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You are here: TMW -- 2013 Motorcycle Models -- Kawasaki -- 2013 Kawasaki Versys 650 Review

2013 Kawasaki Versys 650
Back to 2013 Kawasaki Motorcycle Model Review Page

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2013 Kawasaki Versys 650
2013 Kawasaki Versys 650

2013 Kawasaki Versys 650
2013 Kawasaki Versys 650

2013 Kawasaki Versys 650
2013 Kawasaki Versys 650

2013 Kawasaki Versys 650
2013 Kawasaki Versys 650

2013 Kawasaki Versys 650 Review

2013 Kawasaki Versys 650

This year continues Kawasaki's heritage of high performing, versatile, rider-friendly sports motorcycles. There are some welcome returns along with a few young upstarts that'll get your heart racing.

A Well-Rounded Choice for Almost Any Ride

If versatility were a sport, the Kawasaki Versys® sportbike would be its champion. Gifted with calm manners and a comfortable riding position while commuting, a serious sporty attitude while carving in the canyons and the ability to urge you farther during a backroads tour, the Versys is a fitting companion for just about any adventure. It accomplishes it all thanks to superb engineering and a compact and efficient 649cc parallel-twin engine.

Aggressive styling complements the Versys' dynamic flexibility and strengths, and an adjustable windscreen helps it to accommodate a wide variety of riders. To enhance its comfort during long days in the saddle, rubber bushings on the rear engine mounts and hollow rubber inserts atop the footpegs help to isolate the rider’s feet from engine vibration, resulting in a smoother, more relaxed ride.

The Versys’ compact, liquid-cooled, fuel-injected, 649cc, parallel-twin engine was the perfect powerplant for this light and nimble do-anything bike right from the start: it’s lively enough for advanced riders and predictable enough to inspire confidence in rank novices. The torquey twin delivers a deep ribbon of power in the lower and middle parts of its rev range, making the Versys a great commuter and relaxed traveling companion. Its surprising genius becomes readily apparent once the roads turn twisty, because despite its comfort and civility, the fun-to-ride Versys also offers genuine sportbike handling and excellent fuel economy. With its big, 5-gallon fuel tank, you can go a long way between fill-ups.

Long-travel high-tech suspension is critical to the Versys’ multi-role mission. A Showa rear shock with two-stage damping firms up progressively as the wheel moves through its stroke, providing an initially plush ride that firms to near-sportbike levels as suspension loads escalate. The bike’s short, compact engine makes it possible to use a longer than average gull-wing swingarm to reduce throttle-induced suspension movement and excellent handling. An adjustable, long-travel 41mm tapered-tube inverted fork soaks up bumps big and small, and like the rear end, firms up nicely as the pace increases.

Absolutely key to the Versys’ success is a comfortable, carefully designed cockpit that provides a mostly upright, natural seating position and features a stepped seat constructed to provide optimum comfort for both rider and passenger. The comfort theme is further enhanced by the adjustable windscreen, which offers three different positions. An easy-to-read and informative instrument panel allows riders to quickly scan the gauges and keep their eyes on the road. Possibly the most versatile motorcycle out there, the Versys excels at almost any task it’s given, from gridlock traffic jams to canyon carving to long-distance touring.


2013 Kawasaki Versys 650 Key Features

• Amazingly versatile motorcycle is exceptionally comfortable to ride in a variety of situations, from commuting, to backroads, touring and even track days
• 649cc parallel twin with digital fuel injection (DFI®) provides smooth, responsive power
• Long-travel fork delivers excellent performance over a wide range of situations
• Adjustable single-shock rear suspension offers progressive damping as suspension load increases
• 3-way adjustable windscreen allows customizable wind protection
• Aluminum swingarm and 17-inch cast aluminum wheels reduce unsprung weight for better ride quality
• Under-engine exhaust promotes better weight centralization
• Aggressive styling gives the Versys a distinctive look



