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Brilliant Red 2002 Kawasaki Ninja EX500R (WITH the Extended Warranty: Good until April 2006), purchased and ridden in this, my first year of motorcycling. Check out the current Cycle World, where this bike is deservedly praised.It's a great bike, with: a)clear analog instruments b)TWO resettable trip ododmeters (which helps, since there's no gas gauge, you can zero one on fill-up, think about refilling when you near 180 miles or so) c) a sturdy rear grab rail (I have an armored cable wrapped around it, and lock my two disc locks to it whenever I ride) d)flip-out metal hooks for quickly hooking a bungee net to d)two helmet locks-though I never have used them-to which you could also hook bungee cords, I suppose e)terrific fairing, which makes sitting upright a pleasure f) a STRONG engine (again, see Cycle World!) It's a two-cylinder, so it growls rather than purrs, and the bike's dry weight is @378 lbs. (steel frame) so the engine has some weight to pull from a stop, BUT once you're underway (say, 30 mph on up) it has great power. I cruise secondary roads with it running at 4,000 to 5,000 rpm, so it can dart forward whenever summoned. No trouble at all "keeping up" on the highway at 75mph. It has been carefully broken in (by the book, which is tedious) then run at all speeds and engine speeds on a variety of rides, several up to 5 or 6 hours. Fine little tourer. The handling is predictable and sharp. Sole drawbacks are engine's lower-speed unsmoothness (it's not unique in that) and grumbliness below 3,800 rpm. It's a joy from 4,000 on up. Currently has @ 3,200 miles on it and that may be the last I ride- weather's getting cold, days short. So sad. Given the $390 Extended Warranty, I'm asking $4,350. [email protected]

"Abandon All Sloth, Ye Who Enter Here!"
 

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OH, a P.S.: The riding position is very satisfying. Moderate legs-up, moderate posture. I tend to lean forward with my elbows in, more racer-like. This suits me because I'm used to riding on the drops of my bicycle, but the bike is equally suited to an upright sitting position. Not cruiser- you can easily stand a bit on the pegs when going over bumps or to relieve saddle fatigue.

"Abandon All Sloth, Ye Who Enter Here!"
 
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