Suzuki’s bringing back the V-Strom 1000

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Know what there’s not enough of these days? Large-capacity adventure tourers that are so heavy and so expensive you can’t take them within sight of dirt. Bikes like the Ducati Multistrada 1200, Kawasaki Versys 1000, Moto Guzzi Stelvio, Honda Crosstourer and the new Triumph Tiger Explorer 1200 leave such a gap in the market that the case of this new V-Strom 1000 concept practically makes itself. It’s exactly like all the above, but wears a Suzuki badge.

Suzi says: “More than a decade ago, Suzuki developed the V-Strom 650. The motorcycle offered incredible versatility, comfort, and a fun to ride character. The well-balanced package included an incredibly versatile V-twin engine and lightweight aluminum chassis. Sharing the spirit of the globally successful V-Strom 650 ABS, the all-new, V-Strom 1000 “Concept” will deliver fun, excitement and versatility to the open class rider who seeks a new world of motorcycling adventure.

The riding experience will be further enhanced with these new features to satisfy even the most savvy adventure motorcyclists.

. Strong, rider-friendly Engine:
A totally redesigned, liquid-cooled 1000cc V-twin engine produces effortless acceleration along with a strong V-twin rumble.

. Lightweight, well-balanced Chassis:
Slim and lightweight aluminum frame, thickly padded seat and an adjustable windscreen provides an easy, comfortable, and fun to ride character.

. Brake and Suspension:
Performance-inspired radial mount front brake caliper with Antilock Brake System provides riders confidence in braking on various road conditions. The V-Strom 1000 Concept also features an inverted front fork and an easy to adjust single shock style rear suspension.

. Distinctive Styling Design:
Inspired by the 1988 DR750S—Suzuki’s first big on/off-road machine—the V-Strom 1000 Concept features bold and distinctive styling to create an unmatched presence.

. Advanced Traction Control System:
Suzuki’s advanced traction control system is equipped for enhanced sport riding, performance, and the peace of mind to negotiate slippery surfaces with confidence.

. Luggage System:
An all new luggage system was designed and tested in harmony with the big V-Strom’s overall development. The luggage system provides easy installation, a narrow overall width when installed, and a clean look when detached.”

Here’s the gallery.

  • James

    The beak will grow on you. I learned to love my hyper and my multi. Now I think the hypermotard is the best looking motorcycle ever made.

    • Paul

      Im not sure i’d go quite that far, but the beak definitely grows on you

      • Corey

        Dorso Duro is a much better looking bike with a beak, but still wouldn’t go as far as to say even it is the best looking bike ever made.

  • webbiker

    Why the attitude? They are making what people are bying now. Versatile multipurpose bikes. I don’t think anyone seriously thinks taking any of the big “adventurers” off roading too much and they are not made for that either.

    • SamuraiMark

      It’s HFL. There’s supposed to be attitude. I think I’d stop reading if there was no attitude. I don’t always agree with the attitude, but it’s part of what makes HFL, no?

    • Wes Siler

      Excuse me, I’ll try and do a better job of copying and pasting in the future.

      • coredump

        Uh oh, someone left the 3 mode selection switch in “snark”.

    • Andy

      What are they made for then? “Incredible versatility” – to do what? You’d have to be nuts to take something that size down a trail. Whatever R&D money there is these days in the manufacturers’ depleted coffers should be put to better uses than creating pseudo-bikes and indulging posers.

    • Beewill

      Some of us actually do take our big bikes off road in some very hairy places because they used to be engineered to do so. As an original KTM 950 ADV owner my bike is still the bees knees to me and of this latest group of new ADV bikes, KTM, BMW & the new Strom, none of these stack up anymore. I agree though as this market seems to be the new “it” market now, most of the new buyers won’t take these past the shoulder of paved roads and the occasional parking lot puddle. With this new Strom having 17″ cast wheels it wouldn’t really be any better in the rough stuff than say a Veryses or any other Touring bike, but with anything these days it seems style over substance is the way to go and its sadly dumbing down the breed.

      • webbiker

        Thats my point. No one takes these things off road. The byuyers don’t want to and the manufacturers dont’t build them for that. The fact that they can’t perform like GS 800 is intentional and pretty much obvious from the start. I see these kind of bikes of kinda the swiss arny knife of motorcycles.

        I ride -09 660 Tenere with some so callled ” off road capability” but very often other features than off road capabilities are more important when you have the one bike for commuting, touring, weekend trips, the odd “adventure” trips etc.

