It appears the XR650R and XR650L are dead

221 replies to this topic
  • AHRMA17L

Posted December 21, 2005 - 05:08 PM

In my opinion the 650 is no baja secret weapon bike.

Honda win baja because:

...Kawasaki quit racing there.

  • rmhrc630

Posted December 21, 2005 - 05:37 PM

The top how many winning bikes in Baja are XR650R's? Yes, it getting out-dated but even in the Safari down under the XR650R is one of the top contenders. KTM also rule in that race but, the XR650R is always in the top,
Jamie Cunningham (Honda XR650R) was declared the winner of the 2004 Australian Safari

Honda does need to get on the ball to come back. It isn't all about team Honda, the XR650R is coming in the top five with out Team Honda support. In the sportsmens class the Baja is Dominated by the XR650R! The KTM's and others just do not finish the Baja 1K .... If they do it's finished, that is a fact!

True they won the safari last year but you omitted an important few points:

1. KTM has won it most in recent history. KTM has a small team. Very small, done on an oily rag.
2. Honda did a baja - they had trucks and backup motors and a completely over the top effort relative to the others. They had 5 factory riders. It's a disgrace they havent won it more relative to their effort levels.
3. What bike wins the Finke desert race...the mighty CRF450R.

You're correct about the field in baja using the 650. It is mostly used, but perhaps that is its downfall? How many people live in the desert? SFA. I know in my state it's kinda weird to go ride desert when it's a 5hr drive away and also it's mor fun to ride the mountains up and down.

Honda I think have been believing a bit more much of their advertising hype of late. Kinda like if you keep telling yourself over and over and over you make a great bike you start believing it!!!

  • BWB63

Posted December 21, 2005 - 06:41 PM

Well, try 12 million people live within an hour of the desert here in Southern California and many millions more if you count the whole state. Land area, 155,959 square miles 2/3Rd's of the state is desert and 1/2 of the 36,000,000 people live within two hours, 12% of the U.S.A. live in California. 6th largest economy in the world. You can go from beach to desert in an hour for over 500 miles of coast line. The point is the little guy can race the whole Baja 1000, 500, 250 in a year on the same bike with little maintenance and win. All of Baja is desert. No other bike is doing that. That is with no Team support. I have been there (five hour trip to Sanfelipi from my house, three hours and a half to Ensenada), the fact is that nothing can come close once it opens up. The KX500 isn't a factor anymore, the XR650R can maintain higher speeds much longer then the KX500 can. You should look up the spec's between the XR650R and the XR600R you will be surprised. Look at the number of XR650R members on the XR650R forums that live in California! The Yahoo XR650R group is half Californians. I would guess it's close to the same here. KTM is still not bullet proof enough for the average guy without team support to make the Baja 1000 do-able.

27.0 degrees - XR600R
27.8 degrees - XR650R Fork rake is only .8 degrees deferents.


Do you even have one? I did look up the safari and it's talked about a lot on the Yahoo group (thats all the down under guys talk about...well that and beer) so, from a far-away space I have looked into the Safari, who wins and how many are XR650R's in the top five.

20,050,00 People live in Australia, more people live in Yemen, Ghana, or Romania! The market in Australia isn't that big. Maybe that is why Honda isn't putting that much effort in what they sell there?

There are mountains in the Desert. From below sea level to 3,000 meters in one days ride.

For those with high-speed: Desert slide show: :applause:

Video: :bonk:

  • Old_Man_Time

Posted December 21, 2005 - 08:39 PM

KTM is still not bullet proof enough for the average guy without team support to make the Baja 1000 do-able.

There are mountains in the Desert. From below sea level to 3,000 meters in one days ride.

For those with high-speed: Desert slide show: :bonk:

Video: :cry:

I love my KTM but you are absolutely right about them not being bullet proof enough. They are great bikes but I know my Honda will still be running strong long after my 525 gives up the ghost.

