While preparing for the event we sometimes thought we underestimated it. We were fascinated by the beauty of dedicated, ex Dakarian and full option bikes participating in the event, while the other riders were intrigued, almost incredulous, by the fact that we would participate with a standard sport-adventure equipped with side bags (35-liter capacity each).
We already appreciated its riding easiness and maneuverability while heading for Trento but we didn’t know how it would handle off-road even if its low seat and being able to firmly plant our feet on the ground give us confidence.
Aesthetically our “yellow bird” has a rather pronounced beak and a capacious 20-l tank taken from its ancestor DR Big - a ’90 bike that made African rally enthusiasts’ mouth water - as well as many improvements and solutions that it shares with its 1000 cc big sister.
The 645 cm3 twin engine is a euro 4, with considerably improved low and medium revs, the ones we used the most during the test. The new pistons with anti-friction coating play a part in keeping pollution levels low while considerably reducing consumption. As for the latter, we noted excellent mileage, since we completed the rally with only two full tanks and a consumption of about 25 km per liter (rough estimate). An important contribution to this is given by the SDTV (Suzuki Dual Throttle Valve) injection system. The twin-beam aluminum frame is a distinctive element as is the completely redesigned exhaust circuit - not loud but with the racing high note – that perfectly harmonizes with the whole bike.
We installed a GPS system to follow the tracks and the useful 12 v plug positioned near the digital dashboard ensured power for the whole trip. Using a simple Allen wrench on the 4 screws we completely lowered the windshield since we prefer it to be low riding off-road so that it is less of an obstacle against any branches. We also deactivated the Traction Control but couldn’t do the same with the ABS; however, after we got used to it we didn’t find it to be too interfering.