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Suzuki SV1000 Naked Motorbike Review

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Suzuki SV1000 motorcycle review - Riding
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MCN overall verdict rating is 5

The Suzuki SV1000 is a purpose built big capacity, sensibly priced, road going sporty V-twin. Ok, the engine’s nicked from Suzuki’s old TL1000S but the rest of the SV1000 is all-new yet the price tag is very reasonable new or used. The faired Suzuki SV1000 ‘S’ version has lower bars but is the better all-rounder. The unfaired SV1000 with higher bars is a real funster if less competent on the motorway.

Engine

MCN rating rating is 4
Owners' rating rating is 4.5

The Suzuki SV1000's big V-twin produced over 120bhp at the rear wheel when it first appeared in the TL1000S. Unfortunately the bike had handling ‘issues’ and Suzuki tamed it to little over 100bhp. Claimed power for the Suzuki SV1000 is 118bhp, actual figure is about 106 which is enough thanks to loads of torque – but an exhaust system and power commanded will release more if required from the SV1000.

Ride and Handling

MCN rating rating is 4
Owners' rating rating is 4.5

The Suzuki SV1000's chunky aluminium frame with conventional suspension and it works better than the TL1000S ever did. The SV1000's suspension’s not quite as good as pure sports bikes but it’s fine for most people. If you do lots of track days and fancy aftermarket shock and fork re-build will enable you to flick from peg to peg in an instant with no grief. Brakes on the Suzuki SV1000 are strong but work best with fresh fluid.

Equipment

MCN rating rating is 4
Owners' rating rating is 4

Comfortable over distance but the Suzuki SV1000's seat doesn’t suit everyone. Reasonable if not brilliant pillion seat. Clocks are fairly comprehensive. The Suzuki SV1000's headlights are better than most bikes which is a bonus. Mirrors are acceptable and under seat storage is above average. Steering damper fitted as standard. Additional fairing side panels can ruin the lines of the Suzuki SV1000 and make the engine run hot.

Suzuki SV1000 (2003-2007)

Detail Value
New price £6,049
Engine size 996 cc
Power 118 bhp
Top speed 155 mph
Insurance group 15 of 17
  MCN ratings Owners' ratings
Overall rating is 5 rating is 4.5
Engine rating is 4 rating is 4.5
Ride & Handling rating is 4 rating is 4.5
Equipment rating is 4 rating is 4
Quality & Reliability rating is 3 rating is 4.5
Value rating is 5 rating is 5

Quality and Reliability

MCN rating rating is 3
Owners' rating rating is 4.5

Build quality seems to be a Suzuki problem lately and the SV1000 is no exception. Suzuki SV1000 owners report annoying problems, mainly corrosion and poor finish. Reliability problems are rarer with the SV1000, especially as owners tend to look after their bikes.

Value

MCN rating rating is 5
Owners' rating rating is 5

New list price is reasonable for a Suzuki SV1000. But new motorcycles are sold at discounts for as little as £5000 for the faired SV1000 and a couple of hundred less unfaired. That makes the Suzuki SV1000 one of the biggest bargains out there. This keeps used values pretty low too. Even running costs and insurance aren’t too pricy for the SV1000. Find a Suzuki SV1000 for sale.

Insurance

Insurance group: 15 of 17

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Model History

2003: Original Suzuki SV1000 and Suzuki SV1000S models launched.
2006: Suzuki SV1000 frames now black not silver.

Other Versions

Suzuki SV1000SZ: Special edition with full fairing, multi-colour paint, black frame, crash bungs and slightly more power.

