Intro: THE SULLEN ONE
Suzuki is proud of their best-selling SV and has used the same recipe on an improved 650 version and a 1000 cm3 that has been long awaited by the enthusiasts of big twin engined sports bikes. A brand new cycle part and the mechanical elements of the TL and others like the V-Strom, have together produced a bike that could be called the super SV.
The two machines that we tested correspond to two totally different philosophies when it comes to their engines and their equipment.
The 1000 is shown in its sporting version and benefits from careening on the fork head and an engine sheath. The 650 is in the roadster version.
Esthetique: MODERN ELEGANCE
With the 1000, theres no denying that the city is not its favourite stamping ground and it soon needs a bit more space so that it can show off all it is able to do.
The motorway is not too tough as a test, the protection of the careening working effectively at legal speeds. Beyond that the windscreen is insufficient to resist the air pressure. This is after all a sports bike and so this is hardly surprising.
Painted this new and rather fashionable colour, the SV 1000 S is not short on elegance. The metallic copper has changing highlights and contrasts pleasantly with the metal elements of the mechanical parts and the frame. The frame is made of an extruded and compartmented aluminium trellis, which is very rigid and provides faultless behaviour for the SV 1000.
Behind the careening of the fork head, an original control panel groups a needle graduated rev counted and digital speedo. The usual battery of warning lights surrounds the whole thing. The trip meter and the clock are easy to manipulate.
The saddle is on two levels and is pretty well designed for the rider. The passenger is not spoilt though. Under the seat, a U anti-theft device is housed without too many problems. Several well-placed hooks allow you to fix a weekend bag.
On the 650 N, for Naked, the roadster option is aimed at a younger clientele. Technically, the ingredients are the same as those of the 1000 with the aluminium frame and the 90-degree engine.
An S version of the 650 and an N for the 1000 are also on the catalogue.
The absence of careening on the N version implies different driving controls. The bracelets have been replaced by a very ergonomic shaped handlebar. The new control panel is that of the 1000.
The 996 cm3 twin engine with 4 valves per cylinder develops 106 horsepower and 10 mkg of torque. Water cooled, it is equipped with electronic injection and catalysed exhausts.
At 645 cm3, the twin engine develops 74 horsepower and 6.5 mkg of torque. Quite exceptional figures that give the SV all its character. A larger water filled radiator and an oil radiator improve the cooling and the reliability.
On the road: CITY ABSTENTION
While the 1000 expresses itself in a kind of tranquil force, the 650 offers a livelier, fun character with a touch of the devil. You can even beat the 1000 in the first two gears from a standing start.
It stands up to its bigger sister with effrontery, opposing its vivacity, its weight of just 165 kilos dry and the sharpness of its mechanical elements.
The 43 mm diameter telescopic fork can be adjusted for spring constraint and compression and hydraulic release. For optimal performance it needs to be hardened and retarded in release.
A steering shock absorber limits the reaction movements of the steering, which are a bit flighty. At the back, a single shock absorber action by connecting rods also has three adjustments.
The brakes are excellence itself with a double 310mm disc with 4 piston callipers. This is seconded by a disc at the back. The straighter riding position improves the handling.
So, is it to be the 1000 or the 650 ? A very difficult choice. A concept with two options. Separated by a difference of 3000 Euros, so the choice will also be dictated by the amount that you want to spend on your pleasure : either 6500 or 9500 Euros.
One thing is certain, whichever you choose, it is always going to be just as good as the sensation delivered by this kind of engine and this kind of bike...