Hamamatsu, Japan - Suzuki’s SV650 is one of the most underrated motorcycles of all time, a timeless midweight L-twin in the Ducati mould with huge mid-range torque, commendable fuel economy and legendary Suzuki reliability, set in a classic Verlicchi sportsbike frame.
It has been in production. with annual or biennial updates, since 1999, and has been a quiet but steady seller worldwide, particularly as a 'first big bike' for newbies, thanks to its user-friendly torque delivery and forgiving handling.
At the 2016 Tokyo motor show Suzuki featured the SV650 Rally concept, a streetfighter-styled machine designed to pay homage to the tarmac rally cars and bikes of the 1970s.
Now it’s brought that concept bang up to date for this year’s show, on from 27 October to 5 November, with the SV650X, a ‘neo-retro’ cafe racer design, featuring a restyled bikini fairing and tinted screen (any resemblance to the fly-screen on the iconic Moto Guzzi Le Mans is purely coincidental, we are assured) clip-on handlebars, foglights and a very period tuck-roll seat, which is already available as a genuine accessory for the production SV650.
This little cafe racer, perfectly on trend as the ‘hipster’ market worldwide takes off, could translate with a minimum of fuss into a limited-edition production bike for the European, UK, North American, Australian and Japanese domestic markets.
Suzuki says it will first assess customer reaction to the production-ready SV650X concept at the show, before finalising plans for the 2018 SV650 derivatives.
For more technical background on the SV650, check out Suzuki's promo video for the current derivative: