Ride comfort is like the proverbial magic carpet with the suspension wallowing along at a steady pace. Obviously if you wind up the pace you soon find its handling limitations, but that’s not the point of the big cruiser.
The Suzuki only comes with a single brake disc up front; asking just that single disc to haul up the lardy 363kg may be an economy too far for some. Simply, the single disc just can’t cope by itself although, when combined with the rear (which feels almost as strong) it gets by.
At cruising speeds it’s super smooth, and below 75mph you’re out of the wind-blast thanks to the huge screen, approaching 80mph you start to get a slight buffeting.
The fuelling is faultless and no matter what the speed and the engine is silky. It’s just a shame the exhaust note is so silent and characterless.
On the downside, it doesn’t drive from really low down. There’s a slight hesitation and it simply doesn’t have the grunt of its rivals. The big 1462cc lump happily pulls 50 mph in 5th gear or even 40mph in 4th. Below 40mph in fourth gear it feels really sluggish. For such a big V-twin you’d expect arm-ripping torque from tickover.
Suzuki has fitted a slipper clutch to ease the massive amount of engine braking from the huge V-twin but it doesn’t inspire confidence in the same way that another disc and optional ABS would.
The Suzuki’s styling might not have the grace or classy finish of Guzzi’s California, or the mean road presence of Kawasaki’s Voyager Custom but it’s cheaper but a considerable amount. In one or two areas you can see where Suzuki has saved money.
This is the cheapest bagger on the market by some margin and as such represents good value for money. It should return a claimed 52mpg, which isn’t too bad for such a large machine.
Representing good value for money, the Suzuki lacks in other areas, for example, the front brakes are meagre for such a big and heavy bike and it also lacks modern touches like ABS and traction control.
The clocks have an analogue speedo, but no rev counter. However, they do have a digital clock, twin trips, a digital fuel gauge and gear position indicator, which is a nice touch.