2013 Kawasaki Versys 650 Features and Benefits

649cc DOHC Parallel Twin-cylinder Engine
• The most compact engine in its category helps reduce the dimensions of the entire motorcycle
• Triangular crank and transmission shaft layout keeps it short front to back
• A semi-dry sump oil system reduces overall engine height
• The narrow, chrome composite-plated aluminum cylinders help reduce engine width
• Tuned to deliver smooth, responsive power in the low
• to mid-rpm range for exceptional roll-on response – ideal for negotiating city traffic, tight backroads and anything in between
• A 180-degree crankshaft and a balancer shaft produce a remarkably smooth engine
• Oil jets on the connecting rod ends spray oil on the undersides of the pistons to aid cooling
• An under-engine muffler with 3-way catalyzer aids mass centralization for light handling and great looks

Liquid Cooling
• Engine temperatures stay consistent for long engine life and sustained power in tough conditions
• Closer engine tolerances mean more horsepower
• Coolant routed through the engine cases reduces the number of external hoses

Digital Fuel Injection (DFI®)
• A pair of 38mm Keihin throttle bodies with ECU-controlled sub-throttle valves mean optimum performance and rideability
• Sub-throttles, located behind the main throttle valves, give the Versys precise throttle response and great feel as well
• An automatic fast idle system makes starting and warm-up easy, even on cold days
• Precise fuel injection provides great fuel mileage, and the 3-way catalyzer significantly reduces emissions

Six-speed Transmission
• Versys’ racing-style cassette transmission uses a compact layout that’s easily removable as a single unit from the engine cases for much easier gearbox maintenance

Slender Trellis Frame
• The Versys’ exotic-looking trellis frame is small, light and narrow at the knees and pegs for excellent comfort and control
• 3D computer analysis in the design process achieved optimum stiffness balance for superior ride and handling

Single Shock Rear Suspension
• A distinctive aluminum gull-wing swingarm controlled by a lay-down single shock complements the distinctive frame design, with an integrated line flowing from steering head to rear hub
• The short, compact frame and engine design allow the swingarm to be longer, which improves overall handling
• The Showa shock has adjustable preload and rebound damping, and uses a free piston and two-stage damping valves for smooth action during initial compression that becomes firmer near the end of the stroke for a more planted feel

Adjustable Long-travel Front Fork
• A long-travel 41mm inverted fork delivers excellent performance over a wide range of conditions
• Tapered, relatively short outer tubes help provide the ideal stiffness balance to complement frame stiffness and chassis settings
• Fork height, spring preload and rebound damping can be adjusted to fine-tune the suspension to specific conditions, riding styles and loads

Petal-style Brake Discs
• Dual 300mm petal-style discs with two-piston calipers in front and a single 220mm petal disc with a single-piston caliper in back provide plenty of stopping power
• Same rotor design as found on the Ninja® supersport machines; petal design rotors offer improved cooling and warp resistance compared to traditional discs

Six-spoke Wheels
• Like the ones you’ll find on the Ninja ZX™-6R and ZX-10R, these six-spoke wheels use less material between spokes so rim thickness is reduced along with overall wheel weight
• Lighter wheels increase overall performance – suspension, handling, acceleration/deceleration and initial turn-in

Very Comfortable Ergonomics
• Each section of the two-piece seat was designed with a different thickness and firmness of foam to optimize comfort for both rider and passenger
• The passenger seat and grab bars were designed to provide a natural seating position for added comfort
• An easy-to-read instrument panel has a large analog tachometer and digital readout for the speedometer, fuel gauge, odometer, dual trip meters and clock. White LED backlighting provides increased visibility at night
• Passenger grab rails, seat cover material, and a comfortable seating position make the Versys fun for passengers
• Rubber bushings at the rear engine mounts and hollow rubber-covered footpegs result in reduced engine vibration and a more comfortable ride

Unique Bodywork
• The fairing, stacked dual headlight, front fender and mirrors, and a Z1000-style LED tail light give the Versys a distinctly bold and high-tech appearance
• The windscreen provides a large still-air pocket for comfort, and its three-position adjustability makes it adaptable to fit a variety of riders and climates



2013 Kawasaki Versys 650 - USA Specifications/Technical Details
US MSRP Price: $7,999 USD

Engine Four-stroke, liquid-cooled, DOHC, four valves per cylinder parallel twin

Displacement 649cc

Bore x Stroke 83.0 x 60.0 mm

Compression Ratio 10.6:1

Cooling System Liquid

Fuel System Digital fuel injection with two 38mm Keihin throttle bodies

Ignition TCBI with electronic advance

Transmission Six-Speed

Final Drive O-Ring Chain

Frame Type Semi-double cradle, high-tensile steel

Rake/Trail 25 degrees/4.3 in.

