Suzuki is promising more excitement to the Adventure-bike category with a thoroughly updated 2017 V-Strom 650 and V-Strom 650XT. The popularity of adventure style motorcycles that let riders leave the asphalt behind continues to grow. In an apparent nod to this, Suzuki also announced the impending arrival of the refined and improved 2018 V-Strom 1000 and V-Strom 1000XT.
‘Fifteen years after the launch of the 2002 V-Strom 1000, Suzuki has evolved the V-Strom lineup into a family of highly respected adventure bikes,’ the company notes. ‘Long-distance riders, commuters and weekend adventurers will appreciate the updates Suzuki brings in engine performance, electronics advancements and rider comfort.’
V-Strom 650 and 650XT - Source Suzuki
Kicking off the adventure excitement, the V-Strom 650 enjoys aggressive new styling for 2017 with a new beak-style fairing, featuring vertically stacked headlights that helps the V-Strom 650 and 650XT cut through the wind and protecting the rider in style. The new 3-way height-adjustable windscreen was wind-tunnel tested to reduce wind sounds, buffeting and rider fatigue. The fairing holds a new multi-function instrument panel is similar to the V-Strom 1000 panel, but has functions unique to the V-Strom 650 models.
The new fuel tank maintains its 5.3 gallon capacity, but is shaped to be thin at the rear to flow into the slimmer, two-up seat which aids the rider in touching the ground. The sub-frame is updated with a strong, resin cargo rack and mounting points for optional luggage now unitized across the entire V-Strom family.
Using fresh SV650 engineering, the 645cc, 90O V-Twin engine uses new camshafts and low-friction pistons to boost torque in the low to mid-RPM range, but still retain a strong rush of high RPM power that’s ideal for any riding mission. A new, sleek two-into-one exhaust system with twin catalyzers’ routes below the chassis to reduce weight, centralize mass, and provide space for the narrow seat and tail section.
V-Strom 650 and 650XT - Source Suzuki
The V-Strom 650’s revised fuel injection system employs the innovative, SDTV (Suzuki Dual Throttle Valve) on new 39mm throttle bodies featuring ten-hole; long-nose type fuel injectors. The patented, Throttle-body Integrated Idle Speed Control (TI-ISC) has Suzuki’s Low RPM Assist feature that seamlessly adjusts engine speed during take-off and low-speed riding to smooth the power delivery and to help reduce the possibility of the rider stalling the motorcycle.
A very important new feature on the V-Strom 650 and 650XT that is not found on Adventure bikes of this size is Suzuki’s advanced Traction Control System, which lets the rider control the throttle with more confidence in various riding conditions. It continuously monitors front and rear wheel speeds, throttle opening, engine speed, and the selected transmission gear to adjust engine output if wheel spin is detected. There are three traction control modes (1, 2, and OFF) and the difference between the modes are their sensitivity to road conditions.
V-Strom 650 - Source Suzuki
The V-Strom 650 and 650XT now feature the Suzuki Easy Start system which lets the rider start the motorcycle with a momentary press of the start button without pulling in the clutch lever when the transmission is in neutral.
The V-Strom 650 is supplied with new, lighter ten-spoke cast wheels shod with Adventure-spec Bridgestone BATTLAX 19-inch front and 17-inch rear tubeless radial tires for good all-around performance. The V-Strom 650XT offers the same tubeless radial tires mounted to spoke-style wheels for good all-around performance. The 650XT also features handguards with larger handlebar vibration damper weights and a lower engine protector.
Front dual 310mm-disc brakes and a rear 260mm-disc brake deliver controlled stopping power. The compact Antilock Brake System (ABS) system monitors wheel speed to match braking to available traction.
The good news for interested riders, the new 2017 models will be in showrooms by February next year. Bad news, readers will need to wait to learn what colors they can choose from and how much the two-wheeled adventure will cost.
V-Strom 650XT - Source Suzuki