The fun increases every time I get a smaller bike. I had moved from a Honda Aero 750 cruiser to the N650R, and the Little Red Ninja felt telepathic in comparison. The Ninjette is even easier to ride.Hi Baxter. How do you like your Ninja 400 compared to your 2007 650R? Thank you.
I prefer the moderately sporty ergonomics of both these bikes compared to supersports. The Ninjette suits my stature better than the Little Red Ninja did--I'm 5'7" and 160 lbs (I shrank 1/2 " due to ageing and my doc thinks I should lose 10 lbs). I can flat foot the Ninjette where the N650R was a balls-of-the-feet situation. And the Ninjette is noticeably lighter. Size and light weight combine to make for a bike that's even more suited to tight mountain curves or city riding. I'm eagerly anticipating another trip to the Tail of the Dragon. However, I don't believe that anyone would want to ride pillion for very long.
The Ninjette is still powerful enough for riding on the open interstates. Power on high speed highways was a concern that lead me to choose the N650R over the Ninja 250 when I bought the Little Red Ninja. The Ninjette 400 has enough oomph to deal with any traffic situation. However, I'm finding that passing power happens at higher RPMs than on the N650R. Maybe there's a few more situations where I may want to drop to 5th in passing. But I generally ride with or just slightly faster than general traffic, so the power band suits me.
I was able to get out for a ride on a modestly windy day--25+ sustained winds and 30+ gusts. The Ninjette handled headwind and crosswinds at 80-ish on the interstate just like the N650R, and even handled truck blasts well. This should not present a concern.
It's been too late in the year for a IBA run--darkness with suicidal deer make me think of waiting until June before riding an 18 hour day. So I can't say with certainty how the Ninjette would do on a long trip. But I've done 2+ hour rides in comfort, so I suspect that this bike will be good for long distance travel. And all my old luggage fits securely.
Range was also a concern with the smaller gas tank. But I'm getting better than 60 mpg. So I think that my highway range should turn out to be acceptable even in the western US where gas stations can be hard to find.
I'm definitely enjoying the Ninjette. And I think it's an improvement for me over the Little Red Ninja. But a taller or heavier rider, or someone who wants to regularly ride two-up, might prefer the Ninja 650.