We have just returned from an 8 week trip to New Zealand. Bought a 2016 DL650A-XT specifically for the tour, adding Givi Trekker Outback boxes and a few other odds and sods. Shipped the bike from Gravesend to Auckland through a great little firm, New Zealand Motorcycle Adventures. For £1600 return, they crate the bike up, load into a container, ship to NZ, collect from container, clear bike through customs and arrange the Warranty of Fitness (WOF) to enable you to ride the bike in NZ. The boss, Daniel Jansen, picked us up from the airport, and took us to our hotel, and then to the bike. He also provided a load of good advice, and was on the end of a phone if we needed help. The bike is currently in storage in Auckland, awaiting the return journey in March.
We toured both North and South Islands, travelling on some of the most epic roads I have ever been on. Generally, the speed limit is 100kph, which is plenty for most of roads. We also did a fair bit of gravel roads, which fully loaded and 2 up, were a little challenging to start with (although the little XT did very well on them). We did 12000km all told (and about 500km off-road). Changed the oil half way through, and had to change the rear tyre (fitted a Heidenau K60). Apart from the Sat Nav mount falling apart, and a running light falling off, the bike performed impeccably; plenty of power and bottom end grunt. The Scottoiler was a boon, especially with the dusty conditions on the gravel roads. Only niggle was the seat, which despite having gel pads fitted and the foam recontoured, we both suffered from numb-bum - sheepskin next time. This was a trip of a lifetime, and one I would highly recommend to any biker. The VStrom was the perfect bike for the trip, and she will be a keeper once back in Blighty. Happy to offer advice to anyone considering a similar trip.