Suzuki Bandit series

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Suzuki GSF Series
Bandit 1200.jpg
Suzuki Bandit GSF1200S
Manufacturer Suzuki
Also called Bandit
Production since 1991
Predecessor Suzuki GS series
Class Standard
Engine Transverse inline four

The Suzuki Bandit is a series of sport-standard motorcycles comprising the following models:

  • GSF250, 250 cc (1989-1994)
  • GSF400, 400 cc (1989-2000)
  • GSF600, 599 cc (1995-2004)
  • GSF650, 656 cc (2005-)
  • GSF750, 748 cc (1996-1999)
  • GSF1200, 1,157 cc (1996-2007)
  • GSF1250, 1,255 cc (2007-)

All models have DOHC inline four cylinder engines with 4 valves per cylinder. The 250cc and 400 cc models are water-cooled. 600cc, 650cc, 750cc, and 1,200cc models employ SACS (Suzuki Advanced Cooling System) which uses air-cooling and oil-cooling. The 600 cc model's engine is taken from the GSX-F 600, re-tuned for more mid-range torque. The 1,200 cc model's engine is a bored out version of the GSXR 1100 engine. The 1,250cc models use a new fuel-injected, liquid-cooled engine with a balance shaft to reduce vibrations. In some markets, including the UK, Suzuki have dropped the 'Bandit' name for the GSX1250 models. Both 650cc and 1,250cc models now meet Euro3 emission standards.

'S' versions have a half-fairing, and starting from model year 2000, they also have dual headlights. 'N' versions are unfaired naked bike with a single headlight. The availability of the 'S' and 'N' versions varies with country and model year.

The Bandit series earned a reputation as "hooligan bikes".[1] With more recent revisions, however, the bike has taken on a more streamlined and modern feel, taking it more towards sports tourer territory.[2] The 1200 remains popular with stunt riders,[citation needed] and is used by a wheelie school in the UK.[3]


Launched in 1989, the GSF250 has a liquid-cooled, inline four cylinder engine mounted in steel trellis frame. The engine is based on the GSX-R250 engine. The 250cc engine produces 45 bhp (34 kW). The Bandit 250 has double front disk brakes and single rear disk brakes. 'Limited' versions have a top fairing. 'V' versions have variable inlet timing.

GSF250 models[edit]

1995 Suzuki GSF250v - variable valve timing model.
  • GSF250 (from December 1989)
  • GSF250 45 hp (34 kW) (from April 1990)
  • GSF250ZM ("LIMITED" edition) (from May 1991)
  • GSF250P (from September 1992)
  • GSF250NP (from October 1992)
  • GSF250ZP ("LIMITED" edition) (from May 1993)
  • GSF250R and GSF250NR (from October 1993) [4]
  • GSF250V (1995)
  • GSF250V (2000)


Launched in 1989, the GSF400 has a liquid-cooled, inline-four cylinder engine mounted in steel trellis frame. The engine is based on the GSX-R400 engine. The engine produces 59 bhp (44 kW), reduced to 53 bhp (40 kW) from 1992 onwards. The GSX400 has double front disk brakes and single rear disk brakes. 'Limited' versions have a top fairing. 'V' versions have variable inlet timing.

GSF400 models[edit]

1991 Suzuki GSF400
  • GSF400K (from August 1989)
  • GSF400NK (from June 1992)
  • GSF400-Z (SUZUKI 70th Anniversary "LIMITED" edition) (from November 1990)
  • GSF400M - naked, standard engine (1991)
  • GSF400ZM Limited - Retro cafe fairing, standard engine (1991)
  • GSF400VM (VC Engine model) (from June 1991)
  • GSF400VZM (VC Engine Limited - Retro cafe fairing model) (from August 1991)
  • GSF400VP (VC Engine model) (from October 1992)
  • GSF400P (Normal engine model) (from November 1992)
  • GSF400NP (from November 1992)
  • GSF400VZP (VC Engine Limited model) (from May 1993)
  • GSF400VR (VC Engine model) (from November 1993)
  • GSF400S (Normal Engine model) (from January 1995)
  • GSF400VS (VC Engine model) (from January 1995)
  • GSF400V-V (VC Engine model) (from February 1997)
  • GSF400VZ-V (VC Engine "VZ" model) (from February 1997) [5]



The naked GSF600 N Bandit was released in February. It was based on the styling of the pre-existing GSF400 Bandit, with a retuned engine from the GSX600. The 600 Bandits came with a 15 tooth front sprocket and 48 tooth rear sprocket connected by a 530V 110 link chain.

