The history, statistics and overview of the GSXR model line.
Mar 11, 2009
In 1986 Suzuki Motor corperation released the original Sportbike. The GSXR750 model was introduced as a road legal version of the curent race bikes. Now anyone could afford a road legal race machine for weekend jaunts throught the twisties. The original model was revolutionary with it's alloy cradle frame, 18 inch mag wheels and all new air/oil cooled alloy engine that produced 100hp off the showroom floor. Performance tuned suspension, and 360lbs dry weight offered quick handeling. The streamlined bodywork aided in top speed potential and rider comfort. It was a superb package not befor seen by the mass market and became an instant classic. That same year Suzuki also released the GSXR1100. The 750's big brother was just as revolutionary and agile but with 28 more HP. There was a new big dog on the block and it was taking names.
Production 1986 GSXR750 (blue/white) next to the Suzuki/Yoshimura race bike (yellow).
1986 GSXR750 cutaway view.
The GSXR lineup was an instant hit. In 1988 the bike went in for a full redesign. A new frame was introduced that was inspired by the Norton Featherbed. This new frame offered more ragidity and less weight then the original. The suspension was all new along with new styling and roughly 10 more HP across both models.
1993 brought the advent of liquid cooling to the GSXR. Along with an all new platform design. The trickle down effect from the race circuts had brought inverted front forks, braced swingarms, 17 inch wheels and more rigid frame work and areodynamic styling.
1993 GSXR750. First year of water cooling.
1996 brough a major redesign to the 750 model and the introduction of a 600cc as well. The new watercooled engine now featured downdraft style carburators with SRAD (Suzuki Ram Air Direct) induction. The engine was a mix of aluminum and magnesium alloys. 16 valve DOHC cylinder head featured shim under bucket design for less rotating mass, and the engine was tiped forward 25 degrees for more front end weight bias. This all new package made 128hp. The chassis was also an entirley new design, leaving the cradle frame for a twin spar design that offered more rigidity for bettle handling. Suspension was updated with 43mm Showa inverted forks and an all new alloy braced swingarm. The wheelbase was shortened to 55 inches for quicker handeling and weight was down to 394lbs. 44 less pounds then the previous model. Styling was all new as well and was a direct copy of Kevin Schwantz 500 GP championship winning bike of the previous year.
1998 Suzuki offered the GSXR750 with Fuel injection. The first of their bikes to offer this. The new fuel injection system also upped power to 135HP. A steering damper also became standard in an effort to control head shake and offer smoother steering operation.
1998 was also the last year of the GSXR1100 which was largley unchanged from it's 1993 water cooled introduction. The last model went out on top with 156hp and 493lbs.
The new mellenium brought many new changes to Suzuki's lineup. The GSXR was totaly revamped across the board, offering 600cc, 750cc and 1000cc. 2001 introduced the winningest sportbike platform to date. The GSXR1000 was born on the race track. Suzuki took its many years of racing technology and put it together in 1 package. The new 1000cc engine produced 160hp at 11,000RPM to prople the bike down the quarter mile in under 10 seconds. The GSXR1000 was voted Best International Bike of the year 2001 by 13 major motorcycle publications. The engine and frame were designed from the 750 but with more tweaks. 1mm larger bore, 13mm longer stroke and gear driven counter balancers were major differences. The exhaust was all titanum from the factory and incorperated a servo driven tuning valve in the mid pipe to adjust power in relationship to RPM. The twin spar aluminum frame was also a derivitive of the 750, but it was made of 0.5mm thicker material that made the chassis 15% more rigid. Forks were also a combo of Alloy and titanium with Titanium Nitride coating to reduce sticktion. The total weight of the bike was down to 374lbs.
2003 and 2004 Brought yet another redesign to already amazing platforms. In 03 the GSXR1000 went in to perfect it already class leading design. Suzuki's engineers worked on 3 things to make the bike even faster. Power, weight and handeling. The chassis geometry was optomized for better handleing. New radial mount brakes were added for improved stopping power. Overall Power was up by 2hp with 10% more torque across the rev range, with a revised fuel injection system and all titanium exhaust. And to put an already light bike on a diet, it droped 4.5lbs.
In 2004 the GSXR750 inherited much of the same revamps that the 1000 recived the year prior. All new engine and chassis offered 130hp and the frame was 5mm narrower which reduced weight to 359lbs.
2005 Brought even more redesigns. More extreme then previous years. 2005 brought many of the Moto GP trickle downs to the showroom. Riders position was pushed forward to increase weight bias and enhance handeling. Further enhancments in chassis design improved overall handeling. Suzuki started working with material and production changes to shave weight from the platform while increasing rigidity. New wheel castings lessened unsprung and rotating mass. The new 1000cc engine and fuel injection design produced 170hp with increased throttle responce due to the implement of dual valve throttle control in the throttle bodies. The clutch also recived a back torque limiter to control wheel hop on hard down shifts. Weight was down 2.2lbs and aero's were completly new and wind tunel tested. Even the exhaust was designed for less wind drag.
2006 GSXR600 and 750 recived the trickle down effect from the 1000 incorperating much of it's design and styling. The 750 produced 150hp this year and weighed in at 358lbs.
2007 Suzuki introduced a techno marvel. Lighter, faster, better handling, more power and now with on the fly fuel sellectable fuel mapping. This feature tied into the fuel managment system. A bar mounted toggle switch allows the rider to select between 3 functions, Race, Sport and Rain. More like Fast, Faster and Hold on for dear life. Off the showroom floor the 2007 GSXR1000 produced 185hp, which was suspected to be underrated from it's actual output. This is a production 200mph machine right out of the box. Inhanced chassis geometry makes the bike extremly well manared and controlable at even the highest speeds. More material and engineering advancments made the bike even more rigid although it did gain 14lbs over the previous model. Mostly due to the dual mufflers and added emisions control to comply with european sound regulations and international clean air regs.
2008 Brougnt similar advancements to the 600/750 line and all new styling. This year both models recieved the on the fly mapping system and complete redesigns to engine and chassis.
2009 rings in even more model changes to the GSXR1000. Shorter, lighter more powerful and faster then ever. This years model carries over the on the fly fuel injection mapping system/ traction control. Weight is down to 367lbs. The over square engine benifits from Larger titanium valves, forged connecting rods, 12.8:1 compression and back torque limiting slipper clutch. All these evolutionary advancments produce an astounding 191hp and 87lb/ft. New chassis advanecments bring weight down a couple more pounds while still producing a rigid chassis and more race ready ergonomics produce a smaller foot print to reduce wind drag and place more rider weight forward on the machine.
From here on out the industry is moving into overall advancments every 2 years to produce every last possible bit of performance from these machines and Suzuki is staying on the cutting edge just as they were over 25 years ago. 2010 will most likley produce an all new 600/750 lineup with a new wave of middle weight performance trends. We look forward to next years machines with bated breath.