New Suzuki

Still un­der £10k Power hike - now 148bhp New slip­per clutch Same brakes & shock Up­graded naked gets more horses, but do changes go far enough?

Motorcycle News (UK) - - This Week In Mcn - ADAM CHILD SE­NIOR ROAD TESTER @MCNNEWS

2017 GSX-S1000 rated

Suzuki’s GSX-S1000 should have set the world on fire when launched back in 2015. An ag­gres­sive naked, pow­ered by a re­vised GSX-R1000 K5 en­gine – and all for un­der £9k. What’s not to like? Un­for­tu­nately, quite a lot.

It was plagued by poor fu­elling and fur­ther long-term tests high­lighted other nig­gles. The rear shock lacked con­trol when rid­den hard and al­though the brakes came from Brembo they lacked the bite we’d nor­mally as­so­ciate with the Ital­ian brand.

So now Suzuki have had an­other crack at get­ting the su­per-naked near the top of the pile. For 2017, there’s more power and torque: 148bhp (up from 143bhp) 79.6ftlb (up from 78.2ftlb). Suzuki claim the power in­crease is down to new crank­case ven­ti­la­tion holes. They have also added a slip­per clutch to make down­shifts smoother and there are some mi­nor aes­thetic changes; such as black levers and foot con­trols.

The old bike was never lack­ing power, by ad­ding a few ex­tra horses and in- creas­ing the torque they’ve added ic­ing to an al­ready ex­cel­lent cake, as far as the mo­tor goes. Make no mis­take, the GSX-S is quick; the old bike was good for a true 150mph and would hap­pily lift the front in the first three gears. Power was never an is­sue. The prob­lem was al­ways the ini­tial throt­tle re­sponse and in­con­sis­tent power curves. Suzuki don’t claim to have im­proved the throt­tle re­sponse, though it feels cleaner than be­fore – but still not per­fect. The power is smoother, you don’t dip in and out of the torque as much as be­fore, but there is still a surge around 7-8000rpm.

Un­for­tu­nately Suzuki haven’t ad­dressed the Brembo stop­pers or the shock. The brakes are strong and pro­gres­sive, but when you start to have fun they lack real bite. In pre­vi­ous tests in con­trolled con­di­tions we found them a step be­hind the com­pe­ti­tion. The same can be said of the rear shock – fine for nor­mal rid­ing, but it all gets a bit out of con­trol when rid­den hard. The shock can’t cope with high-speed bumps.

The fully ad­justable front end is still ex­cel­lent, steer­ing is still ac­cu­rate, the er­gonomics fit all sizes and the trac­tion con­trol is more than ad­e­quate – and can be de­ac­ti­vated on the move. It’s a sim­ple naked and it can be big fun.

The price has edged up to £9699, from the sub £9000 price back in 2015, but the Suzuki is still £550 cheaper than a Kawasaki Z1000 at £10,249 and £1300 cheaper than Yamaha’s MT-10 at £10,999. And, af­ter a £2000 de­posit, the GSX-S can be yours for just £117 a month on PCP over 36 months, which is great value for money. Stick a bet­ter af­ter­mar­ket shock on, work on the brakes and get used to the fu­elling and you could be a very happy bunny!

‘The front end is still ex­cel­lent, and the TC is more than ad­e­quate’

Top-notch er­gonomics are a huge plus Af­ter­mar­ket can would boost vol­ume Love-it-or-loath-it front end styling

It’s still a good bike, but it could be so much bet­ter

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