Youngtimer test: Suzuki DR Big 800 S
Suzuki’s affordable travel enduro
He is also known as Doctor Big, the world’s largest single-cylinder series production. Is the travel giant only suitable for medical professionals or is Otto Normal allowed to play around the world??
L.just ate treat yourself! my doctor orders me and diagnoses acute travel fever. He hands me a referral slip to the specialist Dr. Big. However, she is not a doctor, but the largest series single cylinder in the world. From a fat 779 cubic centimeters, this rustic single drums 50 hp and delivers a torque plateau of around 60 Newton meters from 3000 rpm to almost 6000 rpm. Thanks to two balance shafts, there are not even any annoying vibrations to complain about. The Suzuki is also very big in other respects: 86 centimeters of seat height want to be climbed first, 222 kilograms of Enduro have to be balanced. However, its dimensions make it sovereign. This applies to the excellent overview from the Big Throne as well as the (especially nowadays) decent payload of 203 kilograms. Full suitcases, luggage roll plus pillion passenger: not an issue. Thanks to the long suspension travel, the Suzi glides like a sedan chair over potholes and bumps, and hard hits are immediately absorbed at the front and rear.
In two-person operation, the shock absorber should be further pre-tensioned, otherwise it can easily bottom out. Disadvantages of the comfort chassis: There is no direct contact with the road, and when braking, the front plunges deeply, the driver slides forward on the seat. Speaking of brakes: With moderate hand strength, they are easy to dose and have a good effect. The space available for the pillion is also decent, the seating comfort for the driver is not – the bench presses tremendously against the rump. So put your feet in the pegs and head off into the terrain? Goes better with the monster than expected, which is mainly due to the soft performance of the single. If you like to turn the throttle, you can expect up to nine liters of fuel per 100 kilometers. And the health insurance does not pay for it.
- High payload
- The passenger sits comfortably
- Good driving performance
- Decent brakes
- Stable, comfortable chassis
- Engine with plenty of steam
- Really big tank
- Pretty thirsty
- Airy seat height
- Moderate paint quality
- Rust-prone exhaust
- Design takes getting used to
According to today’s design criteria, the DR Big 800 S looks less strange than at the beginning of the 1990s.
Single cylinder four-stroke engine
Displacement 779 cm³
Power transmission five-speed gearbox / chain
Output 37 kW (50 hp) at 6600 rpm
Max. Torque 59 Nm at 5400 rpm
Front brake disc (Ø 300 mm)
Rear brake disc (Ø 250 mm)
Front tires 90 / 90-21 54 S.
Rear tire 130 / 80-17 65 S.
Suspension travel front / rear 240/220 mm
Tank capacity 24 liters, normal
Colors blue / white, red / white
Maintenance intervals 6000 km
Price: 5046 euros including additional costs
The measured values:
Top speed 163 km / h
Acceleration 0-100 km / h 5.8 sec
Pulling speed 60-140 km / h 17.7 sec
Weight with a full tank 222 kg
Payload 203 kg
Consumption on the highway 6.4 l / 100 km
Turning around the corner and traveling as a couple? The Suzuki Enduro does both without complaint.
In the city:
In terms of ergonomic aspects, the Enduro also scores in the city: The high seating position guarantees a perfect view of the sheet metal bodies in rush hour traffic, and the lush spring travel takes away the horror of curbs. Only the size of the big Suzuki should always be kept in mind.
On the country road:
Here the single is particularly fun, as he lets himself slip out of the curves when he is lazy to change gear. The chassis digests everything between the pothole and the meteorite crater, but the direct contact with the road suffers as a result. When braking hard, the telescopic fork dips deeply – it takes a lot of getting used to.
On the highway:
As a travel enduro, it is also at home on the train. From model year 1991, your wind protection is even enough for tall guys, the top speed of 160 km / h is okay. However, the big single-cylinder then approves up to nine liters per 100 kilometers. The large fuel drum still makes long stages possible.
He is a fine fellow, the giant single goes to work with pressure and low vibrations – and on top of that, he is stable. Only the consumption is very high.
4 out of 5 stars
Like a litter. However, the high level of suspension comfort dilutes the contact with the road surface, and the shock absorber tends to bottom out when the passenger is riding.
3 out of 5 stars
The single disc at the front decelerates surprisingly well. With little hand strength and good controllability you can make the front wheel whistle.
3 out of 5 stars
Top: standard luggage rack, engine protection and hand protectors. Flop: high susceptibility to rust in the exhaust system and poor paint quality.
3 out of 5 stars
The chassis is completely dedicated to comfort. The pillion sits perfectly, the seat is less comfortable for the driver.
4 out of 5 stars
Suitable for beginners:
The good-naturedness of the DR Big does not make up for the shortcomings for beginners: too high, suspension takes getting used to – better buy something else.
2 out of 5 stars
Comparison test: travel enduro bikes in Sweden
Test: travel enduros on the way to the North Cape (part 2)
The Suzuki DR Big 750 S from 1988.
The first model from 1988 was called the DR Big 750 S. From its 727 cm³ displacement, the single drew a solid 50 hp. The price of 8990 marks was sensationally cheap, but the two-part 29-liter tank and the duck’s bill took too much getting used to for many. Likewise, the cumbersome starting procedure with pulling the clutch, deco lever and choke search on the carburetor. More cheerful colors came in 1989, as well as disc brakes instead of drum brakes at the rear and five kilograms more weight. The model from 1990 weighed 214 kilograms, the displacement grew to 779 cm³. The Suzuki, now known as the DR Big 800 S, has been further revised: new indicator switch, choke on the handlebar, lower seat and eleven kilograms higher payload. From 1991 the DR has two silencers and fork tubes with a diameter of 43 instead of 41 millimeters, and the windshield is three centimeters higher. The new 24-liter tank with a recessed tank cap is now one-piece and starting is much easier thanks to the automatic decompression system.
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