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post #1 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-20-2015, 12:23 PM Thread Starter
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Voyager shopping

Having been the satisfied owner of a 06' 900 Classic and with 68K on my bike I'm considering a touring bike and began to look at the Voyager. Let me tell you right up front that my 900 is staying with me always but I'm desiring more engine for the long hauls I sometimes get myself into during the nicer weather. Iv'e seen a nice pearl colored Voyager at a dealer I visited once and thought I may start more serious shopping. The Kawasaki website shows no bikes between the 900 and the 1700 so that narrows down the field for a touring bike to the Voyager. The only thing that sticks in my craw is the stated mpg's are 35! Holy Crap Robin! With a 5.3 gallon tank it seems that I'd be planning my long rides around the availability of gas stations. I'm not complaining so much about the poor 35 mpg's as much as I am the reduced range between fill ups.
Seems to me the bike would be well served with a 7 1/2 gallon tank. Maybe I'm just spoiled with the range I have with my 900 and apparently 35 or 36 miles per gallon are comparable to bikes of a similar size from other manufacturers ie Yamaha, Honda and Suzuki. My question to the forum is do these bikes actually get the rated mpg's or are they actually in real life getting closer to 40 ish? Perhaps I should be looking at a Nomad set up for touring but I won't be able to buy new. Looking for input on this please.

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post #2 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-20-2015, 12:28 PM
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intown riding and getting on it, I am around 26. to 30 MPG, when cruising 5th 6th gear, I have been as much as 47 mpg. 46mpg or so doing around 80..

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post #3 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-20-2015, 12:30 PM
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look at the thread that was just posted April 20th 2011.. Ray has 76K miles on it yesterday and you can see his MPG average of 48.6

"Steve"
2011 Vaquero
2008 900 Custom(Sold)
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Dynojet PCV ,THUNDER MFG BAK,
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AUX DRIVING LIGHT,BATTISTINI GRIPS AND PASS PEGS,THUNDER RAPTOR FLOORBOARDS,
STITCH ON TIME CUSTOM TEMPERPEDIC SADDLE
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post #4 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-20-2015, 12:43 PM
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I average around 37 mpg and can get around 40 on longer trips with lots of country highway miles.

During the first few thousand miles it will be low and will get better as it breaks in.
Performance mods will affect it as well.

But, don't expect to break 40 unless you ride lots of miles at 50 to 60mph.

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post #5 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-20-2015, 01:43 PM
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I just recently purchased a new 2013 and have about 300 miles on it so far. The stock MPG calculator is indicating 41 MPG - riding mostly at 60 MPH or less.
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post #6 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-20-2015, 01:55 PM
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I spend a lot of time on 55mph roads and average 44 on my Vaquero. I think the Vaquero averages a bit more than the Voyager; so that's something to be consider.

It works out to about a 160 mile range. I got gas at 180 miles the other day and put 4.8 gallons in. That's cutting it close. So, realistically, I'll plan for 160 miles. That IS disappointing coming off of a 900 where 225+ miles range was typical. To put it in other terms, my 900 could ride for an hour or so more without stopping for gas. But it is what it is.

So you need to decide if that range is unacceptable or not. It's somewhat of a non-issue for me because I usually ride with my wife and she only has about a 160 mile range as well. So if she needs to stop anyway, whatever. But I do wish it was bigger.

Truth is though, that's kind of average for motorcycles. H-D's touring platform on certain models extends around 6 gallons and will get you 200 miles or so. Same with a Goldwing GL1800, you'll get 200~225 miles on a tank. And really, that's the top end of touring bikes. About 60 miles more than what you'll get on a Voyager; or about what you get on a VN900.

Unless you're in remote areas out west you probably aren't going to be 160 miles between fuel stops. And if you are, I'd suggest taking fuel on with you. 2 1-gallon saddlebag gas cans, one in each saddlebag, and one more in the trunk should get you another 100 miles, give or take. There's a guy on here who mounted a 5 gallon beer keg to his passenger seat and filled it with gas. Or for your long trips, get you a trailer hitch and a trailer and store your gear and toss a couple 5 gallon gas cans in there! There are options! And if you go the trailer route, you could get a Vaquero which comes in way cooler color options! (Because whadya need the trunk for?)

If range is end-all be-all, then you'll need to broaden your horizons to sport-touring bikes. The Kawasaki Concours has a 5.8 gallon tank and a fuel economy assist mode, and you can get 7 gallons into certain BMW models. Both flirt with around 40mpg.

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post #7 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-20-2015, 02:41 PM
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I'm with Scott, I get mid-30s round town and it jumps to 40 once a highway without stop and go is involved.

Now is a good time to look at Voyager. They are dealing. I also picked up a 2013 model in a close out and love what I was able to get for the money (liked the color as well).

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post #8 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-20-2015, 07:28 PM
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2010 nomad w 5k on it,getting low to mid 3os around town,up around 40 on highway,not quite what the 900 was averaging,but man I love the bike,what a ride,could not be happier
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post #9 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-20-2015, 07:33 PM
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Curious if the Vaquero really does that much better on fuel than the Voyager (do the larger lower fairings and trunk make that much of a difference? I guess they could. Aerodynamics is everything.), or if guys like RACNRAY and myself are just going too easy on ours! I looked at mine today and with 900 miles on the clock I'm averaging 45.7.

I average 38-39 in my car (42 or so on a long highway trip) with a 2.0L direct-injected I-4. Aerodynamics really is everything. If our bikes aren't as aerodynamic as a brick they'd be much better on gas. Really, a sub-1000lb vehicle with a 1.7L engine shouldn't be in the 30's! Unless that vehicle goes through the air like a parachute.

"8 But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us."

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post #10 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-20-2015, 10:10 PM
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I do a mix of surface and slab almost every time out and average 37 (when I'm not hammering some really good low mountain road)

When I was young and thought getting there faster was the only objective 160 miles per stop would have been unacceptable. I have stretched it to 200 a few times and never put more than 5 gallons on board. If you stop when the low fuel light comes on at about 160 it will only hold 3.5.

Now that I know if a 500 mile trip takes an hour longer because I stopped more often but I and any passenger are in better shape because of it. Who is to say the hour was wasted?

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