1996 Suzuki Bandit N in red


The faired Bandit S model was introduced, where the bikini half-fairing had its debut.


Minor changes: A clutch switch (requiring the clutch to be pulled in when starting the motorcycle, for safety reasons) and carburettor heaters.


The N model had passenger grab rails added. However, the S model had no changes.


Debut of a new rear shock absorber, providing rebound as well as preload adjustment.


The first major changes were made this year.

  • New rear bodywork.
  • Fully electronic instrumentation.
  • New carburettors with throttle position sensor.
  • Additional fuel filter.
  • Nissin brake callipers.
  • 20 litres (4.4 imp gal; 5.3 US gal) fuel tank (up from 19).
  • Improvements to frame and steering geometry.
  • Seat height lowered.
  • S model: New modern styled half fairing, with twin headlights.


No significant changes.


Fuel gauge now as standard.


No significant changes.



The last of the air/oil cooled Suzuki Bandit 650s.

The all new Suzuki Bandit 650 and half faired Bandit 650S launch took place at Tarragona, Spain.

  • Engine displacement increased by 56 cc to improve low- and mid-range performance
  • Seat and Handlebar adjustable for height
  • New engine internals provide for reduced friction, together with smoother performance and increased power
  • Revised four-into-two exhaust system
  • Reshaped fuel tank
  • New halogen headlight
  • New LCD digital display combining speedometer, odometer, tripmeter, fuel gauge and clock
  • Increased rigidity within chassis and upgraded suspension
  • Overall weight reduced
  • ABS available as an option
  • Speedometer/odometer switchable between Metric and Imperial
  • Suzuki PAIR (Pulsed AIR) exhaust air injection system


No significant changes.


Current generation Bandit 650S

A completely new, water-cooled motor was designed specifically for the 2007 Bandit 650, unlike earlier models which used engines re-worked from other models.[6] Most of chassis and the bodywork kept unchanged from the 2005 model, though.

  • Meets Euro3 emission standards
  • 656 cc displacement, inline-four all-aluminium liquid-cooled engine
  • Electronic Fuel Injection with dual throttle valve system (similar to Suzuki's GSX-R and V-Strom)
  • 10% stiffer frame and longer swingarm
  • Stiffer rear shock but softer front fork
  • Claimed 85 hp (63 kW) at 10,500 rpm (up 7 hp)
  • 12,500 rpm redline
  • Same 20 litres (4.4 imp gal; 5.3 US gal) fuel tank as previous model, but the fuel pump takes about 1 L
  • Hydraulic clutch lever
  • 14 kg heavier

The 2007 Bandit 650 was reviewed by Bike magazine as being "de-criminalised" compared to its early brethren, but a good bike for beginners.[7]

Bandit 650 no longer offered in the United States for the 2007 model-year.


Bandit 650 no longer offered in Canada for the 2008 model-year. Replaced by new Bandit-derived fully faired GSX650F in North-America.


In November 2008, it was announced that there would be certain changes to the 2009 GSF650.[8] Changes to both models (naked and half-faired) versions are :

  • Sleeker headlights
  • The frame covers are slightly different
  • Tail lights are slimmer
  • Exhaust ends are re-shaped
  • New instrumentation (single housing with anologue tachometer, LCD speedo, fuel gauge, clock, plus gear indicator)

In addition to this, the 650S has a newly styled cowling with stacked high and low beam multi-reflector headlights. The fairing has storage, and newly designed mirrors and indicators.

The 650N has more angular headlights.

GSX650F (a Bandit variation)[edit]

The Suzuki GSX650F, in many respects a tweaked Bandit

The GSX650F, produced from 2008, is essentially a variation on the Bandit 650, with much the same specification and components.[9] Although built on a Bandit chassis, the additional lower fairing gives it a sportier look similar to that of the Suzuki GSX-R Series. The engine has also had a small amount of remapping to encourage revs, and the suspension is tweaked. It also has a different, one-piece seat.


The Bandit 750 was a Japan only model that used parts from both the 600 and 1200 models; the front frame cradle was identical to the 600, the rear subframe was identical to the 1200 with bolt on pillion footpeg handers, the clocks were 1200 items with a higher red-line on the rev counter of 12,000rpm (vs 10,000 for the 1200), including a fuel gauge which was absent from the 600 models of the time. The running gear and suspension were also the same as the 600. The engine, although visually identical to the 600, had a capacity of 748 cc, The carburettors were similar to the 600 apart from jetting, whereas the exhaust was identical to the 1200. The 750 came with a 6 speed gearbox like the 600 - as opposed to the 5 speed on the 1200. Power was a claimed 85 bhp (63 kW). All machines were restricted to 180 km/h (110 mph) to comply with Japanese regulations, but are easily de-restricted to a true maximum speed of 220 km/h (140 mph).

