My V-Strom 650 gets an average of 50 mpg. On most longer trips it gets up to 54 mpg. Last week I rode my bike to work every day in an effort to save money on gas (my car only gets 24 mpg). Of course, it rained four out of those five days. By the end of the week I was sick of riding. That feeling lasted five minutes, of course.
I know someone that bought a V-Strom primarily as a commuting vehicle and only rides it recreationally a few weekends a month, if he’s lucky. I bought my V-Strom for long multi-day solo road trips and tours, and am just now getting into the habit of commuting on it.
What’s great about this bike is it will serve each purpose equally well. It’s probably the best bang for the buck of any touring bike available today. There are other bikes that may be more comfortable or have greater luggage capacity for long trips, but they cost twice as much (or more). I’ve got $10,000 into my bike, including all my riding clothes and helmet and just about every farkle and accessory you can imagine (except for a GPS unit; there’s always Christmas). Most other bikes cost more than that before you’ve paid for a single add-on or luggage item.
For me, long trips was the reason for the bike’s purchase. Riding to work is a bonus.