Comparison test Honda CB 1300 S, Suzuki Bandit 1200 S, Yamaha FZ1 Fazer


Comparison test Honda CB 1300 S, Suzuki Bandit 1200 S, Yamaha FZ1 Fazer

Comparison test Honda CB 1300 S, Suzuki Bandit 1200 S, Yamaha FZ1 Fazer

They share their sporting roots. At Honda in terms of design, at Suzuki and Yamaha, the engines have already earned their merits in veritable sports machines. How many traces of this past can still be found in the CB 1300 S, Bandit 1200 S and FZ1 Fazer?

The pull that manufacturers use to design even stronger, even lighter super athletes is getting faster and more tearing. Whoever set the tone yesterday belongs to the second guard today. Before he knows it, at best it serves as a parts supplier for other models. Which doesn’t have to be a disadvantage. Because that’s how fantastic engines live on and give upright big bikes not only all their comfort and everyday qualities, but also a dash of sporty flavor.

Like the Suzuki Bandit 1200 S. Your air / oil-cooled unit is a direct descendant of the legendary GSX-R four-cylinder that kept the superbike scene in suspense in the eighties. Technically, the Honda CB 1300 S cannot rely on the genes of any ancestors ennobled with racing laurels. But its gorgeous design is a deep bow to the magnificent CB 1100 R. The classic two-tone paintwork with its contrast of bright white and glowing red, the polished engine cover, the wonderfully processed aluminum swing arm, which is supported by two shock absorbers with expansion tanks ?? a feast for the eyes.

The youngest offspring of the big bike genre: the Yamaha FZ1 Fazer. A motorcycle with rough edges, aggressively sparkling headlight eyes, macho-like stub exhaust. Expressive, idiosyncratic. In addition, the powerhouse of the R1 engine dipped in dark black. Freely displayed in a black aluminum frame. When it comes to the seating position, the FZ1 implements the sporty claim most radically. A short tank that brings the pilot close to the straight handlebars, high notches ?? In no time all your senses are on alert. You have to storm the next bend, sport is the order of the day.

In contrast to the Honda. That was the first thought in view of the 266 kilogram heavy chunk with a full tank. The CB 1300 is a powerful motorcycle. A half-shell that still offers space for a storage compartment, a colossally towering four-cylinder with a clutch housing the size of a soup pot, crowned by a 21-liter fuel keg suitable for long journeys.

And it continues powerfully when you sit up. Mighty comfortable. The seating furniture is daringly reminiscent of the TV armchair at home, which has adapted perfectly to its own ergonomics in night-long meetings. You don’t even want to go down. Also because the chrome tubular handlebars and footrests sit exactly where the extremities expect them. That looks more like an enjoyable, long tour than sport. Well then, let’s go. A quick push of a button and the gentle giant grumbles comfortably to himself.

The Suzuki engine doesn’t start quite so spontaneously, the choke has to help. There is nothing to complain about at work. The tank is short with a good knee grip, the seat is pleasantly narrow, the tubular handlebar is casually at hand. In comparison, the Bandit is a whole lot more compact than the CB 1300, skilfully concealing with quick handling on the first winding kilometers that you are dealing with a full-fledged 1200, weighing 243 kilograms.

The Yamaha sails a bit lighter in an inclined position and thus underlines its sporty ambitions during the first sniffing at the joyful cornering. Only when the Fazer is to dive into greater inclines does it ask for a firm grip on the handlebar. What the Honda driver can only smile about: The CB 1300 can only be angled a little less quickly, and the effort required remains the same over the entire lean angle until the notch nipples are attached.

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Comparison test Honda CB 1300 S, Suzuki Bandit 1200 S, Yamaha FZ1 Fazer

Comparison test Honda CB 1300 S, Suzuki Bandit 1200 S, Yamaha FZ1 Fazer
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Honda CB 1300


Torque flood at the Honda.

Holla, lie at an angle until the notches brush? Of course, because the Honda has dynamic qualities. Which has several reasons. On the one hand, there is the stable, well-balanced chassis. The tubular steel frame with 38 millimeter thick beams can handle a brisk pace completely unmoved. On the other hand, the successful basic coordination of the spring elements, which, however, is more on the soft side. Bumps, patches, fork and struts swallow all that without complaint. Well, during rough braking maneuvers the fork sometimes locks up, and when you deflect heavily in an inclined position there is a little movement. But never excessively. Above all, the perfectly balanced chassis always preserves the composure. This also applies to the sprint over crumpled lanes, because the Honda does not startle its driver with banging the handlebars.

