I’m thinking about becoming a dual sport adventure rider. What bike should I buy?

I can’t tell you which bike will best meet your needs but I might be able to help you think it through. I suggest that you start by determining what your riding will actually consist of. Are you going to ride mostly single track with only enough pavement to get from one trail to another?  Will you be going on long distance adventures? Only by first figuring out what type of riding you will be doing can you select the right bike for you. You might find this guide to dual sport riding useful.


Husqvarna 701 Enduro

At 320 lbs, the 701 Enduro is solidly embedded in dual sport motorcycle category and should make a fine middleweight adventure bike. Let’s find out just how good it can really be.

 


Can a dirt-bike-with-lights be effectively converted into a lightweight adventure bike? I intend to find out after purchasing a 2015 KTM 500 EXC. You can read about my build here.
 

Husqvarna TE610 versus Honda XR650L

The Husky TE610/630 are the finest 650 class dual sport motorcycles ever produced. Unfortunately, Husky discontinued the TEs in 2012, with no replacement in sight. However, the Honda XR650L is still available and it is a surprisingly good platform for a 20 year old design. Which made me wonder – can you modify a XR-L so that it equals the might TE610? Find out in this comparison.

 


 

Husqvarna TR650 Terra

In 2013 Husqvarna came out with the TR650 Terra, produced as a competitor to the Kawasaki KLR650.  I purchased the Husky in the winter of 2014 in order to have a more road-worthy adventure bike.  Planned changes include seat, windscreen, and luggage racks.

 

 

 


Project XR650L Adventure

 In July 2014 I bought a 2006 Honda XR650L that had a bit more than 20,000 miles on the odometer.  My intent was to see how much I could improve the XRL as a dual sport adventure bike.


DR-Z400S Adventure

 A stock DRZ is a fine dual sport motorcycle but I found it to be lacking in a few areas when pressed into duty as an adventure bike.  So I decided to find out just how much improvement was possible.

 


 

 

Husqvarna TE610

 In 2006 Husqvarna redesigned the TE610, its 650 class dual sport adventure bike.  Then in 2008 it upgraded it again with fuel injection.  In 2009 I acquired a TE610 and ended up riding it nearly 20,000 miles over a 4 year period.  This is the on-going review I wrote during the early years of my ownership of the 610.  The 610 has been discontinued but if you are considering buying one on the used market you might find my report useful.