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You are completely correct -- in most real world situations, having serious torque down around 5000 rpm is a lot more useful than having 130 hp at 10,000.



In Europe, the marketplace clearly recognizes that, but so far, here in the US, the customers who think like you (and I) do seem to gravitate to Harleys or other cruisers, 2-valve Ducatis or BMW Boxer twins.



Given the underwhelming market response to other Japanese bikes targeting this segment, I can't blame Suzuki for being a bit gun-shy about bringing it in here. Seems like most customers for Japanese inline 4s are more interested in bragging rights than useful performance.
 

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Super Duper Mod Man
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I have to update my comment on this bike too. Nobody brags about torque. Very few care

about torque. Most people looking at a Japanese bike want the least weight, most horsepower, and the fastest top speed and fastest quarter mile or track time. A win in some national or world event is icing on the cake. That said, you are 100% correct that this bike would be more fun than most made. Sadly, it's the bike yu could never brag to your friends about, so it would never sell and Suzuki knows it. Look at all those Superhawks sitting in the Honda showrooms, or the TL 1000's that never sold worth a damn. Nice torquey light and good handling bikes that nobody wanted. Harley makes what they want and then sell it. The Japanese make what they think will sell. I wish Honda would bring back an updated CBX. Loved that bike but it was another dud sales wise.
 

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That is exactly why my 1200 bandit is so much fun, 78lb/ft of torque @ 4500, 101hp @ 7500, it will go from 1500rpm in 5th to warp 10 with out spitting or popping, thats a real world 4cyl sportbike that don't rack your back, the 1400 can only be better!! Suzuki is on track with the SV1000, but there are a lot of people like me, that like inline 4's, and know you don't have to cramp your back and wring the shiit out of something to have fun, a strong running big-bore 4cyl sounds just as good as a twin to me, Suzuki's really missing the boat on this one.
 

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The latest issue of the British mag Fast Bikes has a comparison test between the Suzuki, Kawasaki ZRX1200, and Yamaha FJR1300 (not available here). It finished third, and based on the comments, it was a distant third. Too slow, poor brakes, too heavy, and too big (one comment referred to not trying to follow a compact car through an opening in traffic, as the 1400 might not fit).



I definitely agree with the "torque's more important than horsepower" theory, (I traded my CBR929 in on an Aprilia RSVR last year, which may be a tad slower but is way more fun), but the bikes the 1400 would compete against are all apparently (quite a bit) quicker. And, of course, even if it were everything you dreamed of, if it didn't sell well here, it would be a mistake to import it (from Suzuki's point of view, anyway). The Honda 919 may be a lot of fun, but I haven't seen any on the road - maybe if more people tried them, they'd sell, but I think a lot of potential buyers are put off by low-performance 1/4 mile times in magazines.
 

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Non conversation?

If you define "performance" as 1/4 mile times in the 10s and over 150 miles an hour, you've got to invest in horsepower.

If you define "performance" as 2.5 seconds 60-80, you can skip a lot of the horsepower because you needn't gear for 150 mph. You can get the second kind of performance with a superbike by just leaving it in whatever gear reaches 100 mph easily, like third. 60 and 80 mph will be right in the thick of the torque curve and the only down side will be the high engine speed. It'll beat the hell out of your "torque only" bike because it's a lot lighter with about the same torque at the rear wheel.

But why should competition have anything to do with it if you're just looking for KICK-IN-THE-ASS? The extra horsepower you'd only use in competition costs thousands of dollars.
 

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and for those people who do think the reported 1/4 mile times are so important..... I'd bet good money they'd be able to do faster, more consistent 1/4's with the big bike and do it easier.

Maybe when you take a full on drag strip position, warm up the rear tyre, get your head mentally set, rev to redline then abuse the clutch you could get an ultralight bike with heaps of high rpm power to do low quarters.



If not prepared to do this at the lights, you'd do better to have bulk torque - just get the clutch out and roll on with none of the above poseur embarassment. .....

The result would be very quick acceleration without attracting police attention and staying relaxed.



Re: the 1400 - I've read quite a bit that a change of exhaust liberates 20+ HP, in the same way as the Bandit, giving low down torque and high rpm power...



Cheers

 

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Don't believe everything you read in those mags. I had a ZRX for a couple years. I also owned a GSX. Size-wise they're in the same ballpark, though you get more ground clearance with the ZRX because it doesn't have dual exhausts. Both bikes also have massive 6-pots....no notable performance difference there either. The ZRX delivers more power on top, but is a lot weaker on the bottom. If you changed the heavy dual pipe on the GSX to a single pipe like that offered by Yoshimura, it reduces the weight by 30 pounds and opens up the top end of the bike, which Suzuki stuffed up to keep the bike from exceeding the 100hp limit of the Japan and certain European markets.
 

