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Hilde44
MotoUSA - Dirt Guy



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   Posted 5/28/2007 1:10 AM (GMT -7)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.

We spent nearly 400 miles with the KLR in Monterey, California, which was the perfect place to demonstrate what this funky new machine is capable of. Read the report here.

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Ferrit
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   Posted 5/28/2007 3:34 AM (GMT -7)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.
The vino must have really gotten to you when you wrote the report?!?!?!  19 inch front?  "now has a fairing and windscreen"--like it didn't before?
 
The Kaw engineers may have addressed some of the issues with the KLR but they missed the mark on the weight.  Adding 50 pounds to an already overweight bike isn't a good thing.
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ianisme
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   Posted 5/28/2007 7:32 AM (GMT -7)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.
and still in Europe the Yamaha XT660 is the bike to have. Oy, Yamaha! Start selling it over here willya!


On the fabled planet of Kittenworld, the most feared weapon of war is the CATapult.
 

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SC_shooter
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   Posted 5/28/2007 8:55 AM (GMT -7)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.
Ferrit said...
The Kaw engineers may have addressed some of the issues with the KLR but they missed the mark on the weight. Adding 50 pounds to an already overweight bike isn't a good thing.


The weight gain is more on the order of 20 to 25 pounds. I don't know where they came up with 337 pounds. But it ain't close to that - maybe 360 or 365.


---
'99 KLR 650

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Racer1
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   Posted 5/28/2007 10:13 AM (GMT -7)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.
I dunno.... but if I were about to take a trip down through South America, this bike may well be high on my list... I'm pretty sure I could service it and do running repairs.I may be porky, but compared to a GS 1200? Also it doesn't have the kind of electronics (ABS controller) that sidelined a bike during The Long Way Round after a minor incident.

It's not perfect, but it seems to stay close to its roots of simple, no fuss, adventure touring in a world where bigger seems to always mean better, and complexity for its own sake is seen as a virtue...

It's the kind of bike that appreciates a road map over GPS maybe... (I've never had a road map give me an error message).
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Racer1
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   Posted 5/28/2007 10:17 AM (GMT -7)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.
OK dammit... typo alert...

I meant to say "IT may be porky" not "I may be porky"...

While it's true that at 5'11 and 180lbs I could probably lose 10lbs, I can in no way be compared to a GS1200! I staunchy defend my non porky status and hate my keyboard for its cruel japes...

As you were...
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Desmolicious
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   Posted 5/28/2007 3:14 PM (GMT -7)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.
What happened to the b1tchin music with the video? I was looking forward to listening to Mother Superior.....
Nice bike, nice review, great video showing what it can do, looks like a bargain. I like the green one.


Børk! Børk! Børk!

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cls
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   Posted 5/28/2007 3:26 PM (GMT -7)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.
Good move in all areas, except they should have made it lose weight and gain a 6th gear. Other than that, it's an awesome "use it hard" bike.
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Hilde44
MotoUSA - Dirt Guy



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   Posted 5/28/2007 3:47 PM (GMT -7)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.
Didn't mean to state the obvious there, Ferrit, just meant that the '08 fairing and windscreen are now more sizeable - and thanks for catching that typo. It is a 21-inch front wheel.
 
I like how you sum it up Racer 1, "simple, no fuss, adventure touring." I thought Kawi did a good job of offering just that, and at a very reasonable price.
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Starting Late
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   Posted 5/28/2007 3:48 PM (GMT -7)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.
Nice article.

I'm impressed with the changes, and will be probably swaping my 05 out for an 08 soon. I love my 05 KLR, it was my first real bike, and a great learning bike. Unlike many people who sell as they move 'up' I have decided to keep it because it's such a great commuter, and simple 2nd bike to have around. All the fixes they mention are spot-on in my book. I was thinking of buying a new exhaust, better brakes, doing the do-hicky, and adding a Corbin seat ... but for the $$ I think I'm better off selling my 05 and buying an 08, where all these shortcomings are addressed. I think I can get $3K for my 05 (7500 miles, no dirt riding), as there is a strong resale market. If I can get a new one for $5500 OTD then I'm looking at ony $2500 to upgrade.


Better late than never

2005 KLR 650

Newbodometer: 7670 Miles (As Of 2-20-2007)

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OhioSteve
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   Posted 5/28/2007 7:16 PM (GMT -7)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.
They kept the price low and improved the brakes. That's a great makeover for the KLR.


I am the foremost expert on my opinion.

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Johnny Monsoon
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   Posted 5/29/2007 9:51 AM (GMT -7)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.
Kawi took a big step backward with this bike, at least in the adventure realm.

The things they've done to it are focused on street use, and I'll readily admit that in that arena they certainly improved the bike, but for that mission they'd have done better to get the Versys out here. For the KLR's go-anywhere-do-anything mission, they made the bike less capable.

