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Old 12th January 2022, 14:15   #1
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Default My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review

Introduction:

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20211205_083216-2.jpg

As a little kid, I was always fascinated by the big bikes that used to feature on magazines like Autocar and Overdrive. Something about the bright red bikes with big tires fascinated me to no end. As I grew up, friends changed, ambitions changed, hobbies changed, but the one of the few things that remained a constant was the dream of owning a superbike. As the superbike culture grew in India and in Bengaluru, the fascination just grew stronger than ever. I would drop anything I was doing and run to the window and look out if I even heard so much as a growl from a superbike.

But I was always wary of them. I knew I had to work my way up to a superbike rather than jump on one from the outright. Being from a middle-class background, it helped that my parents were in no way willing to buy one for me anyway. So I started off with a typical scooter in college. A maroon Honda Aviator which was handed down to me after my brother graduated to his new KTM RC200. From the Aviator and small rides on the RC200, I graduated to a 2017 KTM Duke 390, which my father proclaimed would be the last bike he bought me and that I was now on my own. In a way, I was lucky to have this neat progression as this helped me to better understand these machines and more importantly, my right wrist. Once I cleared my CA exams, my single goal was to save up enough to buy a superbike and nearly 1.5 years later, in July 2021, my dream of having my very own big bike was fulfilled. Read on for a brief ownership review of my 2019 Suzuki GSX-S750, which I bought as a pre-worshipped bike with 12,000 kms on the odometer.

My biggest thanks to my brother, who is also on this forum with the handle @nikhn, for being my biggest support and pushing me to realize a lifelong dream. He is the biggest reason I made the final plunge towards owning this bike. When I conveyed that I had saved up enough to buy and sustain a big bike ownership, he was the one who constantly scoured through OLX, Facebook and Instagram pages for immaculate superbike specimens. He was the one who guided me through every technical aspect of big bike ownership and is the one who I can turn to when any problem arises on the bike. To be very frank, I would have been lost with this bike had it not been for him.

And thanks to fellow BHPian, @GoBlue for guiding me on what to look for in a used GSX-S750 and helping me assess the bike I found on OLX. Your guidance really helped me on the specific aspects to check and possible issues to look out for on the bike.
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Old 12th January 2022, 14:20   #2
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Default The Review Index

Review Index:

TL; DR (a quick overview of the pros and cons)

My previous ride - the 2017 KTM Duke 390

The purchasing decision

Bike specifications and other general details

Ride review

Accessories and post-purchase fittings

The servicing experience

Spare parts availability and pricing

Final thoughts

Last edited by TRR : 13th January 2022 at 18:22. Reason: Updated. Thank you for the help :D
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Old 12th January 2022, 14:32   #3
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Default re: My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review

The Too Long; Didn't Read section:

A quick pros and cons section to briefly summarize my experience with the Suzuki GSX-S750. Please note that some of these points are solely from my experience of the bikes I have ridden (primarily the 2017 KTM 390 Duke) and might be subjective as a result.

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20211205_083303_li.jpg

The pros:

- The inline-4 engine - smooth and tractable with linear power delivery
- Traction control system - potentially life-saving tech, non-intrusive but has saved me from losing control a couple of times
- Looks (subjective) - subtle design with clean lines and sharp angles, not an attention seeker
- Riding posture (again, subjective) - slightly on the aggressive end, but with little to no weight on the wrists and shoulders
- Quality and premium switchgear - feels extremely well-put together, no creaking and random metal noises
- Excellent heat management system - minimal heating even in stop-and-go traffic
- Non-fussy drinking habits - no complaints whatsoever with regular fuel
- Braking system is powerful enough for the power on tap
- Top-notch servicing experience (my only experience so far is with the Aerolex Suzuki in Bengaluru)


The cons:

- Peaky engine - characteristic inline-4 - most of the power is hidden away at the higher end of the rev band
- Suspension - pre-load adjustable only system is on the stiffer end for my usage pattern since it seems set-up for corner carving
- Glaring omission of high-quality parts (no steel-braided lines, no slipper clutch, no adjustable clutch lever, no LED lighting (other than the taillight))
- Lack of pillion comfort - pillion seat only for the brave, especially with there being no pillion grab rails
- Long wait-times for OEM spares, which are eye-wateringly expensive (though I have found a workaround for the wait-times)


The neutral:

- Weight – This is a heavy bike at 213 kgs, but weight only felt while moving it around in the parking lot
- Lighting – more than adequate for my use case, but will definitely need to be upgraded if highway night drives planned
- Mileage – returns 15-16 kmpl in the city and 20-22 on the highway (depending on riding style)
- Rider comfort – being a naked sportsbike, comfort isn’t one of its strengths, but I can’t say that this is an outright uncomfortable bike for 2-3 hour rides
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Old 12th January 2022, 20:45   #4
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Default My previous ride: The KTM Duke 390 (2017)

The KTM Duke 390 (2017)

Before I purchased the Suzuki GSX-S750, my ride was a 2017 KTM Duke 390, which was my steed from June 2017 to July 2021. An excellent bike on its own, albeit with some reliability concerns. The 390 was a hoot to drive around, and now that I have some fair riding experience on a more powerful steed, I can honestly say that the 390 is more bike than you’ll ever need in India. In my opinion, any desire for a more powerful bike is purely a want, if the use case is for anything other than track days.

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-img_20171225_102807-2_li.jpg

The KTM 390 Duke was fast enough to trod along comfortably at 100-110 kmph, returned decent economy numbers, had fantastic brakes and came with enough tech to keep you safe on the roads. Yes, the 390 has a bit of a reputation for being the boy racers’ favourite, but on its own, it’s an excellent bike. One can even call it VFM with all the tech being offered at its price. Even my Suzuki doesn’t have many of its features despite being a much more expensive bike. Steel-braided lines, LED lighting, ride-by-wire, adjustable brake and clutch levers, a quickshifter (in the 2020+ models) and slipper clutch, a TFT screen with navigation, the bike is loaded with most everything that one needs.

