Warning!This post is in our archives. Links in this post have been updated to point to similar bikes available to bid on eBay.
Update 11.4.2020: This bike has sold to an RSBFS reader! Congratulations to buyer and seller! -dc
Suzuki’s XN85 Turbo was built for 1983 only, and combined moderate boost with mid-size 673cc displacement, stuck with air-oil cooling, but was pretty sporty with 85 hp, 16-inch front wheel, and Full Floater rear end. RSBFS reader Don’s example has just under 16,000 miles but looks better than excellent.
1983 Suzuki XN85 Featured Listing
Suzuki stayed conservative on the XN85’s internals, just SOHC and two valves per cylinder, 7.4:1 compression, and everything in the crankcase was toughened up. One nod to the centrally mounted turbocharger was the adoption of electronic fuel injection, which allowed a programmable response to the complex relationship of rpm, manifold pressure, and temperature. The chassis design added triangulation to the backbone, and though the wheelbase and rake were long, handling with the 16-inch front wheel got good reviews. Brakes were good-sized with 296mm front disks and 265mm rear. The cafe windshield and flowing side covers make reference to the 1981 Katana.
Don has kept his XN85 super nice, and the bike was subject of a magazine feature in 2002. Since then it’s gotten a very correct re-paint and regular maintenance to keep it rideable, though it’s not ridden much. Don’s comments about the XN85:
Extremely rare 1983 Suzuki XN85 (factory 650cc turbo). 1983 is the only year 300 units were imported into US and only 1,153 total worldwide. 15,876 original miles. Excellent condition, maybe 9 outta 10, and all original except repaint using original color and OEM stickers by previous owner. Paint is near perfect and original looking. I’ve owned it 3 years.
This same and exact motorcycle was featured in the September 2002 issue of Classic Bike Rider magazine by the previous owner. The magazine issue is included in the sale.
The bike starts, runs and rides like new. I cleaned the fuel injectors recently (ultrasonically) and it runs better than ever. Clean title notarized out of Ohio (previous owner), I never bothered to register it. This would make a great addition for the collector trying to assemble all 4 factory turbos from the Japanese. This is definitely the most difficult to find.
Don asks $7,500 for his XN85.
Bike is located in Sacramento and Don can easily facilitate shipping.
Each of the big four stuck a toe in the turbo waters in the 1980’s, partly in response to gas lines and emissions standards enacted in the late 70’s. At least a good engineering exercise, they checked out some smaller turbo concepts for a future that thankfully was delayed. Suzuki’s entry was the sportiest and shortest-lived, and continues to be the rarest as well. They only appear here once a season or so, and Don’s is one of the nicest and ready to ride, though more of its future will likely involve display.