Posts by tag: RGB500

Suzuki May 15, 2019 posted by

Featured Listing: 1983 Suzuki RGB500 Gamma Racer

8.28.2019: This bike has SOLD! Congratulations to buyer and seller! -dc

In our efforts to bring you, the reader, the very best of the best, RSBFS humbly offers you an honest-to-god, fire-breathing privateer Suzuki RGB500 GP bike! This is no ordinary Gamma converted for track usage. This is a bespoke racer – originally offered by the factory to independent racers of means – now available to allow interested parties to play out their Randy Mamola fantasies. When new, prospective buyers needed to provide significant backing and a racer’s resume in order to qualify for the relatively few bikes on offer – making this a rare and unique prospect for collectors.

Featured Listing: 1983 Suzuki RGB500 Gamma Racer

The resemblance of the RGB to the street-going Gamma is strictly intentional; the road bike was based on the successful GP racer. The racer was based on the desire to win GP events and provided Suzuki with invaluable marketing clout and the kind of credentials that only competition can bring. Thus the RGB was designed with a now ubiquitous square four, 500cc two stroke power plant. Consisting of two parallel twins mated together, the twin-crank engine utilized disk induction (as opposed to reed valves) on each bank of cylinders. And while the earliest engines resembled a cube, the more evolved editions featured stepped cylinders, with the rear bank elevated over the forward block. This presents a visually unique mechanical view, while offering cooling, weight placement and packaging enhancements. Liquid cooling was standard to minimize tolerances and maximize horsepower. The steel chassis offered a trick anti-dive front fork, Full Floater single shock rear suspension and a (very) necessary steering damper.

From the seller:
1983-1984 RGB 500 GAMMA – Extremely Rare Collector Racing Bike
A quick note before presenting its history: this Suzuki RG 500 Gamma is a “competition client” racing bike. This means that every year the manufacturer (Suzuki) offered private race teams a simpler version of their factory world winning bike used in the 500cc World Championship by its factory team. This version did not have all of the latest evolutions that the factory team had, but it was close enough to be used by private teams in World, European and National championships.

This is a NON STREET LEGAL bike. This “competition client” therefore DOES NOT HAVE A TITLE and NEVER DID. Of course a complete and detailed bill of sale / invoice will be provided to the buyer as proof of ownership.

More from the seller:

In fact the chassis was not raced in 1983- Claude Fior who made (another) revolutionary bike/frame for the 1982-83 500cc European Championship – bought new this “competition client” racer only to use its 4 cylinder 500cc engine since he needed a motor. French Endurance World Champion racer Jean Laffond went onto winning the 500cc European Championship race at Le Castellet / Paul Ricard with this Fior/Suzuki this year.

At the end of the season they sold the bike (new chassis with the winning engine) to Franck Freon who had won several races in the 1983 French 500cc Promosport Championship and the Yamaha 350 RDLC Cup. Freon only raced a few times in 1984/85 with his RG 500 Gamma finishing 3rd at the Carole track in the 500cc French Open and 2nd at the same track in the 500cc French Championship sharing the podium with Christian Sarron and Thierry Espie.

Freon was on his way to move from 2 wheels to 4 wheels by wininning the Magny-Cours ELF Winfield Racing School at the end of 1985. He raced cars on 3 continents the next 18 years winning races in Formula Renault in France, Firestone Indy Lights Series in the US also winning the 24 Hours of Daytona, the 12 Hours of Sebring, twice the GTS class at Petit Le Mans in Road Atlanta and competing 10 years in a row at the 24 Hours of Le Mans climbing 5 times on the podium among others.

More from the seller:
The bike is located in Paris, France at Franck Freon’s father’s motorcycle store where it has been displayed in the showroom since being retired in 1985. It was started regularly in the 90s’ and 2000’s but never rode or raced again. It’s complete, the engine is free and it was 100% running when it was used last. Of course it’s in need of a restoration since it’s now a 35 year old racing bike. We took many photos so you can see for yourself. Matching engine/chassis numbers. Simple history since brand new.

This is a collector racing bike – no real title exists. A certified invoice with the chassis number and engine number will be provided.

