Suzuki dropped the GSX-S1000 teaser video two weeks ago, but we didn’t know what was new. Some touted a completely new direction from the old with an all-new hyper naked, ready to take on the competition with a near 200hp beast. Sadly, I know Suzuki just as well as everybody else, and Suzuki’s ethos of ‘If it isn’t broke, don’t fix it’ remains.
The new GSX-S1000 is a mixture. The engine which needed changing hasn’t changed, and the styling which didn’t need changing has changed. Backwards much? The new styling updates, see the new GSX-S1000 look more like a Katana than the actual Katana. I can’t be the only one who thinks that? The new sharp, aggressive styling showcases the triple light under and over lights, becoming common now, as seen on the MT09. These are very marmite and split opinion. The styling is like a modern streetfighter, with radiator shrouds covering up the yucky bits. Adding to the modernness includes Moto-GP style winglets and a camo style pattern to the front instrument cluster cover and side panels. I mean, the outgoing model wasn’t bad looking, in my mind.
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As mentioned earlier, the new lighting update, in triple-stacked format, is an acquired taste, but the upgrade to LED units allow a focused beam giving a wide pattern of bright light. Suzuki says this design gives a lighter and tighter look, and well, yes, it does, but it isn’t pretty, but does it need to be? The tail has also had an update to feature LED taillight and indicators.
GSX-S1000 engine, the new triggers broom?
Sure constant updates and new parts are good, but it is still the engine from the K8 GSXR from 2008. We’re in 2021 now; surely there’s is newer and better (L7 GSXR) engines about? Despite knocking the old engine, it has been updated to meet Euro5, with new cams, valve springs clutch and exhaust. This gives more power and the big fat torque curve that a naked streetfighter wants. Power is up to 152hp, at 11k RPM. Euro regulations have meant adding another catalytic converter, but Suzuki says this hasn’t affected the engine noise. I mean, everybody will only change the pipe anyway, right…
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Revised engine throttle bodies have improved engine response and hopefully smooth out the jerky throttle issue, which was an issue on the previous model. A revised airbox reduces restriction allowing better airflow to the throttle bodies. The cam profiles have been revised, allowing a smaller valve overlap, helping to meet the Euro5 emissions targets. The clutch sees the clutch assist system added, giving a slipper clutch, preventing the rear wheel locking on aggressive downshifts. The springs inside the clutch have been changed, allowing a lighter lever feel too.
Electronics updated to Suzuki’s SIRS and SDMS systems
Euro5 comes with electronics updates, and most of them of a similar nature to what we have seen on the new Suzuki Hayabusa. A new ride by ride throttle makes the link between rider and engine more accurate, and the SDMS system allows multiple engine modes, with three to choose from. Ride by wire throttle also allows the fitment of an up and down quickshifter, and if the same as on the Hayabusa, it’s buttery smooth. Traction control features five adjustments, and all of these modes are changeable through a new LCD dash.
Chassis tweaks and bigger fuel tank
The GSX range has always been a comfy GSXR, yes with a slight detune but with a more comfortable riding position. This remains as the 2021 GSX-S1000 gets a swingarm from the GSXR, 23mm wider handlebars giving more steering leverage and 20mm closer to the rider. Forks come from KYB and are fully adjustable, 310mm discs with Brembo brakes and Dunlop roadsport 2 tyres provide the grip and stopping. The fuel tank is increased to 19 litres, and Suzuki’s quoted 46.3mpg gives a 194-mile tank range, but we both know it won’t get 46mpg in the real world.
11 grand price
The biggest shock comes at the price tag of 11 grand. It’s a lot of bike for the money, considering what else is in the price range. No doubt Suzuki will also run the bank-busting deals like they normally do, giving amazing PCP deals. I think this will fly out of dealerships, just like the old model. I question whether people will save the extra 4k and pick a Speed Triple RS instead, with its sharper spec. That being said, it’s only extra bling you get on the RS vs the GSX-S, like Ohlins suspension, a bit more power too. Time will tell, but I still think the GSX-S1000 will sell well. Interested? Register your interest with Suzuki here
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