Yamaha V-Star 650 Specsby Michael G. Sanchez
Sporting lots of chrome, a bobtail rear fender, clear turn signals and dual exhaust pipes, the 2013 Star V-Star 650 Custom sure looked the part of a classic cruiser. The style-focused bike was the entry level offering in the V-Star lineup. The Star brand -- which is exclusive to the U.S. market -- is Yamaha's cruiser-specific nameplate. Thanks to its low price, moderate power output, and light, maneuverable chassis, the V-Star 650 Custom was an excellent choice for beginning riders and anyone in search of a sharp-looking, easy-to-ride cruiser.
An Agile Cruiser
The V-Star 650 Custom weighed-in at 514 pounds, which was quite low for a cruiser. Its overall length was 92.1 inches and its overall width was 34.6 inches. The V-Star 650 Custom had a 63.4-inch wheelbase and a low seat height of 27.4 inches. The bike offered 5.5 inches of ground clearance and a minimum turning radius of 122 inches.
Classic V-Twin Power
The V-Star 650 Custom was powered by a 649 cc, 70 degree V-twin engine. The air-cooled, single-overhead-cam powerplant had a 3.19-inch bore and a 2.48-inch stroke. Its compression ratio was 9.00-to-1. Fuel was delivered by dual heated 28 mm Mikuni constant-velocity carburetors. Shifting was accomplished by a five-speed transmission with multi-plate wet clutch. Average fuel economy was approximately 49 mpg and the V-Star 650 Custom came with a 4.2-gallon tank.
Suspension, Tires and Brakes
The front end featured a telescopic fork suspension with coil springs, an oil damper shock absorber and 5.51 inches of travel. Out back was a swingarm setup with a coil spring and a gas-oil damper shock. The rear end provided 3.39 inches of wheel travel. The V-Star 650 Custom rode on a 3.25/3.50 front tire and a beefy 6.70/6.25 rear tire. It came with either Dunlop F/K or Bridgestone Exedra tires. The V-Star had a single disc brake in the front and a drum brake in the rear.
An Affordable Option
With a manufacturer's suggested retail price of $6,990, the V-Star 650 Custom was a relatively inexpensive entry-level bike. For 2013, it shipped in only one color: gloss black.