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First Ride: 2006 Kawasaki Ninja® 650R

79915 Views 86 Replies 43 Participants Last post by  dougmo
Might get me to trade my bandit.
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Good one, MO. There isnt a whole lot out on this bike yet and this was better, certainly with more pictures, than anything Ive seen.

It does sound like a good beginner's bike nowdays but it would probably have been considered blazing fast 30 to 40 years ago.

Silver and black are good disappearing colors.

Low seat height plus high footpegs--another indication that "everyone" in Japan does not include people 5'10" plus.
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I'm 6'3" with the right knee of a 115 year old. My KLR 650 is comfortable, but I don't see much else that would be except for other dual purpose or Adventure bikes. Maybe some cruisers, but I don't like riding that low to the pavement. Much better view on a 35" seat.

Triumph Tiger and KTM 990 Adventure are great tall guy bikes, possibly the Yamaha FZ1 too, although I think they lowered their seat height in 06.
Re: Need an SV comparison

But the Euro model has pod-like headlight that takes some getting used to style-wise and doesnt have a windshield as I recall. I like the Ninja 650R variation better than the Euro version--looks much cleaner from the front and offers more wind protection.
Good point about the fairing/windshield combined with raised handlebars. That does set the Ninja 650R apart from the Suzuki 650 options. I'm beginning to think, though, that the Yamaha FZ-6 or whatevers its called has gotten short shrift in various reviews (not sure how MO rated it, but I'll check later). With the FZ-6 you get a fairing/windshield, more or less upright handlebars, and a great deal more horsepower and top-end excitement. But the FZ-6 is not a beginners bike, either, IMHO.
Right, I just read or reread the MO comparo review of an 04 FZ-6. I've seen similar comments elsewhere. Too bad because the FZ-6 reportedly has good upright ergos and I've always liked its looks. Being the fastest in a straight line counts for something too.

The Ninja 650R is a clean/sleek looking bike, especially from the front. And it might have just the right amount of usuable power for most riders. Just wish the ergos werent a little tight for taller riders. Maybe an adjustable seat next year....
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