1997 Yamaha XVS650 DragStar from United Kingdom


Not as good as it looks


Clutch fell apart (broke) - no help from Yamaha.

Corrosion appearing on all chrome.

General Comments:

Plating is very poor.

Brakes are not good enough.

Lighting is poor.

Seat becomes uncomfortable after an hour.

Parts are too expensive.

Would you buy another motorcycle from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 13th May, 2010

1997 Yamaha XVS650 DragStar from United Kingdom


A reliable solid workhorse, which has the looks to catch the eye


Gear fork selector spring. Locked in 5th. Interesting!

Front disc warped.

Front brake line perished.

Front cylinder coil failed.

Rear shock tube to bracket weld failed.

Front brake light switch failed.

Rear brake light switch failed.

Throttle cable broke.

Clutch cable broke.

Shaft to final drive connector sleeve worn out.

Chrome finish on plastic covers bubbling.

Salt damage to chrome on engine covers and lower fork yoke.

General Comments:

I bought this bike as a starter m/c after 20 years on 4 wheels to reduce my traveling time to and from work. I had expected to move up fairly quickly, but as it does the job, is easy and pleasant to ride and has proved to be a very reliable workhorse on a daily 80 mile round trip commute, I've never felt the need to change. The forward controls position makes for a comfortable riding position especial for those with long legs.

Averaged 49.9 mpg over last year.

Averaged 13.5K miles per set of tyres over last 6 sets.

Always first off the line at lights and junctions, but runs out of steam after 60 mph.

A cruiser which responds well to a cruiser style of riding. Sit back and let the bike do what it can when it can, which makes for a relaxing ride.

As the m/c is quite front heavy, when pushed too hard the rear wheel can easily lock up under braking if you de-clutch to change down.

In adverse conditions i.e. water/diesel or icy drain covers it is the front end which normally loses traction first.

Generally the brakes, frame and handling match the low power of the engine, but this doesn't detract from the experience of general riding.

Even after a long wet and mucky week the orange and blue colors seem to give it a presence which turns the head of any passerby.

Would you buy another motorcycle from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 5th November, 2006

2000 Yamaha XVS650 DragStar from United Kingdom


Excellent, Harley looks and Japanese reliability


Had to re-place the rear pillion as my wife complained that the standard one was uncomfortable.

Chrome a bit "suspect"...I keep having to polish it to stop it from rusting.

General Comments:

I started out by looking at new Harley Davidson's, the only one I could afford was the 883 Sportster and at £5000 I was not impressed by the standard of trim or the finish of the HD.

I then considered a Japanese Harley copy and decided that the shaft drive 650 DragStar (known as the 650 V-Star in the US) was my best option.

The UK price was £5000, the same price as the HD883, but compared to the HD the Dragstar costs far less when you begin to add on after-market items such as back-rests, panniers, screens and the like.

I was also lucky in having a friend who imports bikes into the UK from Europe, so I eventually paid a little over £4000 on the road price for a European spec bike, the only difference being that the speedometer is in kph and the headlight dipped the wrong way (easily cured by re-positioning the bulb)

Would you buy another motorcycle from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 21st March, 2005