Then this brake. Fantastically creamy and powerful to grab, finely dosed with little hand strength. Worthy of an athlete and supported by an excellently regulating ABS. And finally there is this unspoilt chunk of engine. An extremely sociable, cuddly muscle man who pushes forward like a steam engine from idle. The four-cylinder grabs with a powerful handshake as soon as the vehicle starts up and flushes its driver out of tight bends with a huge surge of torque.

Once in fifth gear, there is hardly any reason to change gear again. Although with the buttery-soft and precisely flowing gear it is a real pleasure. When rolling into built-up areas, you don’t even begin to feel the urge to downshift. And at the end of the village, when the open country road welcomes you again, a gentle turn of the right hand is enough to accelerate to country road speed in no time. The CB 1300 masters serpentines with equal aplomb. Just let the speed drop to 1500 rpm at the apex of the curve, then pull up the gas, grab the four-cylinder with minimal load changes and? swooosh ?? Let yourself be carried away by this torrent of torques again.

However, the big block can also slide forward terribly if it gets its spurs. Suddenly the cosiness of the comfortable sitting position and the film that is running at full speed in front of the windshield with its increasingly sloping horizon and the impetuous approaching curves somehow no longer really go together. Because the Honda foursome storms up the speed ladder from the basement so powerful and full of vehemence, completely free of holes. It always remains acoustically so discreet that you only think about switching when the gently starting limiter stops the forward thrust. It is in such moments that the sporting spirit of the Bol d? Or comes to life.

Yamaha Fazer


The Fazer is very dynamic.

However, the Yamaha promises the most dynamism in this trio, as already indicated in the seating position. Which is also not surprising, since the latest Fazer variant offers the most modern concept in comparison. If Honda and Suzuki rely on double-loop tubular frames, Yamaha has turned its back on this construction, which was also used in the old Fazer. Aluminum bridge frame, stable upside-down fork and a very long swing arm supported by deflection via a central spring strut. These are the ingredients of modernity. The Yamaha irones crisp and tight over the asphalt strip, with a strut that is more of the hard type in terms of spring rate. The stiff aluminum chassis can easily cope with the performance and also shines with decent steering precision. None of the others match the transparency and cornering stability of the FZ1. As long as the road is level. Second-rate road surfaces, on the other hand, are not the Fazer‘s thing. Because bumps over the wide 190s on the hindquarters can easily introduce some unrest into the chassis. Michelin Pilot Road, which is more tour-oriented than sport-oriented, is not entirely innocent of this. Which raises the question of why you shouldn’t allow such a sporty bike to have adequate initial tires, for example the more manageable, more neutral brother Pilot Power.

Because Fazer wants to do sports. Sure, with the engine. The magic word R1, and everyone knows. Five-valve, 150 HP, right pressure. It was born in her cradle. From 7500 rpm, the FZ1 unit gets down to business really well. Honda and Suzuki can only watch in amazement as the Yamaha glows away. Whereby: Below this mark, there is a lull in the engine room. The Fazer does not have a classy 1000 thump from the lowest speeds in its range. And because, apart from the wider fifth and sixth gear, they got the tightly stepped R1 gearbox on the way, it means digging vigorously in the gearbox, which is still not too smooth, in order to always have enough speed and the right gear ready . If both parameters are correct, the Fazer lives up to its R1 genes.

Still, there is no real joy when chasing corners. Because the driver striving for a clean line, the hard throttle response drives into the parade again and again. Serpentines, for example, can often only be mastered cleanly with the clutch and the aid of the footbrake because of the long first gear. In addition, the beautifully short but wide tank spreads the legs unduly wide, which together with the inconveniently placed notches is more tiring than stimulating in the long run. Too bad, the Fazer could be a prime country road burner. The concept is right. The taut chassis in connection with the superbly controllable and powerful brakes, these are very well the right ingredients for brisk gasoline.

Suzuki Bandit


All-round qualities right up to the price at the Bandit.

The bandit, on the other hand, appears rather obedient compared to the angularly styled Fazer, and turns out to be a real low-key. Acts inconspicuously, but follows the competitors effortlessly when it counts. In the lower speed range, the Bandit 1200 is more energetic than the Fazer 1000, in the upper speed regions it looks a bit livelier than the Honda 1300. And although the basically already aged Suzuki unit lets its vibrations trickle through the notches and handlebars most clearly despite the rubber-mounted suspension, it cuts a good figure in everyday life. A merit of the carburettor-equipped engine, which responds much more gently than the Yamaha four-wheeler and whose power output is much smoother. In addition, the gear pairs can be sorted precisely and with short distances.

