2024 Suzuki GSX-8R Review | First Ride 

2024 Suzuki GSX-8R Review | First Ride 

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2024 Suzuki GSX-8R
An aggressive rider posture adapts the ergonomics on the 2024 Suzuki GSX-8R from open and cozy to fairly sporty when required.

The Suzuki GSX-8R takes an ironic flip within the evolution of bikes. For many years we’ve extolled the virtues of sporty standard-style bikes over dramatically extra aggressive pure sportbikes, however American riders largely turned up their collective nostril at bare bikes and ignored them in favor of swoopier sportbikes.  

The Honda 599 and 919 got here and went seemingly with out discover. Similar for Kawasaki’s Z750, BMW’s F 800 R, Yamaha’s FZ8, and Aprilia’s Shiver. The one actually profitable bare bikes have been the Ducati Monster and Suzuki SV650.  

2024 Suzuki GSX-8R
A set of forged-aluminum handlebar clamps present a sportier driving place than the bare 8S, with the bars 60mm decrease and 6mm ahead.

However now the script has been flipped, and gross sales of pure sportbikes are however a blip on the radar, whereas each producer efficiently sells sporty nakeds. A latest instance is Suzuki’s GSX-8S that debuted final yr. Powered by a brand new 776cc parallel-Twin additionally discovered within the V-Strom 800, the 8S proved to be each sporty and utilitarian, able to practically any sort of driving. 

Commercial

Associated: Suzuki GSX-8S Review | First Ride 

And now right here we’re with the brand new GSX-8R, which is a barely sportier model of the 8S, however it’s a far cry from one thing like a GSX-R. You’ll discover the brand new fairing, however you won’t discover the brand new Showa suspension, accounting for the $440 value enhance over its stablemate’s $8,999 MSRP.  

2024 Suzuki GSX-8R
The GSX-8R is accessible in Metallic Matte Sword Silver and Pearl Ignite Yellow, in addition to the Metallic Triton Blue of our take a look at bike.

“We needed,” says Suzuki, “to create a brand new middle-class normal within the sport section that achieves excessive ranges of practicality and rider-friendliness.” 

Street and Monitor | Suzuki GSX-8R Assessment

To reveal the breadth of capabilities supplied by the GSX-8R, Suzuki invited us to Palm Desert in California for a experience on rural and mountain roads, adopted the following day by classes at a racetrack.  

First impressions have been favorable, because the 8R shows good match and end particulars that belie its sub-$10K price ticket. Three colorways can be found, and I believe all of them look nice. For my steed, I selected the Metallic Triton Blue model that greatest represents Suzuki’s heritage. Scaling in at 452 lb with its 3.7-gal. tank full, it’s straightforward sufficient to wheel round however not precisely mild. The seat is positioned at 31.9 inches. 

2024 Suzuki GSX-8R
The GSX-8R carves corners like a sportbike however with out the punishing ergonomics of a sportbike.

Our road experience happened on a cold and damp day, climbing out of city from 440 ft above sea degree on the Palms to Pines Scenic Byway, cresting at practically 5,000 ft. I used to be grateful to be aboard the 8R somewhat than the 8S, as its fairing offered welcome shelter from the weather. The windscreen is low however moderately efficient, and I used to be additionally happy with the airflow deflection supplied by the fairing, which stored my legs shielded from the wind.  

On a usually sunny California day, this street invitations horizon-tilting lean angles, however damp sections and vehicle bottle-ups thwarted sporting maneuvers. It was tough to find out if the Dunlop Roadsmart 2 tires lacked grip or if it was merely the fault of the cool pavement. I switched the bike’s experience mode from A (lively) to B (fundamental) to assist reasonable throttle response along with the traction-control system, which may be set independently if desired.  

2024 Suzuki GSX-8R
A lovely fairing is the important thing distinction between the GSX-8R and its bare sibling, the GSX-8S.

GEAR UP

Antilock brakes present one other degree of safety, though the system doesn’t profit from an IMU, so it doesn’t function a cornering ABS operate. Regardless, the triple-disc brakes are exact, permitting a rider to deftly apply only a trace of software to clean off 1 or 2 mph whereas angling into corners. The Nissin radially mounted entrance calipers ship a agency lever really feel regardless of not utilizing braided-steel strains.  

Essentially the most ceaselessly used rider help on the 8R is the usual quickshifter, which permits clutchless upshifts and auto-blipping downshifts. It really works moderately effectively however not with the seamlessness as skilled with different quickshifters that profit from information gathered by IMUs.  

2024 Suzuki GSX-8R
The muffler and catalytic converter are tucked away below the chassis for a cleaner look that exposes the 8R’s aluminum swingarm.

