Suzuki GSX-S750 2017 Review
By Alan Dowds
- Wheelie Machine
- ‘Easy-start’ system
- Price tag
- A bit lardy
Photography: Phil Steinhardt / Suzuki Press
Suzuki’s riding high this year, with its GSX-R1000 doing a top job of re-establishing its credentials in the litre bike class. But it’s also launched a whole heap of bikes that sit a little further down the pecking order. Bikes like the GSX-S750, a new upper-middleweight naked roadster that’s based on the old GSX-R750 engine.
We spent a couple of weeks on the GSX-S earlier this year – and it’s fair to say we had a ball on it. It’s a replacement for the GSR750, which I had as a long-termer for a year back in 2013, and it’s a useful upgrade on that. The GSR was a bit too budget for most folk, with sliding caliper brakes, a skinny box-section swingarm, and a finish that suffered quickly when the weather turned bad. It wasn’t a bad bike – but definitely needed a boost to spec and quality to compete with the best in this class.
And the GSX-S goes a long way towards that. The front brakes now have proper four-piston Nissin calipers, the swingarm has been revised with a chunkier, higher-quality look and feel, and the overall design is ratcheted up a notch in the premium stakes.
The foundations were never bad though: the GSX-R750-based motor was the best part about the GSR, and it’s even better in the GSX-S. Suzuki’s added a touch more power (about 6bhp more on the Big CC Racing dyno where I measured both bikes), and a soupcon more torque. Best bit though is still the spread of grunt: on the dyno you can see the torque curve hit over 45ft lbs just after idle, and it stays above that all the way to 10k+rpm. That means you always have creamy-smooth grunt to hand, and in the lower gears, you can hoik up mingers to your heart’s content. Indeed, it’s fair to say this is one of the corking wheelie bikes du jour – if you’re looking for a solid mono practice machine, apply here.
Of course, there’s more to it than mingers...
Day-to-day, it’s easy to get on with, although as a naked machine, you’ll suffer from wind and weather exposure on long trips and in winter. Round town, it’s sharp, agile and composed, and once you get out onto country twisties, you’ll reap the benefits of the revised chassis. The suspension gets a bit more in terms of adjustment, but the stock settings were fine for me. Bridgestone S21 tyres are more than good for the class, and will deal with almost anything you’re likely to throw at them. The GSX-S is no featherweight on the scale, at a claimed 213kg wet – but you’ll not notice that 90 per cent of the time. The only time I felt the chunkiness was pushing it about my patio, when I tripped on an uneven slab, and lost my balance. Suddenly, the GSX-S felt very very heavy indeed as I wrestled with it to stay upright…
One other upgrade from the GSR is the electronics. We get the new Suzuki family LCD dashboard, with the new ‘Easy-start’ system. That means you just push the starter once, with no need to hold in the clutch as on old Suzukis. A small touch, but a niggle improved nonetheless. We also now get a basic Traction Control setup with three levels (plus off). This is similar to the one on the GSX-S1000, and it’s a solid system. It’s easy to control (not all of them are…) and once off, it stays off. It’s more for keeping you out of trouble on a two-degree commute with icy patches than a system to help you get round Clearways at 90mph, sideways, rear tyre smoking - but again, for the class, that’s just fine.
So there you have it. Suzuki dealers were thanking their lucky stars that the GSX-R1000 was such a hit – but we reckon they’ll also be chuffed at the GSX-S750 too. It’s not going to cause any earthquakes – but at just over £7.5k, it’s a very solid, fun bike for the cash: particularly in these times of super-high price tags…
Engine: 16v inline-four, DOHC, liquid cooled, 749cc
Bore x stroke: 72x46mm
Compression ratio: 12.3:1
Max power (claimed) 101.66bhp@10,500rpm
Max Torque (claimed) 55ft lb@9,000rpm
Transmission: six speed, chain
Frame: steel tube diamond-type
Front suspension: preload adjustable 43mm USD forks
Rear suspension: preload adjustable monoshock
Brakes: Nissin four-piston calipers, 320mm discs (front), single disc rear
Wheels/tyres: ten-spoke cast alloy/Bridgestone S21, 120/70 17 front, 180/55 17 rear
Rake/trail: na°/na mm
Kerb weight: 213kg
Fuel capacity: 16 litres
Colours: red/black, blue