Specifications

Top speed 155 mph
1/4-mile acceleration 11.4 secs
Max power 118 bhp
Max torque 75 ft-lb
Weight 189 kg
Seat height 810 mm
Fuel capacity 17 litres
Average fuel consumption 41 mpg
Tank range 150 miles
Annual road tax
Insurance group 15 of 17
Engine size 996 cc
Engine specification 8v V-twin, 6 gears
Frame Cast aluminium lattice
Front suspension adjustment Preload, rebound, compression
Rear suspension adjustment Preload, rebound, compression
Front brakes Twin 310mm discs
Rear brake Twin 310mm discs
Front tyre size 120/70 x 17
Rear tyre size 180/55 x 17

Owners' Overall Rating rating is 4.5(15 reviews)

  • Great Platform To Start

    Douglas Freeman

    Average rating rating is 4.5

    Show Details

    Overall
    Ride and Handling
    Equipment
    Quality and Reliabilty
    Value
    Engine

    In stock form, the SV1000S is just ok, but it's a great platform to create a great bike for small cost. The stock suspension is a bit weak. Correct fork springs and 5 wt shock oil corrected the front. An '07-08 ZX6R shock with modified damping corrects the rear. Throw away the steering damper - too stiff - and raise the forks 10mm. With these mods it corners excellently and never shakes its head. Hit a rock large enough to bend the rear rim, at full lean, and it tracked straight through. The ergonomics suck, but putting tube bar clamps on the top triple clamp corrected that. The stock seat sucks, but is easily corrected with some firm foam and new cover material. The engine is a jewel for the street, sounds great with Yosh TRS cans, open up the airbox a bit and put on a Power Commander to correct the A/F, and it rewards with smooth, strong torque. Great headlights. Typical 1000cc heavy engine braking - makes one think it has a lot of driveline lash. Excellent brakes. The short wheelbase lets it change direction quickly. Not big enough for 2-up travel, short rides only, and only if you are small people. Many think it's a bland bike, and in stock form I agree. Correct the weak suspension and liven up the sound with aftermarket cans, and it's a joy to ride. Better than VTF and better value than RC51 and various Ducatis. My pick for best value big V-Twin.

    24 June 2014

  • Great all rounder

    des077

    Average rating rating is 4.5

    Show Details

    Overall
    Ride and Handling
    Equipment
    Quality and Reliabilty
    Value
    Engine

    The sv1000s is a great little sports bike if your kind on the throttle it will return around 50mpg and even on my last track day at Cadwell park i got 28mpg and it was being seriously thrashed and as for handling, well the pegs was grinding most of the way around the track and gave me no bad moments with no modifications to suspension and with factory settings. Upto an indicated 145mph it pulls very well only outdone by the likes of R1's and Fireblades. My only gripes are a poor standard of finish and a vibration around 3500rpm, this is slow round town and staedy 60mph type riding, once it gets around 6000rpm it's great but then its a V-Twin i suppose but a great bike all the same after owning it for 6 years i've still no plans to sell it.

    06 April 2010

  • SV1000S K3

    Luke Jorden

    Average rating rating is 4.5

    Show Details

    Overall
    Ride and Handling
    Equipment
    Quality and Reliabilty
    Value
    Engine

    Moved up to this from a ZX6R and was really suprised, handles really well, brakes are good, really torquey and a respectable top end. Was considering going for the 650 as I heard they have enough power as it is, but in my opinion it just isn't worth it, the extra you pay on the insurance doesn't even come close to the difference in bikes!

    13 March 2010

  • SV1000S, Sargent seat, Scorpion cans, Oxford heated grips

    Lightning Boy

    Average rating rating is 4

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    Overall
    Ride and Handling
    Equipment
    Quality and Reliabilty
    Value
    Engine

    I've had all sorts of bikes in the past but bought the SV to replace my Buell XB12SS. The Buell had been a great bike but I got REALLY hacked off with Harley and their inability to keep basic parts in stock. I bought the SV about 10 months ago and have ridden it through one winter so far. I've had some minor problems with the smooth running - now resolved after a major service. I was finding the seat hideously uncomfortable, it felt like I was riding on my nuts! This has now happily been resolved by the addition of a Sargent seat, a vast improvement. I also have some Hellibars on order - these raise the handle bar position by about 2 inches, I gather that this makes another huge difference to the riding position. Overall, a superb engine, handling is great (could be improved inexpensively I think), practical and sounds great with some fruity cans - all for a bargain price. Cracking!