After descending the mountain street, we have been confronted with a boring straight one which offered the chance to settle in and consider the 8R’s cockpit and ergonomics.  

The tubular handlebar from the 8S is traded for a pair of clip-ons which might be about 2 inches decrease and a smidge farther away from a rider. They ship a sportier driving place however one which’s a mile away from really aggressive, related in ergos to the GSX-S1000GT sport-tourer. A reasonably tight seat-to-footpeg distance may cramp riders lengthy of leg, however the seat proved to be snug after hour-long stints within the saddle. 

Associated:  Suzuki GSX-S1000GT Review | Road Test 

The 5-inch TFT instrumentation from the 8S can be used on the 8R, offering a brilliant and readable show with a big analog tachometer. It’s a contemporary however fundamental system that’s straightforward and intuitive to navigate by way of switches on the left handlebar.  

2024 Suzuki GSX-8R
The GSX-8R makes use of the identical extremely readable 5-inch colour TFT instrument panel because the 8S. The decrease portion may be toggled to show coolant temperature, ambient air temperature, twin tripmeters, gasoline consumption, and gasoline vary.

Motor’n | Suzuki GSX-8R Assessment 

This was my first likelihood to pattern Suzuki’s first all-new engine, and the 776cc parallel-Twin proved to be amiable and sweetly tuned. It makes use of the Low‐RPM Help System that routinely will increase engine pace because the clutch lever is launched for easy getaways. The patented Suzuki Cross Balancer mechanism, consisting of two counterbalancers, tames vibration past what’s skilled from most parallel-Twins.

2024 Suzuki GSX-8R
The 8R’s clutch cowl and magneto cowl have darkish grey finishes that complement the physique colours, with the Suzuki identify revealed in a contrasting machined silver. Observe the stubby outlet from the stainless steel exhaust system that muffles and cleans in a chamber under the chassis.

The engine is pleasant and vibe-free, however what it isn’t is thrilling. It makes accessible and usable energy, supplying the mandatory grunt to elicit satisfaction whereas performing most road duties, however when pointed down a abandoned street, it feels a bit strangled at its high finish. Energy hounds will want for extra.

Suspenders Shock | Suzuki GSX-8R Assessment

An improve from the 8S is the Showa suspension that replaces the Kayaba elements. There are two surprises right here. First, there isn’t any suspension adjustability apart from rear preload. Second, it’s exceptional how effectively it really works at offering snug bump absorption in addition to respectable chassis composure.  

The 41mm Separate Perform Fork-Massive Piston inverted fork properly holds up its finish of the discount with 5.1 inches of journey. The SFF-BP design makes use of an oil-bathed spring in a single fork leg, whereas the opposite leg makes use of a big-piston damping circuit, which saves a little bit of weight whereas delivering extra exact damping traits. The link-type rear suspension incorporates a Showa shock that has a single-rate spring somewhat than the progressive coil on the 8S. It makes use of a cam-style spring-preload adjuster for simpler changes than the extra fundamental locking-ring design. 

2024 Suzuki GSX-8R
The 41mm Showa SFF-BP inverted fork supplies wonderful front-end suggestions regardless of its lack of adjustability. Nissin radial-mount brake calipers ship reassuring suggestions by way of 310mm rotors.

As arrange, I observed the rear finish lacked a little bit of rebound damping and consulted with Suzuki engineers. They instructed me the 8R is sprung for a 165-lb rider, so to accommodate for weightier American physiques, they added a step of preload on all of the take a look at bikes. My geared-up 155-lb mass doesn’t require as a lot spring, so I backed off the preload one place and loved higher rebound-damping stability.  

The ultimate portion of our road experience was accompanied by sunny skies and dry roads that culminated in a enjoyable descent on Montezuma Grade into Borrego Springs. Lastly, we may push the 8R like a sportbike, leaning into corners briskly sufficient to skim the pavement with footpegs. Good front-end suggestions had me salivating for exploring the bike’s limits on the twisty Chuckwalla Valley Raceway.

2024 Suzuki GSX-8R
A place mild is positioned above the stacked headlights somewhat than to the perimeters as on the 8S. A duct under the windscreen was included to cut back turbulence hitting riders.

Chucky Cheese | Suzuki GSX-8R Assessment 

After we arrived at Chuckwalla, I smiled as I noticed a row of GSX-8Rs prepared for flogging and fitted with Dunlop Sportmax Q5+ tires. With heat pavement and grippier rubber, I donned my leathers and shortly started dragging knees.  

