The DR650 is the best selling dual sport bike in New Zealand and is a huge seller in the USA and Australia.
The DR650 has been used in the military, in enduro competition, in movie sets and some even call it the swiss army knife of dirt bikes.
Australians even call it the ‘tractor’. Why does it have such a big reputation?
Well because they are virtually bulletproof, require low maintenance and have huge reliability, strength, power and good cruising speed.
They are also inexpensive and just keep running forever without any complaints.
They are also super versatile and can be used for the road (dual sport), adventure riding as well as hardcore enduro trails.
There are also plenty of parts for them and there is no real difference between the 1996 and the 2019 models which makes the DR650 amazingly good for parts, maintenance and reliability.
Additionally, they are approved in Australia and New Zealand for learner riders.
In this article I will be going through the bikes specs as well as lay out some tough parts and accessories to make the DR650 even better.
SPOT THE DIFFERENCE >>
Can’t see the difference? Because they are virtually the same bike! If you check the specs between the 2019 and 1996 models, the specs are identical.
As all DR650 models are virtually identical between 1996 to 2019, my recommended parts will fit older models.
The 2019 Suzuki DR650 retails at about $6600 USD new and that should include a 12 month unlimited mileage warranty.
Used, you can pick up a 2016 DR650 for about $5000 USD. I saw a 2009 DR650 for about $4000 USD on cycletrader.com.
This demonstrates how well they hold their value.
Top speed is about 100 MPH on factory settings and that’s with my head down and pushing it hard without a headwind.
You can comfortably cruise along at about 70 MPH with factory standard gearing on the DR650 which makes it good for freeway use if you are planning a road adventure.
The only color available for the 2019 DR650 is black. I don’t know why they didn’t offer white as well, but white is only available on the DR400.
The weight of a 2019 Suzuki DR650 is 366 Pounds. It weighs the same as all its previous models.
The seat height for the DR650 is 885 mm (34.8 in) with the optional lowering kit: 845 mm (33.2 in.)
|Engine||644cc, 4-stroke, air-cooled, single cylinder, SOHC|
|Bore x Stroke||100.0 mm x 82.0 mm (3.93 in x 3.23 in)|
|Fuel System||Mikuni BST40, single carburetor|
|Transmission||5-speed constant mesh|
|Final Drive||Chain, DID525V9, 110 links|
|Suspension Front||Telescopic, coil spring, oil damped|
|Suspension Rear||Link type, coil spring, oil damped|
|Brakes Front||Disc brake, single floating rotor|
|Brakes Rear||Disc brake, single rotor|
|Tires Front||90/90-21 M/C 54S, tube type|
|Tires Rear||120/90-17 M/C 64S, tube type|
|Fuel Tank Capacity||13.0 L (3.4 US gal.), 12.0 L (3.2 US gal.) CA model|
|Ignition||Electronic ignition (CDI)|
|Spark Plug||NGK DR8EA or DENSO X24ESR-U|
|Headlight||12V 60/55W (H4)|
|Tail Light||12V 21/5W|
|Overall Length||2255 mm (88.8 in.)|
|Overall Width||865 mm (34.1 in.)|
|Overall Height||1195 mm (47.0 in.)|
|Wheelbase||1490 mm (58.7 in.)|
|Ground Clearance||265 mm (10.4 in.)|
The stock handlebars are terrible for long distance riding. They are just too uncomfortable, especially when standing up on the pegs.
Take a look at the Tusk High Bend Bar with universal clamps to mount to the DR650. They have a higher bend that makes riding way more comfortable for long distance adventure rides.
The factory seat that comes with the Suzuki DR650 does the job but gets uncomfortable after a few hours of riding in the saddle.
The problem with it is that it is too narrow and not soft enough for long adventure rides.
Take a look at the Seat Concepts Complete Seat for the DR650.
It is super high quality, nice and wide and probably the softest, most comfortable seat out there. It has hundreds of 5 star reviews online.
They come in low, standard and high profile depending on your personal height. They also have carbon fiber patterned sides which gives the bike that custom racing look.
The side stand on the Suzuki DR650 is really good but what I don’t like about it is that it has a narrow foot that digs straight into soft dirt, mud and sand.
If you need to stop the bike on soft surfaces, the stand digs right in which means that the bike usually tips over.
The JNS Engineering Side Stand Foot Pad fixes this problem by providing a wider foot that won’t dig into soft ground.
