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Suzuki Gixxer SF

30 May 2015, 12:18 AM Ninad Ambre

Introduction

Suzuki Gixxer SF

There was a time when Bollywood superstar Salman Khan was basking in his own glory. He was famous for being shirtless and flexing his muscles; quite similar to one of the products he endorses - the Suzuki Gixxer.

But now, a time has come when the brand ambassador of Suzuki has had to 'cover' himself up, and while Suzuki has followed suit, they seem to have done a much better job. Enter the Gixxer SF, faired version of the very successful 150cc motorcycle.

The company is promoting it as 'The Street Sport Bike', which is a one of a kind in that price bracket. We set astride the motorcycle to find out if the SF is Salman Khan in a tuxedo or it has even more substance to offer.

Looks and Styling

Suzuki Gixxer SF

The thing about fully-faired motorcycles is that they are easily noticeable due to the large panels that cover the engine and extend till the headlamp. Some motorcycles look really good, while some not so much with the additional unnecessary mass. Thankfully, the latter is not the case with the Gixxer SF, which is beautifully styled and looks good with the fairing that sports funky decals.

Suzuki Gixxer SF

The Suzuki Gixxer SF looks fresh and attractive due to this new paint scheme and ‘SUZUKI’ stickering. These are a part of the special MotoGP Edition available only in metallic triton blue. The other two colours are glass sparkle black and pearl mirage white, which do not come with the badging. So, for people who think the stickers are overdone, the black and white coloured bikes will keep it plain and simple. The fascia of the motorcycle reminds me of Suzuki's legendary motorcycles GSX R1000 and the Hayabusa. As you move towards the sides, you notice the chiseled tank doesn't have any other changes, when compared to the naked version and from here onward both the motorcycles look the same.

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Suzuki Gixxer SF [2015-2018]

Suzuki Gixxer SF [2015-2018]

  • Displacement155 cc
  • Mileage - Owner Reported45 kmpl
  • Max Power(bhp)14.6 bhp
  • Kerb Weight141 kg
  • ;

Last known Avg. Ex-showroom price

₹ 87,597

Suzuki Gixxer SF

The new fairing is in line with the elegant seat and the upswept tail piece, not giving a feeling that the fairing was an afterthought. Then of course, the large oval-shaped dual exhaust with aluminium muffler cover adds to the bling. The Y shape, three-spoke alloys from the Gixxer make it the best looking alloys in this segment. Not to upset fans and enthusiasts with skinny tyres, the Gixxer SF’s wheels are shod with a 140 section tyre at the back, which gives it a good street presence.

Suzuki Gixxer SF

There is nothing amiss and the designers have taken care of even smaller details like the kick-lever accentuating the design, and the fluorescent  lines on the fairing, tank and alloys are in sync. Be it the headlamp or the fairing, the tank or the seat, the rear section or the tyres, Suzuki has styled the motorcycle in a way that it is at present unparalleled in its class. In fact, if we were to look at the fully-faired motorcycles in the 150cc segment across various price ranges like the Yamaha R15, Fazer and Honda CBR150R, the Gixxer SF is still the clear winner.

Suzuki Gixxer SF

Features

Suzuki Gixxer SF

Coming to the features of the motorcycle, there is not much that I would want to specifically point out as it shares most of the components with its naked sibling. The digital instrument-cluster is straight away carried from the Gixxer and does the job perfectly. The font is clearly visible during the day, in harsh sunlight and at night as well. With the orange back-lit illumination, this instrument panel boasts of the tachometer, clock, gear indicator, odometer, fuel gauge, indicators and an RPM indicator, which are all arranged neatly in the rectangular housing. The RPM indicator is adjustable and can be set in between 5,000rpm to 9,500rpm to indicate the gear shifts - a feature that the competition lacks.

