BDR announces its seventh route, the Nevada Backcountry Discovery Route (NVBDR), produced in partnership with the American Honda Motor Co., Inc. and TravelNevada, Nevada Division of Tourism.
The NVBDR release includes free GPS tracks and route travel information on the BDR website, a waterproof map from Butler Motorcycle Maps, and expedition documentary DVD produced by ColorBlind, and BDR Documentary Films.
The NVBDR is a scenic ride across Nevada, beginning in Oatman, AZ, and finishing in Jarbidge, NV. Created for dual-sport and adventure motorcyclists, this 900-mile south-to-north route primarily uses dirt roads to lead riders through Nevada’s expansive deserts, open sagebrush valleys, and seemingly endless mountain ranges.
In rural Nevada, you’ll experience historic saloons and relics from it’s rich mining history. The state’s maverick spirit remains, and you’ll see ghost towns, artifacts, desert sculptures, murals, the world’s largest car forest, jackrabbits, antelope and even wild mustangs.
Most importantly, the film reveals miles of meandering two-track roads that are just perfect for spending time on an adventure motorcycle.
Check it out here!
Kawasaki KLR 650 – A Fan favorite!
A small dual-sport bike like a 200 or 250cc would will make an all around great learning bike. They are light, nimble and easy to ride, as well as, the smaller displacement bikes are great for riding single track trails and/or rough terrain where a light nimble bike is key. Read more here about some great adventure bikes to learn on. But it appears most ADV riders are looking for an “Adventure” bike that is a little bigger than a 200cc and have plans for more dual purpose exploration in mind, not simply a bike to learn to ride on, but a bike tthat can handle the asphalt and the dirt roads well, a adv bike they can grow into and enjoy for many years to come.
After watching Long Way Down or being slapped by big manufacturers marketing departments, many people conjure up and an image of a big adventure bike, like a BMW GS1200 Adventure motorcycle with hard panniers and a bunch of luggage strapped to it, traversing the jungle or world as an image of what they want in their mind. Now these are incredible machines that have a place, but budget and practicality usually kick in and some realize a 600 pound beast is not the best all around bike, nor the cheapest for them. Again, the big adventure bikes have their place, don’t get me wrong, they are not always the best bet for the masses, especially when first getting into adventure riding and looking for entry level adventure bike.
Riding a 250cc on and extended long tarmac stretch is not ideal and riders will quickly require a little more power and getting your feet wet with a big 600 pound 1200cc expensive bike is not always practical either. But don’t worry there are many bikes right in that sweet spot, that will let you ride trails, dirt roads and also cruise some asphalt comfortably. So that leaves us with the masses, Mid-sized Adventure Bikes and Dual-Sport motorcycles that are relatively affordable and are also are great bikes to learn how to adventure ride and travel on. So that’s what we are looking for in this Entry Level Adventure Motorcycle post, a versatile all-around entry level adventure bike, something in between the light 250 and the heavy 1200 and also reasonably priced.
Here is a list of bikes we feel are great choices for the entry level beginner adventure rider, who have been bitten by the adventure motorcycle bug. So in short, we are leaving our 250cc and 1200cc class adventure bikes out of this post. We will evaluate those classes of ADV bikes down the road.
The best ADV or dual sport bike for you may be different than for another person, depending on your size, type of riding you want to do, as well as price, comfort and other personal variable. It is best to throw a leg over one you think fits your needs and test ride it and see what feels right for you.
Prices stated are MSRP “starting at” price for a new bike.
So without further ado:
Honda CB500x Adventure – Starting at $6299
The CB500x Adventure is new but he CB500 has been around since the 70’s, a 500 is a good size bike, the seat height is a good for new riders.
Here are specs for CB500X Adventure.
Suzuki DR-Z400S – Starting at $6599
Suzuki DRZ 400
Another great Suzuki, a little lighter and more dirt oriented then the DR650, it is a little taller, so higher center of gravity, but a great bike that is light and fun and easy to ride.
Here are specs for DR400.
Kawasaki KLR 650 – Starting at $6149
The KLR has one of the biggest fan-followings and there is a reason why, it is an overall great bike. it doesn’t do any one thing spectacular, but what is does do – it is a lot of everything very very well. It is a a bit of a tank and an overall great bike in general and perfect for new adventure riders.
Here are specs for KLR650.
Honda NC700X – Starting at $7499
This bike is more geared toward the asphalt and it is a Honda so you know it will be a great reliable scoot. It is simple to ride – it comes as an automatic or Honda calls it DCT – (dual clutch transmission) It is a great all around motorcycle and you will be happy to throw a leg over this Honda.
Here are specs for NC700X.
BMW G650GS or BMW Sertão – Starting at $7895
We really couldn’t discuss Adventure bikes without having BMW in the mix, these are both great beginner bikes, they have a low center of gravity and just ride very smooth and make riding seam so comfortable. Although you do pay a little extra for the BMW bragging rights. Here are specs for BMW 650.
Suzuki V-Strom 650 XT – Starting at $10399
Suzuki V-Strom 650
Suzuki really makes a great bikes for a great prices and their bikes are great mechanically as well. The V-strom is no different – it is geared more toward asphalt and gravel roads, compared to it’s DR650 cousin, this bike also has low seat height and ride really really nice. Here are specs for V-Strom 650.
Kawasaki Versys 650 – Starting at $7,999
Kawasaki Versys 650
This Kawasaki is often overlooked and not given enough credit, it is an all around great entry level bike and I highly recommend it, take one for a test ride and you will realize a great bike. Easy to ride and lot of band for the buck.
Here are specs for Versys 650.
