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BikerJC 06-13-2006 03:50 AM

Re: Ex500r or Gs500f ?
Good god don't buy a GS. The EX isn't very good, but its a damn sight better than the Suzuki offering.

mikenomad 06-13-2006 04:18 AM

Re: Get Off to a Good Start: Training
If you've never been on a bike, the best way to start is to take the Motorcycle Safety Foundation Beginning Rider Course. This course is offered by junior colleges and municipal recreation departments. It's a two-day weekend course that includes a day of classroom instruction and a day on a closed course learning from scratch how to ride a motorcycle. And best of all, they provide the bike (usually a 125cc or 250cc model). If you successfully complete the course, many states will waive the riding portion of the test for your motorcycle license endorsement. This is the best way to get started with confidence. Then you can go shopping for your first bike.

egb 06-13-2006 04:25 AM

Re: Ex500r or Gs500f ?
Motorcycle Consumer News (are we allowed to say that?) did a comparo a couple of years back on the two, and I think that neither model has been significantly updated.


It's under "Model Comparision, Part 1/2, July 2004".

Spoiler: Kaw won by a mile. But you're right about the looks.

Good luck!


seruzawa 06-13-2006 04:31 AM

Re: Ex500r or Gs500f ?
A friend of mine bought a GS500F as a first bike and loved it. Went up to an SV1000S after a year, though.

bbtowns 06-13-2006 04:31 AM

Re: Ex500r or Gs500f ?
Both of these are good bikes. I haven't ridden the newest iteration of the GS500, but I recall the ninja having more motor. Really you should be able to live with both bikes for quite a while, but neither of them are likely to high side you if you're careless.

Take the safety class, buy the bike that appeals to you. Either one should be relatively maintenance free, check insurance rates, you may find the Suzuki cheaper to insure. Buy the one that stirs some passion in ya.

SaturnV 06-13-2006 04:35 AM

Re: Ex500r or Gs500f ?
There's a suggestion above that you take the MSF before purchasing any bike, which I strongly second. The MSF is a great way to get a little seat time and some good information.

After taking the MSF, I'd look at which bike fits your budget better - remember that things like (good) gear can be a little pricy (but worth it). If you're looking at the GS500 series, you might consider the unfaired GS500 as an option - easier maintenance access and cheaper when it gets tipped over in a parking lot/garage/whatever (seems to happen alot - I managed to tip my first bike over in my driveway on the day I got it).

If you're absolutely set on a 500cc faired bike, I'd suggest the EX500. It's been around forever, seems reliable and the few reviews I've seen that have both bikes seem to prefer the EX500... I personally have an EX250 (I also had one as my first bike, sold it a few years later and immediately regretted it - I ended up acquiring another one...), which has been an excellent bike and I'd certainly suggest that you consider that as well - it's held up as one of the premier 'beginner bikes' in a lot of places, and although many folks will tell you you're going to 'out-grow' it, I've found that the more I ride, the more I appreciate still having the Ninjette around...


MPA 06-13-2006 04:59 AM

Re: Ex500r or Gs500f ?
I was considering a GS500E (the naked one) before I bought my EX. GS's are way cheaper, but the EX has a way better motor.

It's not perfect, but it's a good bike. check out and for real worl info on both.

The EX board has 2 EX vs GS comparo articles in their knowledge base

acecycleins 06-13-2006 04:59 AM

Re: Ex500r or Gs500f ?
Spend $1500 (or less) and buy an old CB750. Doesn't matter what year. Ride for 6mos putting at least 3000 miles on it. then decide if you like riding enough to invest more. And take the MSF course. You'll be glad you did.

Akuma007 06-13-2006 05:09 AM

Re: Ex500r or Gs500f ?
Kawasaki by a mile.

Then again, I am a bit of a Kawasaki homer.

pattonme 06-13-2006 05:51 AM

Re: Ex500r or Gs500f ?
a CB750 is NOT appropriate. It's too damn heavy and genrally suffers from iffy brakes. It was my first bike and I rode 25K miles that first year so I've been there and done that. I got a pair of GS500e's later (road and race) and the grin factor was HUGE!

Personally I like air-cooled motors - they are so simple. the EX has more power for sure (like 10HP) but the GS is a blast. Find a nice late 90's example and they'll be rather cheap.

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