I wanted to reserve any judgment until I'd actually seen one and ridden one. There is no power improvement. The brakes have gotten somewhat better, but not enough to justify swapping the front forks for; especially when the designs for oversized rotors are available and affordable. These options for braking are lighter and work better. There is really no reason not to have swapped to the same set found on the KLX250S with stiffer springs which would have vastly improved the bike's all-terrain-ability AND braking while not increasing costs any great deal.

The fairing is nice, but not designed for any type of adventure at all. While still flexible, it'd be looking horrible in short order, and the larger windscreen will be in pieces before you start to round off the knobbies if you're doing any sort of adventuring. That's the reason you never see much bodywork on adventure bikes.

I think a restyle was reasonable, but I believe they went the wrong way. A more baja/dakar look while upgrading the 'doohickey' and beefing up the front brake and stator would have met the shortcomings of this bike for far less money. It would have satisfied the adventure junkie and still made improvements that would benefit the KLR for road-going duty.

This is the first thumbs-down I've had to give Kawasaki in a while, and I don't see it being corrected anytime in the near future. It is sad to see such a moto-icon lose its way.


"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than by the ones you did. So throw off the bowlines, Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream."

-Samuel Langhorne Clemens



“Integrity without knowledge is weak and useless, and knowledge without integrity is dangerous and dreadful.”

-Samuel Johnson

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Starting Late
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   Posted 5/29/2007 9:55 AM (GMT -7)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.
Well Johnny there will be plenty of old ones around for YEARS if you like the older style better. In fact around here they are selling leftover 07's for extremely good prices. I like the changes they made, although, as you say, I need to see it person.


Better late than never

2005 KLR 650 (Light and crude)
1994 BMW R100RSL (Heavy and complex)

Newbodometer: 9500 Miles (As Of 5-29-2007)

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Tros
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   Posted 5/29/2007 5:45 PM (GMT -7)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.
I'm suprised they didn't go towards a more-dirt focused dual sport; with that said, I think this KLR will sale quite well and will continue to be a popular dual sport for many years to come.


"People take different roads seeking fulfillment and happiness. Just because they're not on your road doesn't mean they've gotten lost."

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Ferrit
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   Posted 5/30/2007 2:55 AM (GMT -7)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.
A couple of points on Johnny's rant

I don't think Kaw wanted to go head-to-head with KTM in the 50/50 adventure touring group so they stayed with a more 80/20 type bike. We have all seen KLRs with 5k street only miles with every farkle in the books and that's the riders that Kaw has targeted. 90% of the old farkles still fit so the KLR can be tailored to almost any style of riding.

And there is nothing wrong with the doohickey, Kawasaki says so.

My '03 ran coast to coast, border to border on any road that I pointed it down. The changes to the '08 are a start and when they do the next upgrade in 20 years they will probably get to the other issues. The KLR is still the best pickup truck in the American motorcycle landscape.
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Hilde44
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   Posted 5/31/2007 4:24 PM (GMT -7)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.
I've just received the latest due dates for the KLR accessories.
Windscreen (aprox. 3" higher and 3" wider) - mid June
Saddlebags, Tail Trunk, Tank Bag, Handlebar Bag - late July
Center Stand, Heated Grips - still TBA
 
Start bugging your favorite Kawi dealer and keep your eyes peeled.
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david.randall
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   Posted 6/6/2007 1:12 PM (GMT -7)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.
The new KLR is absolutely perfect for me, and Kawi will sell me one next spring. Yes, I am forty. I raced motocross in the late '70s and early '80s, and then spent two decades on streetbikes. If I wanted a dirtbike I'd buy the new KLX450R, but the KLR will take me to Alaska and up the Dempster highway.
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DR-ZKing
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   Posted 6/6/2007 5:50 PM (GMT -7)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.
Over all I don't like dual sports, but on occasion,I like to ride them (like on fire roads or something). My favorite dual sport is the DRZ400S because it is really capable in the dirt. The KLR is set up too be more street than dirt because of the designs (basically, you don't want to take it on some major single track or something), like being about 350 pounds. But if I get a bike mainly for street, I would get a KLR, because they get better gas mileage than a full blown street bike, and they weigh allot lighter. But for dirt I don't care for them that much.
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Hilde44
MotoUSA - Dirt Guy



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   Posted 6/7/2007 10:40 AM (GMT -7)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.
Next spring?!? What about the nine months until then? Surely you could find a few worthy days of riding in that time. Any reason for the delay?
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scooter78666
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   Posted 6/11/2007 7:19 AM (GMT -7)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.
I have admired KLR650's for years, but never owned one. I do own and ride a Suzuki DR350S. It is a fine bike, BUT the seat height is way too tall for me. I haven't figured out a way to carry around the step ladder I need to get on this tall cycle. I read where the new KLR seat height is 35 inches. Does anyone know how to get this height down by at least an inch, preferably two inches?
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Ferrit
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   Posted 6/22/2007 2:28 AM (GMT -7)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.
Scooter---Just in case you never got an answer to your question, there are lowering links available for the KLR and Corbin makes a dished seat. With these you can lower the seat an easy 2 inches Keep in mind that the lowering links will not change the seat to peg relationship but the seat will.
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