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-img_20170825_105352_li.jpg

But yes, the biggest elephant in the room, is the reliability. All KTMs are reputed at being shoddy with their reliability and I faced my fair share of problems with the bike. A couple of pressure-washes of the bike led to a bout of electrical issues one year into ownership, which left me stranded multiple times far from home, including sometimes at midnight. Inexperienced techs at the service center made the problems worse. But ultimately the issue was resolved. Another issue with the engine tappets led to the entire engine being opened up (in God knows what conditions) at the service center. But other than these 2 pain-points, I did enjoy 4 years of mostly trouble-free ownership, other than a few odd gremlins here and there. Yes, I faced the infamous “ECU Error” and the sporadic and temporary radiator fan failures, but these were issues that resolved themselves in a few minutes.

Do I miss the Duke? Sometimes, yes. As I sit down to type this, I miss the lightness of the bike and that abrupt power delivery which made for some very memorable moments. The bike was a hooligan when brought to a ghat section and you could push the bike to its limits without worrying about going too fast. I miss the fancy TFT screen (I am a fan of all things tech) and the stonkingly-good brakes

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-img_20170607_212149.jpg

But once I sit back on the GSX and thumb that glorious inline-4 to life, the KTM feels like a distant memory of engine vibes and crude sounds.
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Old 12th January 2022, 21:13   #5
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Default The Purchasing Decision

The purchasing decision

I was on the lookout for basically any decent superbike to upgrade to. Had a budget of ₹ 8-10 lakhs, and was okay with new or used. My primary requirements were a smooth engine with good power and torque figures, traction control to smoothen my transition to a big bike, good brakes and decent comfort. Another big requirement was the need to have a big bike feel while being discrete. A big bike feel was quintessential as I did not want to feel like I was sitting on another Duke after shelling out 8 big ones on the bike. Call me shallow, but as a 24-year old achieving a lifelong dream and shelling out my own hard-earned money, this was an important requirement. However, the bike had to be discrete as I was planning on dailying the bike on the office commute. By profession, I am an auditor, working in a large professional firm, and this meant I would frequently visit client locations where I would not be guaranteed secure parking. A loud, look-at-me type of bike would have been impossible to daily without being fidgeted with by random people. I had zero interest in the cruisers and ADVs as I feel there is time to explore those categories later on in life. Supersports were out-of-budget and came with far too committed riding styles for my daily usage riding pattern.

The Suzuki GSX-S750 fit the bill quite nicely, though I must admit, I did not start out the search with this bike in mind. My brother found the bike for sale on OLX with 12,000 clicks on the odo, I met the seller and came to a deal that was well within the lower end of my budget. The OEM Bridgestone Battlax S21s were squared off and needed immediate replacement. The price was reduced to accommodate the purchase of new tires (though I significantly underestimated the effect of the tire import ban). The insurance was renewed immediately after our negotiations so I got a year of insurance at the seller’s cost.

This picture is at the ASC from when I tagged along with the previous owner for the bike's scheduled service just before delivery

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20210623_155035_li.jpg

The bike in comparison with the Duke 390

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-img20210718wa0023-2_li.jpg

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20210718_152533_li-2.jpg

The odo reading after bringing home the bike

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The rear tires were squared off and were almost out of tread in the middle, though the sides looked decent. Seems like the previous owner wasn't really a cornering junkie

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-img20210718wa0013.jpeg

Customary temple visit for the pooja

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-img20210723wa0005_li.jpg

Have put in 5000 kms on the odo since I brought the bike home in July 2021 (with the bike effectively being used from August-mid post ownership and insurance transfer and also spending 3 weeks in the service center due to an accident that I met with – more on that later)
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Old 12th January 2022, 21:58   #6
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Default The Tech Specs and Other Details

Specifications

My GSX-S750 is a January 2019 manufactured model with the 2018 Metallic Triton Blue colour spec. The bike is finished in a dual-tone paint scheme, with a brilliant blue and black being the two colours.

- The Exterior

The bike is a typical sports naked bike with a twin-spar aluminium frame. The bike is designed similar to its elder sibling, the previous generation GSX-S1000 with minimal modifications to the make the two bikes distinctive enough at first glance. The bike has a simple side fairing which acts as the shroud for the radiator.

The blue finish looks exquisite in real life with an excellent blue sparkle showing through. The black tank is also painted in a metallic finish, albeit it looks like the sparkles are not as prominent as the blue portion of the bike.

It is a fairly simple bike to look at in the pictures but the big bike presence does make itself felt in real life. The design incorporates many instances of sharp elements, while remaining unoffensive on the whole. This is not a bike that’s loud and in-your-face. In typical Japanese fashion, this bike feels more about the go, than about the show.

The front three-quarters angle

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20210926_115057.jpg

The rear three-quarters angle

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20210926_115436-2_li.jpg

The direct front view with the sharp headlight design with fang-like position lamps

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20210926_115624-2_li.jpg

The direct rear view with a simple tail lamp design

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20210926_115130-2_li.jpg

Bulbous, yet sculpted tank

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20211125_150733-2.jpg

Side fairings, hugging the radiator on either side, proudly bearing the Suzuki logos

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20211125_150250.jpg

An overview of the bike, from back to front

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20210926_115702-2.jpg

One of the best angles of the bike, highlights the beautiful cuts and creases

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20210926_120619-2.jpg

Simple rider seat with adequate padding, set at a height of 820mm. Pillion seat is set higher and is strictly for short jaunts. Also, note the lack of grab rails.

