American Suzuki Shakes Up Cruiser Market With New Suzuki Boulevard Brand
Inspired by Suzuki's GSX-R Sportbike Platform, All-New Brand of Bikes, Accessories and Apparel Is Among the Most Important Launches in American Suzuki History
LAS VEGAS, June 14, 2004; With more than 40 years of experience selling high-performance, cutting-edge motorcycles, American Suzuki Motor Corp. (ASMC) launches into a new era with a new brand of cruisers -- Suzuki Boulevard -- unveiled today at the American Suzuki National Motorcycle and ATV Dealer Meeting in Las Vegas, Nev.
Suzuki, which enjoys considerable market share in a number of key motorcycle segments in the U.S., is seeking to build brand equity in the cruiser segment by continuing to leverage the popularity, sales and racing success of its GSX-R sportbike platform. The specially branded Suzuki Boulevard bikes are being engineered, developed and built with what Suzuki engineers are calling "Suzuki DNA" -- a blend of advanced technology, uncompromising power and performance, nimble handling and outstanding value.
"More than a line redesign, Suzuki Boulevard represents a whole new cruiser brand designed and manufactured exclusively for the U.S. cruising market," explained Mac Kato, president of ASMC Motorcycle/Marine Operations. "It is not an exaggeration to say that this is one of the most important launches in Suzuki's 41 years of selling motorcycles in the U.S."
Five 2005 Suzuki Boulevard models will hit showrooms in August 2004 -- the S40, S50, S83, C50 and C90 -- with more to come in 2005, including the signature M50 muscle machine. Suzuki has designated three separate cruiser lines as the basis for future line growth with specific product names reflecting not only engine size in cubic-inch displacement but also the style of the bike as well -- the stylish "S" series, the "C" series featuring classic cruiser styling and the more-muscled "M" bikes.
Through extensive research of the U.S. cruiser market by Suzuki engineers, Suzuki Boulevard bikes accommodate American cruising enthusiasts' demands for technological innovation, riding comfort, style and performance while incorporating the Suzuki DNA. To fully capture the American cruising lifestyle and complement its new cruiser brand, Suzuki is also launching Suzuki Boulevard Authentic Accessories, a full line of branded accessories and apparel designed to offer buyers maximum opportunity for customization and freedom of individual expression.
"American Suzuki Boulevard cruisers and Suzuki Boulevard Authentic Accessories offer a whole new lifestyle -- a new way to express individuality on the road and a new reason to explore the boulevards of America," added Kato.
According to Kato, Suzuki Boulevard bikes will compete for the American cruising enthusiast eager to add Suzuki's reputation for advanced motorcycle technology and championship racing success to the traditionally image-driven cruiser segment.
"Suzuki Boulevard has been designed specifically for the motorcycle enthusiast who wants more from their cruiser than mere cosmetics," said Kato. "Suzuki Boulevard riders want the power and punch provided by Suzuki DNA in addition to traditional black-and-chrome styling and a low-slung muscle cruiser package."
Suzuki cruisers have been a significant contributor to the overall success of American Suzuki's Motorcycle and ATV Division and the introduction of the Suzuki Boulevard line of cruisers represents the company's continued commitment to its motorcycle dealer body to supporting a more dynamic cruiser brand presence. Suzuki Boulevard will provide dealers with a compelling new line of branded cruiser motorcycles, accessories and apparel to draw new riders into Suzuki showrooms and existing riders from the competition.
"The introduction of Suzuki Boulevard results directly from dealer requests for a Suzuki-exclusive product lineup that will provide increased traffic and sales success within the cruiser segment," explained Mel Harris, vice president of ASMC's Motorcycle/Marine Operations. "The same resources that have brought industry-leading success to other Suzuki product lines like the QuadRunner ATVs and GSX-R sportbikes are being harnessed for the new Boulevard cruisers -- advanced product technology, competitive pricing and compelling marketing."
American Suzuki will launch its new Boulevard brand in August with a major media campaign targeting the core cruiser audience through top-tier motorcycle enthusiast publications, cable networks and specific motorcycle shows -- collectively putting the new bikes in front of nearly 840 million prospective buyers.
Suzuki Boulevard Cruiser Line-up
Suzuki Boulevard cruisers demonstrate a new level of commitment to cruiser enthusiasts with a variety of models for riders of all ages and experience levels. These V-Twin machines, styled and engineered to capture the imagination of motorcycle enthusiasts across the country, mark the beginning of a new direction for V-Twin cruiser aficionados.
Since Suzuki understands each cruiser's desire to choose his or her own bike, style and place in life -- their own boulevard -- the new line will offer variety right from the start. The "S" series, featuring stylish and sleek refinements of Suzuki-styled machines, includes the S40, S50 and S83. The "C" series features a more classic cruiser style in the C50 and C90 models. And, later this year, the "M" series will deliver a more muscled performance image with the M50 and M95.
The Suzuki Boulevard S40 combines sophisticated cruiser style -- rich paint, chrome rear-view mirrors and multi-reflector turn signals, separate hazard lamp and headlight passing switches -- with legendary Suzuki performance and value. Additional custom design touches on the S40 include a teardrop-shaped fuel tank with flush-mounted speedometer, low seat and classic spoke wheels. Combining power and comfort, the Suzuki Boulevard S40 employs a four-stroke, SOHC, single-cylinder, electric-start engine with a five-speed gearbox and belt drive, then adds a flat handlebar and new-style, one-piece seat for increased rider comfort and a streamlined look.
