Tag Archives: Suzuki Motorcycles

Suzuki still serious about turbocharging

We have been reporting on Suzuki’s turbocharging plans ever since they unveiled their Recursion concept in 2013.

Suzuki Recursion - Katana turbo blown turbocharging
Suzuki Recursion

Over the years there have been rumours about mid-capacity turbo sports bikes of 500-700cc capacity and even a turbo version of their Hayabusa or new Katana.

Each year they have hinted at turbocharging and we fly expected to see one at this year’s EICMA motorcycle show in Milan were they had said they would release several new mnkdles.

Instead, we got an updated DR Big V-Strom!

Suzuki V-Strom 1050 Dr Big
Updated DR Big Strom!

Serious about turbocharging

But Suzuki is still serious about turbocharging tech.

British insurance broker website Bennetts says it will be a a GSX 700 Turbo and have released new patent drawings that seem to support that theory.

It shows the turbo located closer to the cylinder heads which makes the engine more compact and reduces turbo “lag”.

The drawings show a tubular frame, compact low exhaust and twin radiators.

Will it be revealed in 2020? Who knows! We’ve almost given up predicting the launch of their forced-induction model.

Meanwhile, Kawasaki is forging ahead with their supercharged models. They now have four models – H2, H2R, H2 SX and the Z H2.

Kawasaki Z H2 - Bimota
Kawasaki Z H2

They’ve also bought Bimota and are powering their new Tesi with a H2 supercharged engine.

Bimota Tesi H2

Even BMW is considering forced induction for their M bikes.

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

Suzuki’s 2020 Dr Big V-Strom 1050

As expected, Suzuki has upgraded its V-Strom range with a 1050 flagship in honour of their legendary DR-BIG.

Not only is the flagship V-Strom bigger with 5kW more power to 79kW at 8500 revs, but it is also more techno.

Some of the hi-tech features include cruise, hill hold, slope and load dependent controls, ride modes and LED lighting.

It will come in two models, standard and XT for touring.

Suzuki Australia says V-Strom 1050 and XT are expected to arrive in the middle of 2020 with final specifications, colours and pricing confirmed closer to launch.

Here is the full V-Strom 1050 press release from Suzuki AustraliaSuzuki V-Strom 1050 Dr Big

Powered by Suzuki’s highly acclaimed 1037cc, 90° V-twin, DOHC engine which has further evolved for MY20, boasting increased top-end power whilst also conforming to Euro 5 emissions standards. Thanks to new camshaft profiles and timing, peak horsepower has increased considerably from 74kW / 8,000rpm to 79kW / 8,500rpm (106hp). The highly refined engine begins with a deep rumble low in the rpm range, then progresses through the mid-range along a strong and linear torque curve then keeps building through the high rpm range in a smooth yet enjoyable manner.Suzuki V-Strom 1050 Dr Big

The distinctive new styling incorporates elements of both Suzuki’s legendary DR-Z desert racer and the large off-road model DR-BIG. The distinguishing beak design first adopted by Suzuki stays true to Suzuki’s heritage while also modernising the design to be more aggressive and bolder for the new generation V-STROM.

The most technologically advanced production Suzuki motorcycle in company history, the latest generation V-STROM is the first to boast Suzuki’s new Intelligent Ride System (S.I.R.S). Combining an array of electronic aids and controls as well as several unique features only available on XT, further enhancing rider useability and convenience like never before.    

An advanced cruise control system works in conjunction with the new ride-by-wire throttle system to maintain the set vehicle speed without the rider needing to operate the throttle, a welcomed feature for long-distance touring that assists in reducing rider fatigue. Cruising speed can be set from approximately 50km/h to 160km/h at fourth gear or above. A switch on the right handlebar can be pressed to put cruise control into standby, and the selector switch (up/down) on the left handlebars allows the rider to adjust the speed up and down accordingly.

Suzuki’s famous Drive Mode Selector (SDMS) is now available on a V-STROM for the very first time, offering riders the choice of three difference output characteristic modes. A-mode provides the sharpest throttle response, B-mode provides a slightly softer throttle response and C-mode provides the softest response of the three modes.

Another Suzuki first is the Hill Hold, Slope Dependent and Load Dependent control systems available on XT. Hill hold control automatically applies the rear brake when the motorcycle is stopped on an upward slope to prevent rollback when the brakes and clutch are released. Slope Dependent control constantly monitors posture and if required controls brake pressure to prevent rear wheel lift during downhill braking.

Load Dependent system supports optimal braking by compensating for varying load conditions such as the difference between riding solo or with a pillion and loaded luggage vs unloaded.     

An updated traction control system now features three modes of control (previously two) inspiring greater confidence in diverse riding conditions. Mode 1 is for spirited riding with minimal level of intervention. Mode 2 is ideal for commuting and regular riding conditions and Mode 3 is best suited for poorer riding conditions such as wet or cold roads as it offers the highest level of intervention.

An upgraded Bosch inertial measurement unit (IMU) equipped on the XT model now works on 6-directions along 3-axis rather than the 5-axis of the previous system. This allows it to detect pitch, roll, and yaw movements based on the angular rate and acceleration. This new high-performance 6-direction IMU combines a 3-axis angular rate sensor (gyrometer) and a 3-axis acceleration sensor in a single compact unit.