Honda XR650L – Starting at $6690
This Honda XR650 has not changed in close to 20 years, but it is a simple but good motorcycle, it will do well in the dirt on gravel roads and even some dirt riding. It is more dirt oriented than the Suzuki DR650. Simply great entry level Adventure/ dual sport motorcycle, especially for taller riders.
Here are specs for XR650L
Suzuki DR650SE – Starting at $6499
This is one of my favorite motorcycles, it is reliable, good power, rides well, does great on dual sport rides and also can cruise down the road at a good speed. If you are doing more asphalt put a windscreen on it, it doing more dirt put some knobbies on it. This bike has a relatively low seat height and is easy to ride and a great affordable place to start adventure riding.
Here are specs for DR650.
Well there you have it a good list of 9 entry level dual-sport / adventure bikes for the newer dual-sport adventure rider to consider. I recommend hitting your local dealer and throwing a leg over some of these bikes and see for yourself what feels most comfortable for your unique height, weight, comfort and posture. And remember it is very important to be comfortable on your new bike. Here is few thing you can do to get the optimal fit.
- Adjust your handlebars. You can get bar risers that not only move the bars up so better for when you are standing on your footpegs, but also they move bars forward for better comfort as well.
- Possibly lower your bike dropping the center of gravity (which makes riding easier) keeps smaller riders comfortable.
- Comfortable seat, many rider swap out standard seat for something a little more comfy.
Remember, new riders, please ride within your comfort level when you are getting used to your new adventure or dual sport motorcycle, don’t take chances, be safe and, of course, have fun!!!
Michelin announced the release of their new Anakee Wild radial motorcycle tires. They are radial tires meant for 50/50 use (on-road/off-road) on adventure and big dual sport motorcycles.
The all-new compounds and innovative tread pattern are inspired by Michelin’s Desert Race tires. Offset blocks and curved tread grooves provide off-road performance improvements, especially in soft and challenging conditions. The front/rear casing design provides improved on-road stability as well.
MICHELIN Anakee Wild offers exceptional durability and road/off-road resistance thanks to radial technology and optimized tire thread depth. Tried and tested in extreme road conditions!
Stability and comfort on the road thanks to radial technology available for the first time on a knobby tire. Excellent longevity and resistance against heating and aggression thanks to its optimized tread pattern’s depth and new tread compound
The Anakee Wild tires will be available from Michelin dealers starting on 1 March 2016 and are available in sizes below:
Available 50/50 Adv Tire sizes for Anakee Wild:
Adventure bikes have a low cost alternative thanks to China and the California Scooter Company (CSC). CSC’s RX3 is a 250cc adventure motorcycle that looks similar to ADV bikes that cost 3 times the amount! But it is also 3 times less the engine displacement as well and I’d have to assume the quality would be a little cheaper, but I do not know and just making some assumptions. The RX3 is water cooled, Delphi fuel injection (which is US based company – FYI), adjustable suspension, hard luggage/panniers, skid plate, crash bars and much more. Now since is a 250 it only goes atop speed of 84mph, to some that may be a problem to others it may be fine. Remember though what it lacks in speed it makes up for with it light weight. Check out their site there have already been some people taking these on some decent adventures, so don’t disregard this bike so fast. The RX3 comes standard with a lot of accessories or farkles already, for example– crash bars, adjustable suspension, panniers and top case, dual sport tires, engine guards, and even a skid plate. As well as, they offer and number of add-ons and upgrades you can add to the bike, like a centerstand, handguards to name a few. So take a look!
Check out some more specs on their website.
And check our ADV motorcycle specs sheet here too.
So Honda has released their new 4 stroke, 1000cc adventure motorcycle, the Africa Twin CRF1000L and let me tell you the specs and the pics just look like a dream. I can’t wait to throw a leg over one.
Couple things that are immediately apparent, it appears to be a narrow bike, has high ground clearance, high handle bars and has a 21″ front wheel– a few great aspects for the dirt roads and trail riding, which is important if you actually take your “adventure” bike off the asphalt.
There are two versions going to be available, the Standard and the DCT (dual clutch transmission) versions. The Standard sports the regular transmission we all have come to know and use, but the DCT is a new type of automatic transmission, that changes the gears for you. Supposedly you can even use the manual paddle shifter with the DCT. Also note that this is a whole new way of automatic transmissions for motorcycles, it is pressured by hydraulic oil and it supposedly better than snowmobile type of CVT automatic transmissions. Ohh it is another $600 for DCT if you are interested, plus I think it comes with gold wheels. ; ) The front and rear suspension are adjustable for spring preload, compression, and rebound damping. The shock offers a hydraulic-preload knob accessible on the right side of the bike.
The Africa Twin comes standard with ABS and traction control or HSTC (Honda Selectable Torque Control) it has steering lock and also a steel frame which helps keeps this bike slimmer and more dirt oriented
Digital Metallic Silver Africa Twin – CRF1000L
There are two colors available in USA, the Dakar Rally (red and white), Digital Metallic Silver
See specs in Worldcrosser ADV Bike database and also here is a link to Honda’s page here.
This bike is extremely promising and just like many others out there I can’t wait to ride one!
But while we are all waiting to ride one- we can do a little VR (that’s virtual reality) with Honda’s Africa Twin VR mobile app- they have it for Apple’s iOS and Google’s Andriod.
Honda has released info on the 2016 CB500x Adventure bike, which starts at an affordable price and is a great entry level bike. Plus the matte brown color looks awesome. 471cc parallel-twin. You can get heated grips, panniers and some other accessories from Honda Powersports. And for you new adventure riders out there on the interweb – you can get automatic, that’s right automatic! Honda is getting focused on the Adventure motorcycle market with all their new offerings – from the Africa Twin to CB500X Adventure.
Check specs here