To answer some questions:
I'm by no means skilled enough to make use of either the 1200s or r... and neither are my friends.
Keeping up with them in a straight line is really all it'll come down to and honestly the 650F isn't even terrible at that at legal speeds.
I make a decent living but I can't say I'm overly wealthy and budget is definitely a concern.
With all that said, I'm kind of asking for something that doesn't exist by wanting a "sporty" bike that does 2-up touring well, but also is short enough for me to be comfortable at a stoplight with her on the back (and she's not too big btw, 5'3" and 130lbs)... and /would like/ somewhere around 150hp/80+ ft/lbs torque that's actually accessible at a relatively low rpm.
She prefers naked bikes (aesthetics only) and looks don't matter to me as much as performance and ride-ability.
I've also been tossing around the idea of a Yamaha fz-10 as it's exactly in line with what I want, but we both think it's ugly as sin. On the other hand, it's $5000 cheaper than the monster comparing new to new... and that could buy a lot of shiny bits.
To elaborate on what kind of riding I do:
Out of the 6,000 miles I've put on the 650F so far, approx. 2000 of those were either solo or group spirited riding, 1000 were short trips with her on the back riding leisurely (1 hour or less one-way), and 3000 were solo interstate touring trips of 300+ miles one-way.
Future riding will consist much more of the leisurely type with her on the back, although she is growing a liking to getting low in corners.
As an aside: She is completely new to motorcycles and is warming up to it still. Eventually I'd like to get her onto her own and go for some nice longer trips sight-seeing.
P.S. I apologize for the novel.