Asking price: $39,000

This is a very interesting offering with known provenance. Claude Fior is well known in chassis design circles and for the use of the Hossack-style front suspension (see pic below), and while this is not a Fior frame his connection with this bike is historically significant. And Franck Freon – while not necessarily a household name – is a successful racer both in the US as well as Europe. These facts make this a significant offering – not to mention that the bike is coming from The Man himself. There is provenance, and then there is proof. This offering seems to provide for both. In terms of rarity, “B” model Gammas certainly rank up there, with an estimated 25 or fewer units offered per type/year. Pricing is right in line of the few examples we have seen recently. Some recommissioning will be necessary for those intending to run the bike in anger, but a solid go-through should be considered mandatory for any track-bound weapon. Good Luck, and unleash your inner Mamola!


Featured Listing: 1983 Suzuki RGB500 Gamma Racer
Suzuki May 31, 2018 posted by

Canadian Stroker: 1986 Suzuki RG500Γ for Sale

Suzuki’s RG500Γ “Gamma” didn’t actually use a detuned version of the racing RGB500’s engine, but at least shared that machine’s square four two-stroke configuration, so it looked and felt like it could have been developed from the real thing. The specifications were certainly unlike anything else on the road: twin cranks, disc valves, four cylinders and 498cc, surrounded by a lightweight aluminum frame.

A quartet of very compact Mikuni flat-slide carburetors tucked in on the sides of the engine and fed the liquid-cooled two-stroke, a six-speed cassette gearbox kept the engine on the boil, and Suzuki’s “Full-Floater” suspension system and anti-dive forks helped put the power to the ground.

That square four turns fuel and air into a combination of power and heavy smoke that dribbles out of the four separate exhausts at idle. Once “on the pipe,” it puts a claimed 95hp through the impossibly skinny 120-section tire, enough to easily motivate the 340lb dry weight. Handling and braking were both exemplary in 1986, but have obviously been far surpassed.

The feeling is still there though and, in spite of Suzuki’ Automatic Exhaust Control power valve that helped give the lightweight machine a more manageable powerband, the bike was still a very raw experience. Which is exactly what makes it such a desirable bike today: it’s a race-replica that does more than just look the part.

From the original eBay listing: 1986 Suzuki RG500Γ for Sale

The bike has never been plated or crashed.  Have owned it since 1990.  Very low mileage, very fast and reliable, 1 -2 kick starts (usually 1).  The only mar on the cosmetics is 4 small dimples , the result of a board sliding over and contacting the tank while in storage.  Can put the winning bidder in touch with the shop that did the engine work.  The shop owner races a gamma in vintage Class, he is the predominate specialist in Eastern Canada.  The entire engine, including the crankshafts and powertrain have been rebuilt and/or inspected, the invoices exceeded $6,000 US and can be emailed to the winning bidder.  My storage people can also do crating, export documents and shipping (Div. of Tippet Richardson Int.)  Shipping are dependent on destination, an advanced quote can be provided.

There hasn’t been much activity so far, but the opening bid was set at $18,000 and the seller is in Canada, which may be limiting interest in the bike. While I think this color and graphics scheme is very flattering, it may also be that purists prefer the classic blue-and-white Suzuki scheme. Hopefully, we’ll see some interest over the next couple of days!


Canadian Stroker: 1986 Suzuki RG500Γ for Sale
Suzuki March 28, 2018 posted by

Worth the Trip: 1983 Suzuki RGB500 for Sale

This time of year, really interesting sportbikes can be a little thin on the ground, so our online searches naturally take us farther afield. In this case, all the way to Japan for a 1983 Suzuki RGB500 that was the Grand Prix racing inspiration for the two-stroke RG500Γ. This Mk8 version was highly-developed, although the earliest iterations of the bike were notoriously brawn-over-brains machines, with plenty of power but sometimes terrifying high-speed handling…

Suzuki’s initial foray back into Grand Prix competition in the early 1970s was built around a production-based, water-cooled parallel twin borrowed from their T500 Titan, which saw limited success. Something different was needed if Suzuki wanted to win, and that meant the development of a brand-new four cylinder engine that featured a pair of cranks, disc valves, and the now famous square-four architecture. The new four-cylinder machine was first competed in 1974 and won its first Manufacturer’s Title in 1976, then went on to dominate Grand Prix racing for years, and actually drove the shift from four-stroke machines to smokers: if you wanted to compete, you made the switch. That change defined prototype motorcycle racing up until 2002, when rules changes specifically intended to allow four-strokes to compete on more equal footing were introduced.

