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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello everyone,

In a thread on another forum, people are saying that the SV650 is a good bike to start with. After looking at it a bit online, I found this site and decided to ask you guys about it, figured I'd get the best info!

So, assuming I take the course do everything as good as I can and start riding with someone experienced that knows what they're doing - do you think the SV650 is alright to start with, or is it way overkill?

I heard it was a well-mannered bike, the way it rides and its weight are suitable for someone starting out - is that accurate?

If it is a decent choice, what do you guys that have first hand experience with this bike and bikes like it, say as any advice or anything related that someone looking into this bike should know?

Looking forward to finding out!!
 

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Have you ever ridden a motorcycle before? It definitely isn't lacking power so that might be overwhelming for someone starting out.

On the positive side you get used to the power quickly and the SV650 is a good handling bike that is easy to ride.
 

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I think part of this is dependent upon the maturity level of the rider. Yes, the SV is a great bike; fairly low maintenance, great gas mileage, excellent performance, etc. In the hands of the wrong person, a really dangerous machine, but so are a lot of other bikes.
 

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I just started riding last year and the SV was my first bike (no prior dirtbike experience, nothing). I bought it after reading a few books where the authors both voted the SV650 the perfect first bike. I did not have any problems adjusting to it after the 125cc Kawi I rode in the MSF course. It has been a great bike to learn on. Just be aware of the throttle and engine braking your first few times out, take it easy the first few weeks, stay on uncrowded roads at uncrowded times, etc. You'll make out fine.
 

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It's my first street bike (some dirt bike experience) and I love it. Havent gone down yet, I think as long as you respect the machine and accept that you cannot ride like you see guys do on tv, you'll be okay. I even have the S model which some say isn't as beginner friendly because the aggressive seat style. I feel super comfy on it though! Except for that stock seat.

+1 it's a good beginner bike, you will not regret getting one.
 

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Well I think it depends on alot of things. How long have you been driving a car? How long a standard car? Any 2 wheel exp?

Heres where I came from
- about 9 years of driving exp
- 7 yrs standard driving,
- no motorized 2 wheel but tons of mountain biking exp
-took an MSF course
- 2 years later without ever driving other then in a pk lot on msf I bought an SV in the US and drove it an hour home then hitting 30 min of traffic when I got there.

I did perfectly fine and felt a bit nervous when I first got onto the highways, but after a but of highway got comfortable. Then when I hit traffic again got a bit nervous but really its not a whole lot different from a car - the only big thing is driving while expecting every car on the road has ZERO clue you are there.

Final words - I think you can start on any bike from a 250 to a 1300+cc. Heres the thing, start smaller and your learning curve will be reduced due to forgiveness - start higher and you may enjoy the bike for longer depending on your needs (who are we kidding 95% of riders out there cant outride a 600SS but plenty of people have 750's and 1000's)

So a 650 seems like a good middle, You can enjoy it for years and maybe for life but it may leave you wanting more due to peer pressure and wanting to look cooler since most here including myself couldnt outride one.
 

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I bought my '05 SV650N as my first bike, and I absolutely love it. I don't think I would have wanted anything smaller, or bigger right now. I'm a big dude, about 265lbs, and this bike hauls my big ass around no problem.

The bike handles great, has plenty of get up and go to it, and it comfortable to ride. Not to mention it sounds awesome with the full Yoshimura exhaust system I have on it.

I've got a good friend who got his cycle endorsement last summer, along with his fiancee, and they bought a matching pair of Ninja 250's. He upgraded to a GSXR 600 3 months later. Wished he had never bought the 250 and had to deal with selling it once he realized it was too small for him. Now, his girl LOVED the 250. But, when he upgraded to the GSXR, she decided she didn't want to ride anymore, and they ended up selling her bike over the winter. She's talking about wanting to ride again now that I got a bike, and that his dad bought a bike last fall. But, she said she doesn't want a sportbike. I'm trying to convince her to go get a little metric cruiser, or a HD Sportster 883, which I think would be good choices for her. We shall see if she gets back on 2 wheels this year.

I just look at it this way, to each his own as to what type and size bike to buy as a first.
 

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If its going to be your VERY first bike ever, NO. TOO much power. If you know how to ride, then it would probably be just fine.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Wow, thanks for all the nice and really quick replies!

SDRider
Have you ever ridden a motorcycle before? It definitely isn't lacking power so that might be overwhelming for someone starting out. I haven't. I have been on the back of one a few times with an experienced, responsible rider - at first I found the curves scary but I slowly got used to it as I got more comfortable. If you go easy with the throttle, is it easy to take it easy? Or is it really twitchy?

007SV650S
Well I think it depends on alot of things. How long have you been driving a car? How long a standard car? Any 2 wheel exp?I've been driving a car for a bit over 7 years, I just turned 25. I've driven standard since the beginning.