The Suzuki Boulevard S50 gives cruiser enthusiasts more of what they crave -- power, performance and style. The clean, sleek and low style of the S50 is accentuated by the flat handlebar, one-piece seat and multi-reflector turn signals, while custom-polished wheels, an abundance of chrome and stunning paint give the bike a custom look. The 2005 Suzuki Boulevard S50 offers more than competitive models with many exclusive features, one of which has made similar Suzuki cruiser models consistently strong sellers -- a custom color-matched frame for each two color options. The S50 is powered by an advanced four-stroke, liquid-cooled, V-twin engine with four valves per cylinder and a low-maintenance shaft-drive system.
The Suzuki Boulevard S83 shares the S50 design -- serious chopper lines, rich paint and loads of chrome -- but adds significant power. The bike's big, 45-degree SOHC V-twin engine offers serious torque from three efficient valves per cylinder, and a consumer-favorite low-maintenance shaft-drive system. The high-style package on the S83 makes every desired cruiser need available, including two color options with color-matched frame, a low, one-piece sculpted seat, comfortable flat handlebar, multi-reflector turn signals and convenient hazard and passing switches for ease of operation.
Perfectly positioned for the largest segment of the cruiser market with numerous class-leading features, classic cruiser style, modern engineering and unmatched value, the 2005 Suzuki Boulevard C50 debuts miles ahead of its competition. The C50's show-quality paint and graphics, generous amounts of chrome and wide, low seat inspire two-wheel passion and all-around riding comfort for an enjoyable ride on any boulevard.
Thanks to Suzuki DNA, the C50 employs championship-proven electronic fuel injection resulting in class-leading throttle response and smoothness from the 45-degree, 50 cubic-inch V-Twin engine plus quicker starts and improved mileage. For relaxed highway cruising, the shaft drive and five-speed transmission with an extra-tall fifth gear combine with a broad, flat powerband to deliver peak torque at 4000 rpm.
Additional styling highlights include wide fenders, classic 4.1-gallon fuel tank, staggered dual exhaust system, full-size floor boards with heel/toe shifter, multi-reflector headlamp and turn signals, and a convenient hazard lamp and headlamp passing switch.
When it came time to design the 2005 Suzuki Boulevard C90, Suzuki listened to input from dealers, owners and cruiser enthusiasts across the U.S. The result is the long, low and massive Suzuki Boulevard C90 -- modern technology combined with classic styling and performance. Of true Suzuki DNA lineage, the 90-cubic-inch, V-Twin engine boasts both electronic fuel injection featuring Suzuki Dual Throttle Valve systems, multi-hole fuel injectors and 32-bit ECU for increased torque and smoother and quicker throttle response. With peak torque at just 2800 rpm and geared to spin a leisurely 2700 rpm at 65 mph, the big V-Twin employs reliable air/oil-cooling, plated cylinders, hydraulic valve lash adjusters, a five-speed transmission and smooth, clean-shaft drive for enhanced reliability and simplified service.
A wide, low saddle paired with ideal handlebar and foot-control placement provide premium rider comfort, while a 41mm front fork and preload-adjustable rear shock allow for a plush, comfortable ride. Rounding out the package, the C90 rolls on wide tires mounted on custom-styled cast-aluminum wheels with dual-disc brakes up front and a single disc at the rear.
Representing the future of Suzuki Boulevard cruisers, the 2005 M50 embodies Suzuki DNA in every nut and bolt, projecting a tough, sleek, "don't-mess-with-me" attitude. By taking the best attributes of Suzuki's most popular cruiser and adding serious attitude, the M50 is a muscle machine that can only come from Suzuki. And, with Suzuki DNA in its blood, the M50 is loaded with engineering and styling features that position it years ahead of competitive machines: Suzuki's championship-proven electronic fuel injection system, liquid cooling, shaft drive, multi-reflector headlamp, LED taillight, inverted fork, soft-tail rear suspension and alloy wheels with tubeless tires.
The anchor of the new Suzuki Boulevard line, the M50 targets cruiser riders 20 years old and up wanting a performance style cruiser that actually delivers on its promise. And, with a 50-cubic-inch V-Twin, the M50 is perfectly positioned at the epicenter of the best-selling metric cruiser class -- where it is destined to shine with its on-the-edge styling. Best described as "graceful with a grudge," the soft-tail design, wide, custom-stretched fuel tank, sleek seat and sharp-edged front and bobtail rear fenders bring a symmetry that accentuates the long, low sleek lines. And blacked-out, cast-alloy wheels, stout inverted fork and multi-piston front calipers complete the aggressive nature of the machine.
Since the cruiser lifestyle is more than just great machines, Suzuki is giving Suzuki Boulevard buyers maximum opportunity for customization and freedom of individual expression thanks to the simultaneous launch of Suzuki Boulevard Authentic Accessories. Suzuki Boulevard Authentic Accessories brings an unrivaled selection of products to meet the needs of every cruiser rider. Suzuki Boulevard-branded products scheduled to be available at launch include hard goods (billet goods, chrome, windshields, light bars, seats, backrests, saddle bags and floorboards), clothing (half helmets, boots, leather jackets, vests, gloves, shirts and jackets for both men and women) and lifestyle items (lighters, pocket knives, desk accessories and more).
"Suzuki Boulevard cruisers and Suzuki Boulevard Authentic Accessories combine to offer U.S. cruiser enthusiasts more than just a new way to ride. They offer cruiser fans a whole new lifestyle, a new way to express themselves and a new excuse to explore the boulevards of America," added Kato.
About American Suzuki
The Motorcycle/ATV Division of American Suzuki Motor Corporation (ASMC), Brea, Calif., was founded in 1963 by Suzuki Motor Corporation. ASMC markets motorcycles and ATVs via an extensive dealer network throughout 49 states. ASMC's parent company, Suzuki Motor Corporation (SMC), based in Hamamatsu, Japan, is a diversified worldwide automobile manufacturer. Founded in 1909 and incorporated in 1920, it has 120 distributors in 191 countries.