The motion track brake system exclusive to XT combines information on the posture of the vehicle from the new IMU with the front and rear wheel speeds. This allows the ABS to activate not only in a straight line but also when the vehicle is leaning. When the brake lever or pedal is operated, this system instantly assesses the need of ABS operation by calculating the posture of the vehicle and front and rear wheel speeds. When judging the need of operation, ABS unit decreases braking pressure, and continues to control the increase/decrease of the pressure according to the traction available.Suzuki V-Strom 1050 Dr Big

This latest ABS system allows the rider to select from 2-levels of intervention. Mode 1 provides minimal intervention and is suitable for flat dirt roads, whilst Mode 2’s intervention timing is earlier than Mode 1 and is ideal for normal tarmac roads.

A newly added Combined Brake System automatically applies pressure to the rear brake to help stablise the motorcycle when the front brake pressure rises to a certain degree.

An updated windscreen design compliments the new exterior design. Developed utilising wind-tunnel testing, the new screen can be finely adjusted without tools to one of 11 positions across a 50mm vertical range.

The instrument panel presents all required information on a full LCD screen using a clean and intuitive layout with information displayed in order of priority. Included in the display are the speedometer, tachometer (full pixel digital display), gear position indicator, odometer, trip meter (A, B), instantaneous fuel consumption, average fuel consumption, driving range, fuel level indicator, engine coolant temperature indicator, ambient air temperature indicator, clock, voltage meter, service reminder, SDMS mode, traction control mode, cruise control indicator, ABS mode, hill hold indicator, engine rpm indicator light, frost indicator light, turn signal indicator light, high beam indicator light, traction control indicator light, ABS indicator light, and neutral indicator light.

A USB port is located left side of the instrument panel. It can be used as a power source for charging a smartphone, navigation system, or other similar device.Suzuki V-Strom 1050 Dr Big

The lightweight and compact chassis is the core factor in achieving the V-STROM’s comfortable and enjoyable character. The narrow width of its V-twin engine allows the motorcycle to maintain a slim body shape even with a 20L fuel tank present, allowing the rider to easily reach the ground with their feet.

Utilising a cast aluminium twin-spar frame featuring the optimal rigidity balance for exceptional stability and handling performance. The frame supports everything a rider requires to embark on their next big adventure from straight line stability to smooth and natural cornering with high levels of traction.

The 43mm KYB inverted front fork features adjustable compression damping, rebound damping and spring preload and can be tailored based on rider preference and usage.

The V-STROM 1050XT also sports a completely new seat design that allows the seat height to be adjusted an additional 20mm higher than the standard position. The KYB rear shock features adjustable spring preload via an external hand dial to easily facilitate adjustments between riding solo, with pillion or fully loaded with luggage.

TOKICO Monobloc radial mounted front brake calipers handle stopping duties matched with dual 310mm floating discs provide strong braking performance with remarkable feel. 

The footrests are constructed of tough steel and have been redesigned to make it easier for the rider to stand on flat dirt, and are also wider than the previous version.

Protection and convenience on the XT is taken to the next level with an aluminium under cowling and accessory bar guarding underneath and side of the engine whilst stronger hand guards have been employed to protect rider’s hands from wind, rain and flying stones. The lightweight centre stand is well balanced and is useful when performing maintenance tasks and loading luggage. Suzuki V-Strom 1050 Dr Big

Wire-spoked aluminium rims are fitted as standard on the XT model offering improved road absorption whilst the standard model is equipped with 10-spoke cast aluminium wheels. Both variants are shod with Bridgestone Battlax Adventure A41 tyres.

A vertically stacked LED headlight and LED rear combination light deliver excellent visibility and stylish looks, the XT also features LED indicators as standard equipment. 

Other niceties include Suzuki’s Low RPM assist system which monitors and automatically raises the idle speed when taking off from a stop or when riding slowly through traffic and 

Suzuki’s Easy Start System which provides ultra-convenient one-touch engine starting.

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

2020 Suzuki V-Strom 1050, 1050XT and 1050XT Adventure | First Look Preview

2020 Suzuki V-Strom 1050XT Orange and White
2020 Suzuki V-Strom 1050XT in Orange and White. Images courtesy Suzuki.

Suzuki has announced updates for its lineup of big V-Stroms, including a nomenclature change from 1000 to 1050. The 2020 V-Strom 1050, V-Strom 1050XT and V-Strom 1050XT Adventure feature sharper styling with bold, bright paint schemes that reflect Suzuki’s historical race livery, and a few technological updates.

At the heart of each Strom is the tried-and-true 1037cc 90-degree V-twin that Suzuki says has been updated with more horsepower while still complying with worldwide emissions standards. Ride-by-wire with dual electronic throttle assemblies powers a revised traction control system with an additional ride mode (for a total of four), a new three-mode Drive Mode Selector that adjusts power delivery characteristics and the addition of Suzuki’s one-touch Easy Start System. There is also a new LCD instrument with mounting bar for a GPS and a new USB port.

2020 Suzuki V-Strom 1050
2020 Suzuki V-Strom 1050 rolls on cast wheels and comes in Gray and Black.

The base V-Strom 1050 rolls on cast wheels, but the V-Strom 1050XT and 1050XT Adventure both include tubeless spoked wheels for more off-road endeavors. They also feature the Suzuki Intelligent Ride System (S.I.R.S.) with a new six-direction, three-axis IMU. The S.I.R.S. includes electronic cruise control and an updated cornering ABS and combined braking system that now includes Hill Hold Control and a Slope Dependent Control System that manages rear wheel lift when riding downhill.

