DNEPR 650 (1974-2000) Review

Published: 24 November 2006

"A real antiques roadshow, which can trace their roots back to the 1940s"

Neval Dnepr motorcycle review - Riding

"A real antiques roadshow, which can trace their roots back to the 1940s"

  • At a glance
  • 749cc  -  45 bhp
  • 45 mpg  -  230 miles range
  • Low seat height (650mm)
  • Suitable for A2 licence

Overall Rating 2 out of 5

The Dnepr/Ural machines are a real antiques roadshow, which can trace their roots back to the 1940s. First seen as a Cossack 650cc, the Neval Dnepr is basic two - or three - wheeled transport. OK, it isn't the most fashionable, fast or reliable bike in the world, but you can get it repaired by a cobbler in Uzbekistan for 68p. The Ural Moto 650/750 is remarkably similar to Neval Dnepr and still available today.

Ride Quality & Brakes 3 out of 5

The modern Ural machines are a vast improvement on the older Cossack/Neval machines with reasonable suspension and a better seating, although the Custom design doesn't really work as well as the retro Red Star classic in terms of riding experience.

Engine 2 out of 5

Most Dnepr models suffered from quality control issues which were typical of Soviet Bloc machines. Carbs were especially rubbish. The post 2001 Ural 650/750 motors have another 10bhp and are likely to last longer, but still basically designed for burbling about lanes at 60mph all day long. Clunky gearbox as you'd expect.

Build Quality & Reliability 1 out of 5

Anything still running from the 70s/80s/90s will probably have been rebuilt eight times. The 2001 onwards Ural Moto generation machines are better made, but this is still a motorbike from the 1940s, dragged reluctantly into the next century. It needs TLC in the same way a classic Norton or BSA might do. 

Value & Running Costs 2 out of 5

Brand new, with warranty, the Ural Moto models cost £3600 upwards, which is hefty tag for something so obviously outdated. Buying a used Neval can be a better bet, especially if you find an enthusiast who is retiring from biking and has spend years keeping his 650 twin chugging along. Buy his spares too.

Insurance group: 8 of 17 – compare motorcycle insurance quotes now.

Equipment 2 out of 5

The later Ural Moto bikes have a front disc brake, carbs that work, 12 volt electrics and indicators that actually work - Nasdrovya! Otherwise, all the Neval/Ural bikes offer basic, no-frills transport which is solidly built, but boasts few 21st century components. Sidecar outfits have reverse though... 

Owners' Reviews

No owners have yet reviewed the DNEPR 650 (1974-2000).

We’re currently improving the way this section works, which means we’ve had to suspend the submission of new owners’ reviews for a short period. Please check back soon.

Facts & Figures

Model info
Year introduced 1974
Year discontinued 2000
Original price -
Warranty term (when new) One year unlimite mileage
Running costs
Insurance group 8 of 17
Annual road tax £80
Annual service cost -
Performance
Max power 45 bhp
Max torque -
Top speed 80 mph
1/4-mile acceleration 22 secs
Average fuel consumption 45 mpg
Tank range 230 miles
Specification
Engine size 749cc
Engine type 4v, flat twin, 4 gears
Frame type Steel tubular
Fuel capacity 23 litres
Seat height 650mm
Bike weight 245kg
Front suspension none
Rear suspension Preload
Front brake 280mm discs
Rear brake 260mm disc
Front tyre size 3.00 x 19
Rear tyre size in

History & Versions

Model history

1974: Cossack 650 arrives in UK, solo and sidecar. 1989 Now known as Neval 650. 1993: Neval Dnepr Phoenix custom launched.
2000: Ukraine factory ceases production.

Other versions

Ural Moto 750 Wolf     Custom variant Ural Moto Roustabout sidecar outfit  Red Star with chair Ural Moto Dalesman sidecar outfit   2 wheel drive off-road outfit Ural Moto Charnwood outfit    Brit Charnwood sidecar attached Ural Moto Red Star/Retro    Old school commie chic Chiangjiang 650/750    Basically a Dnepr, made in China 

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