        • DoctorNine

          See, the problem is, they don’t sell the Tenere 660 in the US anymore.
          No classic Honda Transalp either.

          What we get in the US, are too heavy and expensive bikes that no one else in the world would buy. Ain’t it grand?

    • ike6116

      Wes within the past year started riding dirt bikes, he is now an authroity on off road riding and as such is entitled to speak with whatever attitude he has on the subject

      • Sean MacDonald (the other Sean)

        it’s pretty easy to tell, even without being an expert, that adding more weight to bikes that are already capable will only make them less useful off road. The small displacement versions of these bikes are already great for this genre, and adding more power and more weight doesnt help them on the road and makes them terrible off road.

        • dux [87 CBR600, 95 XR600R]

          If they wanna add more weight, make ‘em add more wheels.

    • John

      By “versatile”, I assume you mean “versatile looking”.

  • Roman

    I kinda sorta don’t mind it. I think the deluge of the Adv-themed styled bike over the past 5 years has desensitized me to the ugly.

  • markbvt

    Hmm. So is it a concept, as their name for it would suggest, or is it actually going into production?

    Also, the point about the distinctive styling design almost makes me think this whole exercise was just about pointing the finger at all the other beak-wearing bikes and saying, “Yeah, WE came up with the beak, not BM frigging W!”

  • stickfigure


    Set all these overweight adventure tourers together (even the new KTM!) and you can barely tell them apart. Disappointing.

    • John

      Form follows marketing

    • Scott-jay

      ADV motos & SUV cars are horses of same color.

      • BMW11GS

        No, they are not, adv motos allow you to enjoy less than perfect roads with all day comfort. They are the omnivore of the motorcycle world, not a compromised truck/wagon/car like an SUV is.

    • AHA

      Why didn’t the first Multistrada sell? Or the 999 before that? The looks were too damn original = scary. Buyers are real conservative and so it seems easier to sell clones. Successful originals are rare.

      • Rob

        Slagging the Tiger Explorer for being late to the party and not bringing anything new is probably justified. But damning the V-strom for being the V-Strom isn’t. Especially if it’s bringing better suspension, better brakes, and ABS to an already proven package.
        The DL1000 is in the suzuki lineup for 2012, at least in the states. A dealer near me will sell you one for 9 grand. Sure, it hasn’t really been upgraded in a decade and it’s been outsold by its little brother from the git, but that’s not a lot of coin for a whole lotta bike.
        You don’t like the Beak? Roll it old-skool.

  • fasterfaster

    I’m actually all for this one, as it promises to be the only one in the range with a remotely reasonable price. For something that is supposed to tip over, many times, in its lifetime that’s a useful feature. Also, I think this is the best looking beak of the bunch.

    Holding breath over weight spec.

    Still would prefer it in 650cc. Basically, I want a KTM 690 ADV with a twin instead of a single.

    • Miles Prower [690 Duke, MTS 1200]

      I agree with almost everything above.

      The beak on this definitely looks most sorted, and I like the look of the headlight. It’s as if the designer took a downsized Hypermotard beak and married it to a 2009 KTM 990 Adventure headlight.

      Unfortunately, I think there’s a bit too much plastic in the wrong places — like where a skid-plate and header guard should be. (At least the oil cooler looks like it has a shield protecting its grill.)

      Mark, have you ridden a late-model LC4? The current LC4′s are almost v-twin smooth — nothing at all like the previous-gen ones. I had a 2006 625 SMC that was brutal for anything longer than a quick “river loop” here in Boston, but my 690 Duke is all-day comfortable.

      • fasterfaster

        I’ve ridden the 690 Duke, SM and SMC. The SMC being my favorite but impractical for my 5’8″. Wasn’t in love with the motor, though. I’ve owned a BMW 650 single which was just bearable at a sustained 80mph (everyday 90mi commuter). Didn’t feel like the katooms were as smooth. With motors this big, off-road torque isn’t lacking, and another cylinder just makes them so much smoother and revier for the road portions. I’d love to have a 690 in the garage and may someday, but if I’m buying a long-haul adventure bike it would be a twin with a 19″ front like the above. If I’m buying a short(er) haul adventure bike it would be something I don’t mind beating to fuck like an XR or DL. If the little ADV were still sold in the US, I may consider it for both.

