In other news, we mostly knew about a couple of weeks ago if not longer, excitement in the Suzuki encampment revolved around the 2020 Suzuki Katana. A design three years in the making by Italian designer Rodolfo Frascoli, the new bike’s cutting-edge bodywork (there was a lot of swordplay and big drums in Suzuki’s hip video) looks like it’s built on top of mostly the preexisting GSX-S1000.
Here’s what Suzuki says: “The 999cc engine offers excellent low- to-mid range torque with good peak horsepower. A variety of advanced electronics include traction control, Easy Start and Low RPM Assist. Twin-spar aluminum frame and braced superbike-style swingarm, KYB-supplied suspension, dual front Brembo Monobloc four-piston brake calipers with 310mm floating rotors.
Unique satellite rear fender extends from the swingarm creating a taut-looking tail design. New style, full LCD instrument panel unique to the KATANA. Metallic Mystic Silver paint with KATANA lettering and logos that mirror the original 1981 model.”
Suzuki President Toshihiro Suzuki says the new Katana is going to strengthen Suzuki’s “monozukuri” for the next 100 years. I need to look that up when I get a chance. But there was lots of positive talk about big sales in Europe and the new plant in Hamamatsu that was just completed, also frightening video footage of the new bike flying around Riyuyo Circuit five feet from Armco barriers and things.
A Mr. Nishikawa spoke about the youthful view that experiences are more important than tangible items. He thinks youth need tangible items to achieve those experiences, and Suzuki aims to build whatever people need to bring excitement into their lives. By 2021, he says Suzuki plans to introduce ten new models, focussing on large bikes.
Elsewhere, there’s a new reduced power GSX-S750 to deal with tiered licensing in some countries, an all-new RM-Z250, and upgrades to the GSX-R1000 and GSX-R1000R, including an adjustable swingarm pivot for the R.