Hello from a former Vstrom owner.
Long story short, I've been one of those KLR riders since '02. I've kept the KLR mainly due to comfort - having bought and sold many other bikes over the last 10 years including an '04 and '08 Vstrom. I had hoped that the vstrom would be the answer to some of the KLR's shortcomings. It was in many ways, but not comfort.
Sold both the Vstroms because they just didn't seem to fit, and I couldn't get comfortable. Other bikes, yes including a couple cruisers have come and gone since then, but I'm still riding the '02 KLR with 42,000 miles on it. From the miles you can see that I end up riding on the road most of the time, forest service roads and some exploring but I don't off-road.
So can the 3rd time be a charm? For all the KLR riders who made the transition and liked it, would you still recommend giving it another shot?
On paper it would seem like a no brainer making the switch - more roadworthy for light touring, FI with extra power, tubeless tires...etc,
considering the type of riding that I do.
I recently test rode a '07 Vstrom 650 - and once again it gave me a smile along with some of the comfort issues that I dealt with before. I've looked into possibly a Versys, but just don't think that would be the right bike based on the comparison with the Vstrom.
Some of the added motivation for going down this path again, is an Alaska trip in the works for August this year. To be fair, I didn't make some necessary upgrades on the last bikes - which I'm willing to do this time around.
So take the 'ole reliable (questionable at this point) KLR or take the plunge for the 3rd time?
ok, sorry it was the long version