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20220113_121437.jpg

Belly-pan finished in the brilliant blue hue – this feels more aesthetic than protective as it is a plastic piece

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20211125_150313.jpg

The orchestra of exhaust headers proudly on display in the front with the oil filter behind. The exhaust gases flow out of 4-2-1 exhaust system with the catalyzer sitting in the mid-pipe.

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20220112_181214.jpg

The rear-swingarm with the stock chain and sprocket set

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20210926_115218-2.jpg

- The engine

The engine is a 749cc 4 cylinder engine in an inline-4 layout. The engine is liquid cooled with the radiator out in front, as is standard on these bikes. The engine is derived from the legendary K5 engine of the 2005 GSX-R750, with adequate tuning and updating to keep up with current emission norms and also keeping in mind that the use case for the GSX-S is significantly different from the GSX-R. Suzuki claims that the peak power is 115HP@ 10,500 rpm and 81 Nm of peak torque at 9,000 rpm. This is a fairly straight-forward inline-4 with no fancy engine technology involved.

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20220112_181201.jpg

The radiator is large and flat with a single radiator fan mounted directly behind it and the entire cooling system swallows 3.2 liters of coolant fluid. Also seen is the radiator guard, which the previous owner had fitted directly from the showroom at the time of purchasing the bike.

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20211125_150258.jpg

The bike is equipped with a 3 level traction control system, with level 1 being for sporty riding on good roads, level 2 being for intermediate riding on urban roads and level 3 being for cautious riding on wet and slippery surfaces. One can also disable the TC system entirely by selecting the “OFF” option. The TC levels can be changed on the move at speeds of upto 30kmph (based on my observation) and can be changed quickly with just a few button presses.

Suzuki has also provided the bike with their Low RPM assist feature, where the bike automatically raises RPM when it senses the RPM to be below specific levels. This aids in bike control at crawling speeds and prevents stalling the bike when rolling forward from standing starts.

Another feature added for convenience is the Easy Start System, where one just has to thumb the starter button and the bike will keep cranking till the engine comes to life. There is no need to hold down the starter button to crank the engine to life. In my opinion, this wouldn’t make much of a difference as the engine cranks to life almost immediately anyway. But sure, it’s a nice convenience to have.

Last edited by TRR : 13th January 2022 at 18:36.
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Old 12th January 2022, 22:52   #7
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Default The tech specs and other details (continued)

- The Gearbox and Clutch systems

The GSX-S750 is equipped with a 6-speed gearbox in typical 1-down, 5-up pattern. The clutch is simple and old-school. No slipper clutch on offer here. A glaring omission I feel, with all its competitors coming with this feature. Even lower priced bikes from KTM have this convenience. As such, the clutch is heavy and downshifts feel crude (when not rev-matching), especially compared to my earlier Duke. I have been advised against fitting any easy clutch system by the service techs at Aerolex and have since gotten used to the heavy clutch.

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20211125_150326.jpg

Also baffling to me is the lack of an OEM adjustable clutch lever. The reach is fine for me, but anyone buying this bike will have to take this into serious consideration or look at arranging for aftermarket levers. It is in these small nuances that I feel Suzuki has gone wrong. Not sure what the thought process was, but these missing conveniences are even more annoying when considering the price paid for this bike.

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20211125_150448.jpg

- The Suspension

The Suzuki is shod with 41 mm upside down forks from KYB at the front with 120mm of travel. The rear suspension is made up of a link-type spring suspension from KYB with 138mm of travel. Both the front and rear suspension are pre-load adjustable only. The suspension is set-up on the stiffer side and one definitely needs to be careful over speed breakers and broken roads as the bumps do get transferred to the rider. It isn’t bone-jarringly bad though.

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20211125_150812.jpg

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20211125_145931.jpg

The front suspension pre-load adjustment nuts (present on both forks)

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20211125_145939.jpg

- The Brakes

Up front, the bike has two 4-piston callipers from Nissin that are radially mounted on 310 mm petal discs, while a single piston calliper from Nissin handles the braking duty at the rear. The bike comes with non-switchable ABS at both ends.

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20211125_150343.jpg

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20211205_083303-2.jpg

The bike does come with adjustable brake levers, which have a healthy range of adjustment to suit your specific needs

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20211125_150437.jpg

Another glaring omission is here with the rubber hoses being used for the braking lines rather than steel-braided lines, robbing you of outright brake bite and braking feel on sustained usage. Funnily enough, looks like this is the case throughout Suzuki’s big bike line up with even the Hayabusa missing out on steel-braided brake lines. Not sure if there is any specific reason for this, but definitely feels like a poorly-thought out decision.

- Tires and rims

The bike was fitted with Bridgestone Battlax S21s from the factory. The front tire is 120/70 spec while the rear is a 180/55 spec. Both the front and rear alloys are ten-spoke alloys, measuring 17-inches in diameter. Obviously, both tires are tubeless and are fitted with straight stems for filling in air. The suggested air pressures are 36 psi for the front and 42 psi for the rear. Weirdly enough, it remains the same with or without a pillion.

I have previously put a photo of the condition of the tires when I picked up the bike. As such, there was an immediate need to replace the tires before I could safely drive the bike around. They were quickly replaced with Pirelli Diablo Rosso IIIs of the same spec. Have completed 5000 km on these tires and they look to be in fairly decent shape so far. Maybe I can eke out another 5000 km from them. Wanted to fit the bike with Michelin Road 5s, but the accursed tire import ban ensured that these tires weren’t immediately available and since my need was urgent, had to settle for the Rosso IIIs.

New tires brought to the ASC for fitment. The service techs at Aerolex dismantled the wheels from the axles, took them to Madhu's, had the old tires removed and the new tires fitted on and got both the wheels balanced. Then the wheels were brought back to the ASC and fitted onto the bike.

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-img20210804wa0005.jpeg

The new rear tire after fitment on the bike.

