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2007 Suzuki Bandit 1250S Road Test


by Pascal Bastien ,

Affordable power

The Suzuki 1250S is part of a segment in which the motorcycles can do whatever they're asked to, providing satisfying results without flinching. For 2008, the big Bandit comes back with all the features that made it so popular.

The Bandit 1250S is a standard bike with unparalleled versatility.

Upon a closer look, standard motorcycle enthusiasts will be delighted as fit and finish are superb as always. The design is enhanced by chrome handlebars, a comprehensive instrument panel, a well-designed fuel tank and a gigantic polished muffler. That said, the completely redesigned engine adds even more style to the Bandit 1250S.

Hold on tight!
This Suzuki is powered by a new liquid-cooled, 16-valve, DOHC 1255-cc engine that was specifically developed for a stripped-down standard bike. The engineers worked the exterior of the cylinder head to give it a modern and substantial look. This mill is fed by an electronic fuel injection system with four 36-mm throttle bodies. The "dual-cradle" chassis has been strengthened to optimize the engine placement.

The powerband is fat and very linear. There's a lot of grunt at low and medium revs for an inline-four engine. Takeoffs are neck-snapping and on-the-fly accelerations are also quite impressive. On the road, the engine is so pleasant to work with that a mere trip to the closest convenience store can become an hour-long adventure. It's smooth and quiet, not to mention far more charismatic than the new engine of the Bandit 650S. It delivers clear and brisk sensations with each passing rev, which obviously increases the riding pleasure.

Power is distributed through a new 6-speed transmission designed to reduce top gear rpm at highway speeds. Gear ratios are far better spaced, but the unit still requires above-average efforts during shifts. This is strange, especially since the similarly-equipped Bandit 650S felt effortless when I tried it out. I should point out, though, that Suzuki gave me the keys to a pre-production 1250S, so the problem is likely to be solved on the actual model.

The 1255-cc 4-cylinder engine is a good fit, delivering enhanced performance.
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