The V-Storm is a tall, imposing bike with a 16.5-centimetre ground clearance and 84-centimetre seat height. These measurements make this bike that much more versatile when it comes to getting off the beaten track.
On the road, the V-Storm cruises superbly, although its high stance can make it somewhat susceptible to strong crosswinds. The small windshield, on the other hand, does a good job of keeping the wind off your chest and doesn’t impair your vision.
Like any modern bike, all the controls and switches are well placed and intuitive. Gauges are easy to read and the mirrors provide good views.
The 1000 cc, V-twin gives the bike adequate acceleration, however, the wide spacing of the gears makes shifting essential to be in the right gear when in traffic. Overall, I was pleased with the power produced by the engine.
As for touring, the V-Storm is equipped with hard saddlebags and a hard tail bag all constructed of colour coordinated fiberglass. As factory bags go, these styled renditions are a good size. They have handles for trouble-free carrying and can be put on and taken off the bike with little fuss.
Those of you who like the look of a sport bike, but also want to do a little touring, will definitely like the Bandit S, commonly referred to as the 1250SEA.
Although it gives you the look of a sport bike, it has the comfort of a touring cycle. Seat height is approximately 78 centimetres at its lowest adjustment.
The Bandit uses a traditional cross-mounted straight four-cylinder engine that churns out 1250 cc, which gives it plenty of power. Unlike the V-Storm, it accelerates without fail – even if you’re in the wrong gear. All this power comes with a price, though, as I didn’t find the Bandit that fuel-efficient compared to other bikes with similar sized engines. But, it might be a small concession when you consider the power this motor generates.
The lower height of the Bandit enables it to be handled nicely in town or on the highway. My only beef was the mirrors as they offered a limited view.
Overall, I liked the way the bike handled at all speeds. The front not only looks sharp, but also offers a bit of wind protection while the sides duct air into the radiator, keeping the bike cool.
Like the V-Storm, the Bandit has a three-bag luggage system that clips on and off the bike easily. Both used a key lock system for opening and removing the bags from the bike.
The V-Storm and Bandit offer different rides. The size and shape of the V-Storm provides riders an option of travelling along the road or going into the wilds. The Bandit, meanwhile, is appropriate for the road and handles much like a sport bike.