Age old Question... 650 or 1000 for two up riding? - Stromtrooper Forum : Suzuki V-Strom Motorcycle Forums
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post #1 of 16 Old 09-09-2013, 10:37 AM Thread Starter
Junior Trooper
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Florida
Posts: 2
Age old Question... 650 or 1000 for two up riding?

Hi All

I'm looking to make a purchase on either the 650 or 1000. This bike will be at my vacation home in FL so it won't get a lot of use. I have some plans to take the bike perhaps to Key West for the weekend and some travel around the area with my wife as a passenger. I'm sure the 650 would be fine but.... I've always been drawn to the more powerful bikes cuz I just like the power to be available if need be.

I'm looking at a 2013 650 ABS Adventure. A dealer in FL has this bike and a 2012 1000. The price is almost the same. I would have to add bags on the 1000.

Being that I'm posting this on 650 section I assume most will vote for the 650. But I would appreciate a honest response.

Thanks much.

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post #2 of 16 Old 09-09-2013, 10:50 AM
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There is no good way to answer that as it is totally a matter of an individual's preferences. You could have a bunch of people prefer one or the other, which is just the way it is, and that would have nothing to do with what is best for you. If the 650 has enough power for you, get it as it is a more refined package. Otherwise, get the 1000 or wait until the new Vee comes out and see how it has changed.

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post #3 of 16 Old 09-09-2013, 11:11 AM
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Join Date: Sep 2012
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2012 650 Adv. rider 2 up on occasion...

I ride 2 up every weekend with my GF on back, mostly 2 lane rural routes around Waterbury, CT. Hilly and twisty roads abound. I ride conservative when she is on the back (<60mph) I'm 204lb and she is approx. 150 lbs. I really don't notice the additional weight except for the occasional down shift going up a long hill. Other than that, Plenty of torque and pull away throttle response for emergency situations. I feel this bike is perfect for 2 up riding.

Additionally, we took our first off road adventure on a loose packed gravel road this weekend, and I was pleasantly surprised how well the bike goes off road with two people. Great cornering with my 2 new SHINKO 705's tires!

Hope this helps clarify and concerns you may have.

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post #4 of 16 Old 09-09-2013, 11:38 AM
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If two up riding + luggage was a priority for me I would probably get something else than the V-Stroms.

The 650 is a great solo bike and can handle two up riding just fine.
When my Strom are carrying both my girlfriend (140lbs) and me (200lbs) it still handles ok and if I let it rev the power is adequate even for spirited riding and overtaking - I don't feel that would still be the case if I added panniers and luggage for two persons to the equation.

The thing is that "adequate" is not enough for me - I prefer to have ample power when riding a bike, and the 650 only have that when I'm riding solo (and stay off the autobahn).

But if I was looking for a bike primarily for two up riding I wouldn't be looking at the current 1000 V-Strom - compared to the new 650 it feels big, ungainly and doesn't handle nearly as well - its a more than 10 years old design and it's beginning to show.

If I wanted a adventure-style bike for two up riding I would be looking at Yamaha XTZ 1200 or BMW R 1200GS - both are light years better than the 1000 V-Strom.

If I had to pick a V-Strom for two up riding I would go for the 650 despite the weaker engine.

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Last edited by Don_T; 09-09-2013 at 11:44 AM.
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post #5 of 16 Old 09-09-2013, 12:26 PM
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for the flatlands of Florida, 650, there are no hills long and steep enuf to warrant a 1000

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post #6 of 16 Old 09-09-2013, 12:38 PM
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I have owned both. If the decision was a 2013 650 vs a 2012 1000 I would get the 650 every time. Simply because the revised 650 is a better overall package and your ONLY choice if you want ABS.

The 650 will cruise at 80+ mph two up with panniers in place. Roll on the throttle and it picks up speed nicely. Plenty of power, especially when I consider two up riding should be a bit on the conservative side anyway. The 1000 has a LOT more midrange power. You don't need to downshift to make aggressive passes. That is what a 1000 gives that a 650 does not. The 650 fuel mileage is a lot better and gives more range per tank.

If you go with the 2012 1000 make SURE you get the updated ECU installed right away. Plenty of information here about doing that.

The 1000 can be a really nice bike too. As for it not having panniers, some might say the aftermarket has better choices anyway.

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post #7 of 16 Old 09-09-2013, 02:45 PM
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At this stage in the waiting game for the 2014 DL1000 I would recommend waiting to see how it does with reviews. That's just my thoughts.

