The Suzuki SV650: Is it A Pro’s Beginner Bike?
It’s easy to use, enjoyable, dependable, and surprisingly inexpensive. If you ask any seasoned professional to recommend a first bike, they will almost certainly point to the Suzuki SV650.
- The ideal first bike.
- Club racer on weekends.
- Commuter with low upkeep.
And the SV650 also manages to be a really attractive motorbike.
Guess, how many bikes can claim to wear as many hats as this adorable little v-twin?
Owning an SV650 is now a badge of honor for any lifetime motorcycle lover. You’ve come to the correct place if you’re looking for your first motorbike, your first track bike, or your next custom project.
Everything you need to know about the motorcycling community’s old & reliable. Let’s take a closer look at the SV650 and why it’s a great starting motorbike.
A Quick Overview of the Suzuki SV650
The SV650 challenges the widely held belief that a new rider operating a bike with 600ccs or more is setting oneself up for failure. In most situations, 600ccs is simply too much for a rookie rider.
The Suzuki SV650 respectfully disagrees, delivering a larger bike riding experience than a 500cc or 400cc bike (or even 300cc like the Yamaha R3). Its 645cc v-twin engine is both powerful and dependable.
The engine sounds pretty strong as the rpm rise, with low-notes that thrum along as you speed. This reasonably large and torque motor provides good all-around performance, providing the rider with enough of jam without being insane.
The SV650 is on the higher end of what is recommended for novice riders, but that doesn’t mean you should pass it up. On the other hand, if you’re an experienced rider or someone starting to ride a motorbike and want a starter bike that will last several years before an update is required, the SV650 is most certainly the ideal bike for the job.
Suzuki SV650 Specs
The essential specifications are mentioned below.
|Engine Type||4-stroke, 2-cylinder, liquid-cooled, DOHC, 90-degree 645 cc V-Twin|
|Maximum Horsepower|| 1999 – 2002: 64.2 hp @ 9,000 rpm
2003 – 2014: 73.4 hp @ 8,8000 rpm
2017+: 74.9 hp @ 8,500 rpm
|Maximum Torque|| 1999 – 2002: 42.3 lb-ft @ 7,200 rpm
2003 – 2014: 47.2 lb-ft @ 7,000 rpm
2017+: 47 lb-ft @ 8,100 rpm
|Fuel System||Fuel injection|
|Fuel Capacity||16 L (3.5 imp gal; 4.2 US gal)|
|Fuel Efficiency||Approximately 48 mpg (4.9 L/100 km)|
|Range||Approximately 250 km|
Dimensions & Chassis
|Height|| 1999-2002: 44.5 in (1130 mm)
2003: 46.3 in (1175 mm)
2004 – 2014: 46.1 in (1170 mm)
2017+: 42.9 in (1090mm)
|Length|| 1999-2002: 80.5 in (2045 mm)
2003: 83.9 in (2130 mm)
2004-2014: 82.1 in (2085 mm)
2017+: 84.2 in (2140 mm)
|Ground Clearance|| 1999-2002: 5.5 in (140 mm)
2003: 6.1 in (155 mm)
2004-2014: 5.9 in (150 mm)
2017+: 5.3 in (135 mm)
|Seat Height|| 1999-2002: 31.7 in (805 mm)
2003 – 2014: 31.5 in (800 mm)
2017+: 30.9 in (785 mm)
|Wet Weight|| 1999 – 2002: 417 lb / 189 kg
2003 – 2014: 437 lb / 198 kg
2017+: 434.3 lbs / 197 kg (w/ ABS)
Tires, Brakes & Rims
|Front Brakes||Dual 290 mm floating discs|
|Rear Brake||Single 240 mm disc|
|Front tire||120/70ZR17M/C (58W), tubeless|
|Rear Tire||160/60ZR17M/C (69W), tubeless|
|Front suspension||*1999 – 2002: Kayaba 41 mm telescopic fork, 132 mm (5.2 in) wheel travel. Non-adjustable (1999-2001). Adjustable pre-load (2002).
*2003 – 2014: 41 mm damping rod fork, 130 mm (5.1 in) travel. Adjustable pre-load.
*2017+: 41 mm telescopic fork, 125 mm (4.9 in) travel.
|Rear suspension||*1999 – 2002: Kayaba single shock, Adjustable pre-load. 127mm (5.0 in) wheel travel. 337mm length. 9.1 kg/mm (510 lb/in) spring rate
*2003 – 2014: KYB (formally Kayaba) single shock, adjustable pre-load. 330mm bolt-to-bolt length. 7.7 kg/mm (430 lb/in) spring rate.
*2017+: Link type single shock, 7-step adjustable pre-load, 130 mm (5.1 in) travel
What Is The Distinction Between An SV650 And An SV650S/SF?
The roadster-styled bike with no fairings is known as the “SV650.” When we hear the words “Suzuki SV650,” most of us immediately think of (and want to buy) one of them.