Wheelbase 55.7

Front Tire Size 120/70-17

Rear Tire Size 160/60-17

Front Suspension / Wheel Travel 41mm hydraulic telescopic fork with stepless adjustable rebound and preload / 5.9 in.

Rear Suspension / Wheel Travel Single offset laydown shock with 13-position adjustable rebound damping and adjustable spring preload / 5.7 in.

Front Brakes Dual 300mm petal discs with two-piston caliper

Rear Brakes Single 220mm petal disc with single-piston caliper

Fuel Capacity 5.0 gal.

Seat Height 33.3 in.

Curb Weight 454.2 lbs.

Overall Length 83.7 in.

Overall Width 33.1 in.

Overall Height 52.4 in.

Color Choices Metallic Stardust White, Candy Thunder Blue / Metallic Spark Black

Warranty 12 months

Good Times™ Protection Plan 12, 24, 36 or 48 months plans are available



2013 Kawasaki Versys 650 - Canadian Specifications/Technical Details
Canada MSRP Price: $TBA CDN

Type 4-stroke, Parallel Twin
Displacement 649cc
Bore and Stroke 83.0 x 60.0 mm
Cooling Liquid
Compression Ratio 10.6:1
Valve System DOHC, 8 valves
Fuel System Digital fuel injection with two 38 mm Keihin throttle bodies
Ignition Digital
Lubrication Forced lubrication (semi-dry sump)


Transmission 6-speed, with positive neutral finder
Final Drive Sealed Chain
Primary Reduction Ratio 2.095 (88/42)
Gear Ratio: 1st 2.438 (39/16)
Gear Ratio: 2nd 1.714 (36/21)
Gear Ratio: 3rd 1.333 (32/24)
Gear Ratio: 4th 1.111 (30/27)
Gear Ratio: 5th 0.966 (28/29)
Gear Ratio: 6th 0.852 (23/27)
Final Reduction Ratio 3.067 (46/15)
Clutch Wet multi-disc, manual


Type Diamond, high-tensile steel
Wheel Travel: Front 150 mm (5.9 in.)
Tire: Front 120/70-ZR17
Wheel Travel: Rear 145 mm (5.7 in.)
Tire: Rear 160/60-ZR17
Caster (Rake) 25°
Trail 108 mm (4.3 in.)
Steering Angle (Left/Right) 35° / 35°


Suspension, Front 41 mm hydraulic telescopic fork with adjustable rebound and preload
Suspension, Rear Single offset laydown shock with adjustable rebound and spring preload


Front: Type Dual 300 mm petal discs
Front: Calipers 2-piston calipers
Rear: Type Single 220 mm petal disc
Rear: Caliper Single-piston caliper


Overall Length 2,125 mm (83.7 in.)
Overall Width 840 mm (33.1 in.)
Overall Height 1,330 mm (52.3 in.)
Wheelbase 1,415 mm (55.7 in.)
Ground Clearance 180 mm (7.1 in.)
Seat Height 845 mm (33.3 in.)
Curb Mass** 206 kg (454 lbs.)
Fuel Capacity 19 litres (4.2 gal.)
** Includes all necessary materials and fluids to operate correctly, full tank of fuel (more than 90% of capacity) and tool kit (if supplied)


Maximum Power‡ 47 kW {64 PS} @ 8,000 rpm
Maximum Torque‡ 61 N·m {6.2 kgƒ·m} @ 6,800 rpm
‡ Power / Torque figures measured at the crankshaft.


