Anybody got/had a BMW F650 or G650?

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  • Anybody got/had a BMW F650 or G650?
  • PeterPoddy
    Member

    I’m finding my maxi scooter a bit boring. It’s comfy and practical but duuuuuuuuuuul
    I use it for commuting 95% of the time but my commute is changing to mostly motorway and a bit more poke would be nice, whilst still keeping the 70mpg+ the Piaggio gets.
    Don’t bother telling me to get a Jap bike because I don’t want one, and on the face of it the BMWs look spot on. I might be able to stretch to the 800cc twin ‘650’ but I’ll be buying used and the G650 looks closer to what I want – Light, slim, pokey in traffic and a high riding position combined with frugality and hopefully a bit of fun.

    So has anybody had one, either the old F650 or the new G650, or the twin?

    What are they like for a 25 mile commute? Reliabe? Fun? Practical?

    Cheers 🙂

    Kato
    Member

    I used to have one of the old Rotax engined 650 singles. Awesomely reliable it was. Made a good commuting bike

    lank45
    Member

    I have the bigger brother of the F650GS, the F800GS, but ultimately the same engine. I commute on mine everyday on open roads and through heavy traffic. It’s a great all rounder, easy through traffic and if you can get one with spot lights fitted you become very easy to spot.

    Only thing that you have to get used to is the snatchy throttle but after a while you learn how to live with it and get around it. Also, be careful of the inline twin engines as I’m on my second, they can have issues with the counter balance bearing failing and sticking to the pistons. If it goes like mine it’s about £3,800 to fix.

    lank45
    Member

    Also, the seat is hard as hell! It is not like riding a maxi scooter, the thing is a narrow knife blade, more akin to a bike saddle!

    PeterPoddy
    Member

    be careful of the inline twin engines

    I’m most likely going to get the single TBH

    fourbanger
    Member

    lank45 – Member
    I have the bigger brother of the F650GS, the F800GS, but ultimately the same engine.

    Eh!? Ones a single, the other a parallel twin. 800 replaced the 650.

    PeterPoddy , they’re nearly 200 kg curb weight. Not sure I’d call it light. Dull as ditchwater and very flat engine in my opinion. Only thing it’s got going for it is it’s cheap.

    Xt660z for my money.

    fourbanger
    Member

    Thought the 800 was a much better bike in every respect .

    lank45
    Member

    I was on about the newer F650GS, which is a twin with an 800 engine and a confusing name. This one:

    PeterPoddy
    Member

    Thought the 800 was a much better bike in every respect .

    It might be. But I can’t afford one, and I don’t need the extra horsepower as we have a Ducati in the garage for that sort of thing. I need a cheap to run commuter that’s not boring. Horsepower does not necessarily equal fun… 🙂
    I know what I want, I just want to hear from people that have/had one, not suggestions on some other bike, OK?

    I was on about the newer F650GS, which is a twin with an 800 engine and a confusing name. This one:

    I know EXACTLY what you mean, which you’ll see if you read my OP –
    I might be able to stretch to the 800cc twin ‘650’ but I’ll be buying used and the G650 looks closer to what I want

    I’m talking about the G[/u]650 single, the newer version of the original F650, this one:

    The TWIN cylinder “F650” is now the F700, and the F650 single has been re-introduced as the G650

    So singles are prefixed G, parallel twins F and flat twins R, for the enduro range at least

    Confused yet? 😉

    And I want a 650. (maybe one of the earlier twins as the prices are coming down) not an 800

    PeterPoddy
    Member

    I think the spec of the G650GS is spot on. Just enough power for a short motorway blast in heavy traffic, 70mpg, cheap to service, a bit of wind protection, high riding position, most of them have ABS and heated grips (ABS is an absolute must) and they look quite funky too.

    I have an old F650 single that the current G650 is an update of. **** thing you can have it for £600 spent most of today swearing at it…**** brake binding piece of shite… Having said that it cost me 900 quid four years ago and its done 20k with me pushing 60 in total. Commute on it every day and never clean it. Good fun up to 70 but its not great at motorway speeds. G may be better book a test ride on a new one. I reckon the F twin would be better for motorway work….. Have you seen the Huskervana Terra same as the G but a few more bhp.

    Premier Icon geoffj
    Subscriber

    I know what I want, I just want to hear from people that have/had one, not suggestions on some other bike, OK?

    You new here ? 😡

    PeterPoddy
    Member

    AA, sounds like you’ve done well to be fair! 🙂
    Yeah, I’ll see if I can get a 650 twin for my budget but probably not. And I’m not sure if they’ll be as much fun as a puncy single anyway. They’re a chunk heavier and bigger, see? The most fun bike I’ve ever had was tiny and light. And that’s what I’m attracted to. I can live with the motorway bit, and at the time I’ll be using it it’ll be heavy traffic anyway, so point and squirt and nice’n’slim should be fine. 🙂
    Budget is around £4000 which gets low mile G650

    Any Huskies for that price. Check out F650.co.uk for hot starting issues. I presume its been cured now.

