Suzuki Motor of America invited us to a special presentation of their new and improved V-Strom 650, V-Strom 650XT, V-Strom 1000 and V-Strom 1000XT.  The presentation was at the Yoshimura Suzuki race shop in Chino CA. which was and added bonus. The new V-Strom 650 gets it's new styling from the desert racer DR-Z and DR-BIG, matching with the larger capacity V-Strom 1000. With a lighter weight and a more powerful engine now meeting Euro4 emission standards, plus the addition of Traction control, we are sure the new V-Strom will appeal to not only existing fans of the V-Strom brand but also to enthusiasts searching for the perfect middle weight adventure machine. We'll have a complete test on the V-Strom line when they become available. Pricing should be announced at AIMExpo in a few short weeks. 

The following data provided by Suzuki Motor of America Inc.


Gathering followers with its versatility and friendly nature, the V-Strom 650 has attracted many riders as an excellent touring machine. It is a masterpiece with an ultimate balance provided by the natural riding position, comfortable seat and the flexible engine character realizing stress-free riding from daily use to long distance adventure touring. This latest model change has given the 650 the same image in looks as the 1000, uniting the V-Strom family, and has succeeded in boosting the engine performance while corresponding to Euro4 emission standards. All the small updates, including weight savings, has further developed the V-Strom to be more versatile, more controllable, more accessible, and has uplifted its total performance to proudly announce that it is simply “More V-Strom”. As well as the current V-Strom 650, both the cast aluminum wheel version and wire spoked wheel version are available offering a choice for various riders.


  • Proven 645cm3 V-twin engine now Euro4 correspondent while succeeding in boosting both power and torque.
  • While the performance has improved, the easy to use and friendly nature of the engine is maintained.
  • Weight reduction of 1kg has been achieved on V-Strom 650 ABS version while equipment has been increased.
  • Finely tuned and updated fuel injection system.
  • Class-leading fuel range to support long distance touring.
  • Newly adopted traction control system to support riding on wet or uneven road surfaces.
  • Light weight digital ABS


  • Suzuki Easy Start System enabling to start the engine with only one-push of the starter button.
  • Low RPM Assist to support clutch engaging and low rpm riding.
  • Comfortable upright riding position
  • Slim bodywork and seat with the ease to reach the ground.
  • Windscreen with a three position adjustment for increased wind protection.
  • Tool-less adjustable rear suspension preload.
  • Large 20L fuel tank inherited from previous model.
  • Informative multi-function instrument panel alike the V-Strom 1000.
  • 12V DC outlet is now standard equipment, for powering a satellite navigation system or for charging mobile devises. NEW
  • The cast aluminum wheel version and wire spoked wheel version to meet various needs.
  • Optional integrated three-luggage system (the same item as the V-Strom1000) attach/detachable with the ignition key. NEW
  • By newly adopting the down type exhaust system, large side cases can be attached at the minimum width. NEW
  •  A large 55L top case able to hold two full-face helmets is added to the genuine accessory lineup.
  • New slim type grip heaters (Genuine accessory)


  • New styling design inspired by the DR-Z and DR-BIG.
  • Vertically positioned headlights and new exterior design in kin to the V-Strom 1000 unites the V-Strom brand.
  • Highly visible and stylish LED tail lights.
  • Slim and easy to maneuver bodywork with a new slimmer tank.
  • Passenger seat and rear carrier meets at the same level offering a large flat area to easily load large luggage.
  • Practical and exhilarating knuckle covers and engine under cowling as standard on the V-Strom 650XT ABS.
  • Wire spoked wheels on V-Strom 650XT model also available. The flexible character of spokes absorb shock from the road better especially at lower speeds, providing the rider with further comfort and exhilarated riding pleasure.
  • Champion Yellow color option features unique and active image gold-anodized rims in contrast to the black-anodized items on the other colors.


As this large capacity adventure category evolves, some models have become larger, heavier, and to an extent, radical, putting off some riders from wanting to enjoy these motorcycles. Among these rivals, the V-Strom 1000 has proposed the “Sports Adventure Tourer” approach with its 1037cm3 engine size and optimal balance of power, lightness and maneuverability along with a high level of comfort and a total ease of use. The chassis and engine was engineered focused for on-road long-distance touring use, and has a forgiving character for real life use and even daily commutes. Its comfortable, high-performance, light weight and easy-to-get-on-with character has widely attracted many genuine riders in various riding situations. In this latest model change, the V-Strom 1000 has a new seat and cowling/windscreen design for improved comfort, while adopting the up to date technology “Motion Track Brake System”, all resulting in enhancing the convenient and comfortable V-Strom character, which now has a reputation globally. Additionally, a wire-spoke wheel equipped V-Strom 1000 “XT” has joined the lineup, offering another option for the enthusiastic adventure riders.


  • Powerful yet forgiving V-Twin engine with ample and usable torque from low RPMs.
  • Light weight and compact chassis.
  • Low seat height and upright handlebars offer a relaxing riding position.
  • Fully adjustable suspension on both front and rear.
  • 3 mode (2modes and off) Traction Control system.
  • Newly adopted Motion Track Brake System.


  • Smart and easy to attach/detach integrated three-luggage system (optional).
  • Understandable and easy to read instrument panel with rich information.
  • Newly shaped wind screen with height and angle adjustments.
  • 12V DC outlet positioned directly under the instrument panel.
  • Knuckle covers and engine under cowling now as standard equipment.
  • Light operation Suzuki Clutch Assist System equipped with slipper-clutch function.
  • Suzuki Easy Start System enabling to start the engine with only one-push of the starter button.
  • Low RPM Assist to support clutch engaging and low rpm riding.


  • A new design with an emphasized “beak” strongly associating with the DR-BIG. NEW
  • New tough bodywork by the concept of “Tough Gear”. NEW
  • Vertically positioned headlights associating with the GSX-R and Hayabusa models.
  • Tapered handlebars standard for the V-Strom 1000XT. NEW
  • A rich variety of genuine accessories.

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Chris Glaspell

The success of any online publication depends on the quality of execution, and
in this respect UpShift Online’s success is virtually assured.  It was founded by veteran motorcycle industry professionals: English-born photographer Simon Cudby, the premier photographer in the world of motocross, and Chris Glaspell, creative director with firms serving clients that include Suzuki, Yamaha, Kawasaki, Cycle World and Yoshimura. This, plus Upshift’s veteran editorial staff and unrivaled journalism, will gives readers unparalleled views of adventure motorcycling.