News 11 Feb 2017 rides 2017 GSX-R1000R at world launch

Phillip Island test for Suzuki's all-new superbike contender.

Source: Supplied.

The launch of the 2017 model Suzuki GSX-R1000R has wrapped up at Victoria’s Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit, with part of the large international contingent sampling the latest generation superbike.

Sixteen years since the launch of the first GSX-R1000 in 2001, the sixth-generation machine has had a total redesign whereby the footpegs are the only part on the new machine that are unchanged from the previous model.

There are two versions of the new supersports machine – the base-model GSX-R1000 and the up-spec GSX-R1000R, which we had the opportunity to put to the test. Up until now a generation behind the class-leading machines in terms of electronic aids, the new GSX-R now features a ride-by-wire throttle, 10-level traction control system, selectable engine maps, quickshifter launch control and electronically-controlled ABS.

More importantly Suzuki has totally redesigned the four-cylinder powerhouse, producing the most powerful, hardest-accelerating, cleanest-running GSX-R ever built. A variable valve timing system aids in delivering a whopping 149kW of power while a servo-operated set of butterfly valves in the header pipes ensure there is no sacrifice to low-mid-range performance.

A redesigned chassis has been optimised to provide greater rider confidence and at the same time is the lighter and more compact than before. The R version gets Showa’s racing-developed Balance Free Front forks and Balance Free Rear Cushion rear shock that delivers more precise and more consistent piston movement and damping control.

The styling and aerodynamics have been inspired by the GSX-RR MotoGP machine with the more aerodynamic bodywork designed contributing to better overall racetrack performance by increasing handling and top speed on the racetrack. More compact, sleeker and narrower, the new ergonomics allow riders to tuck in more completely and easily.

While there is a lot different about this new machine, the core attributes of previous GSX-R1000s haven’t been lost. There is broad power across the rev range, combining low-end and mid-range torque with an exciting top-end rush.

Handling-wise, feel grip and drive are all improved making for one formidable package that has something to offer the trackday rider through to top-flight road racers. Stay tuned to for our full tests and technical rundown of the new machine to come.