    I think I might be very tempted to get a bmw 650 sertao in the new year they just seem like a good go anywhere do anything bike for the money. even though the forks look a bit spindly and they might be a little bit gutless.

    PeterPoddy
    Member

    I don’t want a Husky. That would be so far down off the bottom of the list it’s untrue. Or a Kawasai Versys cos they’re pig ugly and look and feel cheap

    konabunny
    Member

    This thread is relevant to my interests…is the F650 CS Scarver too ugly to be considered?

    allthegear
    Member

    I’m also looking for a g650gs in the new year…

    Rachel

    I don’t want a Husky. That would be so far down off the bottom of the list it’s untrue. Or a Kawasai Versys cos they’re pig ugly and look and feel cheap

    the husky is a G650 with different badges and more power. They also could well be going cheap as its been discontinued.

    PeterPoddy
    Member

    They also could well be going cheap as its been discontinued.

    A rare bike that’s no longer made. That’s EXACTLY why I don’t want one to stick around 12,000 miles a year onto. Exactly….

    PeterPoddy
    Member

    This thread is relevant to my interests…is the F650 CS Scarver too ugly to be considered?

    It has it’s merits, mainly belt drive, but I can afford newer than those.

    konabunny
    Member

    I can’t and I was trying to hijack your thread 😀

    Premier Icon paulx
    Subscriber

    Everything you need to know can be found here ….

    http://www.ukgser.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?373-F650GS-Dakar-and-G650GS-Sertao-singles

    I had the F650GS Dakar a few years back – great bike and surprisingly good off road too. 60 – 70 mpg irc and nothing every went wrong with it.

    deviant
    Member

    fourbanger – Member

    Xt660z for my money.

    This.

    That Yamaha XT engine is genuinely unbreakable and any old mechanic will know their way around it, underpowered at 45-50 bhp but makes good torque from no revs and holds onto it through the (limited) rev range….it is a single after all.

    Brand new from loads of dealerships from £5,200 upwards….pick the model you want, they do a version with 17 inch road wheels and supermoto styling, they do a version with a larger front wheel (19 inch) and knobbly tyres for more trail work….

    ….and they do an out and out trans world tourer with a larger rear wheel and much larger front (21 inch i think?), it also has a larger fuel tank, longer travel suspension and the exhausts have been moved out of harms way and put under the pillion, great official set of aluminium luggage available too….its called the Tenere and also comes in 1200cc flavour but the 660cc single is the one to go for.

    The BMW bikes arent bad, a colleague toured a lot of europe on one of the single cylinder versions but their reliability still lags behind the big four Japanese brands.
    It depends what you want, BMW have been as much of a fashion accessory as anything since the Ewan and Charlie ‘long way round’ series but if you want a genuinely hassle free commuter buy the Yamaha.

    The Yamaha 660Tenere is significantly heavier afaik. Doubt the engine is any simpler or more bomb proof than the Rotax derived one in the G650. Despite all the talk of Euan McBoorman the Ten is more of the RTW wannabe bike than the G.

    PeterPoddy
    Member

    Xt660z for my money.

    From my OP:

    Don’t bother telling me to get a Jap bike because I don’t want one,

    Has anybody actually read the thread title either?

    It’s NOT “Tell me what bike to buy” because I don’t need that advice thanks.

    It’s “Anybody got/had a BMW F650 or G650?” because I wanted to know what people who had one thought of them, their experiences, good or bad.
    Simples 🙂

    PeterPoddy
    Member

    It depends what you want

    70mpg +
    Not many bikes can actually do that. G650GSs can.

    transmute
    Member

    Rachel, if you have the funds then I’d start looking now! December is a fine time to be looking for bikes, far better than spring when everybody’s looking for one. Prices are always lower too!
    Even if you don’t want to ride it yet you can spend the time getting it serviced/sorted/fettled ready for the warmer weather while you sit on it making brrrrm brrrrm noises! 😆

    And the OP, I know you don’t want to hear this but if your commute is changing to motorway miles consider something with a fairing (at least a top half) as naked bikes at that speed become tiresome quite quickly (leading to locked shoulder muscles if you’re unlucky! Not much fun) I suspect the difference from the well protected scooter will be noticeable.

    PeterPoddy
    Member

    I’ve got something with a fairing. A Piaggio X10. Its probably the most ideal bike possible for the commute in question. I know all about that thanks. But like I said, I find it boring. I’ll probably get through the winter on it and then chop it in. I’m, oddly for STW, quite capable of deciding what’s best for me. I just want to know what owners of said bike think of them, as I’ve already said. I don’t need advice on what you think is best thanks. I did 30,000 miles on an unfaired Speed Triple just fine, for instance, including one day of 820 miles. I know about touring on naked bikes. And we’ve got something else faired in the garage too, a Ducati ST3s, should I need it.
    Metalhearts link above was a very good read actually. It confirmed what I thought. I’ll go and test ride one at some stage I think. 🙂

    transmute
    Member

    Yeah but if you wanted a sensible answer you’d have googled rather than asked us lot! 😉
    Could you afford to run both? Scoot on crappy days and have the Beemer for the rest! Keeps the salt off the naked BMW next winter and drops the mileage on both if you want to sell them on at a later date.
    Crappy weather commute on fun bike equals fairly grim journey anyway so might as well plod in on the scooter but the good day + the fun bike makes the fun bike seem even better! 🙂
    Can you get a bigger screen for the Beemer? Just something to take some of the blast away maybe?

