CAGIVA RAPTOR 650 (2003-on) Review

Published: 23 November 2006

"Smart Italian style plus a reliable Japanese engine"

Cagiva Raptor 650 motorcycle review - Riding

"Smart Italian style plus a reliable Japanese engine"

  • At a glance
  • 645cc  -  69 bhp
  • 42 mpg  -  175 miles range
  • Insurance group: 10 of 17
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  • Medium seat height (775mm)
  • New: £4,999

Overall Rating 3 out of 5

The Cagiva Raptor 650's smart Italian style plus a reliable Japanese engine equals a cool, capable light/middle weight all round motorcycle. It’s a blast on back roads but long motorway journeys can be blustery. It’s an extremely unusual bike – imported by Dorset dealer Three Cross Motorcycles.

Ride Quality & Brakes 4 out of 5

You sit very low in the Cagiva Raptor 650 – great for shorter folk but it’s too low for urban riding. Out of town it’s a nifty mover – light weight and wide bars keep it nimble while comparatively conservative geometry means it’s stable. Great brakes – noticeably better than the SV.

Engine 4 out of 5

The Cagiva Raptor 650's engine is lifted straight from Suzuki’s SV650 but with fueling mods which make the power delivery smoother and it feels faster thanks to lower gearing. It’s a cracking engine – there’s pleasingly lumpy character at low revs and it’ll make that distinctive twin noise but the mid range’s smooth and it revs high enough for a little rush at the top of the tacho.

Build Quality & Reliability 2 out of 5

We’re being harsh with a ‘2’ here – not because the Cagiva Raptor 650 is a bad motorcycle, an unreliable motorcycle or a poorly built motorcycle. The problem is dealer back up or, more specifically, the lack of it. If you want parts and specialist servicing knowledge, you’ll probably have to travel. Finish is patchy but no worse than many Japanese bikes.

Insurance, running costs & value 4 out of 5

This is a competitive sector of the market where seasonal discounts can take 25% or more of bikes’ prices. The Cagiva Raptor 650’s a few hundred quid more than most competitors – but arguably worth it for the exclusivity, decent brakes and standard Pirelli tyres. Can be a real bargain used. Find a Cagiva Raptor 650 for sale.

Insurance group: 10 of 17 – compare motorcycle insurance quotes now.

Equipment 3 out of 5

The Cagiva Raptor 650 has not a lot of surplus kit but on a bike like this you don’t need it. The riding position’s surprisingly comfy and the small fairing from 2005 on reduces bullying from the wind blast at higher speeds. A removable seat hump is a nice touch and up-side down forks are rarely seen at this price level.

Owners' Reviews

3 owners have reviewed their CAGIVA RAPTOR 650 (2003-on) and rated it in a number of areas. Read what they have to say and what they like and dislike about the bike below.

Review your CAGIVA RAPTOR 650 (2003-on)
Summary of Owners' Reviews
Overall Rating 4.7 out of 5
Ride Quality & Brakes 4 out of 5
Engine 4.7 out of 5
Build Quality & Reliability 4 out of 5
Value & Running Costs 4 out of 5
Equipment 3.3 out of 5
4 out of 5

Turns heads.

26 May 2015 by Merrison

The bike looks good and sounds even better. A sporty bike built for fun rather than comfort. A Honda CB 500 or successor better for town and commuting. A BMW 1100/1150 for the long hauls. All represent a bargain if you take your time and find a good... Read more example.

Ride Quality & Brakes
3 out of 5
Firm sporty ride. I always have a stop every 50 miles, whatever the bike and especially in cold weather. The clutch is quite fierce (sporty?) and the fuel injection quite peaky, making it a bit challenging in town especially in the wet. Brakes OK. Compared to a Beemer, the pillion will be very uncomfortable.
Engine
4 out of 5
Great engine, great exhaust note, excellent response. Cagiva seem to have wrung a bit more out of it.
Build Quality & Reliability
3 out of 5
This bike was bought by my brother six years ago when it was four years old. Muck and salt gets deposited on the silencers and surrounding framework, leading to corrosion of the aluminium footrest hangers. I haven't been a pillion passenger on this bike, but if the similar 1000cc model is anything to go by you will get soaked when roads are wet as a result of the poor rear mudguard. The oil cooler grill also corrodes rapidly. The mileage is currently only 10K and the bike was laid up for some time, partly as a result of two quite serious failures. The rear brake master cylinder seized, due to swelling of its PTFE piston. The secondary throttle flap ( ie the outer flap that is under the control of the servo-positioner) seized, causing the bike to go into 'safe' mode with no response past half throttle. A battery in poor condition will cause havoc with the electrics, exacerbated by the always on headlamp, and can cause the engine to cut out unexpectedly.
Value & Running Costs
4 out of 5
I do it all myself. I have not had less than 60mpg, and it is not hard to get 70mpg, which is what I would hope for from a bike ! Insurance £66 tpft with zero no claims.
Equipment
3 out of 5
I like the sound and being heard and seen (headlamp always on). I wouldn't change the standard silencers. It has the small cowling round the headlamp which helps a bit, but blustery above 60mph. Not equipped for touring or commuting.
Buying experience

My brother paid £2150 at 4 years and 6K miles. Previous owner bought it from Three Cross for £2500 at 4K miles, ex demo. Quite a saving from £4999!

5 out of 5

Second time around with Cagiva Raptor 650ie.

19 May 2015 by Mr Stephen Harper

Bought 3 years ago. Then sold for an Aprilia Shiver. Then bought another in 2015 and a much better bike all round. No snatchy fuel injection. Lighter chassis and not bad weather protection from the cowling. And better mpg than my other current bike,... Read more a Triumph Street Triple!