I love your desert slide show. We have desert but not like that. Do you have to be dual sported to enjoy all the terrain you included in the slide show? All I can say is WOW :applause:

  • BWB63

Posted December 21, 2005 - 08:52 PM

No, you don't (need a plate) but, I did. Makes it nice to ride to work twice a year :bonk: Our desert where I live is a lot like your Eastern side of Washington. The slide show is real desert, in Mojave, Jawbone, Joshua Tree and some (the jumping) is in Beaumont. Thanks for the nice words :applause:

  • Jayzonk

Posted December 24, 2005 - 11:12 PM

What I don't understand is why Honda would quit producing such a reliable engine like the one in the R. Why don't they build some other bike that the public might want with that engine in it? We have such a throw-away mentality that they can't. They could even put it in an ATV, or a small streetbike, or in the L!
I'm wondering if the 650R engine puts Honda in a difficult spot - maybe it's right at the cusp of being unreliable - you try to drag 10 more horsepower out of it, and you make the motor unreliable. You leave it stock, and it runs forever. I'm not sure.

  • XRmeister

Posted December 26, 2005 - 01:27 PM


  • huntmaster

Posted December 27, 2005 - 12:26 PM

...Kawasaki quit racing there.

So did Husqvarna, Triumph.....
I guess that's the only reason Kawasaki was able to win too?

  • Cobalt650

Posted February 18, 2006 - 10:44 AM

Any recent rumors/thoughts on the future of the mighty Big Red Machine?

  • Shakeyhands

Posted February 18, 2006 - 12:07 PM

Great news.

So mike you've seen the new CRFXXX or spoken to someone who has...?

I pray it doesnt have twin spar alloy frame as that limits gas capacity.

I would also have thought that it would be more like the new husky 610TEE which appears to be awesome.

any more info? would be pretty cool if TT beat everyone else on the new release.

No worries as there would be a raft of aftermarket choices for tanks I am sure.... After all, someone will want to turn one into an Adventure DS in no time :thumbsup:

Visit the ThumperTalk Store for the lowest prices on motorcycle / ATV parts and accessories - Guaranteed
  • InternalCombustion

Posted February 19, 2006 - 10:40 AM

Can't find a KTM dealer! everyone gave up on the company. too difficult to work with, from what the dealers tell me. nothing is more stodgy and slow to react that a German industrialz...

I think KTM is Austrian. :thumbsup:

  • InternalCombustion

Posted February 19, 2006 - 11:13 AM

If Honda is coming out with a replacement for the R and L. here's what I figger:

1. Honda is not stupid. Sleepy at times, maybe, but not long-term stupid. So they gotta be thinking about maximizing the new platform's potential.

2. The 650R is proven, no issues there. So maybe they de-stroke the 650R, give it higher revs, throw it into an aluminum twin-spar frame, strap on USD forks, an e-button...

3. The advantage of such a platform is that it could easily (read "cheaply") go several directions:

- a killer open-class and / or street-legal supermoto, to take advantage of a significant European market and a growing market in the US.
- a killer dual sport, which is also big and growing in Europe. It could be bigger in the US if there was a mainstream manufacturer with a solid performer. No disrespect for Suzuki and Kawasaki for their DS models but their performance is pretty dated... as it is with the L. Again, no disrespect to Husaberg or Husky, they are sweet bikes, but most people want a local dealer.
- an updated Baja bike, with all the strong traits of the current King, but lighter still.

4. Re "dual sport" market, witness the new dual sport interest from Buell, the upgraded Beemer GS, the stellar new Husky. The market is there, at least most manufacturers seem to think so. Peter Egan had an interesting column in last month's Cycle World. He talked about the baby boomers (myself included there!!) are getting long-in-the-tooth and looking for bikes with a more spine-friendly riding position. He cited his own love affair with the KTM 950.

We'll see.

Personally, I love my supermoto-converted, Quicksilver-equipped R and take great satisfaction in starting up the engine the ole fashioned way, the way God intended bikes to be started... :thumbsup:

Ride safe, dudes.

  • uncleroby

Posted April 22, 2006 - 11:08 AM

If Honda is coming out with a replacement for the R and L. here's what I figger:

Personally, I love my supermoto-converted, Quicksilver-equipped R and take great satisfaction in starting up the engine the ole fashioned way, the way God intended bikes to be started... :thumbsup:

Ride safe, dudes.

YEAH! :thumbsup:

  • Cobalt650

Posted April 22, 2006 - 04:31 PM

I realllyyyyy can't wait to find out if there will be a new Honda dual sport this fall!! :thumbsup: If there were to be one, any guesses as to when it would be unveiled? :thumbsup:

  • Jayzonk

Posted April 22, 2006 - 06:53 PM

Does anyone remember that thread we started that had the list of all of the mods we'd like to see to the 650R? Maybe we should dredge that up so Honda can have another look.... :thumbsup:

  • Big Red Paul

Posted April 23, 2006 - 12:38 AM

Riders of the mighty XR650R.
Multitudes have never ridden the PiG650. We are God’s chosen few, the lucky ones. We have boldly gone where …We lone drivers, the last American heroes, the electric centaurs, the demi-gods, the super drivers of the golden west.

