Used buy­ing guide: Suzuki DL1000 V-strom

Of­ten over­looked but a se­ri­ously ca­pa­ble ad­ven­ture tourer

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SUZUKI’S ORIG­I­NAL V-STROM 1000 of 2002 never found the au­di­ence that its 650 lit­tle brother man­aged. Af­ter rea­son­able sales in its first year, from 2003 it lagged be­hind, then sold a third less, then half as many. By the time it was dropped from Euro­pean mar­kets at the end of 2008 (due to im­pend­ing Euro3 emis­sions rules), sales were down to a tenth of the 650’s. Why? Well, it wasn’t the bike’s fault — it was grunty, com­fort­able, re­li­able, af­ford­able and rel­a­tively cheap to run. But it wasn’t a BMW GS, which meant that in most mar­kets, it didn’t stand a chance.

But ad­ven­ture bikes were still big news and with the 650 dom­i­nat­ing the mid­dleweight class, you couldn’t blame Suzuki for hav­ing an­other stab at the big ver­sion. So, for 2014 we got a com­pletely new V-strom 1000. The en­gine was still the same 90° V-twin lay­out but heav­ily re­worked to meet Euro4 stan­dards. The chas­sis was all-new, de­signed to al­low plenty of ground clear­ance and the all-im­por­tant ad­ven­ture bike stance, while re­main­ing slim enough at the sad­dle to make it eas­ier for shorter rid­ers to reach the floor. And the styling was sleeker and more ag­gres­sive than the orig­i­nal’s, with nods to the ‘beak’ on the DR750 Dr Big of 1988. A mi­nor up­date for 2017 added corner­ing ABS but the ba­sic pack­age re­mains un­changed. Here’s what you need to know...

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