Test: Tuning Thousands 2011
New, tuned super sports car for the price of a production motorcycle
A new, tuned thousand for the price of a production motorcycle. That does not exist? But – PS shows the way to your very personal, tuned super sports car at no extra cost.
The situation couldn’t be better.
PS contacted the established brand dealers Honda Wellbrock in Lilienthal, Suzuki Hertrampf in Nordhorn and Yamaha Klein in Dillingen / Saar and confronted them with the following task: Build us a superbike without the weaknesses criticized by PS at the list price of a new vehicle from the 2011 model year and provide it available to us for a test.
In addition, PS insisted on two further conditions in order to make the story understandable for you, dear readers. On the one hand, we demanded a transparent breakdown of costs, and on the other hand, the bikes should be available to everyone at the price given here. All three tuners provided the cost statement immediately.
Tuning against series: Honda Fireblade.
Bamm, bamm, bamm – knocking on heavens door! The Wellbrock Fireblade is pounded from left to right and back to left through the maze of curves. As if you were driving a big nail with fat blows into soft wood, the superbike moves exactly as it should – it doesn’t wobble or fidget. Fits well, turns precisely and lightly and follows exactly the line requested by the pilot. There is no upset moment on the brakes, no crumpling of the hindquarters when accelerating out and turning over in an inclined position is much easier than on the production motorcycle. Bamm, bamm, bamm! Hossa, you can live very well on a blade like this in the northern Black Forest and hold the tough co-testers Ron Hämmer and Mr. Nail, both extremely experienced highway burners, in the rearview mirror.
At Honda Wellbrock’s & Co for PS tuned Fireblade is a 2010 model with daily registration. A look at the speedometer reveals that this motorcycle may have been registered once, but never rode a meter. And this fine device without the ten kilogram C-ABS costs exactly 3300 euros less than the official list price of an identical 2011 model (see "The invoice" further down). So why buy a 2011 bike when you can get a 2010 model for the same money that drives much better and is also a new vehicle with a full warranty?
Right, there is no need to do anything like that. Especially not when the tuned motorcycle has such good manners. You have to do without the one shown in the photos "RC 30 anniversary decor", which strikes with an extra 1290 euros. But back to the blade. PS has been complaining about a few small things since the SC59 was released and made it the tuner’s task to eliminate these deficiencies. The biggest shortcoming of the series SC59 is the spring preload of the shock absorber, which cannot be achieved with either money or good words. Then there is the too hard throttle response and the rear tire with a 50 mm cross-section that does not really promote handling. The one that was criticized in racetrack tests because the gear indicator was missing is not absolutely necessary on the country road, which is why an accessory indicator was dispensed with.
The new, super sporty character of the Wellbrock Blade is rooted in the sum of all tuning measures. The LeoVince complete system with EG-ABE is not only a nice gimmick, it also perfectly reflects the racetrack orientation of the Wellbrock Fireblade. Thanks to Power Commander, the injection system was not only perfectly matched to the air filter and exhaust, but at the same time the response was improved by classes. In addition, a second mapping that can be activated using a toggle switch is now available for using the motorcycle without a dB killer.
The changes to the chassis are also a hit. The revised fork is responsive, offers a large adjustment range and powerful reserves. The hindquarters, however, are very tight when it comes to the overall damping. An advantage for occasional use on the racetrack, but not very comfortable on uneven country roads, as it hardens when driving over hard edges and passes the blows on to the pilot’s back. The 190/55 rear tire fitted with better self-damping does not help either. On the other hand, the Dunlop GP Racer D 211 set up for the test impresses with its high steering precision, especially when it comes to handling. It gives the Fireblade wings as only a sporty tire can and puts the icing on the cake for the tuning blade. Well done, Wellbrock & Co, this blade is great.
The complete system saves weight, a second mapping is available for use without a dB killer.
