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As a matter of fact, there are many great iconic and incredible adventure motorcycles in the last decade. Started from the latest, biggest and hefty priced one like KTM 1290 Adventure and BMW R1200GS, to more budget friendly, smaller and affordable like new Honda CRF 250 Rally and Kawasaki Versys 300. All of them are great bikes, no doubt.
In addition, as adventure motorcycle becomes more and more popular in the recent years, many manufactures are trying to get their hands on the part of the cake. Thank God, because of this reason, now we have so many options when it comes to adventure or dual sports motorcycle.
However, long before those bikes were born, the world of adventure motorcycle already filled with many great bikes. You name it, KLR 650, Africa twin, XTZ660 Tenere, F800S and KTM 640 Adventure are small example of the bikes which helped to shape the adventure motorcycle world today.
Speaking of adventure motorcycle, The bikes listed below are famous and well-known for its capability and reliability both on and off-road. All of these bikes also have been existed for some time, so it is no wonder that many rider from the beginner to the more senior, regard and praise these bikes for their value and performance.
Although some bikes like Suzuki DR-Z400S, Suzuki V-Strom 650 and Kawasaki Versys 650 considered as dual sport bike and no match to the power of BMW R1200GS or Triumph Tiger 800XC, nonetheless, they make great budget friendly adventure bikes affordable to everyone.
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1. BMW R1200GS: King of Adventure Motorcycle
Who on earth does not know the big 1200cc boxer engine GS. Massive and bulky R1200GS has long been considered as one of the best adventure motorcycle (for big boys of course) due to its popularity, versatility and performance.
The BMW R1200GS led this class for many years and claims a respectable place on the heart of riders. The BMW R 1200 GS is a living legend. For 32 years the GS models have been molding the segment of travel enduros. They set engineering standards and have proven to be trusty companions on every riding adventure.
BMW R1200GS has always successfully set new standard of adventure motorcycle by writing a new chapter in its story of success and taking the R1200GS into a new era. You like extreme and long tours? On rough roads, over stony tracks out in the wild, too? Tarmac, off-road, stones and sand: These are the challenges the new BMW R1200GS is longing to master with its easy and agile handling.
A machine for those (big guys) who want to test their limits and go beyond them. Or to put it briefly: A motorcycle for riders who are seeking real adventure and don’t want to miss out on a great deal of riding pleasure in the process.
Conquer any type of terrain on an adventure bike that meets all your practical needs. The R1200GS is also characterized by its unmistakable design, wind and weather protection and by its muscular presence. You cannot miss the big GS on the road!
2. Suzuki DR-Z400S: Affordable Two Wheelers Tank
Although DR-Z400S is dual sport motorcycle, the bike is ideal for taking a ride down your favorite off-road trail or ribbon of asphalt. You’ll be impressed with the amount of torque coming from the 398cc liquid-cooled power plant as well as the crisp handling from the adjustable suspension.
The newest version of ultra-reliable bike is completely street legal with an electric start and easy-to-read instrument cluster. New solid black bodywork with bold, contrasting color graphics makes the bike stand out on the road, on the trail, or even parked. Whether you’re on the highway or on a twisty forest path, the Suzuki DR-Z400S can’t be beat.
Built like a tank, capable to endure tremendous amount of torture, that is how you describe Suzuki DR-Z400S. The DR-Z400S is well known for its reliability and durability. The bike is a true Dual Sport bike with an aggressive off-road focus.
DR-Z400S is small and light with good power in the higher rpm range. It has no windscreen, a small tank and no luggage rack, but its light-weight feel and off-road capabilities and dozens of available accessories and mods make it a great starting platform for building an Adventure Bike that does not drain your pockets.
3. Kawasaki Versys 650: The Equilibrium
The Kawasaki Versys is more or less a balance between an Adventure Bike and naked Bike. The bike has a comfortable upright riding position and stepped seat that works well for 2-up riding. The charismatic twin-cylinder engine offers good power and smooth operation on the highway. A tall windscreen and good fuel mileage give it long-range touring capabilities. ABS brakes are standard on the newest Versys as well.
