Yamaha makes several kinds of "Star" motorcycles, including the Road Star and Royal Star. In 1994, Yamaha created a separate subsidiary just to manufacture their popular Star lines in the U.S. The DragStar 650 is actually one of several names for the same bike. The DragStar is the successor to the venerable Yamaha Virago, and is also known as the V-Star 650 and as the XVS650. It is sold as the V-Star in America. The DragStar/V-Star is a cruiser bike in the style of classic Harley-Davidsons, but also has a reputation for sturdiness and dependability.
The DragStar was originally built around the Virago's engine, and as of 2010 remains, like the Virago, a V-twin. A V-twin is a two-cylinder engine split into a V-configuration. This has been used by many classic and modern bikes, such as the Indian Chief, Scout and Powerplus; Harley-Davidsons; the Kawasaki Vulcan; and the Suzuki Boulevard. Engine specifications for the 650 DragStars have remained fairly consistent over the years. Since the DragStar is a cruiser bike, comfort is more important than speed. The bikes have a four-stroke engine with a torque of 37.41 foot-pounds of torque, 40 horsepower at 3,000 RPM and a top speed of around 87 miles per hour. Compression ratio is 9.0:1. Bore and stroke is 81mm by 63mm, or 3.2 inches by 2.5 inches. The DragStar 650 is, like most motorcycles, air-cooled and has a five-speed manual transmission.
The DragStar 650 body has also remained more or less than same. It is not the lightest bike on the market, but neither is it a heavyweight like the Honda Gold Wing, which can reach up to 318 Kilogram. DragStars have a dry weight of around 213 Kilogram and, filled with air and fuel, a wet weight of 247 Kilogram. Gas tank capacity is slightly over four U.S. gallons. The DragStar is known as a low-riding bike and has a seat height of about 28 inches. Length for the 2010 DragStars is 96.5 inches, width 36.6 inches and height 43.5 inches. Ground clearance is 5.7 inches, and the wheelbase is an extra-long 64 inches.
The DragStar 650 comes with a tank-mounted speedometer and a teardrop-shaped gas tank. Wide handlebars give it a retro look. A small locking compartment is located under the side cover, where riders can stash small items. The bike also has chrome accents and chrome halogen headlights. Various extras have been offered for the DragStar as well, such as chrome bars, tassels and luggage.