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-img20210804wa0027.jpeg

A reminder of the slightly naughty nature of these tires

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-img20210804wa0029.jpeg

The state of the tires after ~2000 kms. Can see a hint of the Diablo symbol in the middle of the tire

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20210926_115247.jpg

The state of the tires after 5000 kms. El Diablo has completely vanished

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20220112_082043.jpg

Last edited by TRR : 13th January 2022 at 12:49.
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Old 13th January 2022, 11:21   #8
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Default Tech specs and observations (continued)

- Instrumentation

The bike comes with a digital display, with a white backlight (which is visible only when the ambient light is low). This is the same unit used on the previous generation GSX-S1000. The dash is easy to use with a crisp readout of the essential information.

The start-up sequence

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The instrumentation cluster with the engine turned off

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20211125_145824.jpg

The tachometer adorns the entire top section of the display. There are five switchable designs for the tachometer readout, which can be set to the rider’s liking. The speedometer takes centre stage and is flanked by the clock on the left side and the gear position indicator to its right. To the right of the gear position indicator is the traction control setting (the active mode is displayed). The coolant temperature gauge is located to the right of the traction control selector. The bottom left side of the dash is switchable between the odometer, Trip A reading, Trip B reading and the brightness control for the display backlight. The bottom right is occupied by the fuel gauge with a toggleable readout of the remaining fuel range, instantaneous fuel consumption and the Trip A/Trip B fuel consumption. The other standard markings (indicators, engine check light, etc) are on either side of the display. Weirdly, the fuel consumption is shown only in l/100km, with no option to change it to kmpl.

The display has the Adjust and Select buttons at the very top, that can be used to control the various functionalities on the display.

- Handlebar and controls

The handlebar is slightly swept back and is set slightly lower than normal, leading to a slightly sporty riding stance.

Prominent GSX-S branding in the middle

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20211125_150010.jpg

The Voigt handlebar risers that were already fitted when I picked up the bike. A highly-recommended addition as I feel the riding stance would be a tad too aggressive for a sport-naked bike without it.

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20220112_180956.jpg

The left side handlebar controls comprise of (from front to back) - the headlight controls (passing/highbeam toggle), the display/TC control buttons, the indicator controls and the horn button.

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20211125_145817.jpg

The right side controls only includes the emergency kill switch as the typical red toggle, the hazard lights switch and the engine start switch. Would have been nice if they had integrated the kill switch and starter button into a single piece, but nothing to complain at all about the current implementation.

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20211125_145811.jpg

All the handlebar buttons and switches feel high-quality and are crisp to use. The quality of plastics used for the control housing feels multiple grades above what I had on the Duke 390.

- Other general observations

Coolant reservoir is unconventionally placed under the bike, with a heat wrap provided to protect it from the adjacent exhaust system. Was initially worried about this hitting speed breakers, but looks like the exhaust system is the one to take the punishment over high speed breakers. Also, note the rear suspension linkage point immediately behind the coolant reservoir.

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20220112_181420.jpg

Ground clearance comes in at 135 mm, which is on the lower end of the spectrum. However, have avoided any mishaps with most of Bengaluru’s unscientific speed breakers. Even with pillion riding (with 150+ kg of human weight on the bike), the bike does not scrape most speed breakers. In the 5000 km that I have ridden the bike, there have only been 2-3 instances of the bike scraping a speed breaker, which maybe could have been avoided had I ridden it over with less speed and more angle.

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20220113_101458-2.jpg

The storage area under the pillion seat is fairly large and can easily hold the first-aid kit and the bike’s papers.

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20220112_081744.jpg

The key slot is like that of a typical bike with “Lock – engine off – engine on” positions. An additional position given before lock is the emergency toggle that allows you to remove the key while switching on the rear parking lamps, the front position lamps and the hazard lights. This is for those odd scenarios where you might have to park the bike on the side of the highway and walk away for a bit with the keys in your pocket. The bike comes with an engine immobilizer that disables the engine if the wrong key is inserted into it. The immobilizer readout is a small red-light next to the key slot.

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20220113_110141.jpg

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20220113_110150.jpg

The wing mirrors are not exotic shaped with exotic mirror stalks, but they are more than enough to get the job done. With proper adjustment, the view behind is excellent and covers a large portion of the traffic and road behind you. No vibrations get through to it at any point of the rev band.

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The footrests are metal and are finished with grippy pointed ends. I ride the bike to office in my formal shoes and the constant foot movements to change gears has ended up gouging out a bit of the shoe’s sole. No damage to my riding shoes though.

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20220113_081410-2.jpg
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Old 13th January 2022, 11:58   #9
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Default The Riding Experience

I bought the bike knowing fully-well that my primary use case would be for the office commute. The bike has so far done 5000 kms with me and roughly 3500 kms of those have been on the office commute. I plan to improve my highway and leisure riding in the upcoming year and intend to keep it at least a 60:40 ratio.

- Inside the urban jungle

To put it simply, the GSX is a very well-mannered bike inside the city.
The inline-4 engine is calm and composed when you want it to be. It throws none of the tantrums that the Duke 390 displayed when driving it around at low RPMs. For reference, the bike can waft around at 40kmph in 6th gear with zero complaints from the engine. The engine pulls cleanly with no sudden burst of power in the lower rev range. The bike just hums along from stop light to stop light. It generates more than sufficient power in the lower rpm band to keep moving briskly in Bengaluru traffic. Pulls cleanly from standing starts and has no complaints with you changing gear in the 2500-3000 rpm range. There is no safe way to access the upper rev bands inside the city as 6000 rpm in 1st gear itself takes you past 60 kmph, leaving no room to maintain a high rpm in the higher gears. One minor (almost nitpicking) complaint is the slightly snatchy on-off throttle response. Not sure if the throttle body needs to be cleaned out to resolve this. The Easy Start system and the Low RPM Assist features on the Suzuki also make it easier to live with in the city with the frequent stops and starts at the plethora of traffic lights on my way to work.