In addition, the Suzuki does not have any major weaknesses in handling. The balance is right, as is the feedback. If your driver feels too comfortable and his speed too brisk, the more comfortable than tightly tuned suspension elements and the only limited sporty-precise Dunlop D 218 suggest moderation. Then the bandit shows its pilot with gentle movements in the landing gear and dwindling accuracy that she is most comfortable with touring pace despite her athletic genetic makeup. Especially since their ABS-reinforced brake system regulates finely and sensitively, but requires a firm hand for proper deceleration.

But if you are not on the last furrow, you can live with it, and at the end of the day you can even get off the Suzuki in a relaxed manner. Because it not only offers such fine things as the highest payload, the lowest consumption and thus the second largest range in comparison. But also an ergonomically excellent workplace, the best wind protection and ?? that unites Honda, Suzuki and Yamaha in the end? a comfortable pillion seat. Which hardly anyone would have thought of their sporty ancestors.

Conclusion and individual disciplines


Three competitors close together.

1st place
Honda CB 1300 S.

The Honda shows greatness in every way. It has simply succeeded, does not make a mistake anywhere and therefore wins by a clear margin.

2nd place
Suzuki Bandit 1200 S.

Convincing all-rounder qualities and above all the ABS secure second place for the Suzuki. The fact that she is also the cheapest of this trio rounds off the success.

3rd place
Yamaha FZ1 Fazer

YAMAHA FZ1 FAZER A powerful engine and first class brakes are not enough. The Fazer concept, which is great in itself, does not stand out because of weaknesses in engine tuning and power delivery.

landing gear

You can’t beat the tight-fitting Yamaha when it comes to well-developed slopes around the corner. But because it reacts sensitively to bumps, its lead over the well-balanced Honda remains small. The CB 1300 S lies almost stoically on the track at top speed, while the FZ1 runs the fastest, but its steering proves to be the most susceptible to unrest.


Tremendous acceleration alone is not enough. The Yamaha gambled away its performance advantage through the inharmonious power delivery, the inappropriately responsive behavior and the still somewhat bony gearbox. A further spread of the aisles would make more sense for everyday life. The massive Honda drive earned top marks in almost all criteria. He’s bursting with strength. That the Yamaha in particular accelerates better? given. The Bandit does not start work as spontaneously as the CB 1300 and Fazer, and you have to help with the choke during a cold start, as with the Honda.


Drivers of all sizes are in good hands on the Bandit. The Honda goes one better than that. The wide tank, which spreads the legs wide, costs the Yamaha points. The driver of the Bandit is best protected from the oncoming wind. Pleasing: All three offer a decent pillion seat.

everyday life

If you forgive the Yamaha for the sparse payload, this shortcoming in the stately Honda is a bit surprising. How it can be done better is shown by the Suzuki, which, in addition to being accompanied, can also cope with the large baggage. Their builders have only skimped on the equipment. But savings have to be made somewhere.


A real highlight of the Fazer are their brakes, which many a colleague from the sports group would be happy about. The Honda stoppers, which are also equipped with an excellently regulating ABS, are hardly less impressive. The Suzuki ABS is also quite sensitive, only the brakes are a bit dull. In return, the Bandit shines just like the Honda in the chapter on handlebars, where the Yamaha negotiates a hefty point deduction. If you can remedy this with a steering damper from the aftermarket, there is an anti-lock braking system for the Fazer neither for money nor for good words.

Costs / environment

The trio is close when it comes to consumption. Just over five liters on the country road are okay in view of the cubic capacity and the performance. The Suzuki makes up for the highest inspection costs with maintenance. It is also clearly superior in terms of price-performance ratio. Whereby it does not come up with the finesse in the details of the other two. Although they all get by on regular gasoline, the Yamaha is the only one that meets the Euro 3 standard. Amazing: The carburettor-equipped Suzuki achieves better emission values ​​than the Honda with its injection.

Performance chart

Size matters: The torque curve of the CB 1300, enthroned majestically above the others, impressively demonstrates the power of the displacement, while the FZ1 weakens especially in the everyday relevant range up to 5000 rpm. The Bandit’s performance curve strives straight up and not only achieves an impressive 108 hp, but also has almost its peak performance over a wide speed range. The performance curve of the Yamaha shows the noticeable bend upwards at around 7500 rpm and is suddenly cut off by the limiter at the maximum.