Models with the suffix “SV650S” have a quarter fairing or a “sportbike style” nose fairing with no belly pan or side plastics. It’s the same as the SV650, but with more plastics, taller footpegs, and clip-on handlebars.
Beginning with the 2008 model year, a “SV650SF” variant was also available. This is the finished product (the one that looks most like a conventional race replica). The same bike as before, but with more plastic and a more aggressive riding posture.
So,In a nutshell, there is not much of difference.
Suzuki SV650 Review
|Suzuki SV650 Quick Specs|
|Year: 1999-2009/ 2017- 2021+|
|Engine: 645cc liquid cooled DOHC 90-degree V-twin|
|Power: 72 hp @ 9250rpm|
|Torque: 46 ft.-lb. @ 7250rpm|
|Performance 0-60: 3.39 seconds|
|Quarter mile: 11.93 seconds @ 111mph|
|Top speed: 129 mph Wet weight: Around 430 pounds (198 kg) with a full tank.|
Those are some really good figures for a smaller displacement sport/standard bike. This is especially true for what is commonly referred regarded as a “beginning” bike.
Nonetheless, the Suzuki SV650 is an excellent starting bike, owing to the engine’s characteristics more than its performance figures.
What’s wonderful about the tiny V-twin is that, while it’s capable of some impressive numbers when pushed hard, the engine is about as mellow and forgiving in the lower part of the rpm range.
That’s great for a novice since it requires you to be purposefully aggressive with the SV650 in order to receive any type of “aggressive” behavior back from it.
It’s also an excellent bike to “grow into,” as the motorbike will continue to give what you ask of it as you gain confidence.
Combine it with an engine that routinely lasts 80,000 miles or more, and you’ll have plenty of time to get to know your SV650.
In terms of comfort, the SV650 has a seat height of less than 32 inches (ideal for new riders who want to flat-foot their motorcycle), a relaxed riding position, and a relatively low 430 pound weight, which means you’ll be just as comfortable learning to ride on an SV650 as you will on any other motorcycle.
Suzuki SV650-Reported Issues
The Suzuki SV650 is so simple to own and maintain that this section seems a bit ridiculous, but there are a few oddities to be aware of if you’re thinking about buying one.
Obviously, with first-generation bikes, you’ll want to pay attention to the carburetors’ health as well as how smoothly the engine runs and idles. The carburetor on these motorcycles are dependable Mikuni units that will run flawlessly for thousands of miles as long as the bike is not ignored for lengthy periods of time.
Apart from that, first-generation owners should be mindful of any performance upgrades passed down from previous owners (aftermarket exhaust, air filters, etc.). If the carburetors have not been retuned/rejetted to match the changes, the bike will not run correctly.
Oil hunger is a recognized problem, however it only happens when you wheelie the bike for long periods of time. Short wheelies are OK on occasion. Long stand-up wheelies down the interstate or repeated wheelies in general, can deplete the oil supply to the front cylinder, resulting in catastrophic failure. Needless to say, the Suzuki SV650 is an unsuitable option for a stunt bike.
Water retention in the front cylinder head is also frequent, resulting in the dreaded “SV325” condition. It’s not a huge issue, but it sure feels like one when it starts happening. The spark plug hole has a very small drain that easily clogs since the front cylinder collects a lot of dirt and moisture as you go down the road. When that drain becomes blocked, water pools around the front plug, ultimately corroding it to the point where the plug no longer fires. Cleaning the drain port on a regular basis and putting dielectric grease in the plug wire solves this problem.
Purchasing a Suzuki SV650
For every dollar spent, The SV650 is without a doubt one of the wisest choices a novice motorcycle owner can make.
They are also incredibly simple to find due to their large production run. If you’re searching for a secondhand bike on a budget, you’re probably looking at a first or second model SV650.
Both are excellent machines, but no one in their right mind buys a carbureted motorbike if they don’t have to, so I’d limit your search to 2003-2009 models.
To be sure, the first generation motorcycles have a certain charm.
Fans of the original TL1000S will undoubtedly like the tubular frame and rounded quarter fairing appearance.
Because of the shorter manufacturing run and fewer existing specimens, first-generation motorcycles are more likely to become antiques.
While there are a lot of Suzuki SV650s for sale, the vast majority of them have had difficult periods. This is an unpleasant side consequence of unskilled ownership and the popularity of club racing.
Still, there are still well-loved and well-kept SVs out there looking for a new owner.
In terms of pricing, there is undoubtedly a vast range available.
If you don’t mind spending $4,000, the third generation SV650 is becoming more common on the secondhand market, with prices starting about $5,000, like as this 2017 model with only 2,200 kilometers.
For an additional $1,000, you get new styling, an upgraded engine, and updated electronics. AND you don’t have to descend to the level of owning a Gladius. That sounds like a very good deal.