Ride Quality & Brakes
4 out of 5
This bike is a great combination of Italian style and a proven Suzuki 'V' twin engine.MV Augusta frame wrapped around a sublime mill.
Engine
5 out of 5
A truly great mid engine 'V' twin and enough character to compare favourably with Ducati without unnecessary electronic interference, and gadgetry.
Build Quality & Reliability
4 out of 5
Have just purchased a Raptor on a 57 plate. It looks good in the advert for 8 years old. Here's hoping.
Value & Running Costs
3 out of 5
Should be economical for its regular service schedule?
Equipment
3 out of 5
Spartan. No gizmos. And none needed.
Buying experience

Just purchased from a dealer in Cornwall and bought off the internet so let's hope the sale will be ok? Got the delivery price deleted from the transaction and a further reduction of cash, and free M.O.T.And they'll keep the bike in their establishment for 5 weeks while we go on holiday.

5 out of 5

Recently aquired I'm still getting used to this bike. First impressions - good.

20 January 2006 by foxman1954

Bought my example in Sept 05 with 3.5k miles and in great condition. Prev' owner has fitted some fruity sounding Remus end cans. First test ride and I knew I was going to buy it. I've owned over 40 bikes sinces starting out with a Puch Maxi moped in... Read more 1972. So I know a good bike when I see one. This is the only 650 Raptor I've seen ever - the 1000 sold in greater numbers but I've read elsewhere there are only about 50 carburettor models in existence in the UK. With the onset of winter I only managed a few hundred miles - it goes well, very well, stops even better, steers where you put it. No Japanese bike I've ever owned or ridden has been this good except a well sorted NC30 Honda and that made me grin from ear to ear as well. Even the wife can ride the Raptor and feel confident although the performance is more than she's used to. Only mod so far was to fit a genuine Cagiva touring screen without which the windblast at higher speeds is uncomfortable. Strengths: Plenty of torque and power - it easily takes the weight of a passenger - makes no difference to the performance and improves the ride quality as solo suspension is a bit firm -typical Italian I suppose. Weaknesses: Possibly this is going to be a bit thirstier than I'd expect but I haven't taken an accurate reading yet - just been enjoying the performance - it's such fun which is what bikes should be about. It's the best bike I've owned since had a YPVS 350.

Ride Quality & Brakes
5 out of 5
-
Engine
5 out of 5
-
Build Quality & Reliability
5 out of 5
-
Value & Running Costs
5 out of 5
-
Equipment
4 out of 5
-
Read all 3 owners' reviews in full

Facts & Figures

Model info
Year introduced 2003
Year discontinued -
New price £4,999
Used price -
Warranty term Two year unlimited mileage
Running costs
Insurance group 10 of 17
Annual road tax £80
Annual service cost -
Performance
Max power 69 bhp
Max torque 46 ft-lb
Top speed 125 mph
1/4-mile acceleration 13 secs
Average fuel consumption 42 mpg
Tank range 175 miles
Specification
Engine size 645cc
Engine type 8v V-twin, 6 gears
Frame type Tubular steel lattice
Fuel capacity 19 litres
Seat height 775mm
Bike weight 180kg
Front suspension None
Rear suspension Preload
Front brake Twin 300mm discs
Rear brake 220mm disc
Front tyre size 120/70 x 17
Rear tyre size 160/60 x 17

History & Versions

Model history

2000: Cagiva Raptor 650 launched.
2005: Fuel injection headlight fairing, black frame and wheels.

Other versions

Cagiva V-Raptor 650: A fraction more power, more radical riding position and a futuristic front cowling. Rarer than hen’s teeth with gold fillings.

Photo Gallery

  • Cagiva Raptor 650 motorcycle review - Riding
  • Cagiva Raptor 650 motorcycle review - Side view
  • Cagiva Raptor 650 motorcycle review - Rear view
  • Cagiva Raptor 650 motorcycle review - Side view
  • Cagiva Raptor 650 motorcycle review - Side view
  • Cagiva Raptor 650 motorcycle review - Riding
  • Cagiva Raptor 650 motorcycle review - Riding
  • Cagiva Raptor 650 motorcycle review - Instruments
  • Cagiva Raptor 650 motorcycle review - Front view
  • Cagiva Raptor 650 motorcycle review - Brakes
  • Cagiva Raptor 650 motorcycle review - Side view
  • Cagiva Raptor 650 motorcycle review - Rear view
  • Cagiva Raptor 650 motorcycle review - Side view
  • Cagiva Raptor 650 motorcycle review - Front view
  • Cagiva Raptor 650 motorcycle review - Side view
  • Cagiva Raptor 650 motorcycle review - Side view
  • Cagiva Raptor 650 motorcycle review - Riding
  • Cagiva Raptor 650 motorcycle review - Side view
  • Cagiva Raptor 650 motorcycle review - Rear view
  • Cagiva Raptor 650 motorcycle review - Side view
  • Cagiva Raptor 650 motorcycle review - Side view
  • Cagiva Raptor 650 motorcycle review - Riding
  • Cagiva Raptor 650 motorcycle review - Riding
  • Cagiva Raptor 650 motorcycle review - Instruments
  • Cagiva Raptor 650 motorcycle review - Front view
  • Cagiva Raptor 650 motorcycle review - Brakes
  • Cagiva Raptor 650 motorcycle review - Side view
  • Cagiva Raptor 650 motorcycle review - Rear view
  • Cagiva Raptor 650 motorcycle review - Side view
  • Cagiva Raptor 650 motorcycle review - Front view
  • Cagiva Raptor 650 motorcycle review - Side view
  • Cagiva Raptor 650 motorcycle review - Side view
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