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Excellent Read! Glad to see Ashley and Fonz in the mix. I agree the SV needs some styling help. However, on the SVrider.com has some great customized SVs. I did like the curvy first gen SV better.... However, having said that because the SV is a great package with lots of after market stuff, I predict it will live much longer than the Kawasaki twin.. If you are looking for a great first bike don't do what I did, buy a 600 Supersport, get the SV and use the saved cash for track time and all the upgraded parts Gabe mentioned.

Great job guys!
 

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Great article!

Made me want to go out and buy another SV650. It's good to know though that there is another viable option in "fun and easy to ride" category.

Keep up the great work with your comparisons and interpretive dance moves(by far the hardest I have laughed at anything on MO:)

 

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Have eagerly awaited this test, heartily agree. Love my nekkid SVee more than my R6 (stolen). As my 6th bike over 25 yrs, bonded with it more than any other including R6 and Fizzer1000. Stock rubber amzes me-can hardly wait to spoon on M1s! Team Promotion, here we come.
 

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Thanks y'all, guys and Ashley, for finally doing this comparo. I've been whining for years about the lack of a "real" beginner bike like the middleweights of the late 70's-early 80's. The SV is close but not quite, still a bit of a strange ride for a beginner. The EX500 was perfect, the new 650 twin should be the kat's meow for a new rider. Even the lack of top-end compared to the SV is a good thing for a newbie! And when they're ready they can transition to the SV and ENJOY THE RIDE!!!
 

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Very nice guys,but after two yrs of my whining,there is finally a new DUCATI DEALERSHIP IN LAS VEGAS!!!!PRAISE THE LORD!!!Just 15 blocks from the house!![also a Victory/Big dog dealership,part of Pat Clark Chevrolet/Motorsports]!I see an MTS 620/1000 with my name on it!!Even the wife is happy!Now ,getting back to the article

.Both bikes are worthy.My first bike I rode whenI got vegas was an sv650s [borrowed] and I liked it.I still say too bad Kawi did not bring the ER6-N to the states ,at least to test market it.
 

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With a better windscreen, a larger tank and some good soft luggage, the 650R should be the sport-touring equivalent of the KLR. No frills, low entry price, and good at everything except dirt. I think a few non-beginners will pick this thing up just because they can.
 

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Phew! Glad to hear my SV is still the daddy.



I was worried that after having grafted on a GSX-R1000 front end, stuffing in a Penske shock, and with a new set of Diablos waiting to be installed, I'd have to run out and buy a new 650R!



(yeah, right)



Great article. Makes me glad I pinched out the 11 bucks to re-up my subscription.
 

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regarding the ann coulter line ... you guys owe me a new keyboard.



speaking of which, is there any truth to the rumor that ann is an anorexic scooter libby in drag? has anyone ever seen the two together? it sorta makes you wonder ...



regarding the test ... great work, as usual. your stuff gets better all the time.



but it is sorta disappointing that there are no curmudgeons among you to champion the cause of aging riders, who wouldn't think of bending themselves into a pretzel to get some wind in our (thinning) hair. for us there is only the kawasaki (or my triumph sprint).



maybe you can get sir anthony hopkins to be a guest-tester? grey panthers, babeee.
 

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Good read, guys and gal. I enjoyed it. I had an SV, and I just finished breaking-in a 650, so I found it most interesting. The 650 will be a more practical, versatile super-moto, of sorts, for me, and it will be my wife's primary ride.



Niether one of these things qualifies for "high performance" or "racer replica," and the SV's half-second faster lap time is virtually inconsequential on the street. Meanwhile, torque, looks, ease of use, and comfort are all big-time important, especially in this class of bike, or in any street bike. They both need a suspension upgrade, so I suspect handling will be a draw, more or less.



The 650 is about dead-on where Kawi wanted to be, I think. You just need to know what you really want from a motorcycle.



My two cents' worth, and worth both pennies. Maybe...
 
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