Since 2012 our touring bike of choice has been the Kawasaki Versys 1000 – it has proved to be the perfect all rounder for our needs. We have now covered over 170,000 miles on 5 Versys and the 6th entered the garage yesterday 🙂 Jan collected it from J&S Motorcycles at Oakmere and it was “all smile” as Kevin handed over the keys. At all times we have 3 bikes available for tour, 1 being a spare which is currently our original 2012 Versys which now has 86,000 miles on the clock.
The upright style and excellent seat for both rider and pillion offers the comfort we require to enjoy the roads and take in the scenery of all the countries we tour through. We have been extremely impressed with the fuel range (250+ miles), and luggage capacity which the Versys provides, both are key things to consider if you are a seasoned tourer or new to it.
So why change from the 2016 green Versys to the 2017 model and what’s new? Mileage played a big part in the decision with 28,000 touring miles covered in 12 months on Jan’s 2016 bike. There are some subtle changes to the 2017 model which now has a stripe detail on the nose cone and side panel. The gear selector indicator is now enclosed in the clock face, the underseat lock has been moved to the side rather than underneath which makes it easier to access. The top box on the Grand Tourer model now comes with a cushioned back rest for added comfort for the pillion and the rear indicators have been lowered as can be seen from the photos below.
We took the new bike into Wales for it’s first 100 miles to start running it in before our touring season starts this coming Sunday 2nd April. The first ride-out was as expected with smooth handling and comfort. When we pulled into fuel up, Jan attraced some attention from 3 police motorcyclists out on a training run who admired the new detailing on the bike – a bit less noticeable than on their bikes but striking all the same!! We are certainly looking forward to riding the Versys during our 2017 season and beyond 🙂