February 9th, 2012
The experts say yes. Suzuki has re-engineered many aspects of their liter superbike for 2012. Lighter weight, a redesigned engine, and a new braking system has the critics raving.
Little has changed on the exterior of the R1000. The 2012 model uses the same chassis and geometry as previous years. The only thing different with the suspension is a little softer setting to the Showa forks. The most apparent visual change is the single muffler of the new 4 into 1 exhaust system. The exhaust under chamber has been removed as well.
What has changed is the power plant. Suzuki has added lighter, reshaped pistons and a new crankcase design to allow for better oil flow and crankcase ventilation. Although peak power and torque are the same as the previous model, more mid-range power is now achieved. Although the redline has been set to 500 RPMs lower, the engine spins up faster. New cam profiles provide a longer exhaust opening and the overlap duration has been increased a smidgen. The compression ratio has been increased by a fractional amount.
The new Brembo braking system with monoblock calipers alleviates the cursed brake fade that has haunted the GSX-R line for years. Although they feel a little soft when first applied, the brakes provide a predictable gradual increase of stopping power through the range of lever pull.
One item that is glaringly missing from Suzuki's superbike is traction control. Many competitors are including some type of electronic safety net for those that get a little carried away with the throttle. Suzuki seems to be standing by the “only for the experienced rider” thinking.
The 2012 GSX-R1000 retails for $13,799, which puts it within a couple hundred dollars of the big-four competition on pricing.
[Motorcycle.com | Superbike]