DR650 vs KLR650 vs XR650L: Which one to choose? It’s a close call!
Three bikes, three different standards and features. Keep reading to find out who is crowned the winner.
Suspension in DR650 vs KLR650 vs XR650L
The DR650 front suspension system is impressive and features a telescopic leading axel. With oil-dampening and 10.2 inches of travel, the DR650 gives users an easy ride. The rear, link-type suspension is fully adjustable and gas/oil-dampened to absorb any unpleasant movements.
The KLR650 features 1mm telescopic front suspension which gives the rider more stability and control. The unique rear suspension has a Uni-Track shock system that effectively dampens and gives a smooth ride. The rear suspension system also features a 5-way preload. The DR650 offers a well-rounded suspension system that can be used for any type of trail or track.
The Honda XR65L front suspension is equally impressive with compression dampening and air-adjustable Showa cartridge fork. The rear suspension is also fully adjustable with link-assisted Showa suspension.
For this round, the KLR650 and the Honda XR650L are close winners. But if we have to pick a single winner, it would be the Honda XR650L, as its suspension system effectively absorbs any unpleasantries and gives the rider more stability and control. The adjustable aspect of the suspension is also desirable, and the rider can change this depending on his or her preference, whether it’s on a tough track or leisurely trail.
Engine in DR650 vs KLR650 vs XR650L
Suzuki’s DR650’s four-stroke, single-cylinder engine is more than enough to give a thrilling ride. At 644cc, the motor is powerful and perfect for those who want to add more fun to their rides. The SOHC engine is air- and oil-cooled, giving better control and handling of engine temperature while keeping a semi-light weight.
The KLR650 four-stroke engine is similar to the DR650 with 651cc, so a little more powerful than the DR650. The KLR650 engine is solely cooled by liquid, giving the overall bike a heavier weight, due to the addition of a liquid cooler. This aspect may affect the performance of the bike in terms of speed and thrust, as the heavier the bike, the more power the engine needs to drive.
For the Honda XR650L, the four-stroke, single-cylinder engine has a displacement of 644cc, just like the DR650. This Honda model features air-cooling, just like the KLR650, making it lighter in weight and, therefore, perhaps affecting the performance of the bike positively.
For engine performance and design, Suzuki’s DR650 and Honda’s XR650L are at the same level, with both models featuring a 644cc, single-cylinder engine. Suzuki’s DR650 is slightly better due to its air and liquid cooler. The air cooler offers a lighter bike weight, but the liquid aspect still effectively controls the temperature.
However, the KLR650’s liquid-cooled engine is the winner for this round. Its 651cc power makes it easily race to the winner’s spot.
Braking system in DR650 vs KLR650 vs XR650L
Suzuki’s DR650 braking system is standard with a single front and rear brakes. The single disc brakes are hydraulic, and the front brake has a diameter of 290mm. This is a pretty impressive braking system; it works well with no major design flaws. Simple and innovative.
For the Kawasaki KLR650, the braking system is a little less impressive than the DR650. The KLR650 features both front and rear single petal disc brakes. The KLR650 braking system has two-piston calipers, with the front brake a large 280mm disc and rear brake a 240mm disc.
The XR6051 braking system is similar to that of KLR650. With disc front and rear braking systems, the model’s twin-piston caliper gives the user solid control. A simple system that is pretty standard.
It has to be the Suzuki DR650 that wins this braking system round. With hydraulic brakes, the model gives the rider ultimate control and increased precision. This is great if you ride for competitive reasons and require a model that you can accurately control. Also, since hydraulic brakes disperse heat more evenly, your brakes will last longer and require less changing. A great bonus. Point goes to the DR650!
Tyres on DR650 vs KLR650 vs XR650L
The tyres on the DR650 are pretty standard with the front tyre 90/90×21 and the rear tyre 120/90×17. For the KLR650, the rear tyre is slightly larger with the front tyre 90/90×21 and the rear tyre 130/80×17. Last but not least, we have the Honda XR6501, which has a front tyre 80/100×21 and a rear tyre of 110/100×18.
When it comes to tyres, the models are highly competitive. The DR650 has standard tyres, with the rear tyre a little on the small side. The KLR650 and the XR6501 are certainly the two that are the closest. The XR650L has the largest tyres, which is ideal if you want to use the bike for particularly tough tracks and require better handling of the surface area.
However, if you are looking for something that still had good grip and handling, but does not need excessive weight or surface area, then the KLR650 may be the choice for you. After all, the larger the tire, the more noise it will create.
Should you look for a bike for racing and competition, then the XR650L is the best choice out of these three bikes, since the larger tires improve performance and can make cornering easier to control and handle.
If you are requiring a model less racer-like and more for leisure purposes, then the KLR650 is a great option. It has a sturdy tyre, and they are certainly not the smallest tyres on the market – they still are pretty large. This just means you do not need to carry around very heavy, ineffective tyres for no reason.
For this tyre round, it’s a joint point, as this really depends on what you are looking for in a bike and its tires as well as the purpose of the bike.
Price of DR650 vs KLR650 vs XR650L
The price of the Suzuki DR650 is $6,699, which is probably a mid-budget for most riders looking for a new bike. For an air- and liquid-cooled 644cc engine, the price tag is justifiable, and there are certainly more expensive models with lower quality features on the market.
KLR650 is slightly more expensive than the DR650 at $7,104, however, this includes the destination/delivery charge. The KLR650 has won a few rounds in this discussion and has an impressive 651cc engine, making it the most powerful out of the three bikes. This model also won the engine round due to the efficient liquid-cooling system. This bike is a solid contender and really bring a punch to the table. Is the price justified by the more powerful engine and the liquid-cooling system? You can be the judge of that.
The Honda XR650L’s price tag is the same as the DR650 at $6,699. Just like the KLR650, this model has won a few of the rounds in this article and is still a great quality bike with an impressive, fully adjustable suspension system and race like tyres.
For this round, the third-place certainly goes to the KLR650. The KLR650 is the most expensive out of the three bikes. The large price tag does not seem to be justified, and frankly, the features are not there to justify the steep price either, not even the powerful engine.
The runner up, in second place, is the DR650. Although this reasonably-priced bike has great features, for example, its impressive hydraulic braking system. However, it lacks on the tires and engine power.
For the same price, you can get the XR650L, which is the standout winner of this round. Honda XR650L’s price is the same as the DR650, yet you can get so many better features. These features, like the fully adjustable suspension and large tyres, are ideal to get a better grip of the terrain and make cornering easier and smoother.
The number 1 spot easily goes to Honda’s XR650L. Even though the engine is not the most powerful out of the three bikes in this selection, the quality of the suspension and large tyre capability takes the first place. This bike’s design has really taken inspiration from the racing aspect, where every feature seems to be considered and made as streamlined and optimized as possible.
The KLR650 is also an impressive and high-quality model. With its 651cc powered engine and liquid cooling system, the features are there. But unfortunately, the steep price tag really lets it down. If you are willing to pay more for a more powerful engine, then that is completely fair. However, in terms of comparing the three bikes, the KLR650 loses its points on the expensive price tag.
For the DR650, this model is a close competitor to the winner. The DR650’s braking system won out of the three bikes, and the model provides the user with very accurate braking and precision. The tyres were the smallest compared to the other two bikes, yet it offers fully adjustable suspension. The price is also the same as the winner, so the model does not lose any credit here. Well done to the XR650L. A close competition, but well deserved.
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