From the Grand Tetons to Tierra del Fuego, and from the Big Apple to Apple Valley, the DR650S can do it all. And that’s because its formula is just right: Like Charles Lindbergh’s single-engine Ryan monoplane that crossed the Atlantic in 1927, the biggest DR eats up the miles with reassuring simplicity. For instance, instead of semi-complex liquid-cooling, its big 644cc single uses a cocktail of air-/oil-cooling, and its carburetor—which works through airflow physics and not electronically like EFI—can be serviced virtually anywhere. Likewise, the 525-series drive chain is easy to source and replace, as are the 21-inch front, 17-inch rear tube-type tires.
At a claimed 366 pounds wet, the DR650S is heavy for a trailbike but light for a streetbike. With 10.4 inches of ground clearance and 10.2 inches of suspension travel, its center of mass is also rather high, making the DR seem larger and heavier than it is. As a small bonus here, Suzuki offers a lowering kit that drops the seat from 34.8 to 33.2 inches high.
Likes: A tourer, trailbike, commuter, and streetbike all in one.
Dislikes: A jack of all trades, master of none.
Verdict: Load up! The big DR is ready for anything.