Unlike bandits sold overseas, the 750 never featured the Bandit logo on the rear fairings - instead it was labelled "GSF 750" with a smaller script reading "DOHC 16Valve".


Suzuki GSF1200P (police version)


The first 1200 Bandit models were generally released in January 1996, featuring a retuned and enlarged version of the engine featured in the GSX-R1100. Other differences from the 600 cc models included a fuel gauge, higher specification suspension, larger diameter front brake discs and a 5-speed gearbox as opposed to the 6-speed of the 600. Also the 1200 Bandit featured a hydraulic clutch. There are some examples of 1995 registered 1200 Bandits. A lot of Suzuki models have the engine size cast into side of the cylinder block, 1200 Bandits (1,157 cc) do not have this but there are examples of some having 1,156 cc cast into the block. These were 1995 bikes, apparently early production models. The 1200 Bandits came with a 15 tooth front sprocket and 45 tooth rear sprocket connected by a 530V 110 link chain.


No changes were made. A version of the S Bandit with anti-lock braking was introduced for certain world markets. The 1997 ABS (anti-lock braking system) 1200 Bandit used a 114 link chain as opposed to the standard 110 link chain.


No changes.


No changes.


No changes.


The 1200 Bandits received a similar revamp to the one the 600 Bandits received the previous year:

  • New rear bodywork.
  • Fully electronic instrumentation.
  • New carburettors.
  • Suzuki PAIR (Pulsed Air Injection), feeding clean air into the exhaust outlet to help eliminate unburnt fuel from emissions.
  • Additional fuel filter.
  • Tokico brake callipers (six pistons at the front).
  • 20 litre fuel tank (up from 19).
  • Improvements to frame and steering geometry.
  • Seat height lowered.
  • S model: New modern styled fairing, with twin headlights.


2004 models added a 2-way catalytic converter (for some markets) to the exhaust system, and minor modifications to the exhaust metalwork.


2005 models (K5 and SK5) were the last of the 2nd Generation 1200 Bandits.


GSF1200SK6 Non-ABS version in Red with aftermarket screen

2006 (K6 and SK6) models received a revamp with a new shape tank, side panels, a height adjustable seat and a longer hexagonal-section swinging arm. The faired "S" versions also have a new shape fairing and mirrors along with a totally redesigned headlight system with over and under beams rather than the previous side by side system. These new models were offered with ABS brakes as an option. ABS brakes were fitted as standard on the UK specification SA model. Some markets also received height-adjustable handlebars. There were minor revisions to the transmission internal ratios as well. The 2006 Bandit 1200s were not sold in the USA but continued to be sold elsewhere around the world. The SK6 version is in generation 3 of the Bandit 1200S line and thus is the sole generation 3 model of the 1200 Bandit. This was the last of the SACS-engined Bandits with a motor design and technology that first saw the light of day in 1985 in the GSX-R 750.



GSF1250SA K7

The GSF1250 has a new water-cooled engine, replacing the 1,157cc air/oil-cooled engine which did not meet Euro 3 emission regulations.[10] While the new engine produces similar power and torque, the big difference is where in the RPM range peak torque is produced. The new 1,255cc engine produces that torque(108 N·m (80 lbf·ft)) at 3,750 RPM.[11] That power is sent to the driveline via a new for 2007 six-speed constant mesh transmission.[12] It was also available as the 1250SA, this version fitted with ABS.

The autumn saw the introduction of a limited edition Street Fighter, featuring Renthal handlebars, a Yoshimura silencer and a single seat cowling.


No changes from the 2007 model.[13]

The 1250GT is a Grand Touring version. It carries a three-box hard luggage system, has fairing lowers and comes fitted with sat-nav.


2009 models carry over the same engines. The cylinders are once again plated with Suzuki’s "Composite Electrochemical Material", and also carried over is the Secondary Balancer Shaft further smoothens the rides.[14]

In May 2009, it was announced that there will be a limited edition Bandit 1250SA 'Z'.[15] It has a pearl mirage white paint scheme, with revised graphics and metallic silver wheels. Only 100 examples came to the UK.


In September 2009 it was announced [16] that 2010 will see the release of the GSX1250FA in Europe. It has the same engine and chassis as before, but a full fairing will make it similar in style to the smaller GSX650F.

The standard 1250A and 1250SA models for 2010 will feature a black engine.[17]


GSX1250FA remains unchanged from 2010 but comes to the US as a 2011 model.


External links[edit]