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Up to last year I was riding a Vstrom and really enjoyed it. However being a gentleman of a certain age and having recently moved to North Pennines the strom began to feel a little ponderous and somewhat top heavy especially when fuelled up. Wishing to retain the joy that is the Suzuki 650 V twin I bought a new SV650 and a superb bike it is too, however the riding position lacks the all day comfort of the V Strom. Enter into the thinking process the CB500X. Going to take a lengthy test ride but just wondered if anyone has trodden a similar path and if so how did you find it ? Most of all did you find the power reduction unacceptable or did the all round charm of the CB make it irrelevant ?

Thanks.
 

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Up to last year I was riding a Vstrom and really enjoyed it. However being a gentleman of a certain age and having recently moved to North Pennines the strom began to feel a little ponderous and somewhat top heavy especially when fuelled up. Wishing to retain the joy that is the Suzuki 650 V twin I bought a new SV650 and a superb bike it is too, however the riding position lacks the all day comfort of the V Strom. Enter into the thinking process the CB500X. Going to take a lengthy test ride but just wondered if anyone has trodden a similar path and if so how did you find it ? Most of all did you find the power reduction unacceptable or did the all round charm of the CB make it irrelevant ?

Thanks.
If you coming from 650 and want lighter, relible, comfortable machine then I would recommend NC750X / NC700X over 500X. Also test ride those if you can
 

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I think that NC700X a good alternative. I would check one of those out. Never rode one thus far and wondered about that bike.

I'm an older guy and like you have owned many other bikes. I have found the 5ooF model totally comfortable. Low seat height, no more stumbling around thinking the bike will fall over. Find the engine very smooth, the power band surprisingly peppy. I had concerns about power coming from liter bike background as you. It delivers great performance, way more then I expected, surprisingly so. Honda did a great job with this bike.

If you ride one you won't be disappointed, you will get off the bike with that WOW factor and your jaw dropped. That was me last June. It just blew me away in all respects. Didn't expect a 500 could get my attention. It's not the 450 or 550 Honda of old. This thing would drive circles around all of those bikes. Think the old 750 Honda and that's about what you will find you got when you grab this thing by the ears.
 

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[/quote]

If you coming from 650 and want lighter, relible, comfortable machine then I would recommend NC750X / NC700X over 500X. Also test ride those if you can
[/QUOTE]

if you're eyeing the cb500x get a test ride.

the NCs are actually much heavier than the SV650.
 

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the NCs are actually much heavier than the SV650.[/QUOTE]

In terms of weight Yes but not by feeling. NCs design of gas tank in the back under pillion seat makes them "feel" very light similar to 500s. I know because rode friend's NC for about 200 miles, on the way back from a road trip.
 

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I have CB500X and love the ride. EXCEPT when in precarious situations as I am 28 inch inseam and have added lowering kit and it is tall for me. Falt footed yes, but nothing to spare.

It is more top heavy than the NC700X that my friend has (not sure the weight difference in CB500X and NC700X, but apparently the gas tank arrangement makes it seem easier to stand up).

Plus, he gets 80 MPG regularly -- I get 70 ish mpg on the CB500X. r
 

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I have a Vstrom 650 and CB500X. The CB is pretty nimble compared to the Vstrom. I prefer it for the shorter around town and twisty roads. If I am doing any highway riding the Vstrom is better. Better acceleration and stability compared to the CB. The CB will do highways without problem but I find hitting a bump at 60 mph is not as stable as the Vstrom. Unless you plan alot of highway riding the CB is a solid choice and easier to move around. I also get 73 mpg.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
The Test Ride.

Just got back from a very enjoyable day riding my 2016 Suzuki SV650 on a 100 mile round trip to ride a Honda CB500X and also a NC750X Dct. Ant the winner is !!!!. Well it’s never quite that simple is it.

On the way there in lovely bright but slightly chilly weather I almost stopped and rang the dealer to cancel as I was enjoying the SV so much that I thought that I would be wasting his time. But on reflection decided to carry on, why not.

The dealer suggested that I tried the NC first (probably his biggest margin so hoping to make the most impression) Tried it for size and the first impression was whilst it is about the same height as the V-Strom statically in feels totally different. Whereas the Strom feels top heavy at a standstill, especially when fully fueled there is none of that sensation with the NC, indeed throughout the entire ride which included A roads, dual carriageway, motorway a heavy traffic not once was there any worries about stability when coming to a halt.

Moving off the rate of take off was very smooth and proportional to the throttle input. In short the Dct is a superb bit of equipment. The NC was comfortable and very roomy and handled accurately and lightly, the single disc was a lot better than the twin set up on the SV with both more bite and feel. Took the bike back after 50+ miles very impressed but also had the feeling that it sat somewhere between a gentlemen's club on wheels and white goods for the home.

Jumped on the CB expecting to be totally underwhelmed. Obviously physically smaller than the NC and a bit lower carrying it’s weight just a tad higher but far from concerningly so. Went to engage first and found the clutch to be a little bit of a stretch but easy to correct with aftermarket levers, otherwise I found the transmission to be faultless, praise indeed having just been using a Suzuki. Took the CB on exactly the same route, immediately I found the CB to be even more comfortable than both the SV and NC. The brakes were as good if not better than the NC. the handling was ! hang on a moment I can sum everything up guire easily, this thing was just GREAT FUN ! How refreshing to be able to thrash a bike without the fear of becoming “ big Billy’s bitch in “B” wing”. The power/torque deficit to the SV is not an issue as it is such a joy to flog this thing and sorry NC owners but it makes the NC feel “ponderous” in comparison.

