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Posted: 4/28/2011 12:39:31 PM EDT
Hey guys, I've been out of the motorcycle game for about a year now since I sold off my last one to help buy a house. Since then I don't have quite the income to support the sport touring bikes I left (BMW) but with summer around the corner I miss having a bike again. I've noticed 600cc sportbikes are falling closely into my price range of $5-6500 dollars.

Between the big 3, the CBR, GSXR, and R6, what should I look into, what should I avoid? What kinds of things do I need to look out for?

I'm 24 going on 25, have 6 years riding under my belt. I know something about bikes, but have not dealt with crotch rockets before, mostly just Harleys or BMW K bikes.

Thanks in advance guys
Link Posted: 4/28/2011 1:06:25 PM EDT
It's actually the Japanese Big 4: Honda, Yamaha, Kawasaki, and Suzuki. I went with Ducati instead, although I originally wanted a Japanese sport bike.
Link Posted: 4/28/2011 1:40:27 PM EDT
IMO the big 4 are all the same when it comes down to performance so I based my decision on ergonomics/comfort when I bought my 929RR.
Link Posted: 4/28/2011 1:46:18 PM EDT
Ok, I've mostly been looking at the Yamaha R6 because there seem to be more deals on them than others. I didn't know if there was a reason for that or what. Mostly just looking for an inside scoop on the japanese 600cc sport bikes.
Link Posted: 4/28/2011 2:35:38 PM EDT
honestly you gotta try sitting on them.  They may look similar but they all feel different.
Link Posted: 4/28/2011 2:56:48 PM EDT
If you're looking for a bike to ride street with, i would get away from the 600cc sport bikes...

They're not a bike to tool around at 60mph...they shine at twice that and they don't like being dogged around at highway speeds.  Their power band is high up in the RPM range which just doesn't suit street riding AFAIC.

I would look into either a larger engine street bike like the gsxr750 or the liter bikes if you want to stick with that look

Otherwise, i would suggest the SV650S or SV1000S for a more street friendly power band and not to mention cheaper initial cost as well.
Link Posted: 4/28/2011 3:45:56 PM EDT
Since it seems like you are a fellow "BMW Convert", I don't think anything from Japan is going to make you as happy as a used Bimmer.  You can get a really nice used K or R bike in your price range, with a couple of hundred thousand miles left in it.    I picked up a 2001 R1100S with 20k on the clock (not even broken in for a BMW) for what you're looking to spend, including hard bags and some nice aftermarket add-ons.  Just my 2 cents.... ride safe.

 DanO
Link Posted: 4/28/2011 3:49:39 PM EDT
Originally Posted By eclark53520:
If you're looking for a bike to ride street with, i would get away from the 600cc sport bikes...

They're not a bike to tool around at 60mph...they shine at twice that and they don't like being dogged around at highway speeds.  Their power band is high up in the RPM range which just doesn't suit street riding AFAIC.

I would look into either a larger engine street bike like the gsxr750 or the liter bikes if you want to stick with that look

Otherwise, i would suggest the SV650S or SV1000S for a more street friendly power band and not to mention cheaper initial cost as well.


While it's true that the 600's really come alive past about 9,000rpm, they do just fine below that if you're not trying to be racer boy or attract the local constabulary. I've had my ZX6R for just shy of 2.5 years, and for 10 months of that it was my only form of transportation. Even though I have a truck now, I ride the bike as often as I can (because cages suck, and the bike gets twice the mpg of the truck). My 6R is happy to tool around at 6,500rpm on the freeway if that's what I choose to do with it, though I do enjoy some spirited freeway onramp rides from time to time.

That being said, the suggestion to look at an SV650 or SV1000 is a good one. You'll pay less for insurance, get to use regular unleaded (I think) instead of Premium, and wind up with more usable torque for street riding. They're still plenty fast to keep you entertained, too. Might be something to consider. Also keep in mind if you plant to do much 2up riding. The 600's will handle it, but their suspension is set up for single riding from the factory, and they really lose steam down low. If you do a lot of 2up riding, consider leaving some cash in your budget to uprade the suspension to handle more weight, or consider a larger displacement bike.

As for the R6. I like them as a track bike (based on what I hear, 'cause I've never been on the track). Their performance stats are typical of race-bred mid-sized bikes: they perform much better when you wind them up. Of all the 600's, the newer R6 tends to have the least usable power down low and towards the middle (correct me if I'm wrong here), and while the chassis setup and suspension are scalpel sharp when you're on smooth and fast roads, they tend to be a skoosh firm for general street riding. When you're wringing the heck out of them, however, they're great performers. Many people ride them on the street, though, so it's going to be 100% up to you to decide if you like it or not.

Let us know what you get!
Link Posted: 4/29/2011 4:57:50 AM EDT
Originally Posted By AZYoungGun:
Originally Posted By eclark53520:
If you're looking for a bike to ride street with, i would get away from the 600cc sport bikes...

They're not a bike to tool around at 60mph...they shine at twice that and they don't like being dogged around at highway speeds.  Their power band is high up in the RPM range which just doesn't suit street riding AFAIC.

I would look into either a larger engine street bike like the gsxr750 or the liter bikes if you want to stick with that look

Otherwise, i would suggest the SV650S or SV1000S for a more street friendly power band and not to mention cheaper initial cost as well.


While it's true that the 600's really come alive past about 9,000rpm, they do just fine below that if you're not trying to be racer boy or attract the local constabulary. I've had my ZX6R for just shy of 2.5 years, and for 10 months of that it was my only form of transportation. Even though I have a truck now, I ride the bike as often as I can (because cages suck, and the bike gets twice the mpg of the truck). My 6R is happy to tool around at 6,500rpm on the freeway if that's what I choose to do with it, though I do enjoy some spirited freeway onramp rides from time to time.


Tis much more fun to ride a slow bike fast, than a fast bike slow.

That's exactly why i never liked riding 600ss bikes on the street...i'm always feeling like i need to go faster....like the bike is bored at normal speeds.  They just have no soul(obviously my opinion there)

I know they can be ridden on the street, no doubt about it.  Millions of people do it.  It's like touring on a dirt bike or dual sport...people do it, but it's not really the best tool for the job.
Link Posted: 4/29/2011 5:30:37 AM EDT
Motard!

Will eat a SS up in the twities, just as comfy (sarcasm).

Link Posted: 4/29/2011 6:51:01 AM EDT
Thanks for the replies guys, you answered most my questions. I actually doubt I'll end up with a bike unless a screaming deal comes along, but if I do you will definitely get a review. I'm just trying to get a little research done just in case something does come along.
Link Posted: 4/29/2011 4:29:20 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 4/29/2011 4:31:02 PM EDT by chop13chop]
I'd recommend the Yamaha or Honda. The jap bikes are so close performance wise it ends up coming down to brand loyalty, or what you like the most.
Link Posted: 4/29/2011 10:09:47 PM EDT
Originally Posted By chop13chop:
I'd recommend the Yamaha or Honda. The jap bikes are so close performance wise it ends up coming down to brand loyalty, or what you like the most.


This, but DEALER loyalty, rather than brand.  I bought my bikes from a good friend, that happened to be the #1 employee at the dealership, because he was a friend, I tended to hang out there and got to know the owners pretty well.... Resulting in some VERY good deals on bikes, new and used. Also, very nice parts and accessories discounts....
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