Both the V-Strom 1050XT and 1050XT Adventure also come with a redesigned windscreen, hand guards and mirrors, a new height-adjustable two-piece seat, a centerstand, engine guards and more.

The 2020 V-Strom 1050XT will be available in two colors, Championship Yellow and Orange and White. The V-Strom 1050XT Adventure will be available in Glass Sparkle Black and includes quick-release aluminum panniers and heated grips. Pricing and availability on all three models is TBD.

Keep scrolling for more photos….

2020 Suzuki V-Strom 1050XT Yellow
2020 Suzuki V-Strom 1050XT in Championship Yellow.
2020 Suzuki V-Strom 1050XT Adventure
2020 Suzuki V-Strom 1050XT Adventure in Glass Sparkle Black.

Source: RiderMagazine.com

Suzuki revamps V-Strom range

Suzuki is tipped to unveil a revamped V-Strom range with an updated and maybe bigger engine with a cosmetic makeover to match the reborn Katana.

The company’s latest teaser video clearly shows the flagship 1037ccc model in all its glory with a squared LED headlight to reflect the more angular styling of the Katana model.

Does this mean more models in their range will follow this new design philosophy?

2019 Suzuki Katana deposits
Katana headlight

There is a clear shot of an updated tablet-style fully digital instrument panel which could mean updated connectivity and electronic wizardry.

It’s a blank screen and it looks like it doesn’t handle glare very well!2020 Suzuki V-Strom 1000

The windscreen looks taller, the seat is now split, it appears to have LED indicators, there’s an engine guard and is that a bigger fuel tank?

We also note different engine casings and a fatter exhaust pipe in the video which means they have likely updated the engine for next year’s tougher Euro5 emissions requirements.2020 Suzuki V-Strom 1000

That could also mean a bigger engine than the current 1037cc twin.

We won’t have long to wait to find out as the bike will be unveiled on Tuesday at the EICMA motorcycle showing Milan.2020 Suzuki V-Strom 1000

V-Strom 650 update?

This video only shows the flagship model, but we suspect the three 650 models will also get an update.


Because Suzuki Australia is currently offering great runout deals on both the 1000 and 650.

Check out the ride-away price bonuses:

The 250 “baby-strom” might also be in line for similar updates.

There may be some other treats from Suzuki at EICMA.

After years of teasing, Suzuki might unveil a turbo model, perhaps even a turbo Hayabusa or Katana. More likely it will be something in the mid-range engine capacity.

There will probably be a concept bike and an electric.

Some have even suggested a smaller version of the recently released Katana.

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

Suzuki Announces New and Returning 2020 Motorcycles

2020 Suzuki Katana in Solid Black
2020 Suzuki Katana in Solid Black

Suzuki has announced new and returning models for its 2020 motorcycle lineup. New models include the modern interpretation of the iconic Katana sportbike, which we test rode in Japan and reviewed last spring, and the V-Strom 650XT Adventure.

All other returning models for 2020 are unchanged except for colors and pricing.

Check out Rider‘s 2020 Guide to New Street Motorcycles

2020 Suzuki Katana

2020 Suzuki Katana in Metallic Mystic Silver
2020 Suzuki Katana in Metallic Mystic Silver

Based on the GSX-S1000 naked sportbike and powered by a liquid-cooled,
DOHC, 999cc in-line four that’s a modified, street-tuned version of the
GSX-R1000 K5 (2005-2008) engine, making 147 horsepower at 10,000 rpm and 80
lb-ft of torque at 9,500 rpm (claimed), the new Katana is based on the Katana
3.0 Concept created by Italian designer Rodolfo Frascoli.

Read about the history of the original, Hans Muth-designed 1981 GSX1100S Katana and the evolution of the new model in our First Ride Review. The 2020 Suzuki Katana will be available in Metallic Mystic Silver or Solid Black. Pricing starts at is $13,499 and it will be in dealerships in November.

2020 Suzuki V-Strom 650XT Adventure

2020 Suzuki V-Strom 650XT Adventure
2020 Suzuki V-Strom 650XT Adventure

Replacing the V-Strom 650XT Touring for 2020 is the V-Strom 650XT Adventure, which is equipped with tubeless spoked wheels, aluminum panniers, an accessory bar, a handlebar cross-brace, mirror extensions and a centerstand. Powered by a 645cc 90-degree V-twin, it is mechanically unchanged from the 2018 Suzuki V-Strom 650XT we last tested.

The 2020 Suzuki V-Strom XT Adventure will be available in
Pearl Vigor Blue and base MSRP is $10,399.

The rest are returning models….

2020 Suzuki Burgman 200

2020 Suzuki Burgman 200
2020 Suzuki Burgman 200

For 2020, the Suzuki Burgman 200 scooter is available in
Pearl Brilliant White and base MSRP is $4,999.

2020 Suzuki Boulevard C50

2020 Suzuki Boulevard C50
2020 Suzuki Boulevard C50

For 2020, the Suzuki Boulevard C50 cruiser is available in
Candy Daring Red or Glass Sparkle Black and base MSRP is $8,299.

2020 Suzuki Boulevard C50T

2020 Suzuki Boulevard C50T
2020 Suzuki Boulevard C50T

For 2020, the Suzuki Boulevard C50T touring cruiser is
available in Metallic Oort Gray No. 3 and base MSRP is $9,599.

