All Duels – Out of competition … but not out of play! – Getting started … and headaches!

Out of competition … but not out of play !

All Duels - Out of competition ... but not out of play! - Getting started ... and headaches!

In the family of sports motorcycles, two models are currently set apart: the Ducati 848 and the Suzuki GSX-R 750. The site therefore had to confront the Italian and the Japanese, both on the road and on the circuit … Duel !

Getting started … and headaches !

Before even starting them, we understand just by riding them that these two motorcycles "apart" roll in two different categories: while one is perfectly welcoming and comfortable for a sportswoman, the other is uncompromising and uncompromising. steep…

Indeed, on the Suzuki, the pressure on the wrists is much less than on the Ducati. The legs are less bent on the "Seven and a half" and can even gain precious millimeters of amplitude via three settings offered by the footrests. An advantage of the Gex 600, 750 and 1000 which should also be inspired by their competitors !

Finally, although the 4-cylinder spreads the knees more apart, they are better received on the Suz ‘because for the older ones, contact with the tubular frame of the Ducat’ ends up boring … Especially as the saddle leaning forward the 848 systematically returns the ball joints to butt against the steel tubes, while that of the GSX-R is flatter and less high by 2 cm.

The Japanese is much more comfortable in terms of position and only real tifosis will accept to be so roughed up by the transalpine !

Once the engines are started, the observation is confirmed: the awakening of the Ducati is more difficult and the effort to produce to move the two pistons seems so important that one would almost come to complain about the starter and its battery! The vocalizations of the twin are so powerful, even at low revs, that we will avoid starting the beast under the window of non-music lovers !

On the other hand, we thank the engineers of Bologna for having opted for an oil bath clutch. When stationary, the noise level of the 848 is more acceptable than that of the Supersport 748 or 749 and longevity should also be improved..

For its part, the Suzuki is particularly civilized. The buzzing of the mill in slow motion and the slow bursts of gas required to change first gears to get out of the garage and then out of the street allow you to be discreet like a Ninja Shinobi !

In town, the Italian ordeal is accentuated by the scent of heat that emanates quickly from the pot placed directly under the saddle. No need for the fully digital counter – superb, readable and very complete – to guess that in traffic jams, the engine temperature can rise to 105 ° C !

To navigate the flow of traffic or maneuver at a standstill, the GSX-R is also essential: its turning radius is a bit better and above all, the pilot’s fingers are not pinched by the fairing when pushing. fully the handlebars! In addition, only the Suz ‘has warnings, useful when ascending – with caution – uninterrupted lines of four, six, even eight or eighteen wheels..

On the other hand, we appreciate on the Ducati the fact that each lever is adjustable in spacing, while only that of the brake is on the Suzuki. But question of use, the advantage goes again to the GSX-R 750: despite its slight lack of progressiveness, the clutch control of the Suz ‘is much less hard than that of the Ducat’ which requires a grip blacksmith !

Likewise, the "Made in Japan" gearbox is smoother and better stepped for urban use: you jump from one gear to another without touching the clutch. Well helped by the flexibility and the roundness of its engine, the Gex makes it possible to circulate in town on the second, even the third report. The most distracted or less awake can even start in second !

It is not the same on the 848: its thoroughbred Italian is reluctant to go below 2,500 rpm and forces the driver to abuse the clutch. In traffic, it is difficult to choose between first and second gear, even at around 50 km / h. To wonder if the 848 does not pull a long hair…

On the practical side, finally, it has been a long time since sportswomen were satisfied with the minimum union, or even outright "zero employer charges". No exception here: the Italian and the Japanese force their owner to carry their belongings with them and the Suz ‘barely accommodates a disc lock.

Let us note on this occasion that our test 848 had no passenger footrest, thus avoiding the "joy" of testing the duo on the Italian. Already the reception of the passenger was not famous on the Japanese…

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