Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Villa Ridge, MO
I test rode the Vee, the Wee and the Bandit.
I rejected the Bandit (2006) because the ergonomics were unsuitable/uncomfortable for me. Wonderful bike in my opinion, but my knees are sort of beat up and my leg couldn't tolerate the rather tight knee angle it has. I wish it would. I really am fond of that bike and for the price I don't think there is a better, more reasonably priced or easily (and afford-ably) up-gradable Sport Tourer on the market today.
I almost got the Vee. But at the time of purchase I was very much a re-entry rider, and simply decided ... at several friend's urging that the Vee's greater power, speed and less linear power band would result in my killing myself too soon. They were likely right in that assumption. Both V-Strom's are so easy and enjoyable to ride that out-riding your skill level is very easy ... and something I did end up doing.
The result is that I ended up with the Wee and still have it along with several others that have come and gone in that time. It currently has a little over 62,000 miles on it. And despite having gone through a cruiser, a Honda ST1100A, Honda ST1300A in that period of time as well as purchasing an FJR1300A ... all with much greater power ... the little Wee is going no-where.
While I am fortunate in that I can (barely) flatfoot it, I know several people who can't and they still own one. Some have lowered them, some have either modified the stock seat or bought a lower one, and some of them simply stop with only one foot down. Regardless they love it and/or the Vee and keep riding them; despite that fact that they can't put both feet flat on the ground at the same time.
Truthfully, even though my DL650 is a 2006 and therefore doesn't have ABS, and as much as I think about owning the DL1000, until it is available with ABS I will probably never own one.
It sounds like are a newer rider. If that is true and you will forgive my unasked for advice, I would suggest you go with a motorcycle that has ABS available. You will be surprised at your dealer's demo day how mobile, quick, maneuverable and able to keep up with any highway traffic the DL650 is.
Regardless however, of the make or model of motorcycle you get, I really would recommend something that has ABS. Remember the only thing keeping you alive on a motorcycle (outside of awareness) is maneuverability, quickness/speed and brakes. Why voluntarily give up one of those 3 lifelines that help keep you alive? Particularly if you don't have years of experience, knowledge and muscle memory too fall back on?
And if you like it, I wouldn't worry about the height as that is an issue that can be easily rectified.
Good luck in your endevours.
Banks C[FONT=Comic Sans MS]:crying:[/FONT]
2006 DL650 Current Engine 15,625 Prior engine 67,426 when chain came off and bent valves
2005 Yamaha FJR1300A 68,000 miles and counting