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It will be interesting to see what happens with the Kawi Z1000 and the new SV1000s. It appears the manufacturers are recognizing that many of us crave high performance torque in a comfy sporting package over lazy cruiser torque or high strung sportbike discomfort.



I have a TL1000S. It has good torque, especially with the mods I have made. The other benefit of effortless midrange pull is that when I ride in the mountains at 8,000 foot elevation, I do not have to wring the hell out of my engine to get good forward thrust.



Recently I was riding with a 600 GSXR in the mountains, coming off a corner and down a straight, he was wringing it out and made 3 gear changes. I rolled it on in 4th and still had to back off to avoid running up to close on him. Altitude affects torquey bikes less.



Ahh, torque...
 

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I've always said that people talk horsepower but drive torque. I'm not racing my bike. Gimmie lots of torque where I can use it. Like to pass a really slow cage. I also have thought that the GRX 1400 looks way to have a power band that is was too usable in most day to driving situations for us Americans to like. Just my two cents worth.



Take care,

Dave
 

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I hear what you're saying, but torque and massive hp are not mutually exclusive, and several 4 cylinder bikes have ample of both.



the Yamaha FZ1 has 71 ft lbs and 117 hp and does the 1/4 in 10.6



the Kawasaki ZX-12R has 94 ft lbs and 160 hp and does the 1/4 under 10 seconds.



the Suzuki Hayabusa 1300 has 99 ft lbs and 156 hp and does the 1/4 in 10.4



99 ft lbs! And people here think Suzuki has somehow missed the boat...
 

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GSX1400

Well, crazybike_37, its too bad you don't live over here in Japan. You could be riding a new GSX1400 today. But, I don't see many on the road, even though the Japanese are crazy for retro looking bikes. The big Honda CB1300 seems more popular -- it might be the bike Suzuki was aiming at with the 1400.

If you want a Suzuki naked power monster, wait for the Boost King, dude. I saw it last year at the Tokyo Motor Show... It ROCKS!
 

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How about 5-60?

Hey MO. A few years ago Car and Driver magazine started posting 5-60 times in addition to 0-60 and 1/4 mile.

The difference is that in 5-60 testing no clutch slipping or smoky burnouts are used, just mash the throttle and go. It really gives a nice "real world" number since most of us don't want to fry our clutches at every launch.

So, how about adding that to your numbers? Maybe even do it with/without a passenger?

It would be interesting to see how the different styles of bikes stack up in this kind of test, no?
 

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The Toad
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Re: How about 5-60?

Buz, I'm afraid you won't see any bike mags do that kind of test. It would be more than mildly embarassing to see all those fully faired track-style bikes come at the back of the pack.

At least Cycle World won't, unless their masters at Honda, Ltd give the okay.

CW's "Open Class Bike of the Year", the VFR800. Get real.
 

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The Toad
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Re: Non conversation?

In the first place there is no such thing as a "torque only" bike. And in the second palce you can gear any bike down if you want. The most serious "bat out of hell off the line" street bike I've ever seen is an old 74in stroker ironhead Sportster that an acquaintance of mine built. Shreds everything. V-Maxes, you name it.

Street dragging is about 1/8th mile. 150MPH top speeds are valueless.
 

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I tried the 919 and was put off by the extremely jerky fuel injection (which none of the main-stream print press mentioned...), the cheap looking and minimal instrumentation and the obvious general lack of quality. A CBR 600 is about the same money, but fit/finish seems worlds better. It also has fully adjustable suspension, complete instrumentation etc etc. In know that someone looking at a 919 would tend not to be cross-shopping with a 600 supersport, but it just seems that the 919 is a half-ars*d effort that could have been sooo much better for just a few dollars more. Or it should be still cheaper.
 

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Get an FJR or other big-bore of choice. Sit up a bit, get a kick-in-the-pants at lower revs. You can't play Ricky-Racer with a hyperbike every day of the week, at least not at my age.

Outta here...Charles (viper)

'00 RWB R1 #34...'cuz there can only be THE ONE.

'85 ZX900 Ninja...the mutha' of all modern sportbikes.

'03 FJR 1300...'cuz ya' gotta keep HER happy.

Click on link below to see my R1, FJR, and Ninja.

http://www.picturetrail.com/r1derbike/823464
 

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BTW, there were at least 1,408 FJRs presold in the US this year, and most of them are already delivered, so, yes, they are here, but unfortunately, they seem to be sold out 'til late '03 or early '04, if early reports can be believed...may not see FJRs on showroom floors for a bit.

I love the hell outta mine...

FJROwners.com and micapeak.com are two popular websites for the recently imported FJR.

Outta here...Charles (viper)

'00 RWB R1 #34...'cuz there can only be THE ONE.

'85 ZX900 Ninja...the mutha' of all modern sportbikes.

'03 FJR 1300...'cuz ya' gotta keep HER happy.

Click on link below to see my R1, FJR, and Ninja.

http://www.picturetrail.com/r1derbike/823464
 
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