All Comparisons – Comparison test Kawasaki Z750, Suzuki GSR 750 and Yamaha FZ8: the roadster war – Japanese etiquette lessons

Comparison test Kawasaki Z750, Suzuki GSR 750 and Yamaha FZ8: the roadster war

All Comparisons - Comparison test Kawasaki Z750, Suzuki GSR 750 and Yamaha FZ8: the roadster war - Japanese etiquette lessons

Slowly but surely, the Japanese resistance is organizing in order to push the Z750 out of its throne: already threatened by the Yamaha FZ8, the Zed must now counter the offensive of the Suzuki GSR 750. A fight refereed by MNC: comparative test.

Japanese etiquette lessons

The GSR 750 is therefore the dynamic and wickedly efficient roadster that Suzuki promised us: on this point, the copy largely surpasses the original while turning against it exactly the same weapons … at least as regards the cycle part.

Because on the engine side, it undoubtedly takes advantage of the 26 years of experience of Hamamatsu engineers on the seven and a half displacement to fine the aging four-cylinder of the Z750 (resulting from the late ZX-9R! ) as easily as that of the FZ8, yet closely derived from the 2008 YZF-R1.

And the good news is that however powerful it may be, the GSR 750’s mill has not forgotten good manners: the gearbox-clutch assembly is the smoothest of the three, while the vibrations felt at mid-range in the feet and crotch are much more bearable than the handlebars of the Z750.

On the other hand, it loses a few points in terms of injection: those of the FZ8 and Z750 are more precise and more transparent, which is particularly appreciable when exiting tight bends and in town..

A brutal hair on the gas net, the power of the Suz ‘nevertheless seems calibrated with great care by the Hamamatsu engine manufacturers: despite its superior engine performance, it was the most sober in this comparison with 5.9 l / 100 km average compared to 6.3 l for the Z750 and 6.4 l for the FZ8.

The right compromise…

Good student, the GSR 750 also takes the ascendancy in terms of practical aspects: like its rivals, it is equipped with a coded key, a fuel gauge and warning, but its on-board console is more complete with in particular two trips, average fuel consumption and gear engaged (read the "Instrumentation" section of our technical sheets on the following pages). In addition, its turning radius is slightly smaller than that of the FZ8 and Z750..

Placed at the same height on all three machines (815 mm), the Suzuki saddle is easy to step over and its excellent handling allows it to squeeze through a mouse hole in built-up areas. It is also easy to live with in the city thanks to an inclination of the bust and a fold of the legs much less pronounced than on the Z750, even if on this point the FZ8 retains the advantage with its almost senatorial upright position..

However, its tank with less pronounced curves than on the FZ8 (despite a larger capacity of 0.5 liters) makes it easier to squeeze between the legs, while its compactness benefits the passenger who has less distance to travel to place his hands on the reservoir when braking. A non-negligible point since, like its two adversaries, the GSR 750 does without grab handles !

As on the Z750, the duo should in any case only constitute a repair option, as the hardness and narrowness of the passenger seat will quickly put the patience of the unfortunate volunteer to the test! Here again, the Yamaha is much more liveable with a wider and more comfortable seat: a real "XJ8", this FZ8 !

The GSR 750, on the other hand, is the only one to offer tie-down hooks on its rear footrests, while the disassembly of its passenger seat updates nylon ties (as on the FZ8) and the largest storage volume. : deep, the space under the saddle allows you to carry a small U-shaped lock and rain gear.

It remains to be seen to what extent the integration of ABS on the GSR 750 – planned in France for summer 2011 – will encroach on the good capacity of the Suzuki roadster’s trunk, knowing that on the Z750 and FZ8 equipped with assistance when braking, the control unit and multiple electrical circuits devour almost all the available space…

First victory, but…

Failing to revolutionize the category, the GSR 750 therefore achieves the feat of improving a recipe (archi) known and dominates the FZ8 and Z750 thanks to a compromise "sport-comfort-daily life" as interesting as not common on this type of motorcycles.

But if it wins this first round, the outcome of the battle is not for all that folded in advance: if its price is more attractive than that of the FZ8 (7,799 € against 7,999 € for the Yam ‘), the new Suzuki 2011 still requires a note of 100 € additional compared to the adulated "Zed" (7699 €).

Some will regret that the GSR 750 does not stand out more significantly in terms of price positioning, especially as the quality of its equipment and its finish (well below the FZ8 and its "full aluminum" cycle part) cannot be put forward by Suzuki to justify an overall high addition and what is more is very close to some European roadsters…

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