The original design for Suzuki’s new square-four used front and rear cylinder banks that were the same height and made 110hp, although later versions used the more familiar “stepped” arrangement familiar to fans of the Gamma and made even more power. Suspension and tire technology took a while to catch up with the engine’s brutal performance: 120hp may not sound like much today, but two-strokes deliver that power in a famously abrupt manner, and the early machines ate tires and chains with startling regularity. By 1982, the bike weighed 238lbs and produced over 120hp, with top speeds of up to 170mph and the RGB500, helped along by talented riders like Barry Sheene and Randy Mamola, was a dominant force in top-level motorcycle racing throughout the 1980s.

From the original Yahoo! Japan listing: 1983 Suzuki RGB500 for Sale

Racer RGB 500 I-MK 8 Works specifications. (Marco Rukkinelli player in Japan has riding)

Frame engine · swing arm Other than Works parts · Exterior manufacturer original.

(Engine) Works Mechanic · Full Overhaul (Replacement of new parts such as expendable parts)

It is running for 2 hours including a mustard and test course.

Basically present car verification. On… examination can receive person hope, in any case present condition delivery no claim.

A bid please those who can understand old racers · those who can understand by image.

Since cancellation of a bid can not correspond, please bid carefully under self-responsibility.

Those who can withdraw to Saitasa city, or if you can arrange for land transportation by yourself as a guideline after about a week after a successful bid

If it is BAS, we will bring it to Kashiwa depot for 5000 yen.

BAS Please bear the shipping fee from Kashiwa Depot by the highest bidder

Please, no jokes about the listing: I ran this though Google Translate so the original seller isn’t responsible for any atrocious syntactical mistakes. Although I’m really interested in “a mustard and test course.” Obviously, potential buyers won’t be worried about the need to register their purchase, since this isn’t a street bike. You’d just need to figure out whether to to race or display this bit of history.


Worth the Trip: 1983 Suzuki RGB500 for Sale
Suzuki December 28, 2015 posted by

As Seen on CSBFS: 1982 Suzuki RGB500 Mk7 XR40!

1982 Suzuki RGB500 for sale

This gorgeous Suzuki RGB500 is for sale in California and Tad wrote it up on our sister site, Classic SportBikes For Sale. Here is an excerpt:

Ridden by such luminaries as Barry Sheene and Randy Mamola, the two-stroke Suzuki RGB500 was eventually developed into the dominant machine you see here, but it went through a significant evolution following its introduction in 1974. As you’d expect, the bike always had power to spare, but high speed handling was suspect at first.

By the time the 1982 bike rolled around, Suzuki had moved to a “square” 54mm x 54mm engine for a grand total of 495cc. It was far more reliable than previous iterations and featured the same stepped cylinders seen on the RG500 Gamma road bike that had the rear pair of cylinders raised up slightly higher than the front pair. With a dry weight of 292lbs and 120hp, the bike could reach speeds of up to 170mph, which is pretty terrifying considering the tire technology of the time.


1982 Suzuki RGB500 for sale on eBay

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from the seller’s listing:

1982 RGB500mk7 XR40

This is not a street bike folks, this is the real deal, A real factory Suzuki GP road race bike… This bike has the stepped square 4 motor with magnesium crankcases, magnesium carburetors, and dry clutch… The Chassis is loaded with magnesium, Titanium and Aluminum, stuff you would expect to find on a factory race bike… First year of “Full Floater” monoshock suspension… Chassis number 42 motor number 49… Bike is in unrestored, excellent condition, just as it rolled off the race track in 1982… This bike from part of the team Heron Suzuki stable, bike has been museum store in Japan since last raced… these bikes are tad more rare than a TZ750 and much more powerful… It is the perfect bike to dominate vintage racing and is eligible for the “classic TT” in Phillips island This is a rare opportunity to own a real factory GP bike, don’t let it slip by, you’ll be sorry if you do…

s-l1600 (1)

Suzuki January 8, 2014 posted by

Smoke Squared! 1983 Suzuki RGB500 in Oklahoma

1983 Suzuki RGB500 for sale

A quick browse of the archives serves as a great reminder that this isn’t an “ordinary Suzuki RG500”, it’s a full on factory racebike, the RGB500. This example has a rather thin description but like many bikes on eBay it could be listed to see what interest may be out there and further investigation will be required. For instance the ad states that it may have raced in the Isle of Man TT but can’t yet prove that. Nonetheless, these opportunities don’t come up that often.