    PeterPoddy
    Member

    No. I can’t afford or have space for three bikes. It would be daft to run two bikes for the same thing anyway as the Duke is the summer bike and is technically my wife’s bike. We both use it, we tour on it etc. The scooter is technically mine. Although we both use it but almost solely for commuting. We don’t need another bike for touring or another for commuting. I’d have to sell the X10 to find the new bike.

    I’d see about a bigger screen yes, but like I already said the motorway part will be in heavy traffic most of the time so speeds will be lower and I don’t mind sitting at 70 anyway. The BMW will have more in reserve than the X10 at that speed.
    I’ve been commuting by bike since 1997. I know all about weather. £500 worth of Dianese goretex sorts that. 🙂
    Dunno. I’ll see.

    Premier Icon metalheart
    Subscriber

    Metalhearts link above was a very good read actually.

    I’ve found that site useful in the past, it’s a good summary. Usually tells you what you actually need to know!

    And, as I read your OP, I didn’t recommend the bike I have either (it’s a Suzuki….) :mrgreen:

    transmute
    Member

    Shame 🙁 New STW shed thread? 😉
    The Beemer’s going to be fine for the summer, see how it goes on the m’way commute and have a think in the autumn, being a Bmw you’d not lose much in a year anyway. And there’s not much more fun than hooning around on a big single (plus they tickle your nethers at certain speeds!) get a naughty pipe for it and look for tunnels/ bridges/gorges etc! 🙂
    And cheer up, your going to get a new bike, whatever it is that’s supposed to be fun! 😉

    transmute
    Member

    Also if you’re in traffic then the skinny and taller Beemer’s going to be miles better than the Scoot for filtering. I wish I could’ve afforded gore-tex when I was a courier! 🙂 Still, it wouldn’t have stopped the snowball that fell out of my visor once while stopped at a traffic light on a blizzardy day! 😆

    So back on task, an old Funduro, like mine would be fine for what you want. Mine has a tooth less on the front sproket gets a bit buzzy at 70 and is more comfortable at 65 on motorways. I reckon the new G650 would be better. Screen on the funduro is fine and its bodywork adds protection for the legs. Compared to a naked its much better. I have commutted year round for almost three years with minimal servicing and almost never cleaning it. The brakes are weak and prone to binding if not regularly cleaned and the head bearings dont last long as the rad melts the grease, dont know if the newer version has fixed this. I do know the newer G had hot starting issues when it came out. I wouldnt bother with a sertao unless you are going to go off road. I use road tyres on mine rather than the dual purpose Torances or whatever as they give a smoother ride. No idea what the fuel consumption is, it does about 160miles to reserve but I dont knowwhat size the tank is! The newer fuel injected G is supposed to be much better.

    Aus
    Member

    I had the 650GS and also the bigger brother 800. The 650 was entirely competent, reliable, practical etc etc … but I found it just a bit dull. Does most things fine, esp shortish commute, fine, but I found any ‘cruising’ type ride, long straight A road/motorway or extended ride tiresome on it re comfort, vibration and a sense that the engine was always straining a wee bit. But I suspect I just find a slightly racier position more engaging, so may well be me more than the bike.

    But was that a G650gs and F650gs or a F650 funduro?!?!

    PeterPoddy
    Member

    Also if you’re in traffic then the skinny and taller Beemer’s going to be miles better than the Scoot for filtering

    See that’s it. The big Piaggio is fantastically comfy, superbly equipped (ABS, traction control, switchable fuel maps, Bluetooth, USB port, even the handlebar controls light up FFS!) one of the best 2 up bikes I’ve ever ridden, economical, massively practical…… But it’s not as good in traffic as the GT200 I had before it because it’s big and wide and a bit slack in the head angle department. It’s got a lovely quiet, smooth engine and plenty of power but it’s got no character.

    Mrs PP used to have a DT125 which was a hoot, and I had a Monster 696 which made me laugh out loud. What both bikes had in common (apart from being red) was that they were small and light and not particularly powerful…. So you could thrash the brains out of them without ever getting into trouble and throw them around like a BMX.

    So that’s where the BMW idea came from. 70mpg and cheap to run for the commute but in theory should have a lovely low down punch off the mark from a big single engine for a bit of fun whilst being higher and slimmer for filtering and 20kg+ lighter than the X10 with nice wide bars to throw it around a bit more.
    Add in that most of them come with ABS (I’ll never buy another bike without it) and heated grips and will take a top box easily if they don’t have one and I think it’s about right. After all, people tour the world on these things, so a busy M3 should be a doddle. 🙂

    PeterPoddy
    Member

    AA, what tyres do you use exactly, how long do they last and how much do they cost?

    I’ve got 2 days off now but I’ve just had surgery on my wrist or I’d go and test ride on.

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