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Discussion Starter #1
There are many things that I like about my 2012 V-Strom 650 Adventure. I could go on and on about the ride, relaxed riding position, fuel economy, support, accessories.. all those and then some. However there are a few issues that I feel could be looked at:
1. The parking position on the ignition. This feature, in my opinion does more harm than good. I can understand wanting to be seen if for some reason you're on the side of the road at night. But it's too easy to turn the key too far and forget that you've just turned your lights on without knowing in daylight hours. After a few hours your dealing with a dead battery. At least have a timed switch so everything goes off in only a few hours without draining your battery.
2. Size of the ignition key....It's HUGE. Any reason for that?
3. Key to the hard cases. I love those cases but the keys to the locks are too flimsy. You could make a more durable key and easier lock.
4. Kind of tall. A good percentage of riders on the V-Strom have issues with the height of the bike. Could it be possible to have an option to have the bike lowered an inch or so from the factory? I know on some of the BMW models there is a option to have a lowered bike and/or lower seat. Along with the bike would come with a lowered kickstand and a lowered center stand. This would suit a larger range of riders who are turned off by the height of the bike.

You folks a Suzuki have built a bike worthy of the praises that we've seen and read. These are my four biggest issues about a bike that is already wonderful but could be even better.
 

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There is a lower seat option from Suzuki.

Also it's a budget bike from Suzuki, they were never going to offer BMW like range of accessories for it!

Did not some of you short riders look at and/or sit/ride on the bike before buying it?

You might get some ideas about lowering options from the Strom Sisters section, as often its the girls that have problems with tall bikes.

Strom Sisters - Stromtrooper Forum : Suzuki V-Strom Motorcycle Forums
 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
There is a lower seat option from Suzuki. Yes, I know there is a lower seat from Suzuki but a lowered bike would also help to get a wider range of riders.

Also it's a budget bike from Suzuki, they were never going to offer BMW like range of accessories for it! Hence my suggestion. Just because it's a "budget bike" it doesn't mean that they can't offer a wide range of accessories.

Did not some of you short riders look at and/or sit/ride on the bike before buying it? Not really a "short" rider but I did sit on the V-Strom 650 but was not allowed to ride it per dealership rules. If you read some of my other posts you can get an idea of what I was wondering before buying the V-Strom 650.

You might get some ideas about lowering options from the Strom Sisters section, as often its the girls that have problems with tall bikes. I do have a response for you but I'm afraid if I post it the Moderators will boot me out.

Thanks.
 

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Suzuki should offer a lowering kit that changes the forks internally like they do on the DR650.

I'm surprised they don't. The DR650 is very much so a "budget" bike and its easy to lower it with OEM parts designed for that purpose. Its odd that the DL650 does not have that option since they share very similar forks.
 

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The key dislike by a few has been around since the beginning. I like the big bodacious key cus it's easy to find in my pocket.
I buy a motorcycle that fits. Lower the bike and then complain about reduced clearance in the corners.
Some folks, like my mom, would complain about being hung with a new rope.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
The key dislike by a few has been around since the beginning. I like the big bodacious key cus it's easy to find in my pocket.
I buy a motorcycle that fits. Lower the bike and then complain about reduced clearance in the corners.
Some folks, like my mom, would complain about being hung with a new rope.
I wasn't complaining I was just offering suggestions, there is a difference.
 

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Use the google box at the top of the screen for your suggestion and you will find plenty of other have had your same concerns.
Those observations have seemingly gone unnoticed by Suzuki corporate.
Having read it several times from those who have the same opinion as you it starts to sound like complaints.
Seriously, I found this bike superior to many of the BMW's I've had. The light problem is in answer to European needs where a parking light must be lit when parked. Personally I don't turn the key that far to experience the problem. I leave other things turned on to drain the battery. Like my multiple GPS and heated grips. Mea Culpa.
The key is a monster cus it works well that way.
I had no problem with the factory bags I had. They don't hold up real well in a spectacular crash but hey, they're only plastic.
The bike is tall, for some, because it is supposed to be a pseudo adventure bike.
Think the DL is tall? Get on the new BMW 800 Adv of the 1200 Adv.
Those dudes are Ginormous!
 

