The Versys is one of Kawasaki’s most popular offerings in the mid-range class in the country, with more than 6,000 units sold since its inception back in 2007. To continue offering affordable and reliable products especially to those who love long-distance riding, Kawasaki Motors Malaysia today has introduced the new 2015 Kawasaki Versys 650, which brings a host of new upgrades in a better-looking package.
Dubbed as ‘the SUV of bikes’, the new Versys represents a big departure from the current model in terms of styling. It is obviously inspired by the Ninja, with the current stacked headlights replaced by the iconic twin headlight design and sleeker fairings. The windscreen is also bigger than before and can be heightened or lowered by 60 mm without the need to use any tools.
Around the back, the Versys gets a new tail light design and an integrated luggage mounting system that allows panniers to be simply clipped on while looking sharp when not in use. The mounting system is part of the newly designed subframe, which along with stronger 17-inch wheels, result in an increased payload.
Powering the bike is the familiar 649 cc parallel twin engine that packs 69 PS at 8,500 rpm and 65 Nm of torque at 7,000 rpm, which is slightly higher than the output in the current model. The engine is mated to a six-speed transmission and has been reworked with new internal parts as well as fresh ECU settings to eliminate the infamous high-rpm vibration.
Not only that, the Versys is also equipped with upgraded suspension system. The front end is matched to Showa 41-mm inverted fork with a preload adjuster on the left and rebound damping on the right while the rear features a single-shock with a remote preload adjuster. Braking power is provided by new petal brake discs (300 mm at the front, 250 mm at the rear) that come with new calipers, new brake pad material and revised master cylinder settings.
Elsewhere, the touring bike gets a 21-litre fuel tank, which holds 2 litres more fuel than the previous model, new rubber mountings for the engine, handlebar and footpeg as well as an under-engine muffler that frees up space under the seat while contributing to mass centralisation.
For now, the 2015 Kawasaki Versys 650 is available solely in black, with other exterior colours set to be available in the future. It is priced from RM38,369 (OTR without insurance, including GST).