Youngtimer test: Suzuki GS 500 E.


Youngtimer test: Suzuki GS 500 E.

Youngtimer test: Suzuki GS 500 E.

Certificate of completion Suzuki GS 500 E

Smiled at as the baby of the family, the petite 500 is often underestimated: The GS is a small youngtimer, but mighty.

Always being called nice can get on your nerves at some point. Especially since nice is often used synonymously with harmless, boring and unattractive, but is not even meant bad. There is often much more to it than that "nice" Object than you might think – like the GS 500 E. The dainty, beautifully made bike with the silver steel frame that looks like an aluminum bridge frame is more than just an unpretentious beginner’s motorcycle. In 1989, when it came onto the market, anyway, because 46 hp was the official output for a mid-range bike with 500 cc. Even today, the GS is able to convey a lot of driving pleasure even to experienced bikers. The two-cylinder pulls up cleanly and evenly, sufficiently powerfully from low speeds and provides decent driving performance. On winding country roads, it is not so much a matter of exhausting the maximum performance, rather the Suzi shows off its enormous handiness here. The relatively low weight, the narrow tires and the gathered, sporty, but relaxed sitting posture make sharpening corners a casual pleasure.

However, the seat got really hard and you shouldn’t expect wind protection – so the 500 is not an ideal travel tourer. The suspension elements are overwhelmed by the passenger and / or luggage at the latest. Even on solo rides, the fork that is too soft can occasionally bottom out when braking hard, and the rear of the vehicle rocks on bumps because of the underdamped strut. However, there is no lack of stability as long as the road surface is level. Full throttle with almost 180 km / h straight ahead or curve dancing until the driver becomes dizzy – the GS does almost everything without complaint and is even very frugal when it comes to fuel consumption. The Suzi saved in terms of equipment, but the lively nude was already available for little money, and used it is even more affordable.

Brief judgment / data


The single disc makes its thing surprisingly convincing. Good effects and precise dosing instill confidence.

● Lively engine
● Low consumption
● Petite and handy, playful to drive
● Easy to throttle to 34 hp
● Decent brakes
● Very cheap as used

● Partly poor processing
● Moderate spring elements
● Mickily padded, hard bench
● Barren cockpit


Engine: two-cylinder four-stroke / in-line
Displacement: 487 cm³
Power transmission: six-speed gearbox / chain
Output: 34 kW (46 hp) at 9200 rpm
Max. Torque: 39 Nm at 7800 rpm
Front brake: disc (Ø 310 mm)
Rear brake: disc (Ø 250 mm)
Front tires: 110/70 H 17
Rear tire: 130/70 H 17
Suspension travel front / rear: 120/115 mm
Tank capacity: 17 liters, normal
Colors: purple, red, black
Maintenance intervals: 6000 km
Price: 3666 euros (new price 1993)


Top speed *: 177 km / h
Acceleration 0-100 km / h: 5.4 sec
Pulling speed 60−140 km / h: 17.4 sec
Weight with a full tank: 197 kg
Payload: 193 kg
Consumption on country road: 4.4 l / 100 km

The competition


The competition

Honda CB 500:

Comfortable, solid, mature and powerfully motorized with a 58 hp two-cylinder. Chassis and brakes are high quality.
Price: 4735 euros (1993)

Kawasaki Zephyr 550:

The pretty Kawa shines with easy-revving, but low-torque four-cylinder and good brakes. Schlapp: the chassis.
Price: 5179 euros (1993)

Yamaha XJ 600 N:

A smooth engine and a more comfortable than sporty chassis characterize the XJ, which tends to be drunk when driven quickly.
Price: 4903 euros (1993)



In the simple cockpit with the delicate dials and a few lights, there is little to see.

Thoroughly revised: In 2001 the GS 500 E was given a facelift. The changes: larger tank, larger front disc brake, seat, rear fairing, instruments and handlebars. Finally a firmer suspension.

With full fairing and oil cooler, the GS 500 F saw the light of day in the world of two-wheelers. The revised, now tighter suspension setup goes well with the sportier outfit. At 4780 euros, the F was 300 euros above the GS 500 E..

In the city


The muffler has a sporty silver coating. The system is susceptible to rust.

The low, very narrow bench allows even very small people in the saddle to have safe contact with the ground. The Suzi is light and agile, it proves to be an uncomplicated city runabout. Its 46 hp are sufficient for a brisk traffic light start, and the GS can be safely parked on the standard main stand.

On the country road:

Less than 200 kilograms in weight, the narrow tires (110 front, 130 rear) and their petite dimensions make the GS incredibly easy to handle. The clutch and transmission work smoothly, the two-cylinder enables decent driving performance. A great country road runabout

On the highway:

With a top speed of 177 km / h, the 500 does not have to hide, but offers no wind protection and little comfort on its hard bench. The chassis can hardly be disturbed, and with the 17-liter tank, thanks to the low fuel consumption, long stages are possible without refueling.

Certificate of completion of the Suzuki GS 500 E


The brake lever is adjustable. This way, drivers with small hands can also get their hands on it.

The undemanding two-cylinder offers decent performance even at low speeds, hardly vibrates and consumes little fuel.

4 out of 5 points

landing gear
The GS with its solid steel frame is not lacking in stability, but the fork and shock absorber look inharmonious. Accessories bring improvement.

3 out of 5 points

Suzi has a better grip on the single pane in front than you might think. There is nothing to complain about the good effect and dosage.

4 out of 5 points

The main stand and adjustable brake lever are praiseworthy, but now almost a matter of course. There isn’t much else worth mentioning to it.

2 out of 5 points

Hard seat, no wind protection, fork that is too soft and quick to break through – the GS doesn’t get a lot of praise here, but is tolerable in everyday life.

3 out of 5 points

Suitable for beginners
An entry-level bike can hardly be much handier, more uncomplicated and easier to control. Little Suzi is made for novice drivers

5 out of 5 points

Offers for naked bikes from the early 90s

Used 1990s naked bikes in Germany

There are even more naked bikes from the first half of the 1990s on the used motorcycle exchange. There are many 90s motorcycles in top condition and at reasonable prices: Used 1990s naked bikes in Germany

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