The un­der­val­ued one

Motorcycle News (UK) - - Buying & Selling -

What we said then

“Suzuki has never made a bad GSX-R1000, and they still haven’t. Not only does it have more power than be­fore, it’s now even eas­ier to han­dle.” MCN launch re­port, 2007

But what is it like now?

The K7/8 is the un­der­val­ued and of­ten over­looked GSX-R1000. Tight­en­ing emis­sions laws dic­tated the use of ugly twin pipes, and the K7 added 6kg of bulk to the K5, while also re­lax­ing its chas­sis ge­om­e­try and in­creas­ing its wheel­base.

Lack­ing the K5’s sparkle, there is noth­ing wrong with the K7, it’s just not as thrilling as the bike it re­placed – and that is its ma­jor crime. How­ever it is great value on the used mar­ket and fairly easy to im­prove upon.

What to watch out for

The K7/8 has the faults of the K5/6, but where most of the lat­ter aren’t al­tered that sub­stan­tially, the K7/8 does tend to get mod­i­fied. Sin­gle ex­haust con­ver­sions are com­mon, so check the fu­elling has been al­tered to suit, and also watch for sus­pen­sion med­dlers. Own­ers of­ten raise the rear end us­ing a spacer un­der the shock mount and fit a 190/55 rear tyre rather than the Suzuk­isup­plied 190/50. Both add a bit of lost spirit, but only if done com­pe­tently.

What we said then

“The K9 feels un­can­nily sim­i­lar to the K7/8 it re­places, de­spite an all-new chas­sis and engine. It hasn’t cap­tured the spirit of the K5 and still lacks the agility to keep up with its ri­vals on track, on the road it fares much bet­ter.”

But what is it like now?

If you have rid­den any other gen­er­a­tion, a blast on the K9 can leave you slightly un­der­whelmed. That said it ticks just about ev­ery box – it’s com­fort­able, very fast and has a lovely mo­tor that is full of grunt – how­ever it just fails to de­liver the thrilling litre-sports­bike experience

What to watch out for

For me­chan­i­cal re­li­a­bil­ity, the K9 is as bul­let­proof as it gets, how­ever its fin­ish lets it down. Own­ers com­plain of very thin paint and fas­ten­ers cor­rod­ing badly, with some even seiz­ing in place.

You need to take care of a K9 and use anti-cor­ro­sion spray lib­er­ally or it can look very tatty very quickly. When it comes to buy­ing used, that’s ac­tu­ally quite help­ful – if it looks well cared for, it prob­a­bly has been.

While the buzz was dulled slightly by tighter reg­u­la­tion, the K7 can still be a hoot

MCN launch re­port, 2009 A true thrilling mod­ern clas­sic, a cared-for and sorted K5/6 GSX-R1000 can hold its own with the new kids on the block Rock solid engine will last for­ever if well cared-for, but lacks sparkle

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