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Um, I am not understanding the hostility here, just offering some feedback for you:confused:


Yes, I know there is a lower seat from Suzuki but a lowered bike would also help to get a wider range of riders.
I don't think Suzuki designed this bike to be low. I am sure if they wanted it to be a low road only bike they would have deigned it this way. Since it was released, the V-Strom has always been aimed directly to the adventure bike market, and this sort of riding needs the extra clearance. I am sure Suzuki are getting many more riders because of this.

Hence my suggestion. Just because it's a "budget bike" it doesn't mean that they can't offer a wide range of accessories.
Actually yes it does, and for the price range that this bike is targeted at, I think Suzuki offer way more accessories than they really should. Three different seat heights is pretty good, as well as many of the other bits they offer. Plus Suzuki know there is a massive aftermarket following for their V-Stoms, so why would they make a heap of accessories just so people can complain how much genuine stuff is?

Also to make the bike adjustable to suit a multitude of heights, means that they would have had to make suspension linkage that is adjustable, and the ability to change the front to go with it. You can't just change the rake/trail and suspension travel of a bike and think that it's ridable off the floor, let alone cover liability. The aftermarket guys get away with this, as you choose to fit the accessories, but if Suzuki were to offer the lowered options they would have to make a bike that is fully compliant in each of the height configurations. Which will add cost to the bike, just so short riders are happy :headbang:

Not really a "short" rider but I did sit on the V-Strom 650 but was not allowed to ride it per dealership rules. If you read some of my other posts you can get an idea of what I was wondering before buying the V-Strom 650.
You should have made sure to get one arranged, or go to one of their demo days? Or alternatively there are many older models out there, the frame is still the same, so this would have given you an idea of the Stroms height. Plus if you could handle the older 650, you would have no problems with the new shape, as it is smaller and lighter.

I do have a response for you but I'm afraid if I post it the Moderators will boot me out.
This was just a suggestion, as it is often a topic of discussion amongst ladies. Most of my female riding friends have had to do some sort of lowering to their bikes due to being too short. Sometimes from getting the seat changed, different linkages, and in some cases even getting their boots raised in height!

Maybe you could try that trick! :green_lol:
 

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Having bought a new 2012 650 ABS last year, I largely agree with your assessment.
And, discovering that this board seems unusually "emotional" when the bike is criticized, I will take care in how I temper this post:
I sat on the bike in the showroom, but was NOT allowed to ride it (4 out of 4 dealers would NOT allow me to ride the V Strom prior to purchase). So, on faith, I bought the bike feeling comfortable with the seat height initially. But, I soon discovered that it was not just seat height alone, but rather high CENTER OF GRAVITY was the issue. This bike has a high CG, plus a long wheelbase, which makes it easy for shorter riders to lose low speed control, and drop the bike. Fortunately, I have not done that yet, but have come close quite often. Two things I miss from my former Hondas: a "common key" system for both ignition and luggage, and, a better sense of low speed balance (IMHO, that is Honda's forte). In addition, I would suggest that the low seat option (which I bought) does help somewhat, but the trade off is that the low seat is far less comfortable (IMO) than the stock seat. A refinement I would like to see: slightly WIDER gear ratios from 1st to 6th. I'd like just a bit LOWER first gear, and a bit more overdriven 6th (for less buzzy higher cruising). Overall, this bike is a GREAT piece of engineering, and a beautiful machine. For anyone with an inseam of let's say 30 to 31 inches or greater, it is perfect. Shorter, OLDER riders, like me, would probably be better off with a lower CG machine. I am not planning to keep my bike as I don't feel confident of low speed control, but that is a RATIONAL decision, not an emotional one.
After all, it is a machine....That being said, I am not going to beat myself up for making an error purchasing the bike. I had not had an issue with high CG bikes in the past (i.e. I never owned one !!). So, this is just testimony that might help others when evaluating what bike is best for them.
 