Spacecoast
I think part of this is dependent upon the maturity level of the rider. Yes, the SV is a great bike; fairly low maintenance, great gas mileage, excellent performance, etc. In the hands of the wrong person, a really dangerous machine, but so are a lot of other bikes. I agree, any type of vehicle can be lethal. I've seen various types of crashes first hand, and I'm much more careful cause of that.

rider8
I just started riding last year and the SV was my first bike (no prior dirtbike experience, nothing). I bought it after reading a few books where the authors both voted the SV650 the perfect first bike. I did not have any problems adjusting to it after the 125cc Kawi I rode in the MSF course. It has been a great bike to learn on. Just be aware of the throttle and engine braking your first few times out, take it easy the first few weeks, stay on uncrowded roads at uncrowded times, etc. You'll make out fine. Cool, thanks for that. Sounds good!! How is it for medium-length trips? Is the positioning of the handle bars good, like does the way it's placed make for relatively comfortable riding?

I like what I'm learning about it so far, sounds like a really good choice.

I saw that other one for $2900, people seem to think it's a steal. How much does a recent decent quality used one normally go for these days? Do you guys have any trouble getting insurance?

I was guessing $1500-2500/year to insure a motorcycle, but I don't really know. I pay $1300/year for my car fully covered, it's a 2004 but that probably has nothing to do with motorcycle insurance.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
So I'm getting mixed opinions about the first time rider thing. A few people are saying it was their first bike and they don't regret it. That's one of the reasons why I was asking about if it's really twitchy - I definitely don't want to kill myself. If having this as a first bike is doable, I am responsible and I'm not looking for a bike to impress other people or whatever, it's purely for my own enjoyment.
 

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Heres how I did it.

I WANTED the SV but knowing that it's torque could fugg me up if I wasnt careful I decided to take the class and decide from that.
I figured if I did really well in the class and if riding felt natural & if I was getting ballzy with the 250 before the end of the class (last part is a joke) then I'd go for the SV.
BUT If I felt twitchy or nervous or was having trouble with the skills or the bike in the class and I didnt feel comfortable on the 250 that I would get a 250 or 500 depending on how nervous I was.


I personally have learned that it is nice to suggest to a new rider a 250 or 500 BUT not all of them will go that way. And thats fine, some people can take to riding better than others! The friend I took the class with almost failed where as I passed with flying colors! She got on a SVNaked & dropped it within 5 min and never touched a bike again, I got my bike late last August and am riding every day the roads are clear & doing 100+ mi a day!

Each rider is different and you are gonna choose for yourself anyways, the least you can do is be honest with yourself about what you think you can handle after you have taken the course.
Don't let a price of a bike reel you into it if you have any doubt about its power either. This is your FIRST bike not your ONLY bike.


As for how the bike is...
She is a Vixen...it can bite you in the ARSE if you dont learn throttle & clutch control quick. She almost bit me a cpl times when I was starting out. She still shocks me sometimes.
If you take it easy and babystep it and only do what you know you have the skill to do, then you should be fine if you are responsible like you claim. Be warned the torque has the possibility of bitting you in the arse...it did my friend hence why she doesnt ride.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
In another thread I Googled, someone said the honda rvf 400 would be a better choice - but isn't that just as bad?

At any rate, I have time to think about it since I need to take the course, practice etc.

I've been a passenger on a yamaha FJ1200, was fun... but I don't think I'd want to learn on such a big bike.
 

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Bought my SV two months ago and just started riding last week. I love it. I've never rode a bike before so I cant compare this one to anything. I have no problems with it. I only chose this bike because I got a killer deal on it. But I def have no regrets. I'm glad I did.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Heres how I did it.

I WANTED the SV but knowing that it's torque could fugg me up if I wasnt careful I decided to take the class and decide from that.
I figured if I did really well in the class and if riding felt natural & if I was getting ballzy with the 250 before the end of the class (last part is a joke) then I'd go for the SV.
BUT If I felt twitchy or nervous or was having trouble with the skills or the bike in the class and I didnt feel comfortable on the 250 that I would get a 250 or 500 depending on how nervous I was.


I personally have learned that it is nice to suggest to a new rider a 250 or 500 BUT not all of them will go that way. And thats fine, some people can take to riding better than others! The friend I took the class with almost failed where as I passed with flying colors! She got on a SVNaked & dropped it within 5 min and never touched a bike again, I got my bike late last August and am riding every day the roads are clear & doing 100+ mi a day!

Each rider is different and you are gonna choose for yourself anyways, the least you can do is be honest with yourself about what you think you can handle after you have taken the course.
Don't let a price of a bike reel you into it if you have any doubt about its power either. This is your FIRST bike not your ONLY bike.
Hello, thanks for the reply. Points well taken! I will definitely take the course, there's no question bout that. I will be able to practice with an experienced rider when I do finally get my own bike.

Seeing several others having chosen this bike as their first and being happy with it is definitely encouraging. I do agree though that the person has to judge themselves based on their confidence and learning experience. I definitely will! life is too short to end it early cause of being stupid about a bike... I do want to enjoy the experience though!
 

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The people who tend to say the SV650 is a great beginner bike are those who started on a SV650.

The people who tend to say the SV650 is not a great beginner bike started on a smaller bike (or learned the hard way) and then moved up to a SV650 and understand the difference.

There's already a lot of threads on this. Keep in mind your first bike won't necessarily be your ONLY bike. You'll learn more on a smaller bike, especially if you get to the point where you can flog it like crazy. With the SV you'll be really touchy in comparison for a long time.

Buy a smaller bike, ride it for awhile, turn around and sell it for what you paid for. Then you'll have a better understand of what "bigger" bike you want and your needs.
 
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