2012 Suzuki V-Strom 650 ABS - First Look

Suzuki strikes again, with a new V-Strom 650 ABS adventure bike.

2012 Suzuki V-Strom 650 ABS - First Look

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BMW may have been first to rediscover the “adventure bike” in the modern era, but Suzuki was right there in 2002 with the V-Strom 1000, which it followed up with the 650 a year later. For 2012, here it comes again with a highly restyled version of the popular 650, complete with a more powerful and fuel-efficient 90-degree V-Twin. A new fuel tank, seat and body panels are designed with long-distance comfort and style in mind, while the bike’s fairing is said to provide increased wind protection and better engine heat management. At 32.9 inches, the seat’s about 15mm higher than the existing bike’s, but 20mm higher and lower seats are options. The new plastic rack and grab rails are designed to work with accessory hard luggage, though our American Suzuki PR person says he has no info as to its availability in the U.S.

In the engine bay, new cams and bigger valves are said to produce more low- and midrange power, along with increased top end, and a new crank with scissors-type primary gear smoothes delivery. A new closed-loop injection system with 32-bit processor metes out fuel 10-percent more efficiently than before, says Suzuki.

Up front, you get a 19-inch wheel stroking through 5.9 inches of travel; out back, a 17-incher with 6.3 inches—both of them part of a package Suzuki says weighs 472 pounds ready to roll, about 10 pounds heftier than the new Triumph Tiger 800 and BMW F800GS (but about 13 pounds less than the existing Strom). The place we hope the new V-Strom will be substantially lighter than those Euro-bikes is the price-tag department; the 2011 model (also with standard ABS) retails for $8099. With the dollar weak against the yen lately, expect a price increase, for sure. Look for a First Ride soon, then look for the bike to appear at your Suzuki dealer, in Metallic Fox Orange or Glass Sparkle Black, around mid-November.

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031 2012 Suzuki V-Strom 650 ABS

030 2012 Suzuki V-Strom 650 ABS

029 2012 Suzuki V-Strom 650 ABS

028 2012 Suzuki V-Strom 650 ABS

027 2012 Suzuki V-Strom 650 ABS

026 2012 Suzuki V-Strom 650 ABS

025 2012 Suzuki V-Strom 650 ABS

024 2012 Suzuki V-Strom 650 ABS

023 2012 Suzuki V-Strom 650 ABS

022 2012 Suzuki V-Strom 650 ABS

021 2012 Suzuki V-Strom 650 ABS

020 2012 Suzuki V-Strom 650 ABS

019 2012 Suzuki V-Strom 650 ABS

018 2012 Suzuki V-Strom 650 ABS

017 2012 Suzuki V-Strom 650 ABS

016 2012 Suzuki V-Strom 650 ABS

015 2012 Suzuki V-Strom 650 ABS

014 2012 Suzuki V-Strom 650 ABS

013 2012 Suzuki V-Strom 650 ABS

012 2012 Suzuki V-Strom 650 ABS

011 2012 Suzuki V-Strom 650 ABS

010 2012 Suzuki V-Strom 650 ABS

009 2012 Suzuki V-Strom 650 ABS

008 2012 Suzuki V-Strom 650 ABS

007 2012 Suzuki V-Strom 650 ABS

006 2012 Suzuki V-Strom 650 ABS

005 2012 Suzuki V-Strom 650 ABS

004 2012 Suzuki V-Strom 650 ABS

003 2012 Suzuki V-Strom 650 ABS

002 2012 Suzuki V-Strom 650 ABS

001 2012 Suzuki V-Strom 650 ABS