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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm in the bike business, I am a custom bike painter (www.bdscycles.com)
I've been riding for 25 years, had probably 100 bikes (everything from ST1100's to R1's, to Z1000's, and a slew of things in between!) I've done 3000 mile 7 day road trips, track days, you name it. Ever since the SV650 came out I have had the itch. Ridden a few along the way. I always thought the 2nd generation felt "soul-less" compared to the 1st gen, but the 2nd Gen I rode was stock, and the 1st Gen was all tricked out (suspension, brakes, full exhaust, etc etc etc)

Got a line on one from Canada, it's a 2006 SV650 that is stock. I'm hoping I can inject a little soul into the 2006. I am assuming they make PC3's for these bikes? What sort of difference does a full exhaust make on these bikes, as opposed to just a slip on? Outside of this, some brake and suspension upgrades should do me, but I think I have that stuff mostly covered.....

TIA!
 

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Some thoughts
  • Perhaps connect with the folks in your area with modified SVs and ask if you can test their bike's soul?
  • If you are in love with the Gen1 then go for those - the Gen2 may just lead you on a self-fulfilling prophesy of regret.
  • Seems if you are thinking full exhaust then look for a bike with it already installed.
  • Maybe put up a new post - "How does the Gen1 FEEL compared to a Gen2?"
Good luck!
 

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I've had both gens, and the first gen seemed to respond better to a full exhaust... but the second gen with slip on still felt faster according to the butt dyno than my 1gen with a Yoshi rs-3. I got a full exhaust and a pc3 for my second gen, and the gains were in low-midrange mostly, although I don't use WOT much so I wouldn't be a good judge of that.
I like first gens for the look, and the soul as you say, but my second gen has been growing on me the more problem free miles I put on it. It's been great too.
 

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I have a first gen and a second gen SV650. The 2nd gen stock was better in every respect than the first gen stock except for the vintage look. I think that the handling of the first gen was improved more by emus and stiffer springs than was the 2nd gen bike. However, with suspension mods on both bikes I still think the handling of the 2nd gen bike is a little more responsive than the 1st gen. The frame of the 2nd gen is said to be stiffer and that is probably the reason. Some people like ride of the 1st gen better because it isn't as stiff, but these differences are really minimal anyway. The bike really shines in the tight stuff and that is where it has the most character to me.

I don't race, so I'm speaking only about street riding: Exhaust and engine mods on the SV650 IMHO are really not cost effective if you are expecting to change the "soul" of the bike regarding performance for (sane) street use. Sound and appearance will be the biggest benefits. If that is what you mean by "soul" then you will probably be happy. The bike is lean from the factory, so remapping or rejetting might make it feel better to you and sprocket mods will change the feel as well. A TRE may be something you want to try first.

The racers here may have a different perspective, but to me, investing a lot of money into power mods will just make you a slightly taller midget.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
to clarify: The 1999 I rode was tricked out, it belonged to a buddy, I borrowed it for a day to ride around town, and I had an absolute blast on it. Reminded me of my old Hawk GT, but better in every way. I smiled all day long on that bike. A few years later at a ZRX rally in the GA mountains I rode a box stock 2001, and enjoyed it as well. A year or so later, at the same ZRX function, same location, I rode a box stock 2004. After just getting 100 yards down the road, I thought to myself, "wow, this just isn't doing anything for me....."

So I am left thinking that the soul/character I felt in the 1st generation SV's that had me smiling from ear to ear may have been something that was lost on the development & production of the 2nd Generation bikes. But then I wonder if I am talking myself into it when I say, "Nah, nothing a little noise and some brake/suspension mods won't bring back..."

It's good to hear that full exhaust systems don't help this bike that much. They are more than I want to spend anyway. A slip-on and a PC may be all I need, along with the stainless lines & HH pads, and a few suspension tweaks....

I need a ride on a local SV, and to make a call to the DMV about bringing this bike in from Canada....
 
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