20 years af­ter its de­but, Suzuki Burgman 400 is slim­mer, lighter and sportier

Motorcycle News (UK) - - THIS WEEK - By Ali­son Sil­cox Of­fice Man­ager @MCNNEWS mo­tor­cy­cle­news

It’s al­most 20 years since Suzuki in­vented the maxi-scooter with the Burgman 400. To cel­e­brate, Suzuki have brought the pop­u­lar ma­chine up to date – and we’re rid­ing it in the bustling Ital­ian city of Turin, on nar­row cob­bled streets and spec­tac­u­lar moun­tain roads. It’s a great lo­ca­tion to put the Burgman 400 through its paces.

If you want more from your scooter than just com­mut­ing abil­ity, the Burgman 400 is a great all-rounder. Around-town throt­tle re­sponse is smooth and in­stant, which is use­ful when you need gap-grab­bing punch. An in­crease in low to mid-range torque over its pre­de­ces­sor makes it even quicker to get up to speed than be­fore.

Suzuki have made the frame more rigid, slimmed down the body­work and re­placed the 14in front wheel with a 15in rim, mak­ing the 400 more sta­ble at speed yet still ma­noeu­vrable around town. The seven- step preload­ad­justable rear shock – a rar­ity in this class – will suit any type and shape of rider, and is specif­i­cally de­signed to cope with a pil­lion.

The brakes are ef­fi­cient with­out be­ing grabby, and they now have a lighter ABS sys­tem, which con­trib­utes to the Burgman’s over­all weight re­duc­tion. Like other maxi-scoot­ers, it has a park­ing brake on the dash.

The Ja­panese firm have worked hard to im­prove the Burgman’s looks, use­abil­ity and rider com­fort. The seat height has been in­creased to 755mm (although its width has been re­duced to com­pen­sate), while its com­fort­able pad­ding is 20mm thicker and there’s now an adjustable lum­ber sup­port. Newly-shaped foot boards make it eas­ier to get your feet down.

Th­ese up­dates make the 400 feel low and roomy, and in­spire con­fi­dence – par­tic­u­larly around town. Suzuki claim 70mpg, which gives a the­o­ret­i­cal tank range of in ex­cess of 200 miles.

‘The up­dates make the 400 feel low, roomy and in­spire con­fi­dence in town’

The new 400’s slim­mer rear end slightly com­pro­mises un­der-seat stor­age. That said, there is enough space for a full-face lid and rid­ing jacket. The two glove­boxes are big enough to hold daily es­sen­tials, and one houses a 12v socket so you can keep your mo­bile charged.

With scooter theft cur­rently wor­ry­ingly on the rise, it’s good to see Suzuki have fit­ted an im­mob­liser. There’s also an en­try point in the body­work through which you can thread a chain and lock the bike up.

The Burgman 400 will be in deal­ers later this year, and will com­pete with the likes of the up­dated Yamaha MAX 400, which is due to be launched in Septem­ber cost­ing around £6000.

Launch took place in Italy, the home of the scooter

Space-age body­work gives a pro­jec­tile feel

Twoboxes and a park­ing brake on dash Stor­age space for full-face lid and jacket

Brakes now have a lighter ABS sys­tem

Sim­ple in­stru­ments give essen­tial data

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