The Kawasaki Ninja 650 and 650R are two popular models within the eclectic Kawasaki Ninja range.
They feature powerful 649cc engines and yet are also a quite popular choice as a beginner bike for their great power and capacity to allow bikers to grow and develop in skill without changing bikes.
This article answers the question “How Many Miles Do Kawasaki Ninja 650 & 650R Last?”…
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How Many Miles Does The Kawasaki Ninja 650 Last?
As one of the more powerful and capable engine classes of the Kawasaki Ninja range – though not the most powerful by a long way – the Ninja 650 is very comfortable to use as a commuter and distance bike.
This means that its crucial components are more durable and can put up with greater and more frequent use.
Therefore, with proper maintenance and without habitually overtaxing the system, there’s no reason that the Ninja 650 can’t last for 120,000 miles or even more.
What Factors Are Important?
To get a resulting lifespan of 120,000 miles or more on your Kawasaki Ninja 650, there are several factors that will be important to keep in mind.
The first factor is maintenance. The bike has to be properly maintained over time in order to preserve its life, the engine, and the efficacy of all the critical components that make up the bike.
The most basic and important regular maintenance includes changing the oil, changing the tires, and maintaining the motorcycle chain.
Another important maintenance has to be done on the suspension, battery, wheels, ABS, important fluids such as coolant and transmission fluid, filters, and controls.
Some riders think they can save money in the short term by skipping important maintenance, pushing the time back further. This will certainly cost you less in the short term, but more in the long term.
By missing short-term repairs, you either doom yourself to need more expensive repairs further down the line when small problems are allowed to grow into bigger ones.
Or, you force yourself to need a brand-new bike sooner because your improperly maintained Kawasaki Ninja 650 won’t last you as long as it should.
The second important factor is usage. To get the most life from your Kawasaki Ninja 650, you will have to be sure not to use it in a way that overtaxes the engine, suspension, or other components.
The Ninja 650 is already much more capable than smaller models like the 250, 300, and 400.
It is more comfortable traveling at speed and distance, can handle better the expressways and highways, and won’t be as easily worn by longer usage each day.
Having said that, it is still a mechanical instrument with its own limits.
If you tax the system with track or racing use where you are pushing the engine to its very limits frequently and for protracted periods, then you will naturally shorten the overall mileage somewhat.
Furthermore, if you use your 650 for amateur racing purposes, then you are also putting the bike at somewhat greater risk of damage, collision, or wipeout on the track.
That also, on average, can shorten the lifespan of the bike to about half of its real potential.
Finally, a further factor to your bike’s lifespan is the environment.
If you ride your bike in the winter on a road that is heavily salted, then you will have to clean your bike more regularly.
Road salt can get embedded all over the bike and cause corrosion, paint problems, and other maintenance issues.
The salt is definitely your friend on the road for helping to maintain traction and safety, but it is no friend to your Kawasaki Ninja’s mechanics.
Furthermore, if you like somewhere with great humidity, especially by the sea where there is also a great amount of sea salt in the air, and environment, then the risk of corrosion also goes up.
Corrosion on any part of your bike is bad news.
It means weakening and possibly irreparably damaging critical components and also causing unsightly paint damage to the body.
What Can I Do To Make It Last Longer?
To make your Kawasaki Ninja 650 last longer, you should first conduct all the proper maintenance according to the manufacturer’s recommended maintenance schedule.
This includes oil changes, chain maintenance, tire changes, and more.
Besides regular maintenance, you should also address any apparent problems with the bike as early as possible.
Very often, problems in motorcycles and automobiles start as small problems, usually caused by an issue with a single component.
If left unchecked, that problem spirals into a much more serious one that is more costly to fix and causes damage to multiple components.
That damage could be more lasting, and may not be able to be restored to normal without considerable labor costs and possibly entirely new components.
Another thing you should certainly do is avoid overtaxing the engine and other components.
This means not riding the bike excessively fast over protracted distances.
It also means avoiding sudden and harsh braking as much as possible.
Pushing the bike’s suspension and steering too far is another way to shorten its life, so avoid unnecessary riding on uneven surfaces and in any other environments that will tax these systems.
Finally, to protect it from environmental hazards, you should regularly clean the bike to protect it from road salt during the winter, but also from salt in the air if you live by the coast or in a place of high humidity.
Keep the bike covered up when you’re not using it, and store it in a shaded, dry place whenever you can.
This will add great amounts of life to it.
What To Expect When Buying A Used Ninja 650?
When buying a used Ninja 650, you should in general expect a bike in pretty good order.
It’s a fairly durable and low-maintenance bike among its competitors, making it more likely that the Ninja 650 is in good shape.
Take a look at the existing odometer reading. If it’s more than 60,000, then you’ll have to be very thorough in your inspection of the bike.
What Parts Break First?
On a used Kawasaki Ninja 650, the most urgent components to check include the tires, chain, exhaust, frame, clutch, brakes, and suspension.
The Ninja 650 is very solidly built, and if the used bike is well maintained, then there’s no reason that anything should be broken or that you should suspect will break early.
The parts of the bike that undergo the most natural wear and tear regardless of actual riding conditions are the ones to watch the most, which includes all the parts that we mentioned above.
How Often Do I Need To Change: Oil, Tires & Chain? (to get better mileage)
You’ll most likely have to change the oil on your Kawasaki Ninja 650 every 50000-8000 miles.
There are many brands of oil you can use, but using Kawasaki’s own 10W-40 oil is really ideal because it’s engineered specifically for your 4-stroke Ninja 650 engine.
Depending on how often and how hard you ride your Kawasaki 650, a set of tires should last you up to 10 years.
You may have to change them sooner than that, however. You can keep track of the tire tread using the penny test.
Place a penny with Lincoln’s head going down into the tread of your motorcycle.
If you can see all parts of the head, then your tread is too worn and you definitely need new tires.
If any of the head is still covered, then your tire tread is sufficient.
How Many Miles Does the Kawasaki 650R Last?
Though the 650R is likely to be an older bike, much of the engineering of the 650R is similar to that of even the newest Ninja 650 models.
Therefore, when properly looked after, the Ninja 650R will also serve you for 100,000 miles or more.
If you buy a used Kawasaki 650R, then pay attention to the mileage already on the odometer.
If it exceeds 60,000 or 70,000 miles, then you’ll have to inspect the bike very carefully to make sure all components and systems are in good order.
What Is The Best Mileage To Buy & Sell 650R To Be Cost-Effective?
Obviously, the less you have used the bike since buying it, the better your overall price point can be when selling.
When buying, it’s good to favor those bikes that haven’t been put through quite so many miles, simply because it increases the chance of all the bike’s components being in good condition.
That doesn’t mean you should automatically write off a bike with a higher odometer reading.
It just means that the higher the reading is, the more questions you should ask regarding the condition of the bike and its service history.
The optimum conditions would be to buy a 650R or Ninja 650 at 30,000 miles or under.
This maximizes the chances that everything is in good working order, and gives you scope for many years of good riding ahead.
Selling under 50,000 miles means you should always be sure of a good price, especially if the bike is well maintained.
If you can provide its full-service history and prove all maintenance is done and that all components are in good order, there’s no reason you can’t sell at 50,000 miles or more.
Would You Buy a 650R Ninja With 30,000 Miles?
You could certainly buy a Ninja 650R with 30,000 miles on the odometer if it also comes with full-service history and proof of any mechanical work or modifications made to it.
The Ninja 650 and 650R are both engineered to last a long time.
A well-maintained bike at 30,000 miles is barely a quarter of the way through its life.
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