2020 Suzuki Boulevard M109R B.O.S.S.

2020 Suzuki Boulevard M109R B.O.S.S.
2020 Suzuki Boulevard M109R B.O.S.S.

For 2020, the Suzuki Boulevard M109R B.O.S.S. muscle cruiser
is available in Pearl Glacier White/Glass Sparkle Black or Metallic Oort
Gray/Glass Sparkle Black and base MSRP is $15,199.

2020 Suzuki DR-Z400S

2020 Suzuki DR-Z400S
2020 Suzuki DR-Z400S

For 2020, the Suzuki DR-Z400S dual-sport is available in Solid
Black and base MSRP is $6,799.

2020 Suzuki DR-Z400SM

2020 Suzuki DR-Z400SM
2020 Suzuki DR-Z400SM

For 2020, the Suzuki DR-Z400SM supermoto is available in Solid
Iron Gray or Solid Special White No. 2 and base MSRP is $7,399.

2020 Suzuki DR200S

2020 Suzuki DR200S
2020 Suzuki DR200S

For 2020, the Suzuki DR200S dual-sport is available in Solid
Iron Gray and base MSRP is $4,649.

2020 Suzuki GSX-R600

2020 Suzuki GSX-R600
2020 Suzuki GSX-R600

For 2020, the Suzuki GSX-R600 sportbike is available in Pearl
Glacier White or Glass Sparkle Black and base MSRP is $11,399.

2020 Suzuki GSX-R750

2020 Suzuki GSX-R750
2020 Suzuki GSX-R750

For 2020, the Suzuki GSX-R750 sportbike is available in Pearl
Glacier White/Glass Sparkle Black or Metallic Mat Black No. 2/Glass Sparkle
Black and base MSRP is $12,499.

2020 Suzuki GSX-R1000

2020 Suzuki GSX-R1000
2020 Suzuki GSX-R1000

For 2020, the Suzuki GSX-R1000 sportbike is available in Metallic
Mat Black No. 2/Glass Sparkle Black or Pearl Glacier White/Glass Sparkle Black and
MSRP is $15,599.

Read our 2017 Suzuki GSX-R1000 First Ride Review

2020 Suzuki GSX-R1000R

2020 Suzuki GSX-R1000R
2020 Suzuki GSX-R1000R

For 2020, the Suzuki GSX-R1000R track-ready sportbike is
available in Metallic Triton Blue or Glass Sparkle Black/Pearl Mira Red and base
MSRP is $17,699.

2020 Suzuki GSX-S750

2020 Suzuki GSX-S750
2020 Suzuki GSX-S750

For 2020, the Suzuki GSX-S750 naked sportbike is available
in Metallic Mat Black No. 2 and base MSRP is $8,499.

Read our 2018 Suzuki GSX-S750 Road Test Review

2020 Suzuki GSX-S750Z ABS

2020 Suzuki GSX-S750Z ABS
2020 Suzuki GSX-S750Z ABS

For 2020, the Suzuki GSX-S750Z ABS naked sportbike is
available in Pearl Glacier White/Glass Sparkle Black with red accents and
wheels and base MSRP is $8,899.

2020 Suzuki GSX250R

2020 Suzuki GSX250R
2020 Suzuki GSX250R

For 2020, the Suzuki GSX250R entry-level sportbike is
available in Metallic Diamond Red or Pearl Glacier White/Pearl Nebular Black
and base MSRP is $4,599.

2020 Suzuki GSX250R ABS

2020 Suzuki GSX250R ABS
2020 Suzuki GSX250R ABS

For 2020, the Suzuki GSX250R ABS entry-level sportbike is
available in Metallic Crystal Blue/Pearl Nebular Black and base MSRP is $4,899.

2020 Suzuki Hayabusa

2020 Suzuki Hayabusa
2020 Suzuki Hayabusa

For 2020, the Suzuki GSX1300R Hayabusa sportbike is available in Candy Daring Red or Metallic Thunder Gray and base MSRP is $14,799.

2020 Suzuki SV650

2020 Suzuki SV650
2020 Suzuki SV650

For 2020, the Suzuki SV650 standard is available in Metallic
Mystic Silver with blue frame and wheels and base MSRP is $7,099.

Read our 2017 Suzuki SV650 First Ride Review

2020 Suzuki SV650 ABS

2020 Suzuki SV650 ABS
2020 Suzuki SV650 ABS

For 2020, the Suzuki SV650 ABS standard is available in Glass
Sparkle Black and base MSRP is $7,499.

2020 Suzuki SV650X

2020 Suzuki SV650X
2020 Suzuki SV650X

For 2020, the Suzuki SV650X café racer is available in Glass
Sparkle Black and base MSRP is $8,399.

2020 Suzuki V-Strom 650

2020 Suzuki V-Strom 650
2020 Suzuki V-Strom 650

For 2020, the Suzuki V-Strom 650 adventure bike is available
in Solid Iron Gray and base MSRP is $8,799.

Read our 2017 Suzuki V-Strom 650 Road Test Review

2020 Suzuki V-Strom 650XT

2020 Suzuki V-Strom 650XT
2020 Suzuki V-Strom 650XT

For 2020, the Suzuki V-Strom 650 adventure bike is available
in Glass Sparkle Black with gold accents and rims and base MSRP is $9,299.

Read our 2018 Suzuki V-Strom 650XT vs V-Strom 1000XT Comparison Review

Source: RiderMagazine.com

Second patent for ‘auto’ Suzuki Hayabusa

Suzuki Motorcycles has filed its second patent for a major upgrade to its Hayabusa speed demon with semi-automatic transmission.