Four-cylinder in-line engine, 4 valves / cylinder, 131 kW (178 PS) at 11,200 / min *, 112 Nm at 8500 / min *, 1000 cm3, bore / stroke: 76.0 / 55.1 mm, compression: 12, 3: 1, ignition / injection system, 46 mm throttle valves, mechanically operated multi-disc oil bath anti-hopping clutch, six-speed gearbox, chain
Light alloy bridge frame, steering head angle: 66.8 degrees, caster: 96 mm, wheelbase: 1410 mm, inner fork tube diameter: 43 mm, spring travel from / h .: 120/135 mm
Wheels and brakes
Light alloy cast wheels, 3.50 x 17 “/ 6.00 x 17”, front tires: 120/70 ZR 17, rear: 190/55 ZR 17, 320 mm double disc brake with four-piston fixed calipers at the front, 220 mm single disc with single-piston Floating saddle at the back
Weight (full tank) 198 kg *
Tank capacity: 17.7 liters of super
Base price 15,157 euros
Honda Wellbrock & Co.
At Neuer Damm 20, 28865 Lilienthal,
Tel .: 0 42 98/46 55 90, www.wellbrock.com
List price model 2011 15 290 euros
House price model 2010 11,990 euros
Tuning budget / measures: 3167 euros
Power Commander V incl. Installation and
Adjustment to the exhaust system 349 euros
Tuning air filter 89 euros
LeoVince Evolution 2 Carbon 1509 euros
Fork conversion 650 euros
Suspension strut conversion 570 euros
190/55 ZR 17 tires in exchange for originals
Of course, it’s tempting to save around 3100 euros on a Fireblade. But only as long as you haven’t driven a tuned one for this amount. Apart from the somewhat too tight tuning of the shock absorber, the Wellbrock-Blade is the significantly better motorcycle with a stronger character. And therefore worth every euro not saved.
Tuning against series: Suzuki GSX-R 1000.
It’s raining! Three-lane motorway to the test track, a red Porsche with a huge rear wing pushes between us. Now the rainwater is rushing towards me like a regiment of firefighters with large ones "A."-Pipes. A gap opens up. Quickly back to second gear. With the soggy gloves on, I slide off the clutch a little rough and with a jolt at 9000 rpm, the connection between Bridgestone tires and wet asphalt breaks. Suddenly the GSX-R is under steam and the rear wheel drifts first to the left, then to the right. Yeah, a purist bike without electronic fun-killer! The Suzi can be held in the slip area and with repeated thrusts in the rather unfamiliar driving situation. Suddenly I am no longer cold, all feelers are live. Due to the increased temperature of the rapidly rotating rear tire, it grips and the front wheel takes off. In a wheelie past the Porsche – in the wet!
Thanks to Hertrampf’s Gixxer conversion, this extreme situation can be easily mastered. Not that that just left me indifferent. But his interpretation of the PS project “Better performance for the same money” is noticeable.
Externally, the Kilo-Gixxe is now significantly slimmer. With just one BOS muffler, the Suzuki looks sportier and, on top of that, you save a whopping seven kilograms. Otherwise only the pillion seat cover is noticeable. Is that it? No, Hertrampf only understood that we didn’t want any optical frills, and cleverly put the money saved into hiding.
The mapping on the Suzuki control unit was visited. This 1000cc comes out of the lower rev range much more robust, pulls up more freely and faster and puts another 300 rpm on top – and that even in every gear. Improved in this way, it is also possible to drive with less gearshifting, which brings clear plus points in flowing traffic or during short overtaking maneuvers. The exhaust is very loud despite the dB-Eater and EG-ABE!
With a few tweaks to the original brake calipers and other brake pads, the front brake, which PS has repeatedly criticized, is much sportier. The pressure point on committed road chase also remains constant. Clean, which is particularly evident in the comparison with the production motorcycle, which underlines our criticisms of the brakes.