  • Eben

    Some of the most beautiful places in the world are on reasonably well-maintained dirt roads. A larger diameter front wheel with somewhat blockier tires, a couple extra inches of suspension travel and a slight rearward shift in weight can make riding those roads change from just doable to tons of fun. I don’t understand why people can’t get that.

    • Sean MacDonald (the other Sean)

      but why not do it on the wee-strom?

      • Eben

        Hell yes, do it on the Wee-Strom! I love Wee-Stroms. If you want some more power, though, the DL1000 is just fine.

        I’m just saying that these road-oriented adventure bikes have real value. People seem to think that bikes need to be made for smooth California pavement or gnarly single track and anything in between is for poseurs. I’m thinking the people that need the all-or-nothing bike might be the true poseurs and the people on V-Stroms and the like are having all the fun.

        • Sean MacDonald (the other Sean)

          love the road oriented adv bikes. just in their smallest sizes. don’t understand anything bigger than a tiger 800.

          wee-strom = awesome
          this beast = sucky

          • BMW11GS

            Sean, I get what you are saying, but I don’t know if you can categorically denounce all these big bores. If you think about them as the new tours that offer a little utility, great ergos, styling that is generally more functional than stylish, they make a ton of sense. But oh the other hand, as a former wee strom owner and current bmw gs owner, I get what you are saying. If I wasn’t so invested in my GS I would love to get another 650 some form. It is the ideal motorcycle engine size.

            • Sean MacDonald (the other Sean)

              what does this bike give me that the Wee doesn’t?

              is that worth it?

              • BMW11GS

                You’re right Sean, probably not worth it. I am encouraged that suzuki is coming out with new and different bikes that are somewhat relevant to what people are looking for, rather than chasing the sportbike pipe dream to oblivion.

                • x

                  agreed. i actually love what suzuki has done as a brand. i think the wee-strom is an incredible bike and the gsxr is my favorite sports bike.

                  would love to see them not follow the trends and keep making bikes that are what you end up lusting after once you stop looking at numbers and start experiencing different motorcycles.

    • richard gozinya

      Don’t need one of these for that. Hell, there’s that Lost Rider guy who takes his R1200R places that would make a GS or MTS owner piss their pants. These big Adventure bikes are the SUVs of the motorcycle world.

      • BMW11GS

        That lost rider guy’s R1200R is a mess though. I would know, he is a former customer of mine at the shop. He always tries to make a big deal how he off roads that R while the GS guys don’t do enough off road. However his bike is testament to why you need the higher suspension travel along with more appropriate wheel sizes and types.

      • Eben

        Actually, if your issue with SUVs is that people buy them for the image and never use them for their intended purposes, then SPORTBIKES are the SUVs of the motorcycle world.

  • deckard

    That’s the first new Suzuki I’ve seen in years that didn’t look like ass.

  • Tommy

    I dont think its thaaaat ugly. Little too much plastic up front, and the rear looks a little unnecessarily fat, but not the ugliest thing I’ve seen.

    Although, its kind of silly to call these bikers adventure bikes, the whole adventure tourer thing makes sense. I think they look better than sport tourers, and the little bit of extra clearance doesnt hurt. Thats why I got an adventure rather than say an Fz6. I think it looks a little cooler, and has a bit more character.

    It would be nice if someone was making something a bit more adventure dedicated and brought it to the states though. Thats for sure. Like dakar adventure, not road touring adventure.

  • 10/10ths

    I love my 2004 V-Strom 650. I love my 1997 Ducati Monster 750. I love my 2004 Honda RC51.

    If I could only have one motorcycle, it would be the Wee-Strom.

    The V-Strom 650 is a shockingly great motorcycle. She gets 48mpg, is all day comfy, handles great, gets 200 miles to a tank, and I can pick her up when I drop her.

    Sometimes, however, when riding on I-10 in west Texas where the speed limit is 85mph, I’m riding into a strong headwind, and I’m at 2,000 ft altitude, and I want to pass a truck, I wonder about owning a V-Strom 1000.

    What’s better, lean and mean and frugal, or powerful and thirsty and heavy?

    Hmmm. Decisions, decisions.

    • x

      lean, mean, and frugal. every. single. time.

  • dux [87 CBR600, 95 XR600R]

    That is a foul, foul beast. It seems to channel Jar-Jar Binks and Daffy Duck simultaneously.