1983 Suzuki RGB500 for sale on eBay

from the seller:

This very rare motorcycle was purchased by us here in the US, we were told it was raced at Isle Of Man, but we are unsure of the team it was raced for. Great vintage shape as you can tell from the pictures. This motorcycle has been on display for many years and has not been ridden/started during that time. This is the same kind of motorcycle that piloted Barry Sheen to many GP wins!

Smoke Squared! 1983 Suzuki RGB500 in Oklahoma
Sport Bikes For Sale December 6, 2011 posted by

“B” Is For Bitchin: 1983 RGB500 MK8

“B” Is For Bitchin:  1983 RGB500 MK8

That “B” means a lot, this isn’t your buddy’s RG500.  Not to take anything away from the street-going Gammas, but the RGB version of this bike is the true factory Grand Prix bike made available to well-heeled teams in very limited numbers. With no concessions to the EPA, DOT or any other federal agencies, the RGB500 was designed with a single goal in mind: win 500cc GP races.

With a square four, 500cc two stroke powerplant, disk-valve induction, full floater rear suspension and leading caliper, anti-dive front fork, this RGB500 represents the latest racing technology available in the day. And how well did it work? While the ’83 season was dominated by Freddie Spencer and Kenny Roberts (with Spencer stealing the title with only 2 points to spare), Randy Mamola managed to capture 3rd overall in the standings riding a RGB500.

From the seller:
New ground up rebuild..race ready…will need break in, as it has a new top end. No known history, as bike came from Japan years ago. Depending what you plan to do with it, I have a large inventory of parts that cover MK 7 & 8 and can be purchased separately.
All new glass work and paint. All hydraulics have been rebuilt….has original race slicks for display only. Comes with original stand.

RSBFS has listed a few of these RGB models in the past, including one from this same seller (check out this 1981 model or this 1982 bike). And thanks to the RSBFS research staff, we have this great video of Randy Mamola hot-dogging on a 500cc GP bike in anger (in this case a Cagiva). Watching tires light up as these big two strokes come up on the pipe just gives me chills!

This RGB500 is available now. While it does not have any documented racing history (according to the seller it was imported out of Japan), it is still a full-fleged RGB racing machine and is thus very rare and very valuable. The BIN figure is $40,000, although the seller is open to other offers. This sounds like a reasonable price for the pristine condition and appearance, and is listed for much less than earlier examples we have witnessed. The lack of history and spares does detract from the value, but the bike appears to be priced in line with others of this caliber. For more information and details, click the link and jump over to the auction. This bike is definitely worth checking out!

Ian and MI

Sport Bikes For Sale August 31, 2011 posted by

Springtime And Square Fours: 1986 Suzuki RG500

Springtime And Square Fours:  1986 Suzuki RG500

Update 8.31.2011: Back on eBay with one day left. Good catch Mike!

It looks like there will be one less two stroke marauding the hills of Kentucky this Spring.  Your neighbors might disagree but these cool Spring mornings and evenings need to filled with the sound of  rattling two strokes. 

Before you ask:  there was no mention of a title in the auction.  Doesn’t mean there isn’t one but you’ll have to ask the seller.  What you do have is a pretty nice RG500 in basically stock condition.  It has what might not be the most popular paint scheme but definitely one of the rarest.  Nothing major jumps out at me that has been changed.  Hopefully the solo seat was just laid on there for the photos and isn’t that ill fitting.  The lower looks like it isn’t fitting very well either.  Who doesn’t start to sag a bit when they get older though!

Is she a high mileage bike?  You’ll be happy to know she is one the lower mileage RG’s I’ve seen lately: 9,283 miles.  One thing that did catch my eye was the wheels.  I’m not sure they are the original color.  Every bike I saw on the net had black wheels with this paint scheme.  I’ve learned to never say never though.  Suzuki could have made 5 bikes for Luxembourg that had this paint with red wheels.  Most importantly you’ve got another bike here, well over 20 years old and it looks to have no major changes.  The front blinkers look to be after market and the mirrors looks a little different as well.  The gas cap might have been on the receiving end of some paint too.  A few stickers might be MIA.  Usually there is a “Suzuki” sticker on the lower and a “Full Floater Suspension” close to the rear passnenger pegs.  Minor stuff (unless it has been repainted)  but I’m sure the eagle eyed RG fanatics notice it.