The ageing Hayabusa has only had two major upgrades in its 17-year history as the world’s fastest production motorcycles of the last century.

While many are expecting turbo or supercharger technology, the two patents so far have been for a semi-automatic transmission.

The first patent in February 2018 details how actuators will be used to control clutch engagement and the shifting of gears.

Suzuki automatics patents in Hayabusa
Suzuki automatics patents in Hayabusa

So it’s not totally automatic as riders would still need to change gears but without the need to use a clutch.

While the patent application used a drawing of a Hayabusa, it was not necessarily meant for that bike.

Second patent

However, the second patent describes the gear position sensor, confirming that it is destined for the Hayabusa.

Hayabusa GSX1300 second patent
Second Hayabusa GSX1300

The rest of the drawings show the bike much as it is now which means it could probably be powered by the same 1340cc in-line four-cylinder engine with 148kW of power.

However, there is talk of a 1400cc version and possibly forced induction.

Suzuki president Toshihiro Suzuki has confirmed that Suzuki engineers are working on the new bike, but has not said when it would be due.

He says it will follow the same style, but gain several electronic riding aids.

Fastest rider Beccie Ellis on her Hayabusa Turbo - wheelie second patent
Beccie Ellis on her Hayabusa Turbo

There is not much they can do with the styling as the bike was designed to be aerodynamically stable at high speeds.

It was apparently designed on paper by aerodynamic experts, but not tested in a wind tunnel until several years later when it was confirmed the aero theories actually worked.

So when it was updated in 2008 and 2017, there was no need to change the shape. 

Auto push

The push toward automatics and semi-auto transmission is gaining momentum.

While most automatic two-wheelers are scooters with CVT, there is a growing list of motorcycles with auto or semi-auto clutchless transmissions.

Honda leads the way with its dual-clutch transmission in the Africa Twin, NC700X, CTX700, VFR1200X and NM4 Vultus.

Aprilia also has the automatic Mana 850 GT and even MV Agusta has a semi-automatic Rekluse clutch in its Turismo Veloce 800 Lusso SCS.

MV Agusta Turismo Veloce 800 Lusso practical
MBW rides the Turismo Veloce 800 Lusso SCS

Husqvarna is also offering an aftermarket automatic Rekluse X clutch option to upgrade their Vitpilen 401 and Svartpilen 401.

And many electric motorcycles are virtually automatic because the electric motor can be used as a direct-drive unit. It is similar to turning up the volume on an amplifier or turning up the “suck” on your vacuum cleaner.

Harley-Davidson employs this drive on their LiveWire electric motorcycle.

We have also heard unconfirmed reports that Harley has invested in American clutch company Rekluse which makes aftermarket auto clutches for Harleys.

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

Retrospective: 1983 Suzuki XN85 Turbo

1983 Suzuki XN85D Turbo
1983 Suzuki XN85D Turbo. Owner: Cliff Schoening, Bremerton, Washington.

It would be entertaining to find out how much this little turbo cost Suzuki, as in development and manufacturing expenses versus sales. Probably it was a heckuva lot. In the very early 1980s turbo-mania was in the air, and Honda and Yamaha were the first out, with the four Japanese manufacturers prone to following one another.

Remember the Universal Japanese Motorcycle? Four cylinders in line, preferably with an overhead camshaft or two. Well, this was the turbo version, and while Honda used the OHV V-twin CX500 for its turbo, the rest were UJMs. In 1981 Suzuki came out with two 650cc UJMs, the chain-driven sporty E and the shaft-drive commuter G. Similar, but different. And Suzuki realized that this two-valve (per cylinder) motor was rapidly becoming obsolete, replaced by the four-valver. So how could it get a little more use from the powerplant? Put it in the Turbo!

1983 Suzuki XN85D Turbo

For the Turbo the engineers took the G’s one-piece forged crankshaft running on plain bearings, instead of the E’s roller bearings. Apparently plain bearings are smoother running. But the three 650s all had those two-valve heads, and twin overhead camshafts, that are the pretty much the same. However, everything on the Turbo’s engine, from connecting rods to cylinder studs, was strengthened.

Amusingly, when looking at the magazine spec sheets for all three bikes one notes that they all have a bore and stroke of 65 x 55.8, but the E and G are said to have 674cc capacity, while the Turbo is 673cc. The wonders of finite numbers. And copy editing.

After Honda and Yamaha began working on their turbos, probably a little corporate spying was going on. I can see the Suzuki marketing types charging into the CEO’s office and demanding that a turbo be built. Maybe somebody ran it past the financial department, maybe not. The XN85 appeared less than a year after the others, but more work had gone into the project, as it was truly a semi-new machine, excepting the reworked motor.

1983 Suzuki XN85D Turbo

As anybody who wrote a Ph.D. thesis on Japanese turbocharged motorcycles knows, that funny XN85 alpha-numeration came from Suzuki’s claim that the turbo 673cc put out 85 horsepower – which it might have, at the crankshaft. Fair enough, but the real world was more interested in what happened at the rear wheel, where a dyno measured 71 horses at 8,000 rpm. And close to 50 lb-ft of torque at 6,500 rpm. Which was quite respectable, and a lightweight rider might sneak into the 11s in the popular quarter-mile drags. The flow of air and a big oil cooler, with more than three quarts of oil in the system, kept the engine heat under control. A new aspect of the cooling system was the forcible spray of oil on the bottom of the pistons, quite useful in keeping these little round things intact.