Warranty 12 months warranty


Good Times Protection Plan 24 or 36 months (Kawasaki GTPP coverage begins after the standard limited warranty expires)


Metallic Magnesium Gray KLE650CDF TBA

2013 Kawasaki Versys 650 - United Kingdom Specifications/Technical Details
UK MSRP Price: £6,649, £6,999 (ABS) (Prices are recommended and inclusive of VAT @ 20% and delivery)

Engine type
Liquid-cooled, 4-stroke Parallel Twin
649 cm³
Bore x stroke
83 x 60 mm
Compression ratio
Valve/Induction system
DOHC, 8 valves
Fuel system
Fuel injection: ø38 mm x 2 (Keihin)
Forced lubrication, semi-dry sump
6-speed, return
Final Drive
Sealed chain
" Primary reduction ratio
2.095 (88/42)
" Gear ratios: 1st
2.438 (39/16)
" Gear ratios: 2nd
1.714 (36/21)
" Gear ratios: 3rd
1.333 (32/24)
" Gear ratios: 4th
1.111 (30/27)
" Gear ratios: 5th
0.966 (28/29)
" Gear ratios: 6th
0.852 (23/27)
" Final reduction ratio
3.067 (46/15)
Wet multi-disc, manual
Frame type
Diamond, high-tensile steel
25? / 108 mm
Wheel travel, front
150 mm
Wheel travel, rear
145 mm
Tyre, front
120/70ZR17M/C (58W)
Tyre, rear
160/60ZR17M/C (69W)
Steering angle, left / right
35? / 35?
Suspension, front
41 mm inverted telescopic fork with stepless (right-side) adjustable rebound damping and adjustable preload
Suspension, rear
Offset laydown single-shock with 13-way adjustable rebound damping and 7-way adjustable preload
Brakes, front
Dual semi-floating 300 mm petal discs Caliper: Dual piston
Brakes, rear
Single 220 mm petal disc Caliper: Single-piston
Dimensions (L x W x H)
2,125 mm x 840 mm x 1,330 mm
1,415 mm
Ground Clearance
180 mm
Seat height
845 mm
" Fuel capacity
19 litres
Curb Mass
206 kg / 209 kg (ABS)
Maximum power
47 kW {64 PS} / 8,000 rpm. 25 kW {34 PS} / 6,500 rpm (25 kW kit)
Maximum torque
61 Nm {6.2 kgf.m} / 6,800 rpm


2013 Kawasaki Versys 650 - Australia Specifications/Technical Details
Australia MSRP Price: See dealer

Type Liquid-cooled, 4-stroke Parallel Twin
Displacement 649 cm³
Bore and Stroke 83 x 60 mm
Compression ratio 10.6:1
Valve system DOHC, 8 valves
Fuel system Fuel injection: Ø 38 mm x 2 (Keihin)
Ignition Digital
Starting Electric
Lubrication Forced lubrication, semi-dry sump
Transmission 6-speed, return
Final drive Sealed Chain
Primary reduction ratio 2.095 (88/42)
Gear ratios: 1st 2.438 (39/16)
2nd 1.714 (36/21)
3rd 1.333 (32/24)
4th 1.111 (30/27)
5th 0.966 (28/29)
6th 0.852 (23/27)
Final reduction ratio 3.067 (46/15)
Clutch Wet multi-disc, manual
Type Diamond, high-tensile steel
Wheel travel: front 150 mm
rear 145 mm
Tyre: front 120/70ZR17M/C (58W)
rear 160/60ZR17M/C (69W)
Caster (rake) 25°
Trail 108 mm
Steering angle (left/right) 35° / 35°
Front: Type 41 mm inverted telescopic fork with stepless (right-side) adjustable rebound damping and adjustable preload
Rear: Type Offset laydown single-shock with 13-way adjustable rebound damping and 7-way adjustable preload
Front: Type Dual semi-floating 300 mm petal discs
Caliper Dual piston with ABS
Rear: Type Single 220 mm petal disc
Caliper Single-piston with ABS
Overall length 2,125 mm
Overall width 840 mm
Overall height 1,315 mm
Wheelbase 1,415 mm
Ground clearance 180 mm
Seat height 845 mm
Curb mass 209 kg Includes full fuel tank
Fuel capacity 19 litres
Maximum power 47 kW {64 PS} / 8,000 rpm
Maximum torque 61 N·m {6.2 kgf·m} / 6,800 rpm