Two other "cafe" -inspired bikes: SV650X and Z900RS - Honda CBR 300 Forum
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post #1 of 35 Old 05-02-2019, 10:52 PM Thread Starter
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Two other "cafe" -inspired bikes: SV650X and Z900RS

These two handsome options have really caught my eye.

Over the preceding few months, I've been alternating between lusting after the CB650R, SV650, and MT-07 (somewhat in that order). I've had, in the back of my mind, the plan to "trade up" in two years assuming life changes and a move after grad school. Although I've come increasingly around to keeping the 300 and adding to the stable instead...

This dome-headed variant on the Suzuki, in the black and white livery (with brown saddle), is gorgeous in my eyes. In addition to the "bikini" cowl and lush seat, the only other big change from the regular SV650 is clip-ons. The thing sounds amazing with a slip-on muffler, and weighs in wet at 437 lbs.




BUT THEN! But then! I stumbled across in my Youtube surfing the 2019 Kawasaki Z900RS Cafe. And it definitely gets me warm inside. I'm even OK with the Kawa green scheme here, with the white striping along the cowl. This boy is a little more hefty than I'm necessarily interested in -- 948cc four-cylinder with a 474 lb wet weight. It's also currently retailing over $11k, a decent chunk over the SV650X's $8,399.

But geez, either one gently used in a few years? I think both options do it for me a little more than Honda's current "retro" design theme. Open question in my mind how well any of these designs age over time...





What do you kids think?

2015 CB300F
purchased 2,390 mi // currently 9.1k+ mi

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post #2 of 35 Old 05-02-2019, 11:31 PM
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I like the looks of both of them. But maybe I'd give the edge to the Kawi, too...
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post #3 of 35 Old 05-03-2019, 12:38 AM
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SV all the way chap! I'm biased to all he11 though as I race one. They do sound awesome esp with a full M4 system which most of the guys seem to run. Lovely torquey motor thats bullet proof and sweet handling as well. Maybe not as nimble as the MT-07 but rock solid stability.
There was a shoot-out recently in a British bike mag my buddy buys and it was between the MT, SV, CBR & Ninja 650. The SV won. You wouldn't be disappointed if you bought that bike.

I came across a crazy deal here on brands new '18 models that tempted even me who's just bought a new bike a year ago:

https://www.trademe.co.nz/motors/mot...3ec32cd7a5-001

$9995NZD = $6500USD
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post #4 of 35 Old 05-03-2019, 07:49 AM
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As far as cafe inspired, I really like that Z900..... maybe it’s the color....
I wouldn’t kick the SV out of the trailer.... or the Thruxton...... some motorcycles are just flat out beautiful!!

Maybe if I get the knee replaced, I can big bike bike it again.... it’s bikes like those two that just might talk me into doing it

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Former Rides: 1971 Honda CT90, 1973 Honda CB175, 1978 Yamaha XS650, 1981 Honda CM200T, 1983 Yamaha XJ650 Turbo,1983 Honda VF750S, 1985 Kawasaki GPZ550, 1989 CBR600F1, 2006 Yamaha TW200, 2006 Suzuki GZ250, 2014 Honda CTX700N
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post #5 of 35 Old 05-03-2019, 09:06 AM
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One of the things I really put high on the priority list is how the bike looks when I’m sitting over it. I had the choice between a CBR500 and CBR300. The things I liked about the 300 were not only the higher bars (which it looks like the Kow’s are), but also the analog tach.
Now after riding the bike for a bit, I can say I’m happy with my choice. I definitely look at the bike when it’s between my legs a lot more than when it’s not....
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Current: 2018 CBR300


Former Rides: 1971 Honda CT90, 1973 Honda CB175, 1978 Yamaha XS650, 1981 Honda CM200T, 1983 Yamaha XJ650 Turbo,1983 Honda VF750S, 1985 Kawasaki GPZ550, 1989 CBR600F1, 2006 Yamaha TW200, 2006 Suzuki GZ250, 2014 Honda CTX700N
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post #6 of 35 Old 05-03-2019, 09:39 AM
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I watched with great interest when Kawasaki announced the rebirth of the Z900 - being I had one in 1976 and when it came out I was disappointed in the looks and the price I don't consider it a retro bike just another new bike but if you want it and can afford it I say go for it
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post #7 of 35 Old 05-03-2019, 10:10 AM
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The Suzuki to my eye looks like less than a half hearted attempt at 'Retro'. The muffler and body work lines are too modern. Really the only piece that suggests 'Retro' is the headlight cowl and the brown seat... everything else on the bike says '2019'.

