It's a family thing

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SUZUKI’S new GSX-R600 shares more than just looks with the all new GSX-R750. Both bikes have a wealth of race-derived technical updates.

The only immediate visible difference between the new bikes is the colour schemes and a shorter exhaust can on the 600 (approximately 7cm shorter).

Although smaller and more angular than the GSX-R1000 the new bikes share the family look of the bigger bike, too. The upper fairing is a similar shape, with the same twin ram air inlets positioned either side of the headlight. The seat unit is again very similar to the 1000’s and the two line LED rear light is almost a cut-down 1000 item. The indicators are slimmed for a smoother look.

Both bikes use engines based on last year’s models but Suzuki has refined them using race-derived technology.

Titanium valves are now fitted in place of steel ones and the subsequent weight loss reduces inertia. The intake ports are now 2mm larger to get more air and fuel in, and the air box has been made narrower by 20mm to allow for a slimmer fuel tank.

The CPU processor for the fuel injection is now twice as powerful, going from 16-bit to 32-bit to create better throttle response especially at high revs.

There are no claims for the power of the GSX-R600 yet, but we expect a claimed figure of around 120bhp at the crank – up from 110bhp in 2003.

The radiator has had to be upgraded to cope with the extra heat generated by more power – and also because Suzuki wanted to use a more compact unit to reduce both bikes’ frontal areas to aid aerodynamics.

Everything on the new GSX-Rs is slimmed down. The new alloy twin beam frame is 15mm narrower than on the previous model. The fuel tank is now 15mm shorter and 20mm narrower at the rider’s knees and the footpegs have been moved 10mm closer together, a change which should make the bike easier to move around on.

Externally braced swingarms are usually the preserve of bigger superbikes but Suzuki has seen fit to use one on the 600 as well as the 750 – probably because it looks good rather than due to any real need for the extra rigidity. The rear shock is a conventional Showa unit, adjustable for compression, rebound and pre-load. The front Showa 43mm forks are inverted – a first for the 600.

Both new GSX-Rs have radially-mounted front brakes with Tokico four-pot calipers. Radial brakes offer improved braking because they allow less flex. The extra power means the size of the discs can be cut from 320 to 300mm, reducing unsprung weight and gyroscopic effect so the bike turns quicker. The wheels carry 120-section front and 180-section rear tyres. Bridgestone’s new BT014s are original equipment.

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MCN Staff

By MCN Staff