Posts by Category: Suzuki

Suzuki January 18, 2017 posted by

Featured Listing: 1986 Suzuki GSX-R750 for Sale

Update 1.18.2017: Sold in 11 days! Congratulations to buyer and seller! If you have an outstanding Rare Sportbike for sale, email us about a $59 Featured Listing for exposure like this this GSX-R 750 received! -dc

Today's Featured Listing is the grandaddy of modern sportbiking, the Suzuki GSX-R750. Sure, you could probably argue that other bikes like Kawasaki's GPz or pretty much every Bimota were also significant, but Suzuki's original "Gixxer" had all of the pieces in place: a fully-faired, bug-eyed endurance-racer aesthetic to match the performance available from the inline four and the lightweight, aluminum-framed monoshock chassis to put that power to the ground. Bimota may have perfected the formula, but Suzuki made it affordable to the masses and, in the process, created an icon. Obviously, boatloads of these were made, but boatloads were also crashed and thrashed and neglected, meaning these have suddenly become very collectible and not easy to find in this kind of condition.

Introduced in 1985, the first-generation bikes like this one are sometimes known as "Slabbies" due to the large, slab-sided fairings. Early bikes eschewed liquid-cooling for their 750cc inline four in favor of a high-capacity oil system known as SACS: Suzuki Advanced Cooling System. The system used a sophisticated oil pump to direct jets of oil at critical components and was used up until 1992, when the GSX-R received more modern liquid-cooling. Why SACS? It was felt that the addition of a radiator and associated plumbing would add unnecessary and undesirable weight and complexity to the new sportbike. Colin Chapman would have been proud, although he probably would also have drilled a bunch of holes into that aluminum frame...

The bike arrived in the US in 1986 and was virtually identical to the 1985 model, excepting some updates to lighting, slightly revised bodywork, and a longer swingarm for improved handling. This particular example looks very clean and appears ready to ride, with fresh plugs and tires!

From the seller: 1986 Suzuki GSX-R750 for Sale

One owner, expertly maintained, synthetic oil used entire life, never been crashed, garaged all its life, all original parts with the following upgrades: Progressive fork springs, Works rear mono shock, advanced ignition rotor, K & N filter and front braided metal brake lines. Old parts are available along with a Suzuki shop manual. Bike has new Metzler Z-rated tires, Iridium spark plugs and a one-year-old AGM battery. 

With almost 60,000 miles on the bike, it is mechanically top notch; the plastic does show some wear with three minor cracks that have been repaired and stop-drilled. Close-up photos are available. The tank and frame are flawless. Most of the plastic is in great condition. Regular oil/filter changes have been made at 5,000 to 6,000 miles or once a year when not ridden often. Brake and clutch fluids were regularly changed, and fork oil was changed every five years. The valves have been recently adjusted. Other than new fork seals--replaced twice--there have been no mechanical failures in the bike's history.

The bike is in excellent mechanical condition with 60,000 miles on it. Cosmetically the bike is in original and very good condition. I am asking $5,800.00 for it. The bike is currently in Ventura County, CA. The bike, while a collectible, is regularly ridden. It runs and handles great!

 

With some pretty outrageously-priced Slabbies out there, the $5,800 this seller is asking seems very reasonable. The miles are pretty high but, as with most collector vehicles, condition is far more important, and this example appears to have been very sympathetically owned. Upgrades are practical and, in my mind very appropriate. Few compromises are needed to own this classic sportbike: no basic maintenance that requires engine-out servicing and no unobtainable parts or esoteric knowledge are required, making these pretty practical collectibles, assuming you find a good one. In fact, probably the biggest limitation will be finding modern rubber for those skinny, 18" hoops.

-tad

Featured Listing: 1986 Suzuki GSX-R750 for Sale
Suzuki January 15, 2017 posted by

Slab vs sling: 1987 Suzuki GSX-R1100, 1988 Suzuki GSX-R750

This post is for two early edition Suzuki GSX-R's, a 1100 and a 750.  Both are in good but not perfect condition, have the desirable blue and white bodywork and similar mileage.


1987 GSX-1100R on ebay

The first bike is a 1987 GSX-R1100...a big beasty of a sportbike responsible for more than one type of skidmark for anyone willing to sling a leg over.  While the smaller displacement 750cc sibling is considered to be the first affordable, modern racer-replica suitable for daily road useage, the bigger GSX-R model actually sold better than its 750cc sibling.  This was in large part due to its being less effort to use on the road/less peaky and also because, well, "more POWAHHHH!!!" is always a big seller.

