW, Triumph, Tenere, etc. after they've experienced "ADV" riding on a KLR. I know there are diehard KLR guys, but do most KLR riders yearn for a Triumph / BMW / Tenere?

    I've ridden dirt bikes most of my life, currently ride a KTM 530 exc, and want to add an "adventure" bike to the garage.

    I plan on my riding to be 80% pavement, 20% dirt roads / easy trails, loaded down with camping gear, exploring the continental united states and alaska.

    Is the KLR "enough" bike? :ear
    #1
  2. Tsotsie

    Tsotsie Semi-reformed Tsotsi Supporter

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    No.

    And the Beemer gets ridden a lot less.
    #2
  3. XDragRacer

    XDragRacer Long timer Supporter

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    Not I.

    Found the bike versatile, capable, maintainable, and . . . affordable.

    Yet, YMMV. Thus, I wouldn't evangelistically proselytize you, as some KTM, or even DR, "True Believers" might.

    But, answering the question in this thread's title, "Not I." Nor do I lust for another marque and model, for the application chosen for my KLR.

    Is the KLR the "One True Motorcycle?" Hardly. However, sometimes "perfect," is the enemy of "good enough, fully adequate."
    #3
    Keating likes this.
  4. Foot dragger

    Foot dragger singletracker

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    "Good enough" is that what we really want? Just something that kinda works?
    Adequate,meaning, "it goes"

    Or something that truly blows your skirt up and will wheelie through at least the 1st 4 gears and hit 95mph real quick if need be,looks bitchin sitting there and you dont find yourself covering it all the time to avoid looking at it.

    Maybe even has real suspension right off the dealer floor? Or is it better to do stop gap fixes and eventually spend as much on it as a bike that was already built right from the start,and still have a wallow hog.

    What do you REALLY want?
    #4
  5. kyxon

    kyxon Adventurer

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    I second XD.

    I have been offroading with a group for a little bit and I've seen some of those others bikes you refer to.

    The Triumphs are always falling over. The BMW guys wear out fast (heavy bike?). I haven't seen a tenere off road. I see more KLRs than any other single make.

    Maybe I'm not a good enough rider to outgrow the KLR.
    #5
  6. NJ-Brett

    NJ-Brett Brett

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    Its not something I would take in the dirt, and I do not think its a great street bike.

    I do not need lots of power, but can not stand a lot of weight in the dirt.
    That breaks bones.
    #6
  7. TexaNate

    TexaNate Riding hard or hardly riding

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    Well put!

    My dad bought a lightly used KLR for $4,000 and then a year later decided he wanted a Triumph 800XC - got a brand new one for $12,000 (with the bells and whistles). But he kept the KLR so I could ride it when I'm home.

    I then rebuilt the KLR's front end with new brake pads, disc and Ricor Intiminators. That made a pretty huge difference in the feel of the bike and now he admits it's kind of hard to understand why one bike costs 3 times as much as the other. They both take you to the same places.

    We took them both onto sandy single-track a few weeks back, just for the butt-clenching experience. If you drop either bike, it's not going to be cheap but the KLR feels distinctly less fragile off-road...possibly because it's so much less valuable.

    Good luck making the choice!
    #7
  8. Jimo368

    Jimo368 Quantum Mechanic

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    I owned a previous generation KLR and it didn't do anything well. Got rid of it after three years, but would like to try the new one. Love my DRZ so far.
    #8
  9. DualsportWA

    DualsportWA Adventurer

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    if it's mostly for the road, I would want more HP! :)
    #9
  10. KamLeeR

    KamLeeR Animal Adventurer Supporter

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    No. I have had 3 KLRs in amongst 2 KTM 950/990s and 3 BMWs, 2 800GSs, and now a BMW 1200GS.

    If I could only own 1 bike, the KLR it would be. Not perfect, but it works.

    Now, will this thread reach the magnitude of " Anyone buy a WR250R and regret it?":D
    #10
  11. bush pilot

    bush pilot Long timer

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    I own two, and I don't regret either, but I did do some upgrades. My 06' 685 has nearly 90k miles and is ready to go another 90k.
    I recently bought an 01' and and massaged it to the max stage 2 705 kit. super upgrade. I will likely put 100k miles on this bike.
    While I like the stock engine the aftermarket 685 and 705cc kits are a distinct and desirable improvement. There are numerous suspension and brake upgrades which also improve the bike significantly.
    All in all the KLR is without question one of the most affordable and capable travel bikes out there. You do have to give it some study to make it right for you.
    Rebuilding the forks to modern specs and using a Moab shock transform the suspension from kinda blah to wow! Brake upgrades to bigger rotors an ss lines are also a big wow!
    #11
  12. B.C.Biker

    B.C.Biker mighty fine

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    Owning a KLR is some thing you "do". Have a 1/2 dozen bikes right now. It's one of the two I would keep for maybe ever. If you like to tinker it's a good choice. They can also be found plenty cheap enough so it shouldn't stop you from getting an of the shelf weapon as well. (or two!)
    I'd keep the KTM at the same time as the KLR if it were me. If it starts to collect dust then I'd start putting $ into the KLR.
    #12
  13. Night Falcon