But the plethora of traffic lights bring to light one of the bigger problems of the bike. Since it has no slipper clutch, the clutch is on the heavier side of things. Especially since I transitioned from a Duke 390 that comes with a slipper clutch, I initially found the old-school clutch system to be hard and clunky. The non-adjustable clutch levers just added to the problem. However, over time, I have got used to it and now it does not bother me as much as before. Sure a lighter clutch would be good, but can I live without it? Yes, definitely. This is relative from person to person and I have made my peace with it. The gearbox is smooth enough to allow me to upshift without the clutch from 2nd gear onwards anyway so the only real problem is at stop lights, stop-and-go traffic and downshifts and this is a bitter pill that I have learnt to swallow.

There are almost no vibrations in the handlebars and footpegs under 5000 rpm so driving inside the city is a very nice affair. As stated before, the view out from the rearview mirrors are fantastic and aid very well in driving the bike around the city.

The engine sound with the stock exhaust is not unruly and “look-at-me” types. But it is definitely not boring. It comes to life with a deep bassy exhaust note typical of most inline-4s. But, personally, and this is completely my own opinion, it feels like the stock exhaust note on this bike is much better than its competitors. For reference, I drove around a friend’s 2022 Z900 and it seemed to make a more tame sound compared to this in stock form. I can only imagine how a Yoshimura slip-on would improve the sound.
The heat management is excellent for a 750 cc bike running a compression ratio of 12.3:1. My morning commutes usually end up in choc-a-bloc traffic and the temperature gauge never rises to more than halfway. I feel little to no heat on my legs during this time. I have not ridden the bike around in shorts and flip-flops so I am unsure of whether the hot air is directed on the legs during this time. But it is definitely more comfortable than my Duke 390. The Duke used to spew hot air all over and the radiator fan would be constantly on during my office commutes. The radiator fan on the GSX is as noisy as the one on the Duke, but the GSX does a better job of masking it due to the louder engine.

The GSX with a friend's Ducati Monster at the infamous Airlines Hotel

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-whatsapp-image-20210915-22.03.47_li.jpg

A small convenience that I find on the GSX is that switching off the engine using the kill switch does not cut power to the radiator fan and as such, I am able to kill the engine at longer stop lights without worrying about the bike’s coolant temperature. In comparison, the Duke would turn off the radiator fan when the emergency kill switch is turned off. I know this might drain my battery a bit, but I don’t believe this is as big an issue as I do end up turning on the engine after a short interval.

The brakes are more than sufficient for intra-city rides. They provide adequate stopping power at both the front and the rear. For reference, I use a 70:30 combination of front and rear brakes inside the city. The bike is equipped with ABS at the front and rear, but I have not yet felt the ABS activate even under hard braking. As stated above, the steel braided lines definitely rob you of bite and feel and as such, the brakes don’t feel as effective as they were on the Duke 390, though they definitely get the job done with no fuss.

The suspension is a bit stiff for Bengaluru roads, which nowadays resemble moon craters. This is the only bit about the bike that gets to me inside the city. Driving it over broken roads is a bit of a hindrance and gets very off-putting, especially considering the constant road works happening around Bengaluru. I frequently end up changing my routes and taking longer paths to work (sometimes even 15-20 minutes longer) simply to avoid bad roads. It doesn’t feel like the suspension will break, but it translates most imperfections on the road to your arms and butt that you end up getting frustrated with it. I wouldn’t say its unbearably bad, but yes, it does annoy you.

I have had almost no experience on the stock tires of this bike and they were in pretty bad condition when I took delivery. My observations on the tire are primarily pertaining to the Diablo Rosso IIIs that I fitted the bike with post delivery. The dry weather grip of the Rosso IIIs are excellent and they almost never break traction, provided the road surfaces are fairly good. I cannot say the same for the wet weather grip levels though. I have had some moments where I have almost soiled my trousers when riding home in the rain. Even with TC set to level 3 (with the least power on tap and highest level of intervention), the Rosso IIIs lose grip easily and one has to very careful with their throttle control, especially when exiting a turn.

The bike weighs in at 213 kgs and this weight does make itself felt when moving the bike around on foot or in parking areas. However, once on the move, the weight is masked brilliantly and I feel as confident manoeuvring the bike between vehicles as I did on the Duke. Combined with the brakes and the power on tap, it is certainly easy to live with the bike’s weight inside the city. The only thing to keep in mind is that the bike is wider than the Duke and requires you to be more mindful when lane-splitting.

The riding position is a mix between relaxed and sporty. To be frank, I feel that it is more aggressive than the Duke. This gives you better control over the front, without being too heavy on your wrists and ruining your back. The footpegs are not too high so as to cause discomfort over long city commutes. The picture below should give you a decent idea of the riding posture. For reference, my brother, who is on the bike in this picture, has a height is 5 foot 10 inches and can easily flat foot on both sides, primarily with the tank being narrow where it meets the seat.

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20220113_101550-2.jpg

I drive often at night inside the city as I used to end up leaving office late at night (post 10pm) and I feel that the stock lighting is adequate for rides inside the city. The street lighting is decent enough in Bengaluru and the stock set-up performs well in the few darkly lit areas. This adequacy primarily stems from the fact that I don’t push beyond 60-70 kmph inside the city. I have upgraded the headlights and indicators to LED units, however, primarily to reduce the load on the battery.

- Parking it around

As stated above, the bike’s weight is a hindrance when moving the bike around for parking it, especially when comparing it to my light-weighted Duke. At 213 kgs, it weighs heavier than Royal Enfields too and the parking pains are further enhanced by the fact that the bike comes with no grab rails at the back, leaving you to simply push and pull the bike into position.