Any good adventure bike needs luggage racks and the DR650 is no different.
Thanks to Tusk, putting some luggage racks on your DR650 to haul your gear across state is easy.
Check out the Tusk aluminium Panniers and Pannier Racks that come in black or silver.
These panniers are a fan favorite among adventure bike riders because they are easy to install, hold heaps of luggage, are not too wide and sit perfectly onto the Suzuki DR650 as well as plenty of other makes of bikes.
Also, get the Tusk Top Rack. It will give you an extra space on the back of the bike to add an extra luggage bag of your choice.
When it comes to luggage bags, I only recommend 1 brand – Wolfman.
They are super rugged, waterproof and will last as long as you own your bike.
Take a look at the Wolfman Expedition Dry Duffel Bag. This duffel bag fits on the Tusk top rack to give you a solid, 100% waterproof, extra luggage solution.
I recommend the medium size as the large size is a bit too big for the back of the bike.
If you are also looking for a tank bag like in the above image, you will also need the Wolfman 6 liter Enduro Tank Bag.
The Wolfman 6 liter tank bag is also super tough, 100% waterproof and it also has a plastic cover at the top to place a map, your phone or any other valuables to you need fast access to.
While on the subject of handlebars, you will need a good set hand guards.
Hand guards will not only protect your hands from oncoming rocks and branches, they also protect your levers from snapping off if you drop the bike.
I really like the Tusk hand guards. I use them on all my bikes. These Tusk guards will fit any DR650 model for both 7/8 and 1 1/8 sized bars.
If you are using a fairing for your DR650, you will most likely have to remove the stock turning signals.
In this case, use the Tusk hand guards with the turn signal lights built in!! These look awesome.
The stock mirrors on the DR650 are good except that they snap off easily if you drop the bike in the dirt.
I recommend the Double Take Adventure Mirrors. They are made from a special material called Zytel that is flexible and guaranteed to be indestructible.
They also vibrate a lot less than the standard mirrors which is better for your rear vision over tough terrain.
The factory foot pegs on the Suzuki DR650 are mounted on rubber brackets which feel strange and squishy. and don’t work that well over rough terrain.
Foot pegs should be 100% rock solid, for safety, grip and balance reasons.
You should replace your foot peg mounts with the JNS ENGINEERING lowering foot peg mounts. These mounts are made out of solid heavy duty steel and made in the USA.
They also provide a 1.5 inch drop from the standard mounts and will offer you a more comfortable, natural ride when sitting on the bike.
While we are on the pegs, the factory foot pegs aren’t the best for grip. I would recommend upgrading to the IMS Pro Series foot pegs. They are so much better for traction when riding offroad.
The factory standard tank is 3.5 gallons which is fine for general dirt bike use around town and on the trails.
But if you want to make your DR650 an adventure bike to go across state then you will need a lot more gas.
The biggest tank I can find for the DR650 is the Safari tank. It comes in at 8 gallons which is over double the standard tank!! You can’t buy this tank or any larger tank than 3.2 gallons for the DR650 if you live in California because of California’s’ bullshit pollution laws! sigh..
The 8 gallon tank will get you approximately 450 miles one one tank of gas. hell yeah! It also looks really cool and will give your bike the pro Dakar look.
Fairing is great for long adventure rides because having wind constantly blowing in your face at high speeds is not much fun.
Good fairing should disperse wind away from your face and away from the bike.
If you are looking for fairing options for your Suzuki DR650, I can recommend a few options.
1) The Safari fairing does the trick for the DR650 but WILL ONLY FIT IF YOU HAVE THE SAFARI FUEL TANK that I recommended previously.
This fairing will disperse wind away from your face and from the bike which makes for a way more comfortable ride.
This is what it looks like on. Pretty cool!
2) If you are looking for the Rolls Royce of DR650 fairing kits, you need to check out the Yenkro DR650 Fairing Kit!
It is made in Australia and is a complete, robust front end solution for the DR650.It has an ultra bright headlight built into the system and bolts directly to the bikes front end, making it a rock solid option.
Also note, this fairing kit ONLY fits the Safari 8 gallon fuel tank recommended previously (or the Acerbis 7 gallon tank).
Here’s what it looks like on. Nice!
3) The third option is for riders that like having a touring windscreen on their adventure bikes.
In this case I recommend the Bajaworx DR650 windscreen.
It bolts onto the existing factory standard DR650 fairing and will give you an effective windscreen option.
