First ride: 2015 Kawasaki Versys 650 and 1000

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MCN has recently been at the world launch of Kawasaki’s new Versys 650 and 1000 in Sicily. Senior Road Tester Michael Neeves rode both models and said: “The 1000 was in sore need of an update, not least because the current version is so ugly. Kawasaki has improved the looks massively with a new ZX-10R-style twin-headlight fairing.

“The 118bhp, 1043cc inline four-cylinder machine also has a comfier new seat, a centre stand as standard, larger diameter front brake discs, an adjustable screen, a stiffer rear shock and best of all, the pointless dual purpose tyres have been ditched to make way for dedicated Bridgestone T30 sports touring rubber. Costing £9749, the Versys 1000 slips nicely under the ten grand mark

“The revised £6749 Versys 650 also gets the 1000’s new nose and tweaks to its 68bhp, 649cc parallel twin-cylinder engine, giving it slightly more top end performance and improved fuel economy. It also has a larger fuel tank, upgraded suspension, a new master cylinder, brake pads and a larger rear disc.”

Read the full test in the December 31 issue of MCN.