It doesn't matter, now. Let them stop production. It really doesn't matter what happens now. We have been to the top of the mountain. Like anybody, I would like the XR production line to have a long life. Longevity has its place. But I'm not concerned about that now.

The future of the XR650R ? Well, the vision dims. All that remains are memories. I remember a time of Red Excellence. Ruined dreams. This wasted land. But most of all, I remember XR650R. The one we called "Big Red Pig". To understand what it was, you have to go back to another time. When the world was powered by the black fuel. And the desert sprouted great cities of pipe and steel. Gone now, swept away.

And the XR650R? That was the last we ever saw of it. It lives now only in my memories.

We are all already heroes, let’s sit back and enjoy the ride.

  • XR_mad

Posted April 23, 2006 - 04:02 AM

although they may be discontinued, they sure as hell aint dead, rock solid reliability means they will be around for a long time :thumbsup:

  • MindBlower

Posted April 23, 2006 - 08:29 AM

With Honda's focus shifting toward Asia, I wouldn't be surprised if there is NO new 600. They are trying to sell scooters and they are concentrating on Asia, so I don't know that they're going to be considering what we want at all. I don't know if their sales warrant trying to stay in this category, for example. The redesigned 650R came out in 2000, and I'm not sure that the investment paid off for them. I mean, I love the bike just like you, but I'd bet that they are simply looking at payback time. If they do come out with a new bike with a new power plant, they're throwing away a great engine. I wonder if they'd sell me the plan for it.....hmmmmmm...........
So they'd race the Baja with full factory support, then throw the #1 bike out the window? It just doesn't make sense.
I'm rambling, but I'm trying to get to the bottom of what I'm thinking about this news! It's too bad that a decision on buying a new bike has to be based on what MIGHT happen in the following year. Kinda ridiculous.

I've read that the big 4 see the handwriting on the wall. That Korea and China will own the dirt bike market very shortly. The rate of increase in the quality/competence in Korean cars has been stunning. There are now Korean cars being ranked above Toyotas in their class. Profit margins aren't very big on a 6k dirt bike and the market shrinks with the open riding land. At some point they will stop putting money into developing new models. On the other hand their skooter sales are through the roof. I wonder how many of those copies of honda motors China has already made? More than Honda made in all the years together? I could see them very easily walk away from this market without a backward glance. Sad, but it's a different world........

  • huntmaster

Posted April 23, 2006 - 10:15 AM

I've read that the big 4 see the handwriting on the wall. That Korea and China will own the dirt bike market very shortly. ........

Everything goes full circle after a while, and it's very possible the Koreans will do to the Japanese what that latter did to the British and European bikes in the 70's. Whatever the origin, it doesn't mean there won't be a continous supply of ever improving designs for the consumer to enjoy OR that there will be an end to a 25+ year tradition of big bore off road Hondas to enjoy.

  • Cobalt650

Posted April 23, 2006 - 11:00 AM

Big Red Paul should have a lock on the movie rights for "BRP"!!!

Related Content


XR650L super moto wheels by greggkklee

Dirt Bike   Make / Model Specific   Honda   XR600/650
  • Hot  29 replies

ignitech programmable XR650L CDI by brianhare

Dirt Bike   Make / Model Specific   Honda   XR600/650
  • Hot  60 replies

Cle Elum Sunday 5/29: Looking for dual sport tips by TigerTanker

Dirt Bike   Dirt Bike Regional Discussion   Northwest
  • Hot  32 replies

DirttyPig 2005 Xr650l Prroject! by braapmebb1moretime

Dirt Bike   Make / Model Specific   Honda   XR600/650
  • 22 replies

Engine Loping/Sputtering by tcaldwell

Dirt Bike   Make / Model Specific   Honda   XR600/650
  • 4 replies

Join Our Community!

Even if you don't want to post, registered members get access to tools that make finding & following the good stuff easier.

If you enjoyed reading about "" here in the ThumperTalk archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join ThumperTalk today!

The views and opinions expressed on this page are strictly those of the author, and have not been reviewed or approved by ThumperTalk.