XR thinking of KLR - Kawasaki KLR 650 Forum
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post #1 of 12 Old 06-14-2014, 08:56 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Boise Idaho
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XR thinking of KLR

I've had 3 bikes in the last 12 months and I'm considering the KLR now. I ride dirt/gravel roads most of the time and like the XR650L, but it's tall and I can't really carry any luggage. I got rid of a BMW F650GS because I thought it was top heavy.

I'm going to test ride a KLR today and see how it compares. I'm interested in hearing from others who've compared the two. Thanks
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post #2 of 12 Old 06-14-2014, 09:01 AM
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Only you can evaluate the KLR's performance and characteristics against your own criteria, cpblue!

I'd imagine the KLR will appear tall and top-heavy also, but . . . please share your own impressions!
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post #3 of 12 Old 06-14-2014, 09:22 AM
Join Date: May 2014
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The KLR is the best "all around bike" out there imo. It is not "great" at anything , but is "good" at everything. The XR would out perform it in "Heavy" dirt situations.If you are a skilled rider the KLR will get it done though. Gravel roads would not matter. The KLR eats them up. Comfortably. All while being able to cruise at 75 miles an hour down the freeway easily when your done with the dirt. Combined with overall cost ,the after market accessories and the most awesome support found in Forums such as this , I feel you cannot go wrong with the KLR's all around performance. IMO
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post #4 of 12 Old 06-14-2014, 09:49 AM
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Location: Alberta, Canada
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Hands down winner for the luggage dept, tons of racks and panniers hard and soft for the KLR. As Damocles was saying though, you'll probably find the KLR tall and top heavy as well, thanks to it's 6 gallon tank . In exchange for the slightly top heavy feeling though, you get awesome range between fuel stops!

Edit: Oh, and welcome to the forum!

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post #5 of 12 Old 06-14-2014, 10:18 AM
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: NW MO
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I've owned and ridden both the XR and the KLR. They both have pros and cons. The KLR is slightly shorter but you're really going to notice the gas tank even if you don't top it off to save weight.

Sitting on an XR is like sitting on a horse. Sitting on a KLR is kind of like sitting on a cow with the giant tank and all the fairings. But, as far as range, more options for luggage and highway comfort, the KLR wins hands-down over the XR. Riding an XR on the Interstate sucks.

They're both good bikes but each has its own niche. If all I did was joyride on gravel and dirt roads around here, I"d probably go back to an XR. But, I regularly do a 60-mile round trip commute to work and some longer day trips here and there and I wouldn't want to do those things on an XR.

In a perfect world, I would own both. I'm still considering looking for a used XR one of these days.

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post #6 of 12 Old 06-14-2014, 10:42 AM
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Welcome to the forum and good luck with your decision. Looking forward to hearing your impressions.
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post #7 of 12 Old 06-14-2014, 04:17 PM
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Join Date: May 2014
Location: Indianapolis, Indiana.
Posts: 76
This might seem a bit weird, don't know if it's just me or not. But one of the things that first threw me with the KLR is the fairing on it. It doesn't turn with the bars but remains stationary. I've owned a few XR's and XL's over the years and I was used to having a smaller overall package on the front end that turned with the bars.
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post #8 of 12 Old 06-14-2014, 04:51 PM
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: NW MO
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XR650 Wet Weight: 349 lbs.
KLR650 Wet Weight: 432 lbs.

That's quite a difference, especially when you have to pick it up.

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post #9 of 12 Old 06-14-2014, 10:07 PM
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Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Kansas
Posts: 1,205
Simple decision. XRL's suck, KLR's do not. All-around bike = KLR. If you want a more aggressive DS get something lighter like a DRZ400 or KLX250. Just my biased opinion.

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post #10 of 12 Old 06-15-2014, 07:47 AM
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: NW MO
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I'm really kind of surprised Honda still offers the XR650 for sale. With its height, I don't see it being a big seller worldwide and I can't remember the last time I saw somebody actually riding one.

That might be a function of where I live, but I at least see the occasional KLR around here.

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