But the mega-hammer on Hertrampf’s optimized GSX-R 1000 is the chassis, because our test track does not master all tuning chassis so easily. The series Suzi definitely not. If the fork on the original GSX hardly responds or not at all, this is now history at the Suzi-Prügel from Nordhorn. Even the smallest waves are swallowed. It’s not too soft, although it sometimes feels that way. In fact, the redesigned big piston fork now has a very successful progression and enough reserves not to hit even with hard braking waves. This fork gives the driver the front wheel almost directly – a stunner. You can finally ride the Suzi sportily over the front wheel.
In contrast to the effort on the fork, Hertrampf only increased the spring preload on the shock absorber and fine-tuned the damper. This in conjunction with the ten millimeter higher fork works brilliantly. The chassis tuning gives the GSX-R 1000 a noticeably improved handling for everyone. The machine follows every steering impulse precisely. Unfortunately, we always had to blame the series for exactly the opposite. Tip for the series shock absorber: rebound and low-speed compression each 1.5 turns from full to open. Handling can be further improved with the higher 190/55 tires. However, the performance of the revised 1000cc Suzuki will remain unattainable even with these little tricks.
The BOS silencer, which is very loud despite the EG-ABE, saves seven kilograms.
Four-cylinder in-line engine, 4 valves / cylinder, 136 kW (185 PS) at 12,000 / min *, 117 Nm at 10,000 / min *, 999 cm3, bore / stroke: 74.5 / 57.3 mm, compression: 12 , 5: 1, ignition / injection system, 44 mm throttle valves, mechanically operated multi-disc oil bath anti-hopping clutch, six-speed gearbox, chain
Light alloy central tube frame, steering head angle: 66.5 degrees, caster: 98 mm, wheelbase: 1405 mm, inner fork tube diameter: 43 mm, spring travel v./h .: 125/130 mm
Wheels and brakes
Light alloy cast wheels, 3.50 x 17 “/ 6.00 x 17”, front tires: 120/70 ZR 17, rear: 190/50 ZR 17, 310 mm double disc brake with two-piston fixed calipers at the front, 220 mm single disc with single-piston Floating saddle at the back
Weight (full tank) 201 kg *
Tank capacity: 17.5 liters of super
price 14 189 euros
Sachsen Strasse 5, 48529 Nordhorn
Tel .: 0 59 21/3 77 78, www.suzukiplus.de
List price 2011 14 190 euros
House price (including discounts) 12 455 euros
Tuning budget / measures 1734 euros
Fork conversion including assembly 898 euros
BOS 4-1 muffler including assembly 578 euros
ECU tuning and performance measurements 258 euros
Lucas SRQ brake pads in exchange
Task solved superbly! So you should strike and forego the discount without regrets! The revised Suzi reacts calmly to sporty country road attacks and lies playfully in the hand. Amazing, because the former pole setter is getting on in years and is no longer up to date. The Hertrampf-Gixxe is a little miracle.
Tuning against series: Yamaha YZF-R1.
As if pulled on a string, the small R1 follows its front wheel. The fork reports the road conditions to the synapses of the pilot in a dreamlike crisp manner, and despite the heavy bumps in the road it burns undeterred through one curve after the other. "This is what the front wheel of a motorcycle should feel like – unadulterated, clear, crisp", enthuses Mr. Nail, alias Mike Nägele, employee of an independent two-wheeler test institute and accomplished highway driver. The lively Swabian, himself a driver of an original R1 (RN04), knows what he’s talking about. And thus underlines the competence of Dominik Klein, who carried out the fork conversion of the YZF-R1 he upgraded himself. However, Nägele is the lightest in the test quartet and a fearless man who has mastered the soft, brisk driving style close to perfection. Heavier pilots like Ron Hämmer, aka PS stunt and test driver Jo Bauer, fear brakes like the author, or PS tester Volkmar Jacob, on the other hand, place a little harder strain on the fork at the entrance to the curve and force it to block again and again. And that although it has been lengthened by nine millimeters. After consulting Tuner Klein, reducing the large air cushion would create more reserves. But basically, and the test drive with the standard Yamaha proves, the fork of the small R1 works with exemplary sensitivity and finally generates what the standard fork lacks: a transparent front wheel feel.