This particular GSX-R1100 is the first year "slab-side" version prized by collectors.  Condition is not perfect but all parts appear to be OEM with the exception of the windscreen (and the seller indicates he has that available).  Oddly there appears to be some front fairing damage that has been fixed via a set of 'stitches' which is not something I have seen before.  Also I can't really tell from the pics but the frame looks a bit shiny - perhaps some polishing has occurred.

Mileage is a respectable 14,186 in the pics and the seller indicates he has owned the bike for about 7 years.   The seller does indicate some idle issues which are probably due to gummed up carb needles.  Other general service info isn't provided so I would expect fresh fluids and tires to be needed.


The second bike is a GSX-R750 edition from a year earlier with similar mileage.

1988 Suzuki GSX-R750 on ebay

The 750cc GSX-R750 was initially the more desired of the the series, in part because the 750cc configuration was the dominant configuration in racing at the time.   Like the 1100 earlier in this post this one looks to be in good condition but not perfect with some bodywork issues, bits of rust on the exhaust canisters and fork oxidation.  Also the condition of the brake lines/front fairing area make me think that despite what the seller says this bike wasn't always garaged or perhaps was originally owned somewhere damp.

As for maintenance, the seller indicates a bit of rough running but on the plus side, it has fresh tires, battery and brake fluids and all parts appear to be OEM with the exception of some handgrips.

Here are a few more pics of the 750cc edition.

So, what are these worth?  Both have opening prices in the $5,000-$6,000 USD range which seems a bit high but not preposterous, especially given both bikes location in California where prices tend to be higher.   Finding first gen Suzuki's that have not been modified is getting to be tougher and tougher - you are more likely to see something like this which while cheaper, would probably end up costing more if the intent is to put it back into completely OEM condition.

From a collectors standpoint, the market for these seems to be demonstrated by the similar pricing of these two so I would not expect either of these to appreciate in price much.  Personally I think the 1100 would be more fun but both will probably appeal more to the nostalgia-oriented rider or restorer than the investment oriented collector.  Then again, market values can change fast so if a late 1980's GSX-R is on your list for your dream garage, maybe a trip to California to check both out would be in order.

-Marty/Dallaslavower

Slab vs sling:  1987 Suzuki GSX-R1100, 1988 Suzuki GSX-R750
Suzuki January 13, 2017 posted by

One Year Only: 1983 Suzuki XN85 Turbo

The Eighties were a wild time in terms of motorcycle development. Manufacturers experimented with all types of engines, suspensions, chassis, materials and design. Like Darwin's theory of Natural Selection, those bikes best suited to their environment survived; other, less fortunate machines fell to the onslaught of progress. This 1983 Suzuki XN85 Turbo is one such casualty. Offered only in 1983 (in the US at least - the model actually survived 3 total years of worldwide production), this rare bird is the rarest of the factory turbo bikes, and offers a terrific glimpse at how hard Suzuki was working at evolution.

1983 Suzuki XN85 Turbo for sale on eBay

Powered by an air-cooled inline four-cylinder displacing a mere 650cc, the addition of fuel injection and an IHI turbocharger maxing out at approximately 12 PSI of boost upped the ante considerably. Still, the XN85 is not the most powerful of the turbo set; while the "85" in the name is supposedly the horsepower figure, that was optimistically taken at the crank. Real world numbers are closer to 70 ponies at the rear wheel. Notably, the XN motor incorporates oil injection on the backside of the pistons - a feature that was enhanced to become the SACS system on the air/oil cooled first generation GSX-R750 models.

From the seller:
1983 Suzuki XN85 turbo. 14800 Original miles. The motorcycle has just come out of long term storage. All fluids changed and fully serviced. Runs beautifully. A few marks and dings on the tank, because the previous owner stupidly piled items haphazardly around and on the bike.

Outside of the novelty of the Turbo setup, the XN85 was also the first US street bike to incorporate a 16" front wheel. This GP technology was based on the fact that the smaller diameter wheel developed a smaller gyroscopic force, enabling quicker handling. While this fad was later reversed due to better suspension, tires and frame geometry, the XN85 was considered one of the best handling sportbikes of the day. Wrap it all up in futuristic-yet-minimalistic bodywork and you have a rare piece of ride-worthy sculpture.

