The Mighty KLR 650. Unchanged for 20 years by Kawasaki, because they got it right!


I’ve had this bike a while now, it just happened to come up at the right price with all the goodies I wanted a bit earlier than intended. As it turns out that’s not a bad thing, as I’ve been able to modify it for the trip bit by bit along the way. In no particular order it now sports:

Stainless exhaust – Fitted by the previous owner, I can’t say I’d have bothered myself.

Long Range Safari tank – Absolutely bloody fantastic! I can do 900kms on one tank of fuel on a long run, and see at a glance how much fuel I have left. Even commuting stop/start through traffic gets me 750kms on a tank! I can also make notes with a sharpie pen, things like oil and tyre changes etc.. Oh, and my Russian homework!

Bash Plate – Hopefully something I’ll never use, but much better than the standard item.

BarkBusters – I call them knuckle dusters. Great for protecting levers in the event of a small off, and good in traffic too 😉

Two Lithium Polymer batteries – Each packing more punch than standard and weighing 1/5th of the total. I was going to get clever and fit a split charge relay, but honestly I don’t think I’ll need the spare and I just can’t be arsed!

Replacement DooHickey – A known KLR weakpoint and something worth doing if you’re keeping the bike, or going a long way. I used Eagle Mikes and the torsion spring to go with it. Easy to fit, don’t let anyone put you off.

There are various other small mods, too many to mention – but if you’re into bikes you’ll know the kind of thing I mean.

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