The IHI (Ishikawajima-Harima Industries) turbo was mounted close to the electronic fuel injectors, which were just beyond the butterfly valve, and the blast of pressurized air would jam that fuel right into those combustion chambers. Where, in the interests of longevity, the compression ratios had been drastically lowered, from the 9.5:1 of the E and G to 7.4:1. The turbo had a non-adjustable pressure gauge and when the boost went over 9.6 psi the waste gate would open. The electronic ignition also had an ability to read boost pressures, retarding timing as the boost mounted. And should that waste gate get stuck, the ignition could deal with that as well. Pretty smart device. When the turbo began to intrude around 5,000 rpm, the lag was noticeable, but less than on the competition.

1983 Suzuki XN85D Turbo

The real trick with this XN85 was not so much the engine, but the chassis. The main frame was a round-tube double-cradle affair, with a triangulated backbone running to the steering head. Up front was a 37mm Kayaba fork, with anti-dive and air-adjustability, providing 5.5 inches of travel. Rake was a conservative 27 degrees, with trail of 3.9 inches. The fork connected to a 16-inch front wheel – which surprised many. Sixteen inches?! That was racing stuff. But even with a pretty lengthy 58.7 inches between axles, the bike handled extremely well. Probably helped along by the Full-Floater rear suspension, using an aluminum swingarm with caged needle bearings, the single Kayaba shock having remote hydraulic preload adjustment. And 4.1 inches of travel.

1983 Suzuki XN85D Turbo

The front wheel was endowed with a pair of 10-inch discs and single-piston calipers, while the rear wheel, a 17-incher, had an 11-inch disc with a single-piston caliper. They sound a bit iffy when compared to today’s GSX-R650 with radially mounted monoblock brakes, but the XN85 is 36 years in the past.

The half fairing looked great, and did a good job of protecting the rider if he wished to exceed the government-mandated 55-mph speed limit. The seat, 30.5 inches above the ground, was comfy, and the flat handlebar allowed for a cheerful 200-mile range – which was about what the five-gallon tank allowed. The fairing did disguise the fact that a modified version of the Ram Air System served to help cool the cylinders; the new design did not look at all like the RAS on the two-stroke triples in the 1970s.

Somehow the Turbo’s curb weight had shot up 70 pounds over the previous E model, weighing in at 550 pounds.

According to numbers found on the Internet, the factory produced only 1,153 of these turbos from 1983 to 1985, of which 300 in the first batch came to the United States. And sold at $4,700. A good reason for that was the third iteration of Suzuki’s normally-aspirated 750 four, which also came out in 1983, now with four valves per cylinder and Full-Floater rear suspension. It put out 72 horsepower at the rear wheel, weighed 30 pounds less than the Turbo and cost a mere $3,500. Talk about trumping your own ace!

Obviously the remaining 853 turbos were sold in motorcycling hotspots like Mongolia and Libya, in case you are looking for a used one.

Source: RiderMagazine.com

Suzuki offer Katana-themed Arai helmet

Suzuki Australia must have over-estimated demand for its new Katana as they are now selling the themed Arai helmet that was included with advanced orders.

All customers who ordered the new Katana online before the delivery date of 8 September 2019 also received a Katana-themed Arai QV-Pro helmet, valued at $995, with their bike delivery.

They say about 60 Katanas were sold before the first delivery of about 90.

We are not sure how many of these limited-edition Katana themed helmets are available through the Suzuki dealer network, but it seems they fell short of their demand in orders for the bike.

Click here for our full Katana review and watch and listen to the bike in action in this video.

Katana Arai helmet specsSuzuki KATANA Arai helmet

  • Price: $995
  • Based on Arai QV-Pro helmet
  • Hand crafted in Japan and inspected five times by an Arai engineer
  • PB-CLC outer shell in multiple sizes
  • Optimised Free Flow System ventilation
  • Variable Axis System visor
  • PinLock insert includedKATANA Arai helmet
  • Shield latch visor lock system
  • Antimicrobial liner material
  • Replaceable, washable interior
  • 5mm “Peel Away” ear cups, cheek pads and temple pad
  • Speaker pockets
  • Breath guard and chin curtain included
  • Emergency Release SystemSuzuki KATANA Arai helmet
  • Double D ring closure
  • ECE 22.05 approved
  • Penetration tested
  • Available sizes: small, medium and large.

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

2020 Suzuki Katana is a rider’s delight

No matter what you think of the rebirth of the venerable “Katana” name and the neo/retro styling, the 2020 Suzuki Katana is a highly polished rider’s delight.

It officially went on sale in Australia on Thursday at $18,990 (ride away with 12 months’ rego), but about 50 riders had already paid a $1000 deposit, mostly ageing former Katana owners or sons/daughters of Katana owners.

Now, Suzuki Australia has to encourage young riders and new Katana converts.

However, be quick as only 4000 will be made, says Suzuki Australia marketing manager Lewis Croft.

If customers are attracted to its origami styling, they may just find a highly enjoyable bike that is as easy to ride fast through the twisties as it is to sedately filter through traffic.

That’s no mean feat for engine architecture derived from the GSX.

But Suzuki has done it with a superbly sophisticated and refined engine, transmission and MotoGP-inspired chassis.


Suzuki Katana is a rider’s delight
Silver and Glass Sparkle Black

This is the controversial aspect.

When the silver Katana was unveiled at the 2018 Intermot show in October and then the “Glass Sparkle Black” version at EICMA in November, opinions were sharply divided.