The Versys 650 rides like a dream, taking corner after corner in its stride thanks to its top-notch suspension and chassis. The Versys 650‘s mile crunching ability and agile handling make it as competent a sports tourer as an adventure motorcycle.
The Versys’ 649cc parallel twin engine is compact and delivers a nice punch high in the rev range while still offering low down and midrange pull. The Versys 650 features extras like a gear position indicator and a windscreen with 2 inches of adjustability, which keeps the wind off you should you hit the highway.
Sporty handling and a fast-revving engine make it a fun bike on twisty backroads. The Versys also works well as a reliable and nimble daily commute bike. The bike has just enough ground clearance for exploring the occasional graded dirt road. However, with 17 inch rims the bike is clearly designed for street use. The Versys is a good option for new adventure riders that intend to ride primarily on pavement.
4. Suzuki DL V-Strom 650: A Unique Package
V-strom 650 is one unique motorcycle offered by Suzuki. Its V-twin engine is capable on both road and off-road. Renowned for its versatility, reliability and value, the V-Strom 650 has attracted many riders who use it for touring, commuting, or a fun ride when the spirit moves them. It is a touchstone motorcycle balanced with a natural riding position, comfortable seat and a flexible engine character that produces stress-free riding during brief daily use or a high-mile adventure.
The V-Strom 650 will take you to and from work every day and then whisk you off for the weekend two up, with no complaints. The V-Strom 650 ABS is one of the best value for money motorcycles, not just in the adventure class, but in any class.
The Suzuki V-Strom 650 is another Adventure “Styled” Bike, but the off-road capabilities are improved with a 19-inch front wheel that makes it easier to carry inertia over rocks. The V-Strom 650 has a more dirt oriented feel than the Versys but is primarily a street bike. The bike makes a good daily commuter and also comes with ABS standard. The V-Strom will allow you to explore the occasional graded dirt road, but serious off-road use is not recommended (especially for novice off-road riders).
The twin-cylinder engine, tall windscreen and wide seat provide a comfortable highway ride. Gas mileage and fuel range are excellent. The V-Strom isn’t the most exciting Adventure Bike, but it is a sensible and reliable option.
5. Triumph Tiger 800 XC: Taste from Britannia
The Triumph Tiger 800 XC is a dual-sport motorcycle launched in 2010 by British manufacturer Triumph Motorcycles. The Tiger 800 is a more road-oriented bike, while the Tiger 800 XC is designed as a more off-road vehicle. Both bikes share the same frame and 799 cubic centimeters inline-three engine, which is derived from the smaller Triumph Daytona 675.
By launching 800 XC Triumph breaks ranks the competition with a three-cylinder motor. Most bikes in the 650-800cc range are singles or twins, but Triumph’s fantastic 800cc Triple has just as many fans as its 1215cc big brother. The motor produces plenty of down-low torque, which makes for plenty of fun on-road and off.
Triumph brought out the off-road oriented XC version of their big-bore Tiger back in late 2012, with aluminum skid plate, engine guards, plastic hand guards and auxiliary lights as standard. Unlike most of the competition, Triumph went with a three-cylinder motor 800cc for the Tiger Explorers, instead of a twin, resulting in very unique and enjoyable power delivery, as well as a unique exhaust note.
The Triumph Tiger 800 is an important new model for Triumph. Filling a gap in their range, the all-new motorcycle has a tough job to not step on the toes of any of the existing Triumph line-up, while also delivering the goods against a tough set of established oppositions. Despite its young age, the 800’s fantastic motor makes it a serious contender as a middleweight ADV bike nonetheless.
Finally mate, the same question, if you are given choice to choose one of the bikes for you adventure, which is it? do you prefer light and pocket friendly bike like Suzuki DRZ400, CRF 250 Rally, or Kawasaki Versys 300? or you don’t mind to spend some grands to get newest and more advanced bike like the new Honda Africa Twin, BMW R1200GS or KTM 1290 Adventure?
Well, don’t be shy to share you opinions with us!
Thank you for reading and remember to share this article to your friends 😀 Have a great adventure!