Suzuki GSX1300 B-King

Since we first laid eyes on the Suzuki B-King concept bike in 2001, we've been wondering if it would ever make it to the production line.

Well that time has finally arrived... the B-King lives!

Oh... what it is to B-King

looks rather nice from the sides and front, but the rear is dog-ugly

For those of you who think that wind-tunnel testing and aerodynamics crap are for techno-geeks, the Suzuki B-King might just be up your street - a brutus, naked expression of raw power.
The bike was first showed in 2001 at the Tokyo Motor Show, and six years later the reality of this machine is essentially a stripped-down Hayabusa.

Despite using the same 1340cc motor as the Busa, the B-King makes less peak ponies but more torque. Ignition and fuel injection mapping are the main culprits, but like its genetic donor, the B-King shares the Busa's SDTV fuel injectors and S-DMS (Suzuki Drive Mode Selector).
The chassis is slightly different than the Hayabusa and the exhausts exit from under the seat in a bulbous, gargantuan, (and I think) ugly display of tailpipes. The front end looks much better with a small cowling wrapped around the headlight. Indicators are integrated into panels that flare out from the fuel tank with mesh scoops to direct air into the air-box. The GSX1300 is fitted with black inverted forks. Suspension components offer compression and rebound damping and spring preload adjustment. Brake rotors and three-spoke wheels are the same as on the Busa, but the front radial calipers are tailor made for the B-King.

Suzuki SA only let me ride the GSX1300 for a few hours, on the last working day before Christmas, so I couldn't do a decent test, but here goes anyway.

First thing that got my attention when climbing aboard was the wide 'tank'. Actually, the only part that is fuel tank is the piece from the seat to just in front of the filler-cap, holding only 16 and-a-half litres of juice. The rest of the space houses the ignition, electronics, on-board computer buttons, S-DMS, albeit with only two modes instead of three, which I think is a complete waste of time - you'll try the 'B' button once only and never again. What were they (Suzuki) thinking? I can't imagine anyone riding a bike in anything but 'A' (maximum-performance) mode, otherwise they should rather buy a cute little family sedan. Oh, and you have to be stationary to change modes, can't do it on the fly.
As I idled out of Suzuki's SA headquarters I was conscious that the machine under me weighed 235kg. From above, the tank and air-intake array resemble a small car, but the impression of lumbering enormity disappeared as I turned out onto the road and opened the throttle. The B-King weaves through corners like a motorcycle half it's size
OK, its upright riding position and naked design render it an improbable track bike, but that does not mean the B-King can't handle, it's impressively agile for it's size.

First stop was the filling station... Yes, they gave it to me empty. With only limited time I filled up and hit the road, around Gillooly's onto the N12 and then bulleted down the R59 towards the Vaal.

The 1340cc mill pulls strong from around 2500rpm all the way to warp speed in seconds. The digital readout shoots up in tens, so fast, that by the time I hooked fourth, I was already doing over 200, with still two cogs to spare. There's no screen, so it's a matter of shut up, hold tight and go for it. Saw 280kph on the digital speedo before grabbing a handful of brakes to avoid becoming another Christmas statistic. Brakes work very well, bringing the 230kg mass from 280 to 120 in a very short space, then it's through the gap and zap... bulleting down the highway all over again. But you can't keep it going at over 220kph for too long, the wind blast wants to rip you backwards off the bike, and things become blurred as you try vainly to steady your head in the wind.

The B-King is also easy the ride through town, once you're moving past 30 or so, you hardly feel the weight, and the faster you go the lighter it gets.

I no sooner got to the Vaal when I had to turn back... and I still had to take some pics. Darn time was running out, and the fun had just begun.

 fairings on the sides of the tank make the King wide

At speeds up to 160kph the B-King is acceptable as a highway cruiser, you don't get the sensation of your hands being wrenched from the handlebars by wind-blast, anything above that and it's hang-on time. In the few hours I rode the bike I didn't push the B-King to its redline. To do that in top gear would require an act of insanity.
Though famed for its GSX-R series of lightning-quick superbikes. After speaking to other guys who'd ridden the bike, they all thought the B-King was... more brash than beautiful. I agree, although, by chopping off those yuk tail-pipes, fitting a smaller more attractive set of pipes, plate-holder, flicker bracket and tail-light, I reckon it will look great.
Naked streetbikes are built with attitude. If you want a Suzuki for sheer performance the legendary GSX-R1000 will beat the B-King over any stretch of road.
The B-King is about potency and image; it's a rocket on the road and a colossal machine, but I wonder how well it will sell at R128 500.


Engine :
Bore & Stroke: 
Displacement :
Compression ratio : 
Lubrication :
Fuelling :
Overall length :
Overall Width :
Height :
Wheel base :
Ground clearance :
Seat height :
Dry weight :

In-line 4 cylinder 4 stroke DOHC TSCC
81 x 65 mm
1340 cc
12.5 : 1
Wet sump
Electronic Fuel Injection
2220 mm
800 mm
1085 mm
1525 mm
120 mm
805 mm
235 kg

Gearbox :

6 speed constant mesh. Wet multi-plate hydraulic clutch

Suspension  (front) :

Inverted telescopic, coil sprung, oil damped,  spring preload fully adjustable rebound damping force fully adjustable compression damping force fully adjustabl

Suspension  (rear) :

Link type, coil spring, gas/oil damped, spring preload fully adjustable force fully adjustable, compression damping force fully adjustable

Brakes / Tyres :

310mm Tokico - Front twin 4 piston caliper
260mm Back single 4 piston caliper

Front 120/70 ZR17
Front Wheels : 17 M/C x MT3.50, cast aluminum alloy

Rear 200/50 ZR17
Front Wheels : 17 M/C x MT6.00, cast aluminum alloy

Fuel tank :

16.5 litres

Exhaust :

4 into 2 into 1into 2 (standard)

Power :
Torque :

135kW, Suzuki Drive Mode Selector (S-DMS) - 2 Modes (A & B)


awesome, brute power of the GSX1300

take off the gargantuan exhaust cans and we have one fine Streetfighter


Thanks to the guys at Suzuki SA for the ride,

but like my chick sometimes says; "it was much too short"