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The CG feels good to me. I guess if you came from a cruiser, maybe not, never tried a cruiser though. I've ridden mostly ST bikes like the FJR, ST11, ST13, C14 etc. Now those are top heavy!

The Stroms fit tall guys, I've always been attracted to the ADV "style" bikes because I'm over 6'. The Wee or the Vee actually feels very nimble and light at low speeds to me. But. what do I know... I like the Stroms better than my 05.5 KTM ADV. :green_lol:
 

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Not the right or ideal bike for allot of riders, yet they still buy it anyways.
 

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I just got a G650GS BMW a 650 single cus a deer killed my F800ST. The bike is a lot like the Wee Strom but seems lighter and I feel like I'm taller on it though I isn't. It is only 430 pounds full tank. Lotta single cylinder vibe though.
I kinda think my Wee will be the touring bike of choice. It's just so dang good at what it does. I'm only 5'7" and 29" inseam so some stops have me swinging my legs for a purchase on the ground.
I wouldn't change anything. I sure don't want to go the cruiser route, too limited in performance.
Folks probably get the Wee because of the price point. A great value for the buck!
 

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Any ideas on why, especially with so many different alternatives out there?

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Because it is such a versatile machine, where many others are pretty much singular in use. They are relatively inexpensive compared to many other offerings "although the money toward farkles can add up", they are reliable and they are just flat out fun to ride. However......they are tall, and they are designed that way for a reason. Another issue is that too many owners "many inexperienced" decide to buy this machine and it is not a good choice for a first bike. Too many also feel the need to flatfoot as well, which is not necessary in the least bit. So these are a few good reasons IMHO why this is not the right choice for many riders, there is a good reason why so many drop these bikes. I for one have never dropped either of the Stroms I have owned, maybe chalk that up to riding experience or maybe chalk that up to me being 6 foot with a 31 inch inseam. Now going down in mud, water, sand, gravel......is a whole different scenario, but many drop their Stroms in their dang driveway or stopped at a traffic light for crying out loud. I do not find them top heavy at all at low speeds, but I can tell you that tires, suspension settings, and handlebars do make a difference on the Strom.
 

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Excellent points you make. I would, from my experience (have ridden about 60K miles in about 15 years of riding experience, having laid off about the last 12 years due to hand surgeries due to Dupuytren's contractures), agree with your statement that the bike is WELL suited to those with inseams of 30 or 31 inches minimum IF low speed balance is an issue. This is where the new Honda CTX 700 will shine: people like me, 60+ year old returning riders, or newbie riders, who place safety in the maneuverability of their bike, especially at the two critical points: stopping and starting (again, low speed). All humbly submitted, in MY opinion, of course. NO diss against the V Strom community. A GREAT all around bike, but NOT for short riders.
 

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I guess it's just a matter of perspective as I don't find the bike top heavy in the least. Of course my other main traveling bike is a ZG1000 and I also ride a DR650 and a DRZ400. The ZG1000 is top heavy. Ride something like that for awhile and you will think the stroms are nimble flickable bikes. Just beware if heavily loaded and have lowered pegs.
 

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I thought I would add 2 cents since I consider myself a "short" rider at 5'8", 29" inseam. For about $50 bucks and 20 minutes of time, you can lower your bike 3/4 inch up to 1.25 " with a lowering link, cut off the seat rubber tabs to achieve about 1-1.5 inch of lowering. Perfect for me. I have never considered this bike to be top heavy, especially compared to larger adventure bikes. Very flickable, like a sport bike. First gear is perfect with lower gearing (14T sprocket). A friend of mine is shorter than me and rides the adventure, but lowered like mine. I consider both of us to be experienced motorcyclist, but not to the extreme. I have also owned cruiser bikes, which are a completely different experience, other than having the same number of wheels. You buy an adv tourer like the Strom for what it offers, versatility. Obviously, not for everyone, but would say has to be best in class, barring the 800 GS and Tiger of course. Still smile everytime I ride her.
 
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