Reasons to purchase a Suzuki SV650
|It generates a lot of POWER.
o 1999 – 2002: 64.2 hp / 47.9 kW @ 9,000 rpm
o 2003 – 2014: 73.4 hp / 54.7 kW @ 8,800 rpm
o 2017+: 74.9 hp / 55.9 kW @ 8,500 rpm
|With a seat height of approximately 31′′ (800 mm), it is suitable for the majority of individuals.|
|It's a nice middleweight with a wet weight of:
o 1999 – 2002: 417 lb / 189 kg
o 2003 – 2015: 437 lb / 198 kg
o 2017+: 429.9 lbs / 195 kg
|It boasts a higher, more upright riding position that is better conducive to touring.|
|It's a good-looking bike, whether naked or faired.|
|It is fuel-efficient, averaging 48 mpg (Fuelly.com)|
|A good example is relatively inexpensive, especially for model years prior to 2014 (about $5,000 for a mint low-mileage bike, around $3,500 for an ordinary bike).|
|ABS — Beginning in 2007, the SV650 may be fitted with an ABS system. Nothing beats it for beginning motorcyclists.|
|The SV650 has a 0-60 time of around 3.2 seconds and a quarter-mile time of 11.85 seconds. That level of performance is more than adequate for a rookie rider.|
|The riding posture - The SV650's upright riding position is both comfortable and practical, without sacrificing sporty performance or the sense of an exciting ride.|
Reasons to avoid purchasing the SV650:
|The v-twin engine isn't as smooth as an inline-four engine.|
|Its height and weight may make it difficult to control for smaller riders.|
|The range - 250 km is roughly how far you'll be able to travel comfortably on its 3.6 gallon tank.|
|ABS is not standard on all models. When looking at older motorcycles, keep this in mind.|
Suzuki SV650 Model Timeline
The Suzuki SV650 first appeared on the scene in 1999, and it was simply a scaled-down version of the legendary Suzuki TL1000S. It is principally powered by a 607cc, 180mm L-Twin engine with an estimated output of 72hp and a stated torque of 47.2 ft. The original SV650 was regarded as the best in most people’s eyes and was widely utilized. It aired in a stripped-down and naked form from 1999 to 2002. From 2003 until 2017, we had a practically all-new SV650, complete with a redesigned frame, pointier appearance, and a fuel injection update. Gladius and SMV650s were also available between 2009 and 2016.
The Timeline of the Suzuki SV650 Model.
Although all years of the Suzuki SV650 share the same famous 90-degree 645cc V-twin engine, there have been some significant modifications to both the engine and the bike itself throughout the years. Here are some quick facts on the development of the tiny twin.
1999-2002 Suzuki SV650 First Generations
Suzuki’s original SV650 is easily distinguished by a few distinguishing external features.
The use of a thick rounded/tubular trellis structure, rather than the angled aluminum or thin steel versions that followed is most notable.
SV650s from the first generation also had rounded tail sections and non-LED brake lights. They have the most “classic” appearance of the four.
Aside from that, the most essential thing to know about early-model SV650s is that they are the only ones without fuel injection.
All SVs were fitted with dual Mikuni carburetors until the 2003 model year.
Second Generation Suzuki SV650 (from 2003 through 2009)
When most people talk about the Suzuki SV650, they’re referring about this model.
Second-generation bikes received a revised “square” trellis frame, a sharper tail section with integrated LED brake lights, fuel injection, new clocks, and a drastically altered front fairing on “S” and “SF” versions (more on that below).
Aside from apparent aesthetic improvements, no significant alterations were made throughout the second generation run.
Certain paint colors are exclusive to specific model years.
Frames and swing arms were raw aluminum in 2003/2004, then matte black for the remainder of the years.
The Suzuki Gladius (Years are from 2009 to 2016)
The Suzuki Gladius (later called the SFV650) is largely regarded as the SV650 family’s successor.
Although the trellis frame, 645cc V-twin engine, and roadster appearance beg to differ, it isn’t really an SV650.
A Suzuki Gladius is essentially can be said as an SV650 with an unpopular contemporary appearance upgrade and modest internal engine changes to the camshafts and intake/exhaust tune.
The Gladius was a disappointment in terms of sales, and Suzuki replaced it in 2017 with the current version of SV650. While it may not have the same classic elegance as the SV650, I wouldn’t exclude the Gladius from your consideration.
Its engine upgrades improved low RPM fuelling noticeably, and unlike the current generation of SV650s, its front forks maintained their adjustable preload settings as well.
Suzuki SV650 3rd Generation: 2017-2021 and beyond
Although this essay is mostly on the SV650 as a cheap (used) bike for beginning riders, I’d be remiss if I didn’t include the revised third generation as well.
For this generation, classic roadster design has returned, and a “neo-café” variation (the SV650X) debuted in 2018.
You’ll pay a little more for newer model bikes, but you’ll get some perks as well, such as revised throttle bodies/exhaust/air intake (5 extra horses), improved throttle response, and a “low RPM assist” that helps new riders keep the bike running when leaving stop lights and circling parking lots at low revs.
Suzuki SV650 Top Acceleration
|Speed (Suzuki SV650 )||Time|
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