The 2009 Suzuki Gladius was unveiled yesterday at the Suzuki US dealer conference in conjunction with the full launch of the fashionably questionable Gladius mini-site, Gladius Style. The U.S. spec Gladius looks to be identical to the Euro version, using the SV650's V-Twin powertrain wrapped in a steel-truss frame. The Gladius will come in at 202 kg wet, (445 lbs.), 8 kg heavier than the SV650. We don't think that's anything to fuss over, and are just happy to see a little diversity.
While the Gladius looks to be a great entry-level bike for beginners as well as commuters wanting more affordable, greener transportation, the marketing Suzuki is employing for the launch of their new model is baffling. We understand the desire to market this bike to young urbanites, but bringing decade-old Gap winter layouts back from the dead? Soft-jazz for the spec section? Even more Mr. Dancypants? This time with a navigation tool for zooming on him and his hip clothes but not the point of this entire marketing exercise, the Gladius?
We really wish Suzuki would have focused more on the elegance of the machine, as these new detail shots show. Sometimes, motorcycles should just be enjoyed for what they are, without the pressures of fitting in, or wearing the right skinny silver pants, or frolicking about in backgrounds that look too much like Takashi Murakami's Cream paintings.