2005 Kawasaki Ninja® 500R
ReliableBy (I am an Owner) on Jun 30, 2014
From GSXR to Ninja, I did not have regrets. This is my first 500 motorcycle and with an almost 5-year hiatus from riding, I can say this is a great bike to start over. It can keep up with R1 650 and CBR 650 and is stable during high-speed. Other than the weird lower fairing that looks incomplete, ... this Ninja looks sweet. It has that classy look (dual exhaust) yet sporty. It doesn't look like every other sportsbike on the street where the "passenger seat" is elevated from the drivers. I am the third owner of my motorcycle and I've never had any problem with it. It's very reliable.
Nice Little RocketBy (I am an Owner) on Jan 07, 2010
I have been riding my 2005 Ninja 500r for two seasons now. Being a new rider I wanted a bike I could handle and learn on. A few of my friends had purchased 600R's and even 750R's as their first bikes. They all ended up crashing. I didnt want this to happen to me. So despite my desire for a 600r I ... bought the smaller brother. I must admit Im glad I did. This bike has gotten me into trouble more then a few times. Lucky for me it is very forgiving. It has saved my arse a number of times when I bit off more then I could chew. Its light and easy to handle. Stops quick and predictably. The power is there once you learn where the sweet spots are and how to drive it. Dont kid yourself though...this bike is fast. 0-60 in about 4 seconds. Pulls strong up to about 100MPH before winding out to its 130 max. Even on the 500r you end up driving 20-30 over everywhere without really noticing or intending to speed. The engine is nice and smooth at low rpm's with a killer punch at the top end. This is a great get around town machine and handles freeway traffic quite well. The twin engine does vibrate and you will notice it after about an hour of driving. My hands will fall asleep from time to time on long rides. Passendgers will complain about vibration to the pegs. The bike can pull two quite well but is not a cruiser and solo rides are really what this bike is ment for. The riding position is still very sporty and uncomfortable after more then a few hours of riding. I have just had the first valve adjustment done and have had few problems. This bike eats batteries and you should check the fluid level monthly. This being its first major service I also had to replace the rear tire, rear brake pads and rotor. I dont think the previous owner understood your suppose to use the front brake too. Still lots of life after 4 years. Also developed a coolant leak from the spark plug drain hole. A small $3 o ring was the culprit. Also lost a kickstand bolt...likely due to vibration. That is it for service other then oils changes, filters etc.
Now that Ive been riding for a couple of years I am looking at upgrading. If this bike were just a little more comfortable and a bit less buzzy I would never part with it. Im just looking for a little more comfort for those longer rides. Otherwise....you cant go wrong with a Ninja 500r. Its been a blast to drive and turned me into a motorcycle nut.