    Night Falcon Structural Failure

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    A good mate of mine has a 530exc for hardcore adv riding and a KLR for softer road and gravel rides. He fitted a 700 kit in it and lots of other gizmos to make it a bit more user friendly. He says you have to just accept the KLR for what it is - a boring but reliable old work horse. Its fit for purpose - just- but don't expect more than that and then you wont be disappointed. If I could have only one bike it definitely wouldn't be a KLR - fortunately we are all different but the same so thankfully you get to make up your own mind.:norton
    #13
  14. Tsotsie

    Tsotsie Semi-reformed Tsotsi Supporter

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    'Or something that truly blows your skirt up and will wheelie through at least the 1st 4 gears and hit 95mph real quick if need be,looks bitchin sitting there and you dont find yourself covering it all the time to avoid looking at it....'

    However, not all of us have the "... Tim the toolman inferiority/adequacy complex...!"

    It would be nice if sometime you could contribute something positive and with substance to a discussion instead of your predictable pithy mumblings. It seems to really piss you off that others might be happy with their choices.
    #14
  15. Full Power

    Full Power Long timer

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    A KLR650 does not need or want 2000 in upgrades.
    Gasoline, oil, filters, tires, chain, sprockets.... balancer chain tension spring... just go ride.
    Of all. The bikes I have owned and ridden, the KLR has needed the LEAST maintenance/upgrading, diddling with.
    Buy it, ride it.
    #15
  16. Godders

    Godders Crazy Pom in Aus

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    No regrets here -

    It's cheap enough and allows the option to farkle if needed

    Sure i'd love a GS1200 or similar but can't justify the money for one of those when it's mainly used for commuting. Love it, on my second one.
    #16
  17. DirtDad

    DirtDad Green Chile Guru

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    I have owned 4 KLR's. I am mostly a dirt bike rider too. I have ridden pretty much all of the big Adventure bikes. Just test rides. My favorites were the KTM 990, and the Buell. I owned a KTM530 also. Funny thing is
    when I did not have a KLR in the garage I felt like I needed one. :D
    I took my KLR on a D/S ride I try to do once a year. Also, took the 530 on the same ride. I was surprised that I enjoyed the ride much more on the KLR, than the 530. Number one reason was comfort! After 3 days on the 530, my arse was done. On the KLR I could have ridden another 3 days.

    I would keep the 530 if you could. The only time I wish I had more power with the KLR is when I am on the interstate.
    #17
  18. XDragRacer

    XDragRacer Long timer Supporter

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    You quickly dog-pile onto your partner's unqualified dictum, "Buy a KTM!" :rofl

    You do not answer the question asked in this thread's title: "Anyone regret buying a KLR?" I rather doubt you ever bought a KLR, and perhaps thus, are unable to offer any direct evidence of any "regrets." Not that your lack of credible input might deter you from boosting your own choice, and condemning that of others.

    Possibly, you tired, momentarily, of inflating your post count on the, well, "self-gratification" chat-room-masquerading-as-a-forum-thread bashing the WR250R. No great leap, transitioning to bashing the KLR, it seems.

    The notion, everyone must clone your preferences and replicate your requirements, appears narcissistic, even grandiose, to me. Incipient symptoms of possible mental . . . well, never mind! :lol3

    Still, if you must enhance your low self-concept by wallowing in elitist snobbery, i.e., "KTMs uber alles" (you can look up the phrase, if you don't know its origin, context, and meaning), then embrace and relish your self-delusional conceit.

    With no direct personal experience with a particular make or model of motorcycle, do you think your own, different choices become validated and sanctified by trashing the choices of others? Seems like typical flawed logic found in the minds of judgmental personalities, to me.

    Alternatively, someone with valid reservations about a product could outline his own personal experience, specifically disclose shortcomings, and . . . if he chose to promote what he considers a better product, compare and contrast it with the KLR.

    Would I expect such discussion from you?

    No. I'd expect ad hominem (personal) attack, name-calling; the usual cowardly refuge of those with no evidence nor logic on their side.

    Regardless, enjoy your delusional notion of superiority from choosing KTM vs. KLR; even though your psyche and your brand choice appear hopelessly intertwined, to me.
    #18
  19. SandHogSC

    SandHogSC Adventurer

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    I bought one and here in this part of S.C. the roads are just too good and the KLR with fuel is too top heavy for local trails. It's not a great interstate cruiser so I sold it. But now I think I want another one for some reason. It seems if you can only have one bike it should be a KLR.

    You said:
    I plan on my riding to be 80% pavement, 20% dirt roads / easy trails, loaded down with camping gear, exploring the continental united states and alaska.
    Is the KLR "enough" bike?

    For Alaska I would think it would be the perfect bike. Large tank, proven reliability, easy to work on. If I lived in Alaska I would want one.
    #19
  20. griffo1962

    griffo1962 Long timer

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    Nope.... owned mine now for over 23yrs..... :evil :evil
    #20