Mark Miller is absolutely enamored with the new, 2022 Suzuki Hayabusa. Don’t believe me? Read his First Ride Review here. Only the third iteration of Suzuki’s land-speed rocketship since it was born in 1999, the Hayabusa has developed all kinds of hype for how fast it’ll go – upwards of 200 mph if given the chance to stretch its legs without Big Brother holding it back.
We last performed this public service in 2017, when your Yamaha FZ-07 prevailed over the Kawasaki Z650, Suzuki SV650, the new Harley-Davidson Street Rod, and the new and indeterminate Benelli TnT 600, in that order. The FZ-07 has since morphed into the MT-07 amidst a host of well thought-out upgrades in 2018, and then again for 2021. The Z650 got a modern instrument pod in 2020 with a few other tasteful refinements, and the SV650 hasn’t changed a bit (God bless it). The Benelli is still around but didn’t get the call this time, and the H-D Street Rod has been withdrawn from the market under a hail of ridicule. Sad.
With all of our staff editors busy working on the upcoming middleweight naked bike shootout, we found ourselves in a difficult position. Thankfully, we have Mark Miller in our quiver of freelancers. Who else but someone who has raced in some of the most challenging motorcycle races around the world could be trusted to crank the throttle of a Hayabusa wide open down the long front straight of the Utah Motorsports Campus? (Note: if you’re looking for information on the technical changes to the Hayabusa, skip over to our First Look beforehand.) —Ed.
With the Aprilia Tuono 660 and Triumph Trident 660, we’ve got two brand new middleweight nakeds on the market this year, entering what was already a pretty good field with the Honda CB650R, Kawasaki Z650, Suzuki SV650, and the Yamaha MT-07. Obviously, this calls for us to put all six motorcycles together in a shootout.
The 2022 Suzuki GSX-S1000 has undergone a thorough restyling and is said to boast engine changes that deliver more broad range torque in the low- to mid-range where the GSX-S had been criticized in prior tests. These updates also bring the GSX-S up to Euro 5 standards. When we compared the last GSX to its predecessor, it had gained smoothness at the throttle but lost horsepower and torque in the process. Hopefully, this trend hasn’t continued with the 2022 model, but only time will tell.
For a segment of motorcycling as technologically-driven as sportbikes, 14 years is an eternity – even more so for a category that Suzuki calls the Ultimate Sportbike – but that’s how long it’s been for the Hayabusa. While there was an incremental update in 2013 that brought ABS to the table, until today, the Hayabusa, a motorcycle that, on its inception way back in 1999 had claimed the title of “world’s fastest production motorcycle,” had only undergone two generational updates: the original release and the 2008 revamp. However, today’s announcement of the 2022 Suzuki Hayabusa adds another chapter to this earth-bound missile.
Suzuki is teasing a new model launch for Feb. 5, and all clues point towards it being for a new Hayabusa. The Hayabusa remained a part of Suzuki’s U.S. lineup in 2020, but in Europe, the GSX1300R was dropped in 2018 when Euro 4 standards were introduced. Rumors of a new Hayabusa have been trickling around ever since, and it looks like Suzuki is ready to launch a new model.
For a couple of years there’ve been rumors suggesting there’s a new Hayabusa on the way, and with that old warhorse currently MIA from Suzuki’s list of returning 2021 models, the buzz has grown a bit louder that Suzuki’s fixing to spring a new World’s Fastest Production Motorcycle on the world. This time we’ll be a bit less unsuspecting than we were in 1999, and this time, it won’t be so easy a feat for Suzuki to pull off, given the existence of the Kawasaki H2 Carbon, which made an honest 206-rear-wheel horsepower on our dyno last November.
It’s all relative. How good or bad a thing is all depends on the competition, doesn’t it – a thing that’s kept us employed and entertained for more than a few years now. Competition is good for business; MO comparison tests usually always draw in more eyeballs than single-bike reviews. In a perfect world, we’d gather up all five or six contenders in a given class for a week-long flog over hill and dale and racetrack. But in the real world of today, well shoot – it looks like our Top Five most-read comparisons of 2020 are only two bikes each.
If you’re looking for an inexpensive, lightweight vehicle for riding around town or completing short errands, scooters are an excellent choice. If you want something with a bit more performance and versatility, you might want to consider a maxi-scooter instead. Maxi-scooters, or touring scooters, offer larger engines and typically better wind protection, making a good choice as an everyday commuter or for longer distance rides.
“There is no such thing as a new idea. It is impossible. We simply take a lot of old ideas and put them into a sort of mental kaleidoscope. We give them a turn and they make new and curious combinations. We keep on turning and making new combinations indefinitely; but they are the same old pieces of colored glass that have been in use through all the ages.” – Mark Twain
I knew this day would come eventually. I didn’t expect it to take so long, but I suppose good things like the Aprilia RS660 are worth waiting for. You see, as an owner of a Suzuki SV650 that’s almost of legal drinking age (and a former Kawasaki Versys 650 owner), I have a soft spot for bikes in this middleweight category. They hit that sweet spot between power, performance, and price – there’s just enough power to keep things exciting, moderate performance to emphasize the importance of rider skill, and well…SVs are dirt cheap. After all this time, I still haven’t found a compelling reason to replace my trusty little Suzuki.
You all know the saying, “You get what you pay for.” It’s an important life lesson that rings true for many aspects of life. Like cheap tools, the pleasure we get for the minimal cost outlay quickly evaporates as soon as it breaks much sooner than it should. Shoulda bought the good one is what we inevitably say to ourselves every time.
We’ll admit this is an unusual ADV test. There are any number of competitors we could have lined up against the new-and-improved 2020 Honda Africa Twin. Honda’s dirt-focused ADV bike has received a host of changes to make it even better both on-road and off, but it has always felt most at home when the paved path turns to the loose stuff.