    03 August 2009

  • 1st Big Bike

    cushk3

    Average rating rating is 4.5

    Show Details

    Overall
    Ride and Handling
    Equipment
    Quality and Reliabilty
    Value
    Engine

    After the standard "Shall I buy the 650 or 1000?" questions a mint 1000s turned up on the market that had been well-loved and looked after by its previous owner. Having only owned it for a week I feel I cannot contribute entirely to a worth-while review, however in the 200 miles+ I have ridden, I feel completely satisfied that I made the right choice. Being that my previous bike was a Suzuki GS500ES which I had to give up 3 years ago I felt this was a huge step up but so far the bike has done everything asked of it without scaring the hell out of me! It's very stable and responsive and after only a short while inspires confidence. My only niggles are that the seat leads to a numb bum quickly and the after market end bars seem to add to the vibration and I feel my hands going to sleep after only a few miles. Overall thoughts: Stunning looking bike with huge amounts of low-end grunt with a top speed not to be sniffed at - not like I'll need all the power anyway! I only hope I'll look after it as well as my predecessor...

    01 March 2009

  • a great all rounder

    kharheng

    Average rating rating is 3.5

    Show Details

    Overall
    Ride and Handling
    Equipment
    Quality and Reliabilty
    Value
    Engine

    bought this bike 2 years ago and done 10k miles. satisfy with the engine performance but lack of engine braking and smoothes compare to my CBR1000RR. low end torque is good and its good for street use and twisties hills. low rev is jerky, installed a TRE and improve better. head light is briliiant! tail light is simple and cool. For riding position, some might not happy with it. its far to reach to handle bar and its low. long ride migh suffer from pain. the rider seat looks nice, but uncomfortable.. same goes to pillion seats and seating position is too high. fuel comsumption is reasonable but a bigger fuel tank would better as it is a sport touring bike!! front brakes is good but not superb, maybe braided hose and sintered pads will improve, rear brake is brilliant! handling is stable at low speed. high speed corner may feel unstable and the bike diving all the time. try my best to adjust but still lack of stability at high speed corner. a change on rear shock and fork spring is recommended if required. link pipe is close to footrest, beware of getting your legs burned when stand still at traffic lights. stock Michelin rubber last 5k miles but not sticky. chain need to adjust frequently and regular WD-40 spray is needed. no break down issue so far, reliability should be good. this is an inexpensive bike and affordable :)

    12 January 2009

  • SV1000s past 5 years

    kaybe

    Average rating rating is 4.5

    Show Details

    Overall
    Ride and Handling
    Equipment
    Quality and Reliabilty
    Value
    Engine

    I have owned from new and bike is still in immaculate condition and done 14k miles, admittingly only summer use. It gets washed afetr every run and a squirt of WD 40 all over. Apart from absolute top speed, it easily keeps up with the most recent sport 1000s in the twisties which after all is what you want given the fun factor. It does get through back tyres 1500-1800, best being 2100, with the front 2500-3000 miles. Done a number of track days and the bike was limited by my abilities. At one circuit the marshalls said my bike was by far the best sounding as it came into and out of the hairpin on its open scorpions. Nothing like a free breathing v-twin on full chat, yahoo. Suspension is ok for a FB like me at 15 stone, but the GSXR K3 rear suspension unit sorts that. Brakes are excellent, all in all great value for money.

    13 October 2008

  • Excellent

    peterfurness

    Average rating rating is 4.5

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    Overall
    Ride and Handling
    Equipment
    Quality and Reliabilty
    Value
    Engine

    I've had my SV1000s for a year now after changing up from the SV650s. Brilliant bike, cracking for fast blasts and great for commuting in and out of town. Handles well and keeps up round the lanes with any other bike I've come across. A must ride bike!

    03 September 2007

  • sv1000s

    spotterj

    Average rating rating is 4

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    Ride and Handling
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    Engine

    Just passed 22k, what a great bike, everything i need from fast blasts with mates to touring 2 up with Mrs. Never let me down & what a sound when you open her up

    05 July 2007

  • SV1000SZ

    Kleggy

    UK

    Average rating rating is 4.5

    Show Details

    Overall
    Ride and Handling
    Equipment
    Quality and Reliabilty
    Value
    Engine

    Having tried the CBR and Gixxer settled on the SZ variant of this brilliant bike. Have ridden it through its second winter the build quality is equal to that of Honda. The ride is very involving unlike the others tested.The SV still impresses after this length of time. Its the Daddy. Takes a pillion better than most sports bikes.

