Suzuki's radical G-Strider concept
Saturday November 1, 2003Suzuki has released details of the futuristic G-Strider concept motorcycle which gizmo.com.au showed the world's first pictures of last week.The G-Strider is as interesting and radical as it looks, and in many ways it builds on the direction taken by the Burgman 650cc scooter tested in Gizmo last year and simply bristles with new ideas and functionality.
Most significant in the design is the feet-forward riding position of the scooter which has been further modified with a lower seat and a lower frontal area for the fully-faired machine. Suzuki’s literature describes the riding position as one that “a relaxed human body assumes in a weightless environment.”
With an obviously heavy emphasis on comfort, the bike’s handlebars, footrests, seat backrest, passenger backrest and windscreen are all electrically adjustable on the move to enable dialling in the most comfortable riding position available.
Already producing the largest scooter-styled motorcycle in the form of the 650cc Bergman, Suzuki has retained the parallel-twin motor but increased its capacity to 916cc – once more getting power to the (massive 220) rear wheel is via Suzuki’s very efficient electronically-controlled continuously variable transmission, the same transmission we raved about in testing the Bergman.
The front suspension is of the centre-hub type and brakes at both ends are anti-lock, but it is the electronic and communication systems which demonstrate the most forward thinking. Like many of the prestige automotive manufacturers, Suzuki is clearly developing an intelligent telematics system which communicates directly with the distributor network’s computers with bi-directional wireless system. Though only sketchy details were provided in the documentation at the Tokyo Motor show, it appears that motorcycle will report wirelessly on the condition of its systems so the distributor network can take a more proactive role in the maintenance of the machine and perhaps even the upgrading of software within the systems. The bike features a self-diagnosis system, and two rear-facing cameras which are incorporated in the rear lighting system and display video to the “mirrors”.
The headlight system also incorporates new technology, with a powerful combination headlight comprising a high-intensity-discharge projector-type light source flanked by high intensity light-emitting diodes (LEDs). The intelligence incorporated in the system involves night riding where the motorcycle’s microprocessors judge the radius of a corner based on the angle of the motorcycle and the handlebars and illuminates the corner on the inside of the curve, a long overdue enhancement to overcome the problems associated with night riding on winding, unlit roads. LEDs are also employed in the rear taillight and turn signals to enhance conspicuity even during daylight riding.
Suzuki’s forward-thinking in motorcycle design is becoming evident in the features they are showing in concept bikes such as the G-Strider and the B-King and the proof can be found in the highly under-rated Burgman.