Klein also spiced up the criticized, rather blunt front brake with SBS brake pads. It now bites into the discs powerfully and with a linear delay, which greatly benefits its controllability and, in conjunction with the fork, lets you turn with confidence at the entrance to the curve. However, on very bumpy stretches, the pilot has to be tough because, similar to the Wellbrock Fireblade, Klein chose a very tight basic setting on the shock absorber. Above all, hard edges nail right into the seat cushion, which hardly changes even with the high-speed pressure stage fully open. But streets of the third and fourth order are not the preferred neighborhood for super sports enthusiasts anyway. Your territory is the fast curves of well-developed country roads. And there the small R1 shines with a good roadholding, wonderful neutrality and a very special kick for a Yamaha: an automatic gearshift.
In its tuning budget of 2800 euros, the Dillingen dealer found space for this fun accessory that doesn’t make you faster on the country road, but significantly increases driving pleasure.
If the production and tuning Yamaha fly across the country at the same time, it is noticeable that riding the production bike is more strenuous. While the souped-up Yam simply bends, goes stress-free into even the deepest lean and relaxes and massages the rear tire into the asphalt from the apex with fat power, the line on the series R has to be corrected. Both on the brakes and when accelerating, the pilot lacks confidence. Which not only has to be blamed on the softer and spongier chassis, but also partly on the cap of the mounted Michelin Power Pure. In terms of neutrality, this is not on the level of the Michelin Pilot Power 2CT mounted on the small Yamaha and thus creates a small barrier in the driver’s head.
What is stuck after the test drive? That the R1, type RN22, is a very good country road motorcycle – especially when a little hand is put on. In addition, it beguiles with its snotty sound, which is made even more robust by the slip-on silencers.
It should also be mentioned that the eye-catching decoration set of the test motorcycle is not included in the tuning budget. That should please everyone who can do without trendy war paint and who pay attention to inner values.
The small R1 is a finely groomed motorcycle. Your stern is slimmer thanks to the slip-on pots.
Four-cylinder in-line engine, 4 valves / cylinder, 134 kW (182 PS) at 12,500 / min *, 116 Nm at 10,000 / min *, 998 cm3, bore / stroke: 78.0 / 52.2 mm, compression: 12 , 7: 1, ignition / injection system, 45 mm throttle valves, mechanically operated multi-disc oil bath anti-hopping clutch, six-speed gearbox, chain
Light alloy bridge frame, steering head angle: 66.0 degrees, caster: 102 mm, wheelbase: 1415 mm, inner fork tube Ø: 43 mm, spring travel from / h .: 120/120 mm
Wheels and brakes
Light alloy cast wheels, 3.50 x 17 “/ 6.00 x 17”, front tires: 120/70 ZR 17, rear: 190/55 ZR 17, 310 mm double disc brake with four-piston fixed calipers at the front, 220 mm single disc with single-piston Floating saddle at the back
Weight (full tank) 210 kg *
Tank capacity: 18.0 liters of super
Base price 15 790 euros
Motorrad Klein GmbH
Pachtener Strasse 32, 66763 Dillingen
Tel .: 0 68 31/7 31 40, www.yamaha-klein.de
List price model 2011 15 790 euros
House price model 2010 12,990 euros
Tuning budget / measures: 2800 euros
Fork conversion stage 3+ 650 euros
Suspension strut conversion including spring 350 euros
Slip-on silencer Laser 800 euros
Tellert automatic switchgear 649 euros
SBS brake pads 120 euros
De-& Assembly work: 231 euros
Even Yamaha Klein has really spiced up the YZF-R1. The complaint about the setup should not be overrated, because the revision basically extends the range of uses of the R1 towards very sporty driving. The Ypse has become a very fast, trust-inspiring country road hunter who is a lot of fun.
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