    20 March 2007

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zepmon

zepmonsays

sv1000s 2003

ive had the sv1000s for 2 and a half years now, at first i hated it, but after pissing about with it to get rid of the things i didnt like i now love it! Its a very easy bike to mod on the cheap by doing simple things like going up 2 teeth on the rear sprocket and fitting a tre. It was very soft on the front untill i set it up right, and now its very stable at high speeds (if you hang off like me) and stops very well but not great if going from a more modern bike with radial brakes. This is an easy fix tho as the k1 k2 gsxr1000 front calipers (6pot) bolt straight on. The gering is well worth doing as it is geard far too tall as standerd. Taking the snorkel off the air box is a must and lifting the front of the tank 16mm with spacers (adds 5bhp tested on a dyno). Another easy and very cheap mod is fitting a TLR gear arm as its shorter and makes for smoother shifts. Finish is a bit crap on the engine paint if not kept clean. In all it is what you make it, good as it is if you are a bit slow and steady but if you want more its very easy and cheap to get, and the community is great for help with mods and getting parts.

Good cheap bike that with a bit of a push will go like stink! i smoked loads of "faster" stuff on the sv and have grown so fond of it that i am never going to sell it! i just keep finding things to do to it to make it better!! the motor is great when let loose!! TRY ONE! THEY ARE CHEAP AS CHIPS!

24 April 2013 20:19

YorkshireBob1979

YorkshireBob1979says

Is the SV 1000s for me?

Hi there,

I had a GSF 600 Bandit for my first bike and found it too keen, too revy if you like, I sold it to move house and now i'm looking at the SV, I always fancied an SV 650 but after working in an american motorcyle shop and riding the naked gixxer for a while I feel that the SV1000s would be a good move.

I'm no speed freak, I just love the character and sound of the twin. I'm quite happy to admit i'm a fair-weather rider, but i'm still not sure it's maybe a touch to big of a jump from 600cc loony bike to 1000cc beast?

I've ridden bikes from an early age, had a time out, came back did the old direct access, bought a bandit, rode lots of american muscle and here I am, 32 and a dilemma.

Any help and advice will be greatfully recieved.

Cheers! 

21 September 2011 23:32

davepreston

daveprestonsays

sv1000sz

after a chat with suzuki uk i found out that their were 310 made and sold for the uk market, making it a nice rare bike, but with this it means if you bin it dont be expecting to find those lovely panels coming up on ebay for cheap, also that suzuki were kind enough to put a few more horses as standard thru the engine of the sz

dont listen to any complains about build quality mines been used rain or shine and with just basic maintance still looks and go's wonderfully

25 August 2010 00:18

LukeZX6

User's Badge

LukeZX6says

SV1000S K3

Moved up to this from a ZX6R and was really suprised, handles really well, brakes are good, really torquey and a respectable top end. Was considering going for the 650 as I heard they have enough power as it is, but in my opinion it just isn't worth it, the extra you pay on the insurance doesn't even come close to the difference in bikes!

13 March 2010 23:25

mender

User's Badge

mendersays

Went touring on mine

After much consideration I planned a route and headed East  via Portsmouth - Le Havre, through France, Germany, Austria visiting Vienna, into Slovakia to see Bratislava then on to Hungary. A day in Budapest then past Lake Balaton (building the new Balaton ring circuit) and into Slovenia and Italy throught the Alps and back via Strasbourg then the Dieppe - Newhaven ferry. 2712 miles in 12 days. My SV1000K3 never missed a beat, returned about 45 - 50 to the gallon and cruised along at a steady 95mph(I have a small flyscreen fitted). I've had it a year now and am thoroughly pleased with it, Art cans make a lovely sound which I have to say is probably the bit which pleases me most!!. I have a Scottoiler fitted whch meant the chain needed no adjustment. Being able to change the speedo to KPH was also a bonus. The only thing I would change;- next time I will invest in a Satnav!  A great bike and mucho fun.

   

03 June 2009 15:39

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