One critical requirement for me was for the bike’s ability to go incognito in random parking areas, be it on the side of the street or in an office parking lot and to that extent, the bike comes in at a neat 10/10. Unless there are people gawking at you because of the sound when you park the bike, almost no one realizes that this is a 8L+ motorcycle if left by the side of the road, without you pointing it out to them. The result? Tension free parking on any road side and no worries about someone fiddling with the bike when you’re inside a restaurant or at work.

For reference, at one of my clients’s offices, they had no parking space for external visitors and I had to leave the bike behind at the street side. As seen below, the bike neatly blends in with the commuter vehicles alongside it and just disappears.

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20210805_122506-2_li.jpg

For people who want a superbike to draw attention to themselves, the GSX is definitely not one to buy.

- On the highways, rural roads and canyon carving

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-img20210808wa0006_li.jpg

Unleashing the 115 horses on the highway brought some heart-in-mouth experience during my initial few days. The inline-4 comes alive once it crosses 6000 rpm and all those city manners are long forgotten. It almost feels like a new engine switches on with the way the power surges post 6000 rpm. From there, it’s a mad rush all the way to the 11,500 rpm limiter. The GSX can hit 105 kmph in the first gear and has a top whack of 235 kmph (though I haven’t tested this out). It just pulls like a freight train and is extremely good at it too. The Duke was alive at the lower half of the rev range and dead at the top. The GSX is opposite to this. Engine heat is almost not felt at highway speeds, though the radiator fan keeps switching on from time-to-time.

Another big difference on the highways is the way that engine howls once you open up the throttle past the 6000 rpm mark. It sounds extremely ferocious and just keeps singing that glorious inline-4 note till you hit the limiter and then starts again once you upshift. One of the biggest lures of an inline-4 is the engine sound and boy, does it sound fantastic. It roars well over the wind blast noises that boom in your ears past the triple-digit mark on the speedo. As a teenager, I used to spend a lot of my time on YouTube videos of these bikes. And now, I can confidently say that listening to these bikes roar in real life is a whole different ball-game.

The non-slipper clutch is not as big a problem on the highways. I practice clutch-less upshifting from 2nd gear onwards and highway use does not require frequent clutch use anyways. The gearbox is smooth throughout and rarely will you find the bike complaining about not being in the right gear.

The weight is a big advantage on the highways as it keeps the bike stable and planted at cruising speeds. I generally cruise at 100-110 kmph with short burst of higher speeds. The front end of the Duke 390 used to become light and twitchy at higher speeds and any side winds would have a big impact on the stability of the bike. The Suzuki’s 210 kgs keeps it stuck to the ground and unless there is a big side-wind, very little unsettles the bike’s composure on the highways.

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20211205_074058_li.jpg

Windblast, as on almost all naked sport bikes, is a concern. At 100-110 kmph, the windblast is a mild annoyance, while at higher speeds, it becomes downright difficult. I have fitted a windscreen to the bike, but it works only decently. I still have to plant my chest on the tank to avoid the windblast and that ends up being very tiring.

On our national highways, the bike’s suspension is excellent. For carving up ghats section, the bike’s suspension is excellent. Gives you great feedback and the stiff suspension aids better control of the bike. But bring the bike to the rural heartlands, and like in the city, this becomes a chink in the armour of the GSX. Have to reduce speeds massively to tackle poor roads. Completely broken roads call for a slow crawl. The bike’s low ground clearance also requires extra caution on the mountains that rural India calls as speed breakers. My rides outside Bengaluru follow a pattern of national highway (70%) -> rural roads (20%) -> ghat/hilly section (10%) and back. The KYB suspension is fantastic on parts 1 and 3 of this and lacks on part 2. But the trade-off is something that I am okay with. I love riding the hilly roads and this suspension is perfectly suited for that.

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20210911_092040_10.jpg

The brakes are adequate for the highways, though I mostly use engine braking to control my highway speeds. It is on the highways that the rubber hoses rear their ugly head and reduce your confidence due to the spongy effect at the lever. Make no mistake, the 4-piston callipers at the front do a great job at dropping anchor and reining in the high speeds. But more feel and bite at the lever would go a long way in improving the riding experience. The rear brake is but an accessory at the high speeds, though I do end up using them to avoid putting 100% of the load on the front brakes. On the highway, I generally follow a 80:20 split between the front and the rear.

The tires, similar to their behaviour in the city, are excellent on dry, smooth tarmac. They are like leeches and keep you stuck to the surface even with great lean angles. The Rosso IIIs give you incredible confidence when opening up the throttle while exiting corners. On good hilly roads, I have not once broken traction while coming out of a turn, even with spirited riding. But like in the city, broken roads and wet surfaces give rise to scary times with the bike. Riding on gravel/sand strewn roads is like skating on an ice rink. I have felt both the front and rear wheel slip sideways simultaneously while riding over a sand strewn corner and that is not a fun experience at all.

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20211205_085356_li-2.jpg

The tires give you a lot of confidence on good roads and allowed me as a novice rider to pull some nice lean angles. These reverse chicken strips speak to the tires prowess on grippy road surfaces (this was at BR Hills)

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-img20211204wa0006.jpeg

I do not drive outside the city at night, but I feel that for those who do indulge in night rides outside urban areas, auxiliary lights will be necessary, unless you have no intention of crossing 50-60 kmph on our highways. The high-beam is decent and lights up the middle at around approximately 80-100m in front of the bike. But yes, will definitely need the auxiliary lights. I don’t have too much experience in this and will refrain from saying anymore.

