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New Motorcycle/Review

Suzuki Hayabusa GSX1300R

Alexis Bachofen

Now in it's second year the Hayabusa is as much fun to receive as it is to ride. I have only pleasant memories as well as an enormous amount of respect for the Hayabusa. The last time I rode this upgrade from a GSX-1100R both my previous editor and I almost lost our licenses, returning from the GP at Silverstone we decided to have a race down the M40 back to London. Our race didn't last long as were stopped by the boys in blue, clocked at 160mp/h (265km/h). We were let off! I'm still wondering how! We explained who we were and pleaded that we would both loose our jobs if booked, and the law enforcers took pity upon us. At the end of the day, I think the police were more interested in seeing the Hayabusa for the first time than the juvenile speeds we were caught at. That is however not a typical example of police behavior and should not be tried in Australia.

The Suzuki Hayabusa is a beast. It is so fast it is truly astonishing. Cruising at 80km/h in third gear you can whip back the throttle and you'll be going 180km/h in no time at all. In fact I often found that it would get up to some harebrained speed before I had the chance to see how quick I was moving. It's amazing that I haven't been booked yet, because with a bike like this it is actually hard to keep to the speed limit. As if allergic to whatever speed is posted on a road, the Hayabusa is always going faster. It's so comfortable, with so little wind hitting the body that sometimes you have no clue what speed you're doing. The brakes are excellent, in true Suzuki fashion, and stop the 1300cc motorcycle quickly and very safely. The dial layout is clear, in fact it seems to have been purposefully designed to enable you to see the speedometer at high speeds. Included in the layout are a clock, dual trip, fuel level and temperature meters as well as your indicators and high beam light.

It's the handling that is the key factor for the Hayabusa, for although it has a huge rear tyre; it handles beautifully and is incredibly stable. Around town the bike is great, it maneuvers easily through traffic and doesn't feel heavy at all when negotiating sharp, slow short obstacles or cars. If you're used to a 600, then you will be in for a surprise, but you'll soon get used to it. Everyone from kids to old age pensioners gaze at the Hayabusa, whether parked on the road or cruising down a small road be prepared for pointing and staring. Be a little careful accelerating from corners, as the Hayabusa is so powerful that it will try to flip you. Especially if you give it a little too much throttle too quickly. I was almost thrown out of the seat and have too very bruised knees to prove it. Around Barbegello raceway the Hayabusa was brilliant fun. Coming up from the basin I got it up to 265km/h and the police clocked me a 190km/h down the start/finish straight - Is that all? Admittedly it's a little heavy in corners, but it will teach you good throttle control. Too much will get it all out of shape whereas two little will make the bike dive down in corners.

Now selling for $17,000 you'll be getting a hell of a lot of motorbike for your money. Well worth every penny! If you're looking for a big-bore sports bike with looks (and the top-speed) to kill - look no further. Take it for a test ride first just to see how powerful this slick beast really is. I guarantee that you'll be surprised at how easy it is to ride a big bike like this. Have fun!

Model:                  Suzuki Hayabusa GSX1300R
Engine:                 4-stroke, 4-cylinder DOHC,
                        16-valve, liquid-cooled
Displacement:           1,298cc
Compression:            N/A
Transmission:           6-speed
Suspension: Front:      Inverted telescopic, 43mm inner
                        tube, fully adjustable
             Rear:      Progressive linkage, fully adjustable
Brakes:     Front:      6-piston caliper 320mm dual disc
             Rear:      Twin piston caliper, 240mm disc
Fuel Tank:              22L
Dry weight:             215kg
Power:                  160bhp @ 9500rpm
Top Speed:              332km/h

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