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I have an '08 KLR and really like the bike. It's cheap and simple. Very dependable too. The DR 650's are great bikes too JagLite. I ahve a few friends that ride them. I would have bout a DR but the KLR showed up on Craigslist with 1100 miles and the price was way right so I jumped on it. He bought it new and it was in showroom condition. Picked it up for $3,100 bucks cash. Half price for a new bike practically.
 

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I know that Triumph Tiger XC is tough. I met up with a few guys in Nevada and we rode through the desert all day at some ridiculously high speeds. I was on my 1150 GS, another on a KTM another on a KLR and one of the guys was on the Triumph Tiger XC. He must have fallen a dozen times and all of them high speed get offs. At the end of the day the bike and rider each showed minimal damage. That guy and that bike can take a punch.
 

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Have the V-Strom, but am seriously fed up with magazines always forgetting the DR650.

I noticed after years of motorcycle magazine reading that getting older we know more than the writers. What I have read is the DR650 is perfect bike for economical Adventure riding. But finding that data for someone with less time reading magazines would be impossible because it's lost in the archives. I went on a motorcycle Adventure Rally a few years ago in Carson Valley NV with rides through the CA mountains. Out of all the bikes there of all price points I came away with the most respect for a customized DR400.
 

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Sadly, writers these days rarely know all that much about what their topic. If they're assigned a story like this one, about all they do is go to each mfr's website and pick some models, and throw something together from that. And with no actual knowledge about a particular model, it's easy to overlook the DR650 (or even the DRZ400) because they don't look at all fancy or modern. Same would go for the Honda XR650L.

So what they don't get, that only those of us who own them will, is that these bikes are more like a blank canvas, ready to be customized by each owner, according to his specific needs. Like, I don't need the KLR650's fancy bodywork, and we usually change windscreens anyway, so why have one that just has to be replaced? That sort of thing.

The new Top Gear show, for example... I never watched the old one (I thought it was stupid), but the new one is gonna be even worse. The people hosting it DON'T KNOW ANYTHING ABOUT CARS from what I've read. So again, we just have some idiots driving around in cars doing stupid stuff.

Sigh.
 

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New KLR's. Getting ATV tires mounted at the dealership, I wondered around and saw 2 new KLR's. At first glance I thought they were Sport Bikes. The fairing on the front looked more like a space ship than for a dual purpose motorcycle. They are bigger than I thought and seem/look different in person from what the photo's show. Guess they would be comfy on the highway but way too big for the places I ride. Aren't the older KLR's smaller? Maybe they look smaller with less body cover stuff.

Not related to the thread, but I also saw some nice big KTM EXC 500 Dual Sport Bikes. I think they were 16 hands tall. I'd need a step latter! But they looked cool!
 

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Yeah the KLRs are huge. The old ones are almost as big. I think the frame is the same, but the bodywork is far less, and more like the DR650. The weight of the old ones is also much closer to the DR. The current KLRs are 440 at least. A friend weighed his 2009 KLR with a skid plate and crash bars and it came to 475 lbs. He prefers his DRZ400 to it (speaking of Chuck, the guy who's coming out to meet me a week early in Moab).

The KTM is an awesome bike but with a 37 or 39" seat height, it's nuts. Plus it's like $9500. No thanks.
 

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All five of the bikes are excellent bikes ....wouldn't mind having any one of them (or all), but.......touring bikes?

Dual sports, adventure, or ???

You would need to add a few thousand $'s in accessories to make them into "touring" bikes.

....ST1200, SJ1300, RT1200 seem more like touring bikes....and they are "tough" enough for me.

jb
 

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Last time I rode in the UP, I was on a YZ490. Next time I go there, I might take my TW.
 

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So, is the KLR the Clydesdale of the lot? I love the TW, but would like a bit more power. How much more power do I need/want? I don't know. When I was 45 years younger and 60# lighter I was riding a Hodaka Ace 100. I wanted more power. But with the trail sprocket on there I could get up lots of hills other guys couldn't on their ported and polished 175's. I think if I were going to ride lots on the highway, I might like a 600 or bigger bike. I think for me, the DR350 would be very nice. But, it doesn't have a FAT back tire, and I like my FAT back tire. lol YMMV
 

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New KLR's. Getting ATV tires mounted at the dealership, I wondered around and saw 2 new KLR's. At first glance I thought they were Sport Bikes. The fairing on the front looked more like a space ship than for a dual purpose motorcycle. They are bigger than I thought and seem/look different in person from what the photo's show. Guess they would be comfy on the highway but way too big for the places I ride. Aren't the older KLR's smaller? Maybe they look smaller with less body cover stuff.

Not related to the thread, but I also saw some nice big KTM EXC 500 Dual Sport Bikes. I think they were 16 hands tall. I'd need a step latter! But they looked cool!
The newer KLR have a better seat and bigger Windscreen. The fans of this bike wanted that. I am a fan of the KLR but its just too tall. It won 2 years ago the bike you would want if Armageddon came upon us. They said it's the easiest to fix, no electronics and cheap. My issue is the same of many its bulky and tall for trails and although great back road bike it is not ideal out on the open highway at higher speed. I really considered the 2015 KLR but decided to get left over Super Tenere. All that said I still fully endorse someone to buy one if they understand it's limits. More so than even a Super Tenere because of price.
 

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I've got a Gen2 KLR thats pretty good on the hiway and is ok for mild off-roading however if I can spend more time in Tennessee then there maybe a Suzuki DRZ-400 in the mix.
 
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