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20210911_084320_li.jpg

- Pillion-usage

This bike is heavily tilted towards solo riding. Pillions can tag along, but for not more than 5-6 kms max. The pillion seat is small, high and there is absolutely nothing that one can grab on to other than the rider. Of course, the pillion can lean over and place their hands on the fuel tank but this ends up being very uncomfortable as the pillion seat is higher than the rider seat. The pillion foot pegs are also very high placed and cramp up the pillions leg. Unless your pillion has a lot of experience sitting behind on these types of bikes, it will be a fairly uncomfortable experience for them.

- Fuel and mileage

The fuel tank has a 16 litre capacity, with 2 litres out of that being kept aside for the reserve. A full tank fill usually takes around 13-14 litres of fuel. The bike is not fussy about the type of fuel you fill it with, though I don’t have the courage to venture to any shady fuel station. The bike has been fed with fuel from Shell, BP, Nayara (erstwhile Essar) and IOC, with IOC being only for XP95 fuel. However, I only stick to XP95 and Shell these days, especially since XP95 is found even far outside Bengaluru. The bike returns around 15-16 kmpl inside the city and goes up to 20-22 kmpl on the highways, with my riding style of sedate cruising mixed with short bursts of speed. The highways range is a healthy 280 km, which drops to 180-200 km inside the city. I know I can eke out a little more mileage, but then I’d have to drive the bike like an old codger at 70 kmph and that is not what I bought this bike for.

Last edited by TRR : 13th January 2022 at 13:38.
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Old 13th January 2022, 12:35   #10
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Default Accessories and post-purchase fittings

As most everyone who owns a superbike knows, owning one of these bikes becomes a never-ending affair of buying and adding little tid-bits and accessories every so often. The previous owner of this GSX had it fitted with the radiator guard, the frame sliders and swing-arm spools before I bought the bike. Similarly, post-purchasing the bike, I have added a fair number of things to make the bike “mine”, other than the tire upgrade previously mentioned:

- LED lighting (headlights and indicators) – was satisfied with the stock illumination from the halogen lamps but decided to swap all the non-LED lights for LEDs to reduce the load on the battery. The headlight was fitted with an H4-LED light and all the indicator bulbs were swapped with LEDs without changing the indicator housing. The illumination spread with the LED is almost identical to that with the halogen bulbs and is not blinding to those in front.

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20220113_121359.jpg

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20220113_121241.jpg

- Windscreen – procured from AliExpress: Improves the look of the bike (I feel) while providing some comfort from the windblast. Isn’t adequate enough for the touring type of person, but I detest the taller touring windscreens as they ruin the look of the bike. A fair trade off for me since long inter-state touring isn’t really my thing. Bought a number plate holder of a Yamaha FZ-S from a nearby Yamaha ASC and used that to mount the number plate up front.

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20211125_145913_li.jpg

- PPF coating – at Quadra4 in Bilekahalli, Bengaluru: The tank, the side shrouds, the front mud-guard and the rear painted surfaces were all covered with self-healing PPF. The bike looks a lot better as the detailing brought out the metallic sparkle finish and I have some peace of mind from swirl marks and minor scratches on the bike’s painted surfaces.

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20220103_162949.jpg

- Engine Ice coolant replacement – purchased on Amazon. Replaced these simply based on online feedback. Cannot really compare them to the stock coolant as I did not ride around for more than 400-500 km on the stock coolant before getting it replaced. Satisfied with the cooling performance so far and don’t intend to change back anytime soon.

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-img20210909wa0000.jpeg

- Kriega fork seal covers – purchased from Let’s Gear Up, Bengaluru. Precautionary purchase to extend the fork seals’ lives. I know it won’t protect the seals against dropping the bike in a pothole, but will save it from dust and sand from breaking the seals.

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20220113_121729.jpg

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20220112_181149.jpg

- Rim tape – purchased and fitted at a local sticker shop. I like the aesthetics that rim tapes give so I got this simple half-rim pattern on each side of the rims. Helps that they are reflective and should aid in additional visibility at night.

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20220107_175342.jpg

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20220107_164936.jpg

- Eazi-grip Pro tank pads (ordered, yet to be received and installed) – purchased from Retro Rides, Delhi. Bought these to protect the tank from belts buckles and my riding jackets. Also plan to get the Eazi-grip Pro tank grips to aid in holding onto the bike with my knees.

Other than these parts, I have also procured a DID brass chain and Vortex front and rear aluminium sprockets to be fitted when the current chain-sprocket set wear out. The stock chain-sprocket kit was pretty rusted already at the time of delivery and hence I have purchased these as precautionary measure to change at the first instance of problems. The chain was procured from Europe through my brother and the sprockets were procured from Revzilla and hand-carried to India by my brother’s friend.

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20220113_121650.jpg

Last edited by TRR : 13th January 2022 at 12:46.
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Old 13th January 2022, 13:03   #11
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Default The servicing experience

One of the biggest roadblocks to an uneventful ownership experience of these big bikes is proper service support. Buying these bikes brand new ties you to an authorized service centre for the duration of the warranty and then you are at the mercy of the service centre technicians who may or may not be competent/interested in caring for your bike the way you do. The horror stories from Triumph and other big bike brands (other than Honda, if I’m not wrong) are well-documented on this forum. In the case of the GSX, the warranty period was over just before I picked up the bike. But I have decided to stick to the service center at Aerolex Suzuki in Bengaluru for all the work to be done to my bike.

The service intervals are a standard 6 months/6000km. Given my heavy usage of the bike inside the city, where it will be exposed to vast amounts of dust and pollutants, I think I will stick to a 6 months/5000km interval.

The service center for Suzuki’s big bikes (Hayabusas, V-Stroms, GSX-Rs and GSX-Ss) is attached to the showroom and is separate from the service center for the commuter Suzuki bikes. The service techs are led by one Mr Hafiz, who is well known as Dr Busa in biking circles. He has a Hayabusa of his own, called Venom, which is specifically modified and used for drag racing in events across India.