Katana devotees both loved and hated it as did those who weren’t Katana fans. Reminds me of the reception the original Katana experienced!Suzuki Katana is a rider’s delight

In the “flesh” this new Katana looks a lot better with high-quality fitment.

I prefer the silver as it looks more original and highlights the original’s lines and angles better.

There are a lot of faithful Katana lines such as the cut in the tank, the shark nose, two-toned seat, rectangular headlight and even the half-moon front fender.

But Katana devotees will find points to criticise.Suzuki Katana is a rider’s delight

To me, it seems the designers were trying too hard and made the design too complex.

But it certainly stands out and includes some neat modern features such as full LED lighting and a remote rear fender.

The biggest change is straight bars instead of clip-ons that make it much less ergonomically painful to ride than the original.

In fact, with its narrow seat and upright stance, it is extremely comfortable in the saddle, although the wide tank does splay your knees, so it could be painful for some people with hip problems.

At 825mm, the seat is much taller than the original, but I’m 183cm tall and I was able to plant both feet flat on the ground, still with a slight knee bend.

Motivation delight

The real delight of this bike is in the motivation: the engine and transmission.

Here is an interesting tech specs comparison to the original.

Suzuki Katana is a rider’s delight

But tech specs do not tell the real story of this bike’s motivation.

It’s simply so silky smooth with thick, creamy torque and a super-slick foolproof gearbox.

This combination virtually makes it like an automatic; just slip through to sixth gear by 60km/h and twist the throttle.

No need to shift gears. It will pull from 2500 revs in sixth at 60km/h to 4500 revs at 100km/h and on to dizzying revs and go-straight-to-jail speeds.

On the media launch through the border ranges of NSW and Queensland, most of the riders stopped changing gears after a while and just used fifth or sixth for everything.Suzuki Katana is a rider’s delight

Yet it delivered electrifying throttle response and rapid acceleration when you started tap-dancing on the gear shift.

It’s so smooth there is little character to the feel of the engine, but there is a lovely aural harmony of induction “woof” and exhaust growl.

Back into the heaving traffic on the Gold Coast, this maniac machine was suddenly docile, tame and so controllable as we filtered slowly through the traffic.

Lewis describes it as both “a city bike and a show-off bike”.

It certainly is with only about 200km maximum range from the 12-litre tank.Suzuki Katana is a rider’s delight

The engine is Euro4 compliant and no doubt will be updated for Euro5 within the next couple of years. It burns lean and blows a fair bit of heart on to your right foot in heavy traffic.

There are no engine modes, but three-strange traction control that can also be switched off, all on the fly.

My only concern is the heavy cable clutch which is non-adjustable. Although, it does have a clever low-rev assist feature which adds 500 revs as you let the clutch lever out.

This prevents embarrassing and potentially dangerous stalls if you’ve filtered to the front of the traffic! It’s a delight to use in stop-start traffic.

There is also an easy-start function where you just hit the ignition and it starts on its own.Suzuki Katana is a rider’s delight

The comprehensive instrument screen is big, like a max-sized phone, but some of the letters and figures are small and difficult to read.

You can operate all functions via a handy controller on the left switchblock and they are easy to use.

Suzuki Katana is a rider’s delight
Traction and instrument controls

Town and country

In town, the Katana is light and nimble and easy to slice through traffic with its tight turning circle and wide bars.

That also makes it great for twisting roads, although you don’t need to manhandle the bike to change direction.Suzuki Katana is a rider’s delight

It feels very light and the fully adjustable suspension (except for rear compression adjustment) is firm, but fair.

I backed off half a turn on the front compression to sort out some of the bumps on the backroads and it ploughed through without any headshake.

The big 310mm dual disc brakes have plenty of bite with good feel through the controls, although the ABS was a little jerky.

Lewis says the Dunlop RoadSport 2 tyres are specially made for the bike.Suzuki Katana is a rider’s delight

They feature a tread pattern that looks like it has been cut with slashes from a katana. The tyres heat up quickly and have excellent grip even on damp roads.

The combination of capable suspension and strong brakes make it a delight to whip through the bumpy and twisting roads of the Gold Coast hinterland.

Lewis says they have a long list of accessories including carbon bits, a black and red seat, protection, heated grips, smoked windscreen and red Brembo calipers.

He says buyers so far have spent an average of $1300 on the accessories.

There are also a Katana keyring, scale model and branded clothing.

ConclusionSuzuki Katana is a rider’s delight

I’m no Katana devotee and the looks don’t really appeal to me, yet I was won over by the ease of riding this bike hard as well as slow.

There may be more appealing neo/retro bikes on the market, but this is by far the rider’s delight of the pack!

Suzuki Katana GSX-S1000SM0 tech specsSuzuki Katana is a rider’s delight

POWER 110kW @ 10,000RPM 
TORQUE 2180NM @ 9500RPM

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

2020 Guide to New Street Motorcycles

This handy guide includes all new or significantly updated street-legal motorcycles for the 2020 model year. Organized in alphabetical order by manufacturer, it includes photos and links to details or, when available, first rides and road test reviews about each bike. This guide is updated regularly as more new/updated models are announced, and when we’ve had a chance to ride them and report our impressions.