This bike is located in Florida and is looking for a new home. XN85 machines are not like other Suzuki products; parts are hard to come by, with many no longer in stock/available. If the foundation is good, the cosmetics can be repaired. Tire selection is quite limited these days due to the 16" combination, but they can still be found. The Suzuki XN85 Turbo is an interesting machine in concept, a great looking bike in person, and a terrific machine to ride. Prices really have not risen much over the years, so this may be a future collectable as well. Check it out and let us know what you think!

MI

One Year Only: 1983 Suzuki XN85 Turbo
Suzuki January 4, 2017 posted by

The Beast Below: 2001 Suzuki TL1000R

2001 Suzuki TL1000R on ebay

Back in the late 1990's the motorcycling world was gobsmacked by the Ducati 916 - not only was it shockingly beautiful, it restored the v-twin as THE desired powerplant for the motorcycling cognescenti.  Given the impact of the Ducati 916 it wasn't a surprise that the competition tried to build their own v-twins with the results including the Aprilia FalcoHonda Firestorm and Suzuki TL series (S/Street and R/Race model). While these bikes were each interesting in their own way (especially the Falco) none dethroned the Ducati.  The reasons for this were varied; the Aprilia was poorly marketed and simply bland looking in comparison while the Honda suffered from a very small fuel tank and poor (for Honda anyway) build quality.  As for the TL series, the issue was handling.

When the Suzuki TL series was introduced with the TL-S/Street version the 90 degree v-twin won raves for producing 125hp.  However the v-twin design meant that there was less room for the rear suspension so Suzuki fit a car-like rotary suspension system which involved a separate spring and rotary damper.  While this suspension is fine under most situations for the street, when the suspension came under heavy load it got hot and the suspension could struggle to respond quickly enough. The result was front wheel lift which could then result in tank slap.   The press jumped on the issue, declaring the bike as a "widow maker".

Even as Suzuki worked to resolve the TL-S/Street versions handling issues the company launched the TL- R/Race version.  Like its year younger sibling, the TL-R had a great engine (tweaked to produce 135hp) that was now mounted in a GSX-R series derived beam frame and clad with full bodywork.   The TL-R came with a factory installed steering damper but despite the changes, still maintained its reputation for dangerous handling.  Sales were below target and after 6 years Suzuki decided to pull the plug on its V-Twin series efforts and refocus its attention on the GSX/inline four series.

This particular TL1000R is in the traditional late 1990's blue and white Suzuki colors.  Personally I think it was a mistake for Suzuki to clad the TL-R in something that was so similar to the GSX-R series but the bodywork on this one does look to be pretty good.   The taillights, turnsignals, windscreen and frame sliders/crash bungs are aftermarket but could be restored pretty cheaply.  The seller does indicate some scuffs and a broken bit of fairing but also indicates that the sale includes some extra bits

Here is what the seller has to say

  • Mileage 11,338
  • Has a full Yoshimura exhaust system, Power commander + tune  
  • Included in the sale is a spare belly pan, tail fairing, and upper fairing and clear windscreen 
  • Chain and sprockets are in good condition, oil is fresh.  
  • Bike is lowered slightly but OEM shock with OEM ride height links that will go with the bike

So what is this V-Twin beastie worth?  Obviously its not a pristine bike and will require some attention if the intent is to acquire it for a collection.  However the price right now is stupid low at $2600 USD (which is barely above KBB trade in value) and these still have a reputation for being very good both as a daily commuter and on  the track.   Personally I think this one is a screaming deal right now.

Note: If you are interested in learning more about the TL1000R, check out some of our previous posts regarding the Suzuki TL1000R.

-Marty/Dallaslavowner

The Beast Below:  2001 Suzuki TL1000R
Suzuki January 2, 2017 posted by

Retro Dream: 1999 Suzuki GSX 400S Katana

Up for grabs today is something so rare that in the States most people won't even know it exists. I know you think you're looking at a 1000cc Katana from 1981. But in fact, this 400cc version was produced nearly 20 years after the fact! Retro was very big in Japan (and continues to be), and this smaller version of the Katana was meant to cash in on the big model's original heyday. Unfortunately for those in the US, this was a Japan-spec model limited to home country use, with some limited exportation to Asia-Pacific countries. Small bikes rule in Japan, and so we see a great deal of attention to detail in the sub-500cc sector.