Technical data: Honda CB 1300 S

Water-cooled four-cylinder four-stroke in-line engine, two overhead, chain-driven camshafts, four valves per cylinder, bucket tappets, wet sump lubrication, injection, Ø 36 mm, uncontrolled catalytic converter with secondary air system, 420 W alternator, 12V / 11Ah battery, hydraulically operated multi-disc oil bath clutch, Five-speed gearbox, O-ring chain.
Bore x stroke 78.0 x 67.2 mm
Cubic capacity 1284 cm3
Compression ratio 9.6: 1

Nominal output 85.0 kW (116 hp) at 7000 rpm

Max. Torque 117 Nm at 6000 rpm
Pollutant values ​​(homologation) in g / km
Euro 2 CO 2.578 / HC 0.640 / NOx 0.164

landing gear
Double loop frame made of steel, telescopic fork, Ø 43 mm, adjustable spring base and rebound damping, two-arm swing arm made of aluminum, two spring struts, adjustable spring base and rebound damping, double disc brake at the front, Ø 310 mm, four-piston fixed calipers, disc brake at the rear, Ø 256 mm, single-piston floating caliper, ABS.

Cast aluminum wheels 3.50 x 17; 5.50 x 17
Tires 120/70 ZR 17; 180/55 ZR 17
Tires in the test Dunlop D 220 »K«
mass and weight
Wheelbase 1515 mm, steering head angle 65.0 degrees, caster 99 mm, spring travel f / h 120 /
116 mm, weight with full tank * 266 kg, to-
load * 186 kg, tank capacity / reserve 21.0 / 4.5 liters.

Two year guarantee

Service intervals every 6000 km

Colors red / white, black

Price1 10990 euros

Additional costs 180 euros

Technical data: Yamaha FZ1 Fazer

Water-cooled four-cylinder four-stroke in-line engine, two overhead, chain-driven camshafts, five valves per cylinder, bucket tappets, wet sump lubrication, injection, Ø 42 mm, regulated catalytic converter, 560 W alternator, 12V / 9Ah battery, mechanically operated multi-plate oil bath clutch, six-speed gearbox, O-ring chain.
Bore x stroke 77.0 x 53.6 mm
Displacement 998 cm3
Compression ratio 11.5: 1

rated capacity
110.3 kW (150 PS) at 11,000 rpm

Max. Torque 106 Nm at 8000 rpm
Pollutant values ​​(homologation) in g / km
Euro 3 CO 0.460 / HC 0.123 / NOx 0.067

landing gear
Bridge frame made of aluminum, upside-down fork, Ø 43 mm, adjustable spring base, rebound and compression damping, two-arm swing arm made of aluminum, central spring strut with lever system, front disc brake, Ø 320 mm, four-piston fixed calipers, rear disc brake, Ø 245 mm, single-piston Floating saddle.
Cast aluminum wheels 3.50 x 17; 6.00 x 17
Tires 120/70 ZR 17; 190/50 ZR 17
Tires in the test
Michelin Pilot Road “S”, “D”
mass and weight
Wheelbase 1460 mm, steering head angle 65.0 degrees, caster 109 mm, spring travel f / h 130 /
130 mm, seat height * 800 mm, weight with a full tank * 222 kg, load * 188 kg, tank capacity / reserve 18.0 / 3.4 liters.

Two year guarantee

Service intervals every 10000 km

Colors silver, red, dark blue

Price 10420 euros

Additional costs 175 euros

Technical data: Suzuki Bandit 1200 S

Air / oil-cooled four-cylinder four-stroke in-line engine, two overhead, chain-driven camshafts, four valves per cylinder, rocker arm, wet sump lubrication, constant pressure carburetor, Ø 36 mm, uncontrolled catalytic converter with secondary air system, 475 W alternator, battery 12V / 10Ah, hydraulically operated Multi-disc oil bath clutch, five-speed gearbox, O-ring chain.
Bore x stroke 79.0 x 59.0 mm
Cubic capacity 1157 cm3
Compression ratio 9.5: 1

Rated output 72.0 kW (98 PS) at 8500 rpm

Max. Torque 92 Nm at 6500 rpm
Pollutant values ​​(homologation) in g / km
Euro 2 CO 0.960 / HC 0.440 / NOx 0.160

landing gear
Double loop frame made of steel, telescopic fork, Ø 43 mm, adjustable spring base, two-arm swing arm made of aluminum, central spring strut with lever system, adjustable spring base and rebound damping, double disc brake at the front, Ø 310 mm, four-piston fixed calipers, disc brake at the rear, Ø 240 mm, two-piston fixed caliper, ABS.

Cast aluminum wheels 3.50 x 17; 5.50 x 17
Tires 120/70 ZR 17; 180/55 ZR 17
Tires in the test Dunlop D 218 »N«
mass and weight
Wheelbase 1480 mm, steering head angle 64.4 degrees, caster 104 mm, spring travel f / h 130 /
136 mm, seat height * 800 – 820 mm, weight with a full tank * 243 kg, payload * 212 kg, tank capacity 20.0 liters.

Two year guarantee

Service intervals every 6000 km

Colors blue, red, black, dark gray / red

Price 8150 euros

Additional costs 130 euros

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