2024 Suzuki GSX-8R
Streetbike, commuter, light-weight sport-tourer, and trackday toy, the GSX-8R can do all of it.

Sportbike snobs have disdain for bikes with out aluminum frames, however identical to the Kawasaki ZX-4RR I tested last year, bikes with metal frames don’t have anything to be ashamed of apart from some further poundage. The 8R demonstrates its GSX-R heritage and supplies a succesful and safe platform to discover sporting limits. 

I didn’t anticipate a 452-lb sportbike with sport-touring ergos to comport itself so effectively on the racetrack, however it wasn’t the primary time I’ve been mistaken, because the missus usually jogs my memory. A agency set of reliable brakes combines with impartial steering responses for reliable composure when leaned over all the way in which to – and typically past – the footpegs decking out and grinding on the tarmac.  

2024 Suzuki GSX-8R
A detailed have a look at the footpegs reveals beveled nubs, a sign of the enjoyable that was had on the 8R in addition to its racetrack limits.

GEAR UP

It’s solely on the straightaways the place the 8R comes up a bit quick. The 776cc Twin that works so effectively within the V-Strom 800 and in most road eventualities with the 8S and 8R feels a bit breathless when exploring the higher reaches of the tachometer. Its redline is simply shy of 10,000 rpm, however it’s claimed to provide peak energy at 8,500 revs, so there’s no benefit to screaming it out. After we dyno’d the identically tuned GSX-8S, it spat out 76 hp to its rear wheel at 8,300 rpm. I found the 8R gathers pace higher when leaving some revs on the desk and shifting at 9,000 rpm.  

2024 Suzuki GSX-8R
The 8R’s pace on a racetrack is restricted solely by cornering clearance and mundane engine output.

Regardless, I can attest that for those who took a GSX-8R to a trackday, you’d be impressed by its composure and sure-footedness whereas scratching pegs. Chuckwalla has a reasonably easy floor, so the rudimentary suspension wasn’t vastly taxed and held up each ends with out criticism.

Sum Up | Suzuki GSX-8R Assessment 

2024 Suzuki GSX-8R
The GSX-8R isn’t a fire-breathing dragon like its GSX-R siblings, however it has loads of sporting potential.

The GSX-8R’s greatest attribute is that it straddles a large line on the earth of motorcycling – an all-in-one machine. It’s docile and pleasant for commuting duties, however it’s additionally enjoyable and interesting when ridden like a sportbike. Strap on some baggage, and it may be a fairly cozy and succesful sport-touring rig. Suzuki’s accent line gives facet instances, tankbags, a taller windscreen, and heated grips to assist transport you to the following horizon in fashion and luxury. 

Complaints in regards to the 8R are few. I’d’ve favored to have seen a mildly hot-rodded motor to up the ante from the 8S, and an aluminum body would’ve trimmed just a few kilos from a reasonably portly curb weight. An IMU and fuller suspension adjustability can be welcome additions.  

However all these issues would add to Suzuki’s construct prices, leading to a motorcycle that might probably push previous $12K. On this period of ever-increasing costs, the GSX-8R’s MSRP of $9,439 hits a candy spot of worth and capabilities that set it aside from related choices available on the market. To ease the way in which into 8R possession, Suzuki is providing 1.98% introductory financing for it.  

2024 Suzuki GSX-8R
The GSX-8R is designed to enchantment to riders throughout a variety of ages and ranges of expertise.

Previous to testing the bike, the jaded and professional journalists on the launch didn’t appear terribly enthusiastic about driving what appeared to be a comparatively tame bike. After two days experiencing the GSX-8R on street and observe, our preconceptions had been banished. It proved to be a kind of uncommon machines that really feel higher than the sum of its elements.

Check out more new bikes in Rider’s 2024 Motorcycle Buyers Guide 

2024 Suzuki GSX-8R Specs 

  • Base Worth: $9,439  
  • Web site: SuzukiCycles.com  
  • Guarantee: 1 yr., unltd. miles  
  • Engine Kind: Liquid-cooled, transverse parallel-Twin, DOHC w/ 4 valves per cyl.  
  • Displacement: 776cc  
  • Bore x Stroke: 84.0 x 70.0mm  
  • Horsepower: 82.0 @ 8,500 rpm (manufacturing unit declare)  
  • Torque: 57.5 lb-ft @ 6,800 rpm (manufacturing unit declare)  
  • Transmission: 6-speed, cable-actuated slip/help moist clutch  
  • Last Drive: Chain  
  • Wheelbase: 57.7 in.  
  • Rake/Path: 25.0 levels/4.1 in.  
  • Seat Peak: 31.9 in.  
  • Moist Weight: 452 lb (manufacturing unit declare)  
  • Gas Capability: 3.7 gal 

See all of Rider‘s Suzuki coverage here.

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