I can honestly say that these guys at Aerolex (both the showroom and service center) are among the most professional and customer-friendly people I have met. The showroom staff are extremely courteous and will go out of their way to make sure you are comfortable. There is no differential treatment meted out once you have purchased the bike. The service techs are no different as well. These guys, especially Mr Hafiz, are very well-versed with bike tech and know their way around almost every problem. They are extremely helpful and do not take shortcuts in servicing the bike. I recently picked up the bike from service in December and they waited till I was back to collect the bike, made me sit on the bike and ensured that the chain slack was adjusted for my weight. That is something I haven’t seen any service center do, albeit I will admit my experience is not very vast. Labour prices, I feel, are reasonable in the big bike world, with a full service costing ₹ 2,000 in labour charges. Mr Hafiz helped procure the Diablo Rosso IIIs for a reasonable price in a market that was price-gouging for high end tires. Not enough can be said about the professionalism of these guys. I can confidently drop the bike off at Aerolex and not be worried about them screwing up my bike. I am not a very technically-inclined person and have to rely on my father and brother to guide me through the technical aspects of vehicle ownership and yet I do not have to worry about being ripped off at the ASC for unnecessary parts and services.

The service techs adjusting the chain slack for my weight

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-whatsapp-image-20220113-12.55.00.jpeg

Suffice to say that the showroom and service experience has been so good, I think my next big bike will almost 99% be a Suzuki from Aerolex (provided things stay the same).

Last edited by TRR : 13th January 2022 at 18:34.
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Old 13th January 2022, 13:12   #12
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Default Spare parts availability and pricing

Spare parts are sadly out of the control of Aerolex and at Suzuki’s discretion. And this painful aspect of big bike ownership is the same as that of other brands. Procuring spare parts is an expensive and time-consuming aspect, though I have found a workaround for this.

A month after I picked up the bike, I met with a minor accident on the bike and this resulted in the radiator bending just enough to block the radiator fan. The radiator fan was jammed and on my way to the ASC, the fan coil/motor burnt out, rendering the fan useless. At the ASC, I was told that a new radiator fan would have to be procured from Japan at a cost of a whopping ₹ 37,000. To make it more painful, I was told that procuring the fan would take at least 40-45 days. The bike would have to sit at the ASC till then since riding it without the radiator fan was impossible. Mr Hafiz opened the fan up in a last-ditch attempt to see if there was anything else to be done, but it looked like there was no alternative than to procure a new fan. I was okay with the cost as I had kept this in mind while buying the bike, but the 45 days wait time was too much since the GSX was my daily office commuter.

The damaged radiator fan

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-img20210824wa0003.jpeg

My brother, who was in Netherlands at the time, scoured online and found the OEM radiator fan for ₹ 24,000 from a non-descript seller on ebay . uk. We contacted the seller who turned out to be situated in Japan and he confirmed that the part would be shipped from Japan and that the part was indeed a Suzuki OEM part. We made the payment on a Monday and the part was despatched on Friday through DHL express shipping (an additional ₹ 2,500). The package was at my home in Bengaluru on the immediate next Monday. The part shipped was genuine OEM Suzuki and had all the right stickers and labels in this regard. Not sure what value was declared in the shipping documents (was in Japanese, for some reason), but the Customs toll was a mere ₹ 2,000. So we ended up procuring a ₹ 37,000 fan for ₹ 28,000 and the best part was that the turnaround time from payment to procurement was a mere 1 week.

The new fan purchased through the eBay seller with genuine Suzuki OEM markings on the box

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-25165f10fa774868ba813d94020390cf.jpg

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-0a674fd95ab24d28891cc4c3348280c5.jpg

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-78b30afe11484fcc97dd3b26188f4887.jpg

But yes, the spare parts procurement situation is not great through the ASC and I have pinned my hopes on this ebay seller having access to other OEM parts of the bike as and when needed. Else, my bike will languish at the ASC in case of any mishap. The pricing of the spares was a known devil at the time of purchase of the bike and it is a tax that I will have to pay for the joy of owning the GSX-S750
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Old 13th January 2022, 13:33   #13
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Default Final thoughts

To sum it all up, yes, the big bike ownership is not a bed of roses. It comes with its own set of problems. The infamous saying goes – “You should never meet your heroes” – as you’ll most likely come away disappointed once that halo of herodom is removed. My hero has always been a big bike with an inline-4 growling between the tires and to be honest, I am glad I met this superbike hero of mine. All the troubles and costs of ownership cannot ever make me regret the decision of spending my hard-earned money on the GSX-S750. It isn’t a bike that wows you outright in any single way. It is one of those silent jewels that gets almost everything right, without excelling in any one way. That creamy smooth engine with the glorious exhaust note, the comfortable yet aggressive riding posture, the big bike looks that fly under the radar and the basic yet unintrusive safety tech make for a brilliant stepping stone into the big bike world. The bike has its flaws, sure, but they are not strong enough to even come close to overcoming the sheer brilliance that the bike offers as a package. Besides, most of the shortcomings like the rubber hosed brake lines can be rectified in the aftermarket scene, albeit at an additional cost. All in all, with that bulletproof Japanese build and reliability, this bike is definitely a keeper for a long time.

My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review-20210911_084501_li.jpg
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Old 14th January 2022, 07:25   #14
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Default

Thread moved out from the Assembly Line. Thanks for sharing!

Lovely thread TRR. Wish you thousands of miles of happy ownership.
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Old 14th January 2022, 11:16   #15
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Default Re: My Suzuki GSX-S750 | Ownership Review

Exceptional, unbiased & detailed reviews of motorbikes that don't have an official review have started going to our homepage reviews box. It's the ultimate stamp of trust from Team-BHP (as a platform) because lakhs of visitors every month check out reviews from there & make purchase decisions.

Your review has also gone here. Thank you so much for sharing .

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