2000 Valuebike Shootout

Who let the MO out?

Page 3

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Brian Lindquist - Guest Tester

I ranked the Suzuki first. It's a clean-looking bike bike with solid lines and color. The ride is impressive: great power and acceleration, smooth shifting and solid braking -- everything you would expect in a good sportbike. I also found the rider's position to be very comfortable, even being a tall rider.

I liked the Honda a lot, and ranked it a close second, but the feel of it and rider position was not up to the par of the Suzuki. It is a fine-looking bike though, and would satisfy most entry-level sporting riders.

The Yamaha was on a level of the Suzuki for style points but for me a cruiser just does not compare to a sport bike. Nice handling, decent power, I found it uncomfortable for a pseudo road hog. Fun to ride but, well, it's a cruiser.

The Harley was cool-looking but felt pretty clunky. Good torque in typical Harley fashion but not my favorite out of the two-bike cruiser showdown. I've got nothing against Harleys -- never have -- but they just don't do much for me, especially in a price-conscious comparison.

The Kawasaki was kinda clumsey on the street. Might have been more fun on a desert or woodsy trail. Clunky shifting, it also seemed under-powered and over geared.

The Buell was too small and too finicky shifting and not much fun to ride. It did corner well due to its low center of gravity, but wasn't much of what you would expect from Buell. If you're a newbie rider that's intimidated by big, powerful bikes, this is probably the scoot for you.

From left to right: Roland Sands, Brian Lindquist, Brett Ratner, Carl Pedersen, Philip Strauss, Brent Plummer.
Buell Blast Harley-Davidson Sportster 883
Honda Nighthawk Kawasaki KLR650
Suzuki SV650 Yamaha V Star 650 Custom

How we voted

All bikes were placed on the dyno within one hour of the others so as to ensure as unbiased numbers as possible. A specal thanks to our friends at Dynojet for the excellent Model 250 dyno.

  Brent Plummer Brent Avis Brett Ratner Roland Sands Carl Pedersen Brian Lindquist Totals
Suzuki SV650 3rd 1st 2nd 1st 1st 1st 37
Harley 2nd 2nd 1st 4th 3rd 4th 27
Yamaha 1st 4th 4th 5th 2nd 3rd 24
Honda 4th 3rd 3rd 3rd 5th 2nd 22
Kawasaki 5th 5th 5th 2nd 4th 5th 16
Buell Blast 6th 6th 6th 6th 6th 6th 36

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