There were some seriously sweet carbon cans on Ebay a few weeks ago that would look awfully good back there.  Maybe some Jolly Moto’s to go with them?

Here is what the seller has to say:

For Sale low mileage, 9282 miles-14,938 km . I have owned this bike since 2003. It has been in storage and garage kept. Bike has original paint and bike is mechanically and esthetically sound. This bike is very clean to be 25 years old. The color of this bike is the black, white orange and red, the most rare color that was available. Anyone who knows anything about the RG 500 Gamma know they are highly collectible.

Without knowing about the title I’m staying away from guessing a price.  The starting bid  was set low so I’m sure we are no where near the reserve as of this writing.  If it is titled I don’t see a reason why someone wouldn’t want it. You can place your bid here.


Sport Bikes For Sale June 17, 2011 posted by

Customer Works Bike? 1984 Suzuki RG500 MK11 (I Think!)

Customer Works Bike? 1984 Suzuki RG500 MK11 (I Think!)

I joke a lot here about being jealous about not owning some of the exotic bikes we list on RSBFS.  This is the sort of bike I’m truly sorry I don’t own.  Who the heck wouldn’t want to own a piece of racing history from when GP racing technology was evolving full throttle.  This particular bike is quite interesting as it comes from a time when Suzuki had “officially” pulled out of grand prix racing and had turned the reins over to companies like Padgetts, Harris and Heron.  When I first saw a picture of this bike the frame threw me off.  It looked way to spindly for 1984.  Before Suzuki pulled out, the frames on its’ XR series of race bikes were getting noticeably more stout.  So what gives?  I warmed up my fingers to search the WWW for answers.

After the glaciers melted and Columbus supposedly found America, Suzuki started to produce customer race bikes, the MK series.  It started with the MK1 in 1976.  Once you get to 1982 it gets a little confusing.  The RGB500 appears.  As far as I can tell this is just a continuation of the MK series.  So, if you still follow me,  in 1982 you have the RGB1 or MK7.  Feel free to comment if you can clarify this.  There is some debate but it appears the last “complete from the factory” MK was the MK9 (or RGB3) in 1984.  After 84 Suzuki supplied engines but left the rest up to companies like Padgetts.  And so here we are, a Harris framed 1994 RG500 MK11 from Padgetts.


Here is MK11 from Padgetts back in the day.  What is fascinating when you start researching these old RG’s is the number of different frames you will see on them.  They were trying all kinds of stuff.  It sounds like these bikes had reed valve engines with power valves which was strictly factory spec stuff. Nice!!!!

 An example of the varied framed RG’s of the day.  This was an experimental carbon fiber frame  on the Heron Suzuki.

Here is a little about the bike for sale from the seller:

George Beale restored the machine, which was acquired by Kevin Wilson; who ran it at the Isle of Man Jurby circuit and then brought it over to Canada.  It was then purchased by the current owner who ran it at a track day at Mosport in Ontario, Canada about 8 years ago and then decommissioned it (fogged and drained).

The machine is one of three built by Padgets in ’86 through Suzuki under contract as a factory MK11 with a MK 9 power valve engine. One was built for George Farlow, one for Trevor Nation, and one for Darren Dixon.  Original cases #: rgb500-10150, rebuilt cases #: rgb500-10501 and Harris frame # HPMK.102. The bike includes the factory manual, parts catalogue and a stack of documentation.

Be sure to check out the sellers Flickr account more a lot more photos of this beauty.

Oddly enough while researching this bike I found there are quiet a few MK’s and RGB’s for sale.  None were in the US or cheap if you were curious.  This one is pretty close being in Canada.  The auction is up and running.  Starting bid is $15,000 and I’d imagine it will take a little while to find the reserve.  Take a look.


RG historians I’m deferring to you now.  After finishing up this post I was going over the sellers photos on Flickr and found one with the bike and a info sheet.  The info sheet says the bike is 1985 MK12.  I know it is not earth shattering news but I’m sure for the money this bike would sell for someone would like to know exactly what it is.  It also looks like a rotary valve engine as well,  instead of the reed valve I’d mentioned earlier.