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"Dirt Rider", March 1, 2013

DUAL-PURPOSE AND TERRA-IFFIC

2013 HUSQVARNA TR650 TERRA

Story By Chris Green

Photo By Chris Green And Sean Finley

The birth of Husqvarna’s new 2013 TR650 Terra came partially from the current market trends proving that motorcycles right around the 650cc engine size are very practical for everyday use. Now, whether your daily path leads you down a winding dirt road or through a packed urban city like Los Angeles, the TR650 Terra has your back. You might even hear faint whimpers coming from the garage at night when the little Husky dreams about getting its tires dirty.

An all-new model for 2013, the Terra sports a split-backbone tubular steel frame chassis that holds a 652cc single-cylinder DOHC engine based off of BMW’s proven G 650 GS powerhouse. To ensure it didn’t introduce a sleeper, Husky gave its TR650 a “tune-up treatment” with a 20 percent increase in power for a claimed 58 horsepower. A Magnetti Marelli electronic fuel-injection system feeds the motor from a 3.5-gallon fuel tank. A claimed 55 mpg is about accurate, as the fuel light would come on around 150 miles into a full tank and the bike will go another 30 without running dry. From the BMW-based motor, the Husky version has altered camshafts and an increased compression ratio along with larger valves and a stiffer, lighter forged piston.

The first outing down the freeway had us impressed with the TR650’s comfort level and lack of vibration at higher speeds, which typically kicked in around the 80 to 85 mph mark while the rpm were nearing 6,000. Other single-cylinder 650cc bikes have had our feet tickling and hands buzzing after a 20-minute ride, but this was never an issue on the Terra. However, the lack of a windshield dropped the preferred speed down to about 65.

Power delivery on the TR650 is very friendly so long as you get used to its ways of dropping the hammer. The initial feel when letting out the clutch to engage power is smooth, but right off idle the engine has somewhat of an empty gap that requires the user to give extra throttle and modulate the spin of the motor with the clutch. It’s not really an issue since the clutch action is consistent; it’s just something you have to get used to. Once past the first/second gear take-off stage, shifting through the gears feels very clean. A small complaint we have is the cable-pull clutch — we’d prefer to have the luxury of a hydraulic system.

The best hyphenated pair of words that describe how the Terra feels off-road is comfort-aggressive. This Husky will soak up any decent-sized fire road chop or dirt road imperfections without wallowing down into the stroke; it simply stays up and remains planted and in control. We even had a wild hair itching so bad that we took to some mellow single-track and were impressed once again by her wide range of capabilities. There aren’t many single-track–capable motorcycles that will get you down the freeway and into work that next morning.

SECOND OPINION

Joe McKimmy

Ht: 5’11” Wt: 165 lb Ability: Off-Road Intermediate

I honestly didn’t like the Terra off-road much, mainly due to the tires that come with the bike. The Terra’s motor is a little sluggish on low-end power, and the footpegs are a bit slippery. I felt more comfortable on the street with the Terra. The stiff front end allowed me to push the bike harder on cornering than expected, and cruising through the twisty turns in the mountains was a blast!

SEAT HEIGHT: 34.2”

GROUND CLEARANCE: 11.0”

FUEL CAPACITY: 3.6 GAL.

WEIGHT, TANK FULL: 406 LB

MSRP: $6,999

WWW.HUSQVARNA-MOTORCYCLESNA.COM

WANT MORE?

GET A BIT OF HUSKY 650 ACTION RIGHT HERE! WWW.DIRTRIDER.COM/2013-HUSQVARNA-TERRA-650

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