Want to see all of the new/updated motorcycles for 2019?
Check out Rider’s 2019 Guide to New Street Motorcycles

2020 BMW R 1250 R

2019 BMW R 1250 R. Image courtesy BMW Motorrad.
2020 BMW R 1250 R

Receiving updates similar to those that other models in the
R family received for 2019, the BMW R 1250 R roadster gets a larger 1,254cc
boxer twin with ShiftCam variable valve timing and valve stroke and updates to
its electronics package. It also gets a mild style refresh with a TFT display,
a DRL option for the halogen headlight and new color options. Although originally
announced as a 2019 model, the R 1250 R didn’t make it to the U.S. in time. BMW
says it will be available as a 2020 model with an MSRP starting at $14,995.

Read our 2020 BMW R 1250 R First Look Review

2020 BMW R 1250 RS

2019 BMW R 1250 RS. Image courtesy BMW Motorrad.
2020 BMW R 1250 RS

Receiving updates similar to those that other models in the
R family received for 2019, the BMW R 1250 R roadster gets a larger 1,254cc
boxer twin with ShiftCam variable valve timing and valve stroke and updates to
its electronics package. The RS also gets a style refresh that drops the
asymmetrical, winking look of the S 1000 RR in favor of a sporty twin-LED
headlight assembly, and an LED DRL (daytime running light) is an option.
Although announced as a 2019 model, the R 1250 RS didn’t make it to the U.S. in
time. BMW says it will be available as a 2020 model with an MSRP starting at

Read our 2020 BMW R 1250 RS First Look Review

2020 BMW S 1000 RR

2019 BMW S 1000 RR in Motorsport livery. Images courtesy BMW Motorrad.
2020 BMW S 1000 RR

More power (205 hp), less weight (434 lbs), updated
technology and a new up-spec Motorsport version. The 2020 BMW S 1000 RR is at
the pointy end of the sportbike spear. Pricing starts at $16,995 and bikes will
be in dealerships in summer 2019.

Read our 2020 BMW S 1000 RR First Look Review

2020 Harley-Davidson LiveWire

2020 Harley-Davidson LiveWire action
2020 Harley-Davidson LiveWire (Photo courtesy Harley-Davidson)

Harley-Davidson’s new LiveWire electric motorcycle is seriously sporty, shockingly fast and whisper-quiet–everything a typical Harley isn’t. And that’s just the way Milwaukee wants it. It’s propelled by a liquid-cooled electric motor that makes a claimed 105 horsepower and 86 lb-ft of torque, drawing power from a 15.5 kWh battery that offers, according to H-D, a range of 146 miles in the city and 95 miles of combined stop-and-go and highway riding. Single-speed transmission offers twist-and-go convenience, and styling, ergonomics and components are the sportiest offered on any Harley-Davidson. MSRP starts at $29,799.

Read our 2020 Harley-Davidson LiveWire First Ride Review

2020 Suzuki Katana

2020 Suzuki Katana
2020 Suzuki Katana (Photo courtesy Suzuki)

The 2020 Suzuki Katana features styling cues that pay direct homage to the 1981 original, and it’s built around the potent GSX-S1000 999cc inline-four. It features ABS, traction control, Easy Start and Low RPM Assist, as well as a twin-spar aluminum frame, braced superbike-style swingarm, KYB suspension, dual front Brembo monoblock four-piston calipers, 310mm floating rotors and a model-specific LCD panel. We got a chance to ride the new Katana in Japan last March, but pricing and availability are TBD.

Read our 2020 Suzuki Katana First Ride Review

2021 Yamaha Ténéré 700

The Ténéré 700 will be coming to the U.S. in the second half of 2020. Images courtesy Yamaha Europe.
2021 Yamaha Ténéré 700

Announced in the fall of 2018, we’re still waiting to see the
new Ténéré 700 (T7, for short) in the flesh–Yamaha says it will be coming to
the U.S. in the second half of 2020 as a 2021 model. We know it will be
powered by the 689cc CP2 parallel twin used in the MT-07, housed in a new
tubular steel double-cradle frame. Other details include a 62.6-inch wheelbase,
9.5 inches of ground clearance, a fully adjustable USD 43mm fork with 8.3
inches of travel and a remote preload-adjustable rear shock with 7.9 inches of

Read our 2021 Yamaha Ténéré 700 First Look Review

2020 Yamaha YZF-R1 and YZF-R1M

2020 Yamaha YZF-R1M and YZF-R1
2020 Yamaha YZF-R1M (left) and YZF-R1 (right)

Yamaha has updated its flagship sportbikes, the YZF-R1 and the track-ready YZF-R1M, for 2020, with both featuring refinements to their CP4 crossplane crankshaft engines, an augmented electronic rider aids package, enhanced suspension and redesigned bodywork. MSRP is $17,300 for the YZF-R1 and $26,099 for the YZF-R1M (the latter is available in limited quantities through Yamaha’s online reservation system).

Read our 2020 Yamaha YZF-R1 and YZF-R1M First Ride Review

2020 Zero SR/F

2020 Zero SR/F
2020 Zero SR/F

The first new model from Zero Motorcycles since 2016, the 2020 SR/F’s streetfighter look and steel trellis frame blur the styling lines between gas and electric motorcycles. Powered by a new ZF75-10 IPM (Interior Permanent Magnet) motor and ZF14.4 lithium-ion battery, it delivers a claimed 140 lb-ft of torque and 110 horsepower. It also features Bosch’s Motorcycle Stability Control System and Zero’s new Cypher III operating system. Pricing starts at $18,995.

Read our 2020 Zero SR/F First Look Review

Source: RiderMagazine.com