The Suzuki V-Strom 650 And Honda NC700X

Suzuki V-Strom And Honda NC700X. 2 Great Bikes

Suzuki V-Strom And Honda NC700X
Suzuki V-Strom And A Honda NC700X

I’ve been wanting a V-Strom 650 ever since my wife got her’s a few years ago. It’s an incredibly versatile bike that suits our needs well. It’s comfortable, plenty of power, somewhat reliable, and easy on gas. It’s a sensible bike for commuting and weekend trips. The only thing I ever wished was that Honda would come out with something comparable because I’ve always found Honda to be a notch above Suzuki in quality.

I noticed that Honda was offering a new NC700X and I was sold at first sight. The price was much lower than the V-Strom and it reminded me of my first bike, the 1982 Honda Silverwing. In those days, the Silverwing was like a smaller Gold Wing. Even though it defied everything that other 18 year old riders wanted, it suited me fine. It reliably took me on many adventures and it was a sad day when I sold it. I always wanted something similar to take it’s place, but Honda never offered anything… until now. It was as if the Silverwing of old had evolved somewhere in secret into a new machine the likes I’d never seen.

The NC700X has a new design for a motorcycle motor. It’s a parallel twin that lays nearly flat to keep the weight low and centered as well as allowing for a storage compartment where the fuel tank usually is. The real fuel tank is under the seat. On my test ride, I realized that this motor didn’t run like other motors. All of the power is in the low RPM range with a red line at 6500 rpm’s. My first measured fuel mileage was 70mpg! It handles incredibly well, especially at slow speeds. I am really happy with the bike.

I researched the bike for a few days before buying it. I had reservations after reading so much bad press. The thing was, the complaints were things that I don’t care about anyhow! They said –

  • “It’s slow.” It goes over 100mph and it’s speed ratings to that point are comparable with a new V-8 Mustang. Fast enough for me.
  • “It’s like a scooter.” Looks and rides like a motorcycle to me.
  • “It’s not really an adventure bike.” Neither is the V-Strom or many others until you customize them. I don’t go on trails with it anyhow.
  • “The V-Strom is better.” Kind of. It’s faster, a little more comfortable, and a few other niceties. It’s also not better in the fit and finish department, it’s more expensive, and it’s not a Honda.

I could go on with these, but only a test ride will tell if you’re trying to decide which one works for you. They both have more good than bad points and it really comes down to your personal preferences. I’ve got a good feeling that the Honda is going to outlast the V-Strom, but I’ve got nothing to prove that. I guess the best way to find out is to ride them far enough to find out.