Whereas virtually everything about the Kawasaki Z900 is true to the concept of 'Retro'. Even the Z900's USD forks blend in to be almost unnoticeable.

ďMachines never lie.
Success will always come if theyíre really good.
So letís show the world what weíve done.
Then they can see the real Honda!Ē

- Founder Soichiro Honda at the inception of the Honda Collection Hall.




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post #8 of 35 Old 05-03-2019, 02:27 PM Thread Starter
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I find the SV650X more pleasing to look at, for a few reasons... One of which might be directly to your point, MotoMike: It is more modern looking. If this retro cafe fad disappears tomorrow, the Kawasaki will definitely feel more dated in my opinion. I'm not sure about the 650X. For me, it fixes one of the stylistic things I dislike about the new SV650 (non-X), which is the "brow" treatment above the headlight. (See below.) The regular SV650 looks a little unfinished there.



The stock can on the SV650X is still obnoxious, but I'm thinking I probably do a tail tidy and exhaust on any bike I purchase.

There's definitely a Star Wars or Pixar character that both bikes are strongly invoking here, with their round headlight and cowl... I just can't put my finger on it. Not this guy, but close:


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post #9 of 35 Old 05-03-2019, 04:47 PM
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Originally Posted by Zeke View Post
... If this retro cafe fad disappears tomorrow, the Kawasaki will definitely feel more dated in my opinion. I'm not sure about the 650X. For me, it fixes one of the stylistic things I dislike about the new SV650 (non-X), which is the "brow" treatment above the headlight. (See below.) The regular SV650 looks a little unfinished there.

The stock can on the SV650X is still obnoxious, but I'm thinking I probably do a tail tidy and exhaust on any bike I purchase.
Yeah agreed. The regular model is too much of a plain Jane styling wise, or rather a lack of. They got it better with the X model and it has clip on bars as well.
Pipe and tail tidy is pretty much compulsory mod on any new bike these days, just gotta factor it into the equation when purchasing.

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post #10 of 35 Old 05-08-2019, 12:45 PM
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Originally Posted by Zeke View Post
These two handsome options have really caught my eye.

Over the preceding few months, I've been alternating between lusting after the CB650R, SV650, and MT-07 (somewhat in that order). I've had, in the back of my mind, the plan to "trade up" in two years assuming life changes and a move after grad school. Although I've come increasingly around to keeping the 300 and adding to the stable instead...

This dome-headed variant on the Suzuki, in the black and white livery (with brown saddle), is gorgeous in my eyes. In addition to the "bikini" cowl and lush seat, the only other big change from the regular SV650 is clip-ons. The thing sounds amazing with a slip-on muffler, and weighs in wet at 437 lbs.




BUT THEN! But then! I stumbled across in my Youtube surfing the 2019 Kawasaki Z900RS Cafe. And it definitely gets me warm inside. I'm even OK with the Kawa green scheme here, with the white striping along the cowl. This boy is a little more hefty than I'm necessarily interested in -- 948cc four-cylinder with a 474 lb wet weight. It's also currently retailing over $11k, a decent chunk over the SV650X's $8,399.

But geez, either one gently used in a few years? I think both options do it for me a little more than Honda's current "retro" design theme. Open question in my mind how well any of these designs age over time...





What do you kids think?
Agreed both bikes are lookers, Zeke, I favor the Kaw, the cleaner of the 2 without the SV's little tank fairing, added plastic bits & bulky muffler.
The Kaw's muffler looks fine, unless additional mods were planned I keep it. I'd replace the SV's whole exhaust system
with 1 more straight forward, lighter, less restrictive. Both bikes, like all bikes these days, would clean up nicely with a tail tidy,
taillight with integrated signals & Proton (the brightest) flush front signals.
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