Took the SV over the same route and excellent that it is due to the ergonomics and suitability to our current environment not to mention the realistic price, it will be the CB for me.

Geoff.
 

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Thanks for the write up, interesting to get your point of view as a "first big bike" many of us look to get bigger because that is bound to be better after all :)
 

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it will be the CB for me.

Geoff.
hey, geoff, thanx for an excellent appraisal of the 500. i'm in the same boat: somewhat eager to downsize from my 2015 650 vstrom.

four replacement scoots on my list: sv650, ninja z650, cb500f, and yzf-r3. i have yet to ride any of them, but am about ready to scrap the yamaha due to clip-ons....ugh.

anyways, great write-up, and you confirm the praise that i have read from other sources.
 

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I could have predicted this.... LOL...enjoy, from another happy CB fan.

I think if more people gave these bikes a ride, Honda would get behind on production.
 

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Geoff -


You won't regret the decision. I had a 2014 NC700X and now a 2016 CB500F. I very much prefer the CB over the NC for a number of reasons but mostly for the "normal" engine on the CB. I could never get used to funky power plant on the NC.
 

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Up to last year I was riding a Vstrom and really enjoyed it. However being a gentleman of a certain age and having recently moved to North Pennines the strom began to feel a little ponderous and somewhat top heavy especially when fuelled up. Wishing to retain the joy that is the Suzuki 650 V twin I bought a new SV650 and a superb bike it is too, however the riding position lacks the all day comfort of the V Strom. Enter into the thinking process the CB500X. Going to take a lengthy test ride but just wondered if anyone has trodden a similar path and if so how did you find it ? Most of all did you find the power reduction unacceptable or did the all round charm of the CB make it irrelevant ?

Thanks.
Having sold a Harley 1200 Sportster around 11 months ago I have been looking for something more...practical, comfortable, reliable, and more fun to actually ride long distances on. I tried both the 1000 and 650 V-Strom's and for me personally, they were both a bit top-heavy in slow moving traffic, although for obvious reasons good fun on a long winding road, and very Motorway capable. Then.....I saw about a million Youtube video's proclaiming the merits of the CB500X....so 3 weeks ago I travelled around 80 miles north from where I live, bought one without so much as a test ride........and it's been THE best fun I've ever had on a bike! Excellent commuter, great on a long run (first ride was the 80 mile return journey home), light, economic, great handling, and makes me smile from ear to ear.....could not be happier....
 

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Geoff -


You won't regret the decision. I had a 2014 NC700X and now a 2016 CB500F. I very much prefer the CB over the NC for a number of reasons but mostly for the "normal" engine on the CB. I could never get used to funky power plant on the NC.
Funny I just went to a dealer and test road a used NC700x with low miles. I purchased the CB500X.:laugh:
 

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Geoff: How are you getting on with the CB500X, a year and a half later?

I have a similar background to you, but wound up on a CBR500R. I'm thinking I maybe should've gotten the CB500X instead.

Now that I've got a few hundred miles on it, I realize it is not nearly as quick as my old '00 SV650 was. The SV was not much heavier, but made 40% more power. The Suzuki gearbox was a bit better, but Honda's is great too. The fit & finish on the Honda is a bit better. The SV made more power everywhere, and also didn't mind revving. Their 645cc 90° V-twin is not overrated; it's fantastic. The Honda 500 twin is also great and a lot more efficient. The Suzuki got low-mid 50s mpg fuel economy, where the Honda gets 65-75 mpg. It's a fair trade-off: economy for power.

The Honda engine is a lot more compact.

I also rode a DL650 V-Strom, and I owned a later model KLR650. I do miss the plush suspension on the adventure-style bike.

I'm 5'8" tall, with a 29" inseam. I can get my toes down on the standard DL650 or KLR650. One doesn't need to flat foot unless one is a beginner, IMO. The CB500X's seat height is lower.

A great combo would be an SV650 for the sporty stuff, and a CB500X for the rest.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
8,000 miles in and could not be more satisfied with the CB500X. I have never kept a bike longer than one year in my 50 years of motorcycling but having test ridden all sorts of bikes over the last month I can find nothing that I prefer over the "X". The more I ride it the more I love it. I have made a few mods to make it spot on for me (listed below) and if someone told me that I had to have another bike now in all honesty regardless of price or anything else I would buy another CB500X.

Heated grips, gear position indicator, grip puppies, fenda extenda, tank protector, Michelin PR4's with "Tyre seal installed", shaved seat, rack and Givi Blade top box, rear hugger, sidestand plate, center stand, Hawk accessory bar with spotlights, Daneli mini soundbomb, Givi XS319 tanklock bag, loobman oiler, Evotech radiator guard, Fuel Micro Mini minus baffle and a liberal coating of Acf50 oh and a detachable sheepskin seat pad, lovely.

Geoff.
 

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Noob here. First post. I'm 75 yo and just came from a V Strom 1000 I sold with 74,000 miles on it. Seems like it was getting heavier each year. So I downsized to the CB500X because of the seating position and light weight. I'm 5'10 with a 32 " inseam. Feels like my old KLR650 but with more power. I live in Colorado and spend winters in Arizona. I ride in Mexico a lot with a regular group I travel with there but think I'll use my Yam FJ09 down there as I have large Givi cases on it.



But I think I'm going to enjoy this little bike.
 
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