The headlight on the Suzuki DR650 is not really that good and it hasn’t improved over time. If you will be doing a lot of night riding then you will need more light then what the standard headlight can provide.
I recommend the Jockey Thumper Jockey Enduro 3000 Headlight Kit. It is an led light kit made up of 2 lights that sit on either side of the main headlight.
They are super bright and will give you the brightness you are after.
This is the Jockey lights attached to a Yamaha WR. They are super bright and look really cool!
To properly install them on your Suzuki DR650, you will need a mounting bracket.
The JNS Engineering Auxillery LED light mount attaches between the triple clamp and the fender and you can mount the Jockey lights to it.
The very best tires you can possibly get f or the DR650 are the Dunlop D606 tires for front and back.
The Dunlop D606 are awesome for the road but still work great on the hardest enduro trails. They also are super durable and last a long time.
Also, get yourself some heavy duty inner tubes to help prevent getting flats.
I recommend the Bridgestone heavy duty inner tubes. They are 4mm thick!! and will resist all types of punctures.
Suspension is so important to getting better comfort and handling, cornering efficiently and improving overall traction.
The DR650 have good springs straight from the factory but they can be a whole lot better.
You would be amazed at how much better performance can be achieved by upgrading your springs.
Personally, I don’t like playing with suspension and springs because it is just so easy to get it wrong and it can ruin your entire ride.
I recommend talking to the experts about improving your Suzuki DR650 suspension.
Cogent Dynamics in N.C are the DR650 suspension experts and can advise you on everything from using the right springs for your weight all the way up to fully blown racing suspension replacements.
If you want to upgrade the suspension, give these guys a call and get it done right the first time.
The factory standard exhaust is good, no complaints there.
However, if you are looking for great, take a look at the FMF Q4 silencer.
Why is it great? Well firstly it keeps your bike in the acceptable DR650 engine noise law standards (mid 90 decibels).
Secondly it will give your bike a more aggressive sound that is satisfying as hell.
Thirdly, the engine will breathe better and you will notice some more power when you twist the throttle. Awesome!
Fourthly, It is 7 pounds!! lighter than the stock exhaust.
Finally, it will give your bike that pro enduro Dakar look that will make your friends jealous 🙂
If you are going to upgrade your exhaust to the FMF muffler, make sure that you also upgrade your jetting as well to handle the extra power, otherwise your bike will run too lean.
I recommend the JD Jetting Kit.
This jetting kit comes with a table to give you precise settings based on your engine modifications. JD makes it easy to install and tune.
Protecting the engine is crucial for dual sport bikes, especially if you are miles from nowhere and are on rocky terrain.
I recommend the Ricochet Offroad Skid Plate. It’s made of super thick aluminium and protects the underside and sides of your engine casings from damage.
It will fit any model from 2006 to 2019 and will easily take anything you can throw at it!
Also, a case saver is a crucial part of guarding your engine casing from damage.
A case saver sits around the front sprocket and will stop the chain from smashing into your engine if it snaps of while riding.
Take a look at the JNS Engineering case saver and sprocket cover for the Suzuki DR650.
Finally, you will need to upgrade the plastic chain guide to something that won’t break.
Get yourself the Warp 9 Chain guide. It is made out of solid machined steel and will resist all types of impact.
Uncorking your dirt bike is really important and the DR650 is no different.
Uncorking your Suzuki DR650 is free and the easiest way to make the bike breathe better.
To do this you will need to do a couple of things.
1. Break the plate and welds that are in the header pipe. To do this, take the header pipe off and file out any restrictions in there.
2. Drill some holes in the top of the airbox. This will drag more air into your bike which will allow the engine to work a bit harder.
Okay, next one. If you have a DR650 that is a 2016 model or older, the neutral sending unit bolts can fall out and mess up your engine badly!
Don’t ask me why, it is just one of those quirky things that some bikes have.
But it is really easy to fix. Here is a video that explains how to do it.
Another quirk with the DR650 on older models is that the countershaft seal keeps popping out which means the oil will drain out of your engine while you are riding. Disaster.
So if your DR650 is older than 2014, I recommend installing a countershaft seal retainer.
This seal retainer sits behind your front sprocket and holds the seal in place.
Okay that’s plenty of accessories and parts to keep you busy for a while. Do you own a Suzuki DR650? Let me know in the comments below and tell me what your favorite accessories are.
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