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post #8 of 16 Old 09-09-2013, 03:39 PM
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Originally Posted by hunt1moore View Post
At this stage in the waiting game for the 2014 DL1000 I would recommend waiting to see how it does with reviews. That's just my thoughts.
Yup, awaiting the Motorcycle Consumer News report on any new, revamped DL 1000. :-) Ride safe, all.


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post #9 of 16 Old 09-09-2013, 07:36 PM
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This is my view for what it is worth.

I currently have a 2013 DL650 Adv model with the bags & trunk. I've come from a 2008 Harley Hertiage Softail and before that a BMW R1100R and before that older gold wings and so on.

I have only put about 300 miles on my bike as I picked it up last Friday. Today my wife and I with all our gear, but the bags & trunk empty, ( we would weight in the neighbourhood of 400 lbs with ATGATT.

Handling. Bike handles the weight with no problem and in fact from a balance perspective there is no difference if I'm riding 2 up or solo. Steering is fine with no front end light feeling. I have the rear shock preload cranked all the way up and no sign of any bottoming when I'm travelling 2up with all the luggage. Enters turns fine and the bike handles really well and is a joy to ride. Brakes are excellent.

Power. Where I live we have some really big hills to get out of the city and the bike will accelerate in 6th gear up the hill with bags, trunk & 2 up. You can hear the engine work a little harder but it has no problem accelerating and passing slower moving vehicles up the hill. Loaded semis are in the area of 15 mph going up this hill, so it is a good test for the bike. If I start into the hill at 60 mph it will accelerate with no problem. As I'm still breaking the engine it I have to limit myself to less than 5000 rpm, and that is the only limiting factor to the speed going up these hills.

Comfort. Overall -Good to excellent. Seat can be an issue for longer rides for some, but some don't find it bad, so that is a personal type of thing. We don't bump into each other and each has room to move around and we aren't cramped. The stock adv windshield is great, no buffeting in either the mid or upper position. I wouldn't invest in an aftermarket screen until I put some serious miles on the stock one. Handlebars - you might want to rotate them slightly to find the spot that suits you. Foot pegs to seat. I'm about 5" 11" with around a 31 " inseam. Don't have any issues with my knees and either 2 up or solo can touch the ground flat with at least one foot.

Conclusion. There is no doubt you are riding a lighter bike, but you can't think of this bike/engine combination like the 650 4 cyl from the 70/80's. It has lots of power and 2 up is not an issue unless you are one that can't stand staying around the highway speed limit 2up. ( Most of us ride a bit more conservatively when the boss is on the back ). The only area that I noticed and lack of grunt is staring from a dead stop uphill. You then realize you are riding a 650 not a 1000. A little more gas, slip the clutch slightly and away you go. (This is not an everyday riding condition and if it was you could always mess around with the gearing ( sprockets ) if you wished.) A lot will boil down to you & your passengers total weight, type of riding you will do together and how much you will actually travel together.

From what you describe your needs I would go with the 650. For the money it really is an excellent all around motorcycle.

Last edited by cycleman; 09-10-2013 at 10:34 AM. Reason: Forgot something
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post #10 of 16 Old 09-09-2013, 10:14 PM
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Originally Posted by realshelby View Post
The 1000 can be a really nice bike too. As for it not having panniers, some might say the aftermarket has better choices anyway.
At least with regard to the 650 ADV's panniers, I was offered a really nice discount if I'd taken the dealership's model off their showroom floor. But in my opinion they're unnecessarily wide, and I chose the stock 650 ABS model. If you choose your farkles wisely you'll end up with exactly the set-up YOU want, and may very well save some money in the long run. SW-Motech Evo racks, or Givi PLX, are only a few of your options, and at least with the SW-M you have several different choices as to what sidecases you want to go with.

After riding two-up all over the place on the EX-500, then a C-10 Concours, and now the DL650, we don't find it lacking at all. (Hm, well except for top speed!) And the amount of weight it can carry is quite surprising. Two-up, with a pair of Givi E36 sidecases and Givi V46 topcase all packed up, we still have plenty of acceleration and passing speed on tap, and the handling and suspension have provided lots of sure-footed fun in the twisties. However, like others have mentioned, if I were serious about the 1000, I'd probably wait and see about the 2014 model. Good luck with your choice, whatever you decide!

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