Back in Time.
Suzuki seems to be consulting their old design book for inspiration these days. Just look at the recently launched Katana. Now they have done it again this time looking back at one of their offroad legends the DR-Big for cues for the new V-Strom.
Now don’t get me wrong I love the fact that they are doing it, I think the Katana looks brilliant as well as the new V-Strom. Looks are subjective so I leave it to you to decide what you think. So what is the new 1050XT all about?.
Well for starters it’s Suzuki’s top of the line adventure bike but it doesn’t compete with the 1250GS or 1290adv both of which are much more expensive. Its also not really a like for like bike against the new Africa -Twin as the Honda is definitely more off-road orientated. This by no means makes it a bad bike just a different option. I like to think of it as a “Soft-Roader”, a large touring bike that can handle a little rough stuff. I am also not saying it can’t go off-road just that I don’t think that is its purpose.
Nestled in the frame is a 1037cc V-Twin producing 105hp which is about par for the size. It also produces a fairly healthy 100nm of torque at 6000rpm, Peak power is at 8500rpm. The engine has to work a little to shift the 247kg(544lb) kerb weight. The weight and power figures match up with most bikes in the segment. Another clue to the V-Strom’s more on-road bias is the standard-fit 19″ front wheel and somewhat lowish ground clearance of 160mm. At this stage, I don’t have many details on the suspension set up other than upside-down forks at the front.
Suzuki hasn’t skimped on the tech front and has included quite a bit of aids on the 1050XT. Suzuki Intelligent Ride System(SIRS) is what they are calling it. The system incorporates the Motion Track Brake System, Hill Hold Control System, Slope Dependent Control System, Load Dependent Control System, Cruise Control System, Suzuki Drive Mode Selector (SDMS) and a Traction Control System. The systems are powered by a new ride-by-wire throttle and a 6 direction 3 axis IMU sensor. Looking at the picture of the display above it looks a little fussy but we will have to see it in use to know for sure. Looking at the V-Strom as an everyday usable touring bike with some off-road capability it is actually quite an attractive option. Pricing, according to Suzuki starts at £11,299(Launch Price) which is quite good. Bikes are on sale from Spring 2020.