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10 Great Advanced Beginner Motorcycles


If you're relatively new to motorcycling but are considerably bigger, heavier, or more experienced than a first time rider, you'll want to take a look at these 10 Great Advanced Beginner Motorcycles. Some have taller seat heights, others are a bit heftier, but all are great choices if you've got a bit of experience under your belt but aren't ready for a more serious bike.

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1. 2012 Suzuki DR 650 SE ($5,999)

2012 Suzuki DR650SE
Photo © Suzuki
Suzuki's DR 650 SE is a single-cylinder, dual-purpose workhorse. Its 34.8 inch seat height can be lowered to 33.0 inches-- which is still a bit tall for most riders, but right at home on this list of advanced beginner motorcycles.

>>Click here to see the 2011 Suzuki Lineup

2. 2012 Kawasaki KLR650 ($6,299)

2012 Kawasaki KLR650
Photo © Kawasaki
The Kawasaki KLR650 is a dependable, tried and true bike that's been around for over two decades; a recent redesign makes it even more desirable, though its 35 inch seat height might be tall for some beginner riders.

3. 2011 Yamaha WR250X ($6,590)

2011 Yamaha WR250X
Photo © Yamaha
The Yamaha WR250X is a supermoto bike whose light weight lends it loads of agility, while its 250cc engine is perfect for beginners.

>>Click here for a look at bikes in the 2012 Yamaha lineup.

4. 2012 Honda XR650L ($6,690)

2012 Honda XR650L
Photo © Honda
Honda's XR650L is a rugged dual purpose bike with a reliable, air-cooled single-cylinder engine. Its 37 inch seat height is high, but for taller riders it makes a great advanced beginner motorcycle.

5. 2012 Kawasaki Ninja 650 ($7,499)

2012 Kawasaki Ninja 650
Photo © Kawasaki
The Ninja 650 is more powerful variant of the 250R and 500R, and features a flexible parallel twin engine. Though this Ninja is one of the more powerful motorcycles on this list, it's an easy to use bike that's completely approachable.

>>Click here for a 2012 Kawasaki Ninja 650 Review

6. 2012 BMW G 650 GS ($7,850)

2012 BMW G650GS
Photo © BMW
BMW's R 1200 GS hogs all the glory with its big-bore displacement and globetrotting reputation, but its little sibling G 650 GS actually makes for an excellent advanced beginner bike thanks to its mild single-cylinder engine, 31.5 inch seat height, and available lower suspension that drops the saddle to 30.3 inches. For a more offroad-ready version of this bike, take a look at the 2012 BMW G 650 GS Sertão.

7. 2012 Kawasaki Versys ($7,899)

2012 Kawasaki Versys
Photo © Kawasaki
The Kawasaki Versys is an aptly named, versatile dual purpose bike that defies categorization. Its fuel injected 649cc parallel twin offers strong enough acceleration, but this motorcycle is characterized by its overall sense of balance.

8. 2012 Suzuki V-Strom 650 ABS ($8,299) / V-Strom 650 ABS Adventure ($9,799)

2012 Suzuki V-Strom 650 ABS
Photo © Suzuki
Nicknamed the "Wee Strom" because it's the smaller-sized V-Strom, this V-twin-powered bike is a favorite among adventure-seeking riders of all levels; for a more rugged, saddlebag-equipped version, take a look at the "Adventure" model.

>>Click here for a photo gallery of the 2008 Suzuki lineup.

9. 2012 Ducati Monster 696 ($8,795)

2012 Ducati Monster 696
Photo © Ducati
Ducatis tend to be more expensive to maintain than most bikes, but their unique personalities inspire a passionate following among enthusiasts. Though it faces competition from the Monster 796 ABS, the Monster 696 hits the sub-$9,000 sweet spot, and can be ordered with ABS.

>>Click here for a photo gallery of the 2009 Ducati Monster 696
>>Click here for a review of the 2009 Ducati Monster 696

10. 2012 Suzuki Boulevard C50T ($9,499)

2012 Suzuki C50T
Photo © Suzuki
Suzuki's Boulevard C50T cruiser offers retro styling and a torquey V-twin with touring accessories like a tall windscreen, saddlebags, and a passenger backrest.

>>Click here for a photo gallery of the 2011 Suzuki lineup.

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