Suzuki RE5

Practical Sportsbikes (UK) - - Special Build of the Year 2018 -

1974-1976 498cc liq­uid-cooled sin­gle cham­ber ro­tary, 62bhp, 230kg

What is it? The re­sult of Suzuki’s dal­liance with a tech­ni­cal cul-de-sac that was rapidly killed off by the sharp rise in the cost of fuel and the fact the firm’s other less com­pli­cated of­fer­ings were bet­ter in ev­ery re­spect.

Why so odd? Nei­ther a two-stroke nor four-stroke but de­liv­er­ing el­e­ments of both, the wankel mo­tor can pro­duce mas­sive per­for­mance, es­pe­cially in a light bike. But the RE5 was big, heavy (a gar­gan­tuan 230kg dry), thirsty and no match for Suzuki’s more con­ven­tional GS750.

Why you want one: Like a fac­tory turbo, own one for the sheer hell of it. Those who own RE5S, love them. Plus there will never be another Ja­panese ro­tary.

Val­ues: £5000-£12,000

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