So, with the dust settling on the Milan Bike Show 2017 (or a superbike settling if you’re Ducati 😬). We thought we’d share a round up of the Honda and Suzuki announcements from Europe’s largest motorcycle show.
Honda was very active again this year announcing a slew of new bikes across the different categories. Some of the bikes we’d already seen at the Tokyo Motor Show the week before, but it gave the European crowds a glimpse of what was to come in 2018.
The new Honda Gold Wing was leaked as early as Spring on the internet. The 2018 model sports a slimmer look and a weight saving that will enable 20% greater fuel efficiency. It also gets electronic suspension, a fly-by-wire throttle, Apple CarPlay display, stop-start technology, DCT (dual clutch technology), keyless ignition… the list goes on and on and on! A full press release can be found on Honda’s press room here.
At the other end of the spectrum was the much talked about (highly nostalgic) 125cc Monkey Bike. Originally launched in the 1970s it was a massive hit at the time. Fast forward to the 21st century and the MSX125 has been equally as popular, which when combined with the current retro revival sets the stage for a relaunch… alas this is still a concept and nothing was announced for production.
Another exciting new model range announced was the uber sexy, ultra modern but retro accented Neo Sports Cafe series. Which includes CB125R, CB300R and CB1000R models. These models have “…moved away from ‘RR’ inspiration and instead used a host of textured metal finishes and an ultra-minimalist look under the design theme of ‘Neo Sports Café’. The result is a machine with a unique identity, a fusion of Sport Naked and bare-boned Café Racer inspirations.”
Another cool concept announced was the CB4 Interceptor adding even more futuristic looks to the new Neo Sport Cafe project. It does look very sharp and if it makes it to production then will definitely turn heads as it goes down the street or neon-lit race tracks of the future!
There was also some welcome news for the NC750X & NC750S models. Honda will produce 35kW models that will be available to ride on a A2 licence. This will be able to be increased to full power at any Honda dealer when the rider has passed their full motorcycle licence. At the time of writing, nothing suggests this will change for the UK market, so watch this space!
Along with the other announcements from Tokyo the PCX125 will be available in the near future in hybrid and electric flavours AND the Africa Twin gets a larger fuel tank for super adventure riding – Honda will certainly be very busy in 2018!!
Our Suzuki team saw a massive amount of activity in 2017. First we saw the announcement of the highly anticipated new GSX-R1000R and standard GSX-R1000 models. Revamped, reimagined and better than ever. Then, the ever dependable V-Strom 650 got a facelift and technology enhancements – again to make it better than any Suzuki mid-range adventure bike before it. A revised GSR750 was reborn as the GSX-S750 and the Burgman 400 got an edgy new look. On top of that we saw Suzuki committed to launching some awesome smaller capacity models in the GSX-R125, GSX-S125, GSX250R and V-Strom 250 models.
The highlight this year saw Suzuki launch a more retro looking SV650X model. With a snazzy 80’s look: dropped handlebars (clip-ons) giving a sportier riding position, a headlight cowl/flyscreen and neat fog lights building on the very popular all-rounder. These changes add sex appeal and a certain vintage class to a very modern built bike. The two tone paint job on the fuel tank further enhances the retro styling – which many older riders will remember fondly.
There were rumours that there was a new Intruder 125 or 150cc model in the pipeline, but that didn’t surface at the show. From the leaks we saw this is due only for the Asian market, however with regular requests for 125cc cruisers we may see something soon.
Suzuki did launch some new colours in the GSX-R1000 which our team on the ground were able to snap and was shared on Instagram last week. The traditional Suzuki blue and white is long desired in the new GSX-R1000 models and the colours pictured below bring the dream closer to reality!