Suzuki are launching the re-introduced SV650 on Monday in the north-east of Spain and MCN will be there to give the middleweight V-twin a run for its money.
The naked SV returns to replace the curvy, futuristic styling of the SFV650 – originally introduced in 2009 as the ‘Gladius’ before being renamed – and the bike that launched a thousand riding careers is now going back to basics.
There’s more power from the 645cc engine, with the claimed figure increasing from 71bhp to 75bhp thanks to reduced friction from new pistons sliding up and down more easily in their new plated cylinders.
The 60 new or redesigned engine parts contribute towards the total of 140 across the whole bike, which now weighs 8kg less than the outgoing SVF650 with a claimed kerb weight of 197kg instead of the SVF’s 205kg. The two weights are for the ABS-equipped bikes as the new SV will only be available with ABS, as per European legislation for newly launched models.
Looks are also changed, with a more angular design than the rounded finish of the SVF, which was sold as being particularly appealing to female riders when it was first revealed in the winter of 2008. The bulky underslung exhaust collector box is also gone, which is an aesthetic boost.
It may have gone back to its roots in the styling department, but it’s still clear the SV is aimed at newer riders. The seat height remains a suitably low 785mm and there’s a new ‘low RPM assist’ feature that helps avoid engine stalling while pulling away, and an ‘easy start’ that means pressing the starter button and leaving it rather than holding it down until the engine fires.
Budget-conscious riders will also be pleased to read that Suzuki are claiming fuel economy is up from 68mpg to 73mpg, though that is measured in controlled conditions and we hope to find out a real-world figure on the riding launch.
The relaunched SV faces stiff competition, with Yamaha’s cheeky parallel twin MT-07 having won the MCN Machine of the Year award in 2013. Both make similar power and we reckon Suzuki will pitch the new SV at around £5500, which will make sure it comes in £250 cheaper than an equivalent ABS-equipped MT-07 (£5749).
The riding starts and the expectation stops when MCN gets to leap on the new bike on Monday, February 29.