  • wwalkersd

    As the owner of an ’02 DL1000 (which, contrary to Suzuki’s PR, preceded the DL650 by 2 years, at least in the US), I’ve gotta say that that Ducati-esque beak and headlight doesn’t make an ugly motorcycle any prettier. The brake and suspension upgrades would be welcome. Not sure about the need for TC.

    As to the use, for me, it serves as a kind of sit-up-straight sport bike, something nobody was making in ’02. Sure, it’s way heavier and less powerful than a superbike, but it’s plenty fast enough for the street in my book. I’ve done some touring on it, but I’ve never taken it off road, and didn’t plan on it when I bought it. It has pretty much all the virtues Wes ascribed to the DL650 when he tested it, with the addition of more power.

  • Porter

    Portly, balding, middle-aged squids around the world: Raise your glasses of shitty domestic light beers and rejoice!

    • webbiker

      Out of curiosity, what should one ride and drink in order to be accepted in your world of trendy coolness?

      • ike6116

        My guess: any Stone Brewing company beer and a UJM “Project bike”

        • Porter

          I’m not a hipster if that’s what you’re implying. I just happen to think that this bike appeals to posers in the same way that Bud Light does. It’s weak, watery, crap.

          • ike6116

            How close to the mark was I?

            • Porter

              no Japanese bikes in my stable at the moment. No plans on any vintage projects. Not a fan of Stone. Definitely more of a North Coast brewery guy. Can’t beat Old Rasputin.

          • Lawrences

            Actually Porter you sound like a bit of an insecure fool.

          • webbiker

            Who / what are posers and why would they matter to you? What makes someone a “poser”? Most of the 990 Adventure, GS 800, Panigale, or what ever have you don’t ride their bikes to their fullest potential. So what? If some want’s to buy say a big GS 1200 Adventure and likes riding it without taking it around the world or seldom even off the paved roads so what? How can owning a certain bike make someone a “poser”?

            This particular bike appeals to posers how exactly? What does the ” poser” think in your mind when he apparently finds this bike appealing? Is this the ultimate poser bike or would a GS 1200 be even more desirable for a poser? To whom are the posers posing to? To you? Why would they?

            • Porter

              All right, all right. Take it easy. I’m not saying everyone who owns one is a poser. I’m just saying that, in my experience, these things are to middle-aged squids what R6′s are to shirtless,flip-flop-wearing 19 year olds. I worked at a bike shop and nearly everyone who owned a DL fit the description from my original post. It’s an ugly stereotype, but there’s some truth to it.

              • webbiker

                Let’s meet at the middle and make internet history. :)

                • Porter


            • Scott-jay

              Webbiker asks, “To whom are the posers posing to?”
              My-own-self. My Walter Mitty absolutely thrills at chances to glance sideways and see me riding by, reflected in a plate glass window.

              • Campisi

                Man, the V-Strom comment threads get all of the Thurber references…

      • Porter

        beer that actually qualifies as such by not having been frozen, boiled and filtered a dozen times and an ADV bike that actually works off road as well as it does on. The real thing, in other words.

        • BMW11GS

          I think we should institute a new rule where someone has to have ridden a bike before making significant comments on its capabilities and worthiness. ;)

          • Paul


        • Eben

          Why does it need to work as well off road as on? Someone who wants to be comfortable touring on dirt roads needs to buy a bike capable of single-track or they’re violating some edict regarding allowed motorcycle compromises?

          • webbiker

            Well said.

  • muckluck

    I’m guessing it’s a 17″ front rim instead of the old 19″?

    • Scott-jay

      MCNews comments “fairly narrow tyres on the concept machine suggest that Suzuki might have plans to endow any future DL1000 with a little more off-road ability than its predecessor.”

  • BMW11GS

    Also…radial calipers! On a v-strom!

    • dux [87 CBR600, 95 XR600R]

      I bet they don’t make it to production…

      • BMW11GS

        They probably will, I can’t see the brand, but they are definitely not Brembos and probably nissan or similar..aka mass produced and really not anymore expensive than axial calipers.

  • Johndo

    Ugly, and I’d still pick the 650 over the 1000.

  • Ratlanta

    Sadly, this kind of bike is the only way to get factory handbags on most standards.

  • Georgetta

    An intriguing discussion is definitely worth comment.
    I believe that you ought to publish more on this topic, it might not be a taboo matter but generally folks don’t speak about these topics. To the next! Best wishes!!