For the road the Suzuki GSX-R1000 K9 is comfortable and very stable, even accelerating hard on bumpy roads. Three-way adjustable footpegs makes the Suzuki comfortable for short and tall riders alike and the handling is predictable.
Turn up the wick, or ride the GSX-R1000 K9 on track and it becomes difficult to change direction quickly and heavy to turn in to a corner. Despite having new monobloc calipers, the brakes fade under hard use and don’t have the power of the competition.
Disappointingly, during MCN’s group test the GSX-R1000 lapped 2.5 seconds slower than the 2009 R1 around Cartagena, on the same tyres.
The Suzuki GSX-R1000 K9 get a shorter-stroke engine for the first time, which Suzuki claims makes the same power and torque as the old model.
Strangely our dyno results show it’s actually 7bhp down on the old bike, making 161bhp at the back wheel. The idea of the shorter stroke engine is to allow race teams to tune them and raise revs safely, compared to the old long-stroke motor.
The power delivery has been softened off in the mid-range compared to the old bike, which gives you the confidence to open the throttle sooner and harder. There’s still lots of grunt to play with, despite the shorter stroke motor.
The engine is physically 59mm shorter than before to allow for a longer swingarm, which aids rear tyre grip. This is a trick also used on the current Honda Fireblade.
Suzuki engines are bulletproof, so expect the GSX-R1000 K9’s motor to run on forever and never break down. The overall finish of the Suzuki GSX-R1000 isn’t right up there with the Hondas and Yamahas of the world, but overall it is very well built.
GSX-Rs used to sit at the cheaper end of the sportsbike market, but not any more, it’s now more expensive than the 2009 Fireblade and ZX-10R, but you still get lots of performance, handling and fun for your dosh.
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Only seen on the 2009 Kawasaki ZX-6R and Suzuki’s factory Suzuka 8-Hour endurance racer until now, the Suzuki GSX-R1000 K9 is fitted with Showa’s Big Piston Forks.
They’re lighter than standard forks and have simpler internals, with just one internal piston in each leg to control rebound and compression damping. They have a harsher feel than conventional forks, but work better and give more front tyre feel, the harder you push.
The Suzuki GSX-R1000 K9 also comes with a new chassis and ‘banana’ swingarm, wheels, fully-adjustable Showa rear shock, monoboc four-piston calipers, instruments and a cable-operated clutch to replace the old hydraulic item.