1999 Suzuki Katana 400 for sale on eBay

This 400cc model looks so close to the original that you'd be forgiven if you wrote it off as another anemic air-cooled putt-putt. Cleverly disguised to remain aligned with the retro theme, the seemingly air-cooled mill was actually sourced from the 400cc Bandit (which was actually a derivative of the GSX-R400 power plant). What looks like an oil cooler is actually the radiator. Cast wheels that mimic the originals, Tokico calipers (another nod to the Bandit/GSX-R line), as well as the cool retro piggy-back shocks round out the aesthetics.

From the seller:
1999 Suzki GSX 400S Katana located in Santa Ana, California. This bike has 2273 KM = 1363 Miles. This is a true low KM JDM original bike. This bike has a 400cc engine and is sold in Japan only. The carbs were cleaned about 10 months ago. They do need a light cleaning now because the bike has been sitting. This bike is being sold with a bill of sale only. I don't have a title for the bike and can not get one, so don't ask. More info is available on our website. If you overseas or Canadian buyer, you will have to make your own shipping arrangements. I can help USA buyers with the shipping, or you can arrange your own shipper. Bike is being sold as is, no returns. Ask questions and look at the pictures carefully before you bid. Again, this bike is being sold with a bill of sale only, NO TITLE.

I'm not sure what importation looks like, given that this is an 18-year old motorcycle that looks like it's going on 40. Much of the heavy lifting has been done as the bike is already Stateside - except it is missing a title and other niceties that would allow you to register it. As with most things it's likely verboten in California, but I imagine it is possible in other (more lenient) States. It might be some effort, but you could pretty much guarantee that you would *never* see another one like it on the road. Check it out here, and good luck!

Retro Dream: 1999 Suzuki GSX 400S Katana
Suzuki December 29, 2016 posted by

Sensible Upgrades: 1986 Suzuki RG500Γ for Sale

One of the most desirable sportbikes of the 1980s, the Suzuki RG500Γ was in a class of basically two with the Yamaha RZ500. Powered by a two-stroke square four it shared with no other bike in Suzuki's lineup, the Gamma was intended to evoke their Grand Prix racebikes, which led to an interesting dilemma: two-strokes were still king in the racing world, but their smoky emissions and poor fuel-consumption were dooming them to irrelevance in the real world. And while quarter-liter two-strokes continued well into the 1990s, "big" 500cc two-stroke fours from Suzuki and Yamaha lasted for just a couple years.

The Gamma's 400lbs and 100hp weren't cutting-edge numbers even in their day, but the relatively light weight and 500cc power meant that, although there were faster bikes in a straight-line, the Gamma had that magical combination of agility and top-end hit that two-stroke fans find so addictive. Or maybe burnt two-stroke oil has some sort of narcotic effect? Sure, yesterday's Triumph Daytona would probably kill it in any quantifiable measure of performance, but what would you expect from a thirty year-old motorcycle?

Today's example is very sharp-looking and has been modified to use wider 17" wheels front and rear. Purists might balk, but finding sticky [and safe] modern rubber to fit those very skinny [120 wide at the rear!] stock items might be difficult and I think it improves the look of the bike, although aesthetics are certainly subjective.

From the original eBay listing: 1986 Suzuki RG500Γ for Sale

GAMMA, totally refurbished, Lance Gamma tune, top end, pipes. Carbs bored, air filters, ride height adj, RaceTech forks, Fox shock, GSX-R400 rims, new body work and paint. Bike comes with owners manual, shop manual, custom stand, race stand, cover, and Suzuki leather jacket size 48. Bike runs and idles perfectly. If u have ever wanted one, this is the one. Don't let this pass you up, bike will only appreciate.

Digging back through our archives, it doesn't look like this example has graced the pages of RSBFS. Obviously, restomods can be a bit divisive, but I'm a fan as long as they're done tastefully and this one looks pretty class, assuming that carbon dash is real carbon fiber... Even the slightly updated graphics on that solo tail look great, and it has the required Lance Gamma tune. The price for this pristine, tastefully-modified Gamma? A cool $23,000. That's pretty steep, but the bike looks sharp enough to justify that kind of cash, and if you've been looking for a lightly-modified RG500, this might be the time to dig deep.
-tad
Sensible Upgrades: 1986 Suzuki RG500Γ for Sale