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Discussion Starter #1
Does anyone on this forum have any first hand experience on the 650? I'm curious to see what the comparisons are by actual riders (aside from the obvious: Bigger motor, quicker bike) but I really am curious to see exactly how the two bikes stack up in terms of handling, ergonomics, endurance on long trips, etc.

My girl is considering one which I was I'm asking
 

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My first bike was a GSX600F. Pretty much the same thing thing just the suzuki version. Good bikes, got quite a bit more grunt than the 300. Top speed was about 130 ish. Not bad bikes at all.
 

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the GSX650F is a nice ride, one of my brothers has those. I have ridden the ER6N and its not bad, more power then the 300 but i prefer the 300 just cos its more flickable. the 300 is great on long trips. i have done over 800 kilometers on mine in a weekend. i suggest have a read thru the DIY sticky, some some good info in there like handle bar riders, seat pads etc
 

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I rode the first-gen Ninja 650 for the duration of a break-in (about 600 miles). I was impressed, but the engine sounds just like the 300 and doesn't rev as high. Good power on the freeway. Didn't like the bars at all (too swept back) but they've fixed (more of a normal bar-position). It's a hell of a good bike though...sorta bridges the gap between a learner which can be made into a really nice bike and a supersport.

Also, decently low/narrow for shorter riders. Recommended, but I also really like the 300...less money, nice rev-range, great gas mileage, etc.
 

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for me the 650RL seems more planted. easier to get moving and seems to grip the road better at higher speeds. alot more power and torque down low.
the down side was it was a bigger, heavier bike and the steering lock to lock wasnt that great. what i liked about the 300 was it was a lighter bike, easy to control and looks pretty sporty. what i needed for city driving. after 3months i think i made a good choice. will i upgrade? im having too much fun wit the 300 and i dont need a bigger bike for what i use it for
 

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Discussion Starter #6
for me the 650RL seems more planted. easier to get moving and seems to grip the road better at higher speeds. alot more power and torque down low.
the down side was it was a bigger, heavier bike and the steering lock to lock wasnt that great. what i liked about the 300 was it was a lighter bike, easy to control and looks pretty sporty. what i needed for city driving. after 3months i think i made a good choice. will i upgrade? im having too much fun wit the 300 and i dont need a bigger bike for what i use it for
Agreed, I love my 300 ridiculously and after 4000 miles worth of riding still can't find a reason to want to ditch it. She just seems to be stuck between the cbr500 and the ninja 650 for power reasons (can't blame her, but we all know what this bike can do :)

we'll see what happens, I'll keep everyone posted
 

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Lately I've been giving some thought to selling the 300 and getting the super sport I've always wanted but for practical reasons I cannot bring myself to do it yet

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I was out the other night, and a friend of mine just bought a 650. He let me test it out, but I really didn't like the way it sits. I also wasn't impressed with the power at all. I'd take the 300 any day.
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
Lately I've been giving some thought to selling the 300 and getting the super sport I've always wanted but for practical reasons I cannot bring myself to do it yet

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Yeah sometimes I think about it, but strapped for cash right now and again, even if I had the money, I can't really fault anything on this bike that really makes me want to change it just yet. It's a phenomenal little package. I'm probably going to spend some money on a full exhaust and either an ecu flash as per spacepods suggestions or an area p tuner.

Oh and new tires...god these stock tires need to go
 

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Check out this video. It may or may not help in making the decision. It has the 300, 636 and the 650 test ridden by the same rider. The guy picks the 650 at the end as his preferred choice. 300 for me or the 636!:) Everyone's taste is different, I guess...

It all comes down to what she is comfortable with. Get her to test ride one if possible. At the end of the day, she has got to like and feel comfortable with whatever she chooses. Cheers...

 

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Discussion Starter #11
Check out this video. It may or may not help in making the decision. It has the 300, 636 and the 650 test ridden by the same rider. The guy picks the 650 at the end as his preferred choice. 300 for me or the 636!:) Everyone's taste is different, I guess...

It all comes down to what she is comfortable with. Get her to test ride one if possible. At the end of the day, she has got to like and feel comfortable with whatever she chooses. Cheers...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GCfL7OZL2CM
Man that 636 looks so sexy. Good video, except now it made me stop thinking about my girlfriend and how I want to ride the other two lol

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ex-300 owner here. Right now I have a Ninja 650R and a GSXR-600.

The 300 beats the 650R in these aspects:
* cheaper
* better gas mileage
* much more fun on twisties -- the 650 is horrible on twisties with its shitty suspension
* has slipper clutch -- you'll miss it once you lose it :(
* surprisingly better suspension than the 650R

As a commuter bike I couldn't care less about power but obviously the 300 is much slower than the 650R. But what really made me sell the 300 was how much more comfortable the 650R was compared to the 300. If you're like me and comfort to ride for hours on end is important to you, then I'd say get the 650R. But obviously this goes from person to person. If you're comfortable with the 300 then I see no reason to get the 650R over the 300. The power on the 650R is nice to have but you really don't need it -- the 300 has plenty of power for legal stuff.
 

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I had the Versys, basically the same as the 650R. Very nice motor, but I say go big or go home, or go little. The 650 is the middle child, gets no attention. The Ninja 1000 is the way to go if you want some power with the same ergos. Personally, if I wanted to ride track days, I would opt for the ZX 10. And it looks like the 300, only lower bars.
 

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As a hobby, I buy dropped bikes in the fall/winter from auto auctions and rebuild them before the snow melts for the next riding season. Last winter, I repaired/restored four 650s and two 300s. I have some comments to offer based on both riding and repair experience.

Riding-wise, I picked up a '13 650 at auction last summer, fixed 'er up, and put about 3000 miles on it. I thought it was decent enough, but I missed the adjustable suspension of my previous ZZR 600. I figured I would fix and drive one of the '15 ABS 650 models for this season. However, after fixing and riding all the bikes, I kept a '14 300 SE. Of the various bikes I've had the past three summers, it is by far the easiest and most enjoyable to ride. The hands-down winner.

You'd think a 650 would ride as good or better as a 300 but, alas, not so. As others have previously stated in this thread, the 650 suspension is horrible, particularly the front forks. Well, the rear is pretty bad too. On our lousy Michigan roads, the 650 pogo sticks all over the place. Encounter bumps at an intersection and it's downright dangerous, IMO. Compared to the tossable 300, the 650 is an overweight, under-engineered and dated design. The 650 engine is nice, but wind it out and you're doing 100 MPH. As any 300 rider knows, you can wind it out, have a blast, but stay within a reasonably legal speed. Well, almost. . . The 300 suspension isn't adjustable either but it's remarkably smooth by comparison.

As for build quality, again the 300 trumps the 650. The 300 snaps together better and is more robust in some key areas, like the headlight mount structure for instance. On the 300, it's a welded, tubular cage. On the 650, it's a flimsy bracket bolted to the steering tube. No comparison on strength and rigidity. I could go on and on about the engineering differences, it becomes obvious when you have to piece together all the plastic bits on a bike.

Add in nice features like the slipper clutch, smoother throttle operation (a big deal if you do a lot of slower, city style driving) and the 300 shines. Finally, after an hour of driving each bike, my forearms are tingling with the 650 from some unabated handlebar buzzing. The 300? Nothing. Could ride it all day.
 
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