Which small ADV ride?

Discussion in 'Japanese polycylindered adventure bikes' started by Woodsparrow, Nov 19, 2019.

  1. Woodsparrow

    Woodsparrow Been here awhile

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    So I think I've narrowed my bike desires down to the Kawasaki Versys 300, the Royal Enfield Himalayan, and the BMW G310GS.

    I like the higher top end on the BMW, I like the looks on the RE, and...well, the Versys is kind of there - it gets good reviews and everything.

    I won't be tugging around the highways all that often, but I like having the option. But I like having the factory center stand on the RE. I've got some Kriega bags I'd like to strap on - they're the universal types that will take a generic pannier frame and bolt on. No top boxes though.

    Riding habits will mostly be running 10-15 miles to the train station and parking, but I'd like to run the 30+ miles each way to work occasionally. All city street or highway, won't ever get near an off road.

    I'm also at a point where I'd just as soon have a 'zero maintenance' bike, so I'm worried about the RE reliability. Sounds like the fork bearings and an oil leak might be 'a known issue'?

    BMW doesn't have a ton of cons aside from premium fuel type and potentially more expensive shop maintenance, and a non-OEM center stand.

    I'll be going to sit on a couple tomorrow. I looked at the G and F 600 through 800 BMW bikes, but I don't think I can afford them. I prefer a slightly newer bike so the 2000-2010 era bikes are a bit too old.
    #1
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  2. afordableperformance

    afordableperformance Been here awhile

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    Great clearance deals on the Versys and you might consider a left over CB500X too since you're staying on the street and its about the same physical size.
    #2
  3. Woodsparrow

    Woodsparrow Been here awhile

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    Versys super-high revs seem a bit annoying, without riding one?
    #3
  4. flexiflyer

    flexiflyer Been here awhile

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    You would have to define annoying "to you". A person who hasn't ridden track, ridden sportbikes etc , only ridden boxers etc might find it annoying. Its like riding half an R6 in a sit up bike on the highway. Nothing but fun and capable of doing it all day loaded at 10,000 grand effortlessly. I dont use it as such but itwould be a damn near perfect commuter.
    #4
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  5. CaseyJones

    CaseyJones Ridin' that train

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    The Versys X is far smoother than a thumper; mine has been reliable and trouble-free. It's a machine of two characters - ride it conservatively and it sips gas. Roll the throttle to the stop and it screams. The engine was made for it, no worries - just keep up with the oil changes.

    It's a hundred pounds lighter than its big brother, the 650 Versys and you feel it. In a good way. It's like little bikes everywhere, except that few little bikes can do 94 mph.

    Your planned use sounds ideal for that X. I've never ridden the 310, but I see more of them popping up second-hand than Versyses X. And some testers felt, despite the cast wheels, the 310 GS was more oriented to off-road uses, and the Versys happier in commuter service.

    Not that it can't handle gravel trails. It does, and easily, and will come up relatively easily.
    #5
  6. flexfoot

    flexfoot Been here awhile

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    Another bike to consider would be a Honda CB500X. A four year old used one can be found for $3k bucks an that is a lot of bike for the money. To bad they are not popular. Ya can’t ever go wrong with a Honda. Dealers are everywhere and parts plentiful. A real good value, IMO.
    #6
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  7. sieg

    sieg Wearing out tires......2 at a time, day after day. Supporter

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    Versys
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  8. jrw600

    jrw600 Adventurer

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    I am happy with my VX300 as well!
    #8
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  9. twinrider

    twinrider Pass the catnip

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    Riding to the train station and back, why not just pick up a used Super Tenere for the same price as a new mini-adv bike and enjoy the 112 hp and maintenance free shaft drive?
    #9
  10. rideforzen

    rideforzen Long timer

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  11. Woodsparrow

    Woodsparrow Been here awhile

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    The cheapest used one near me is 8k for a 2014 model, and it's still a bit too tall for my tastes.
    #11
  12. Woodsparrow

    Woodsparrow Been here awhile

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    #12
  13. fastnlight

    fastnlight Tire Tester

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    I just sold my versys last night. It was replaced with a CB500x primarily for the difference in engine feel and also for the bit of added power. It was a very good bike and no less reliable or capable in my opinion. For your simple commuting need, the versys wins if you want faster highway performance and Top end as you mentioned. Versys all the way... If you dont need that, just pick the one you like to be on and really consider a used cb500x as well.
    #13
  14. Xchemie

    Xchemie Adventurer

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    For your riding, I would also suggest looking at the CB500X. It's a great small bike for city streets, and enough power for steady 75 mph on the highway. You'll appreciate the extra power over the other options you mentioned. Dead reliable (Honda, of course) and good deals available on the used market. You might still be able to find a new 2018 with a steep dealer discount as well (that's what I got) since you won't need the 19" wheel of the 2019 model.
    #14
  15. jrw600

    jrw600 Adventurer

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    You would think the high revs would be annoying, but to me , they are not. But it is subjective. You really need to ride all three, and the CB500X as well. I was debating between a new VX and a used CB500x and it was the ergonomics that sold me on the VX.
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  16. twinrider

    twinrider Pass the catnip

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    I guess my main point is that if you're buying the bike for commuting, power is your friend when it comes to keeping out of harms way. A V-Strom 650 would be another good candidate, plenty of cheap used ones around.
    #16
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  17. cyclopathic

    cyclopathic Long timer

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    Did they lift stop sale on G310GS yet, can you already buy one?
    #17
  18. Oilhed

    Oilhed MarkF Supporter

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    Parts are arriving any day now for the permanent fix. I just put a deposit on one today. I may have rather had a KTM 390 but I've had great luck with BMWs and my local dealer. Plus they were happy to take a ten year old bike in trade. Gonna use one to dilly dally around and explore some crappy or dirt roads. Might commute on it as well.
    #18
  19. Don T

    Don T Roaming Viking

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    For your described usage and budget I will join the choir that suggest a CB500X.
    It's a much better street bike than any of the other 3 you are considering.
    #19
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  20. The_Precious_Juice

    The_Precious_Juice 2019 DL650XT Touring

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    RE Hima if the dealership is close.
    Long warranty.
    #20