Suzuki Gixxer SF

Unfortunately, the throw of light is low and the intensity could have been better. It might not cause any problems at night in the city, but for the enthusiasts who would want to take the bike out on long tours,  night travel will be a tough task. Coming to the usage of the mirrors, the nature is exactly opposite to the usage of the headlight. The mirrors do provide a perfect sight and are stable on the highway, but are too wide making it difficult for the bike to pass between two vehicles in the city traffic with ease. Nevertheless, if it seems to be a hindrance, Suzuki has given users an option of fitting mirrors on the handle-bar like the naked Gixxer. 

Suzuki Gixxer SF

Most of the other features are from the Gixxer. The handle grips are nice and soft and the seat is well-stitched and comfortable. The body-coloured grab-rails flow well into the rear section with the immaculate design and are pretty useful for the pillion to hold on. So, even though the Gixxer SF is not a feature-rich motorcycle, the features are adequate enough and of top-notch quality.

Suzuki Gixxer SF

Performance

Suzuki Gixxer SF

The Gixxer SF is powered by the same 155cc single-cylinder air-cooled carbureted engine from the Gixxer and there are no changes to the powertrain. This mill churns out 14.59bhp of power and 14Nm of torque and comes mated to a five-speed gearbox.

When Suzuki had launched the Gixxer, they had made it clear that this 155cc engine is not a unit that the company shares with the  commuter centric GS150R motorcycle. The engine is new and comes equipped with SEP (Suzuki Eco Performance) technology, which will help the motorcycle deliver both performance as well as fuel efficiency.

This powerplant is mated to a five-speed gearbox, unlike the six-speed one on the GS150R. The engineers have set the gear ratios really well throughout the rev range and we never felt the need of the sixth gear. Suzuki's intention of developing an optimised powertrain with the five-speed unit has worked well. But only if the company could have kept the first two gears short, the bike could have sprinted better than the naked, especially considering the fact that it is also a bit heavier than the naked model. However, the gear shifts on the Gixxer SF felt a bit hard when compared to the naked version. 

Suzuki Gixxer SF

The engine performance is almost similar to the naked version. The mill revs smoothly from idling to up to 9,500rpm without skipping a beat. There is ample amount of low- and mid-range of power to ride the motorcycle at low speeds and cruise comfortably at 100kmph respectively. Indicated speeds of more than 130kmph are possible but 80-90kmph is where the rider is going to be very comfortable.

But then again, this is not what I was expecting from a faired motorcycle. It would have been nice if Suzuki would have re-tuned this motor to churn out some more power. True that the additional weight does not make it feel sluggish on the street, but it would have performed better in line with the   sporty look. The fuel economy of 40-43kmpl could have been a lot better, even if at present it is better than its competition. Even so, consumers will be happy about the refinement of the engine and the minimum number of vibrations even at high speeds, something that Suzuki has beautifully worked upon.

Suzuki Gixxer SF

Ride & Handling

Suzuki Gixxer SF

Anyone would love to ride the SF. The ride height and seating position is comfortable and would suit a rider of any stature. The placement of the handle-bars is neither too low nor too high allowing the rider to sit straight and enjoy the ride at cruising speeds or even duck down and go flat out. The visor on the fairing helps to deviate the air over the rider and maintaining speeds in excess of 100kmph is not a tiresome task.

The Gixxer uses telescopic forks at the front, and a seven step adjustable rear mono shock suspension with aluminium swing-arm at the rear. These have been tuned according to the Indian riding conditions. The stability of the bike is taken care of by the suspension set-up which is soft and good enough for rough terrains. The wide tubeless tyres also add to the stability and offer a smooth ride. These MRFs stick to the road and inspire confidence to take corners, but a stiffer suspension could have meant taking the same corner with more conviction. The SF rides on MRF Revz (front 100/80-17, rear 140/60-17) tubeless tyres and derives its braking power from a single front disc brake and rear drum brake. This setup is not at all bad, in fact, the front disc brake provides great feedback, but a rear disc brake would have been an added advantage.

The ground clearance is good considering the Gixxer SF is a fully-faired bike with its low slung belly pan. The bike never scraped on speed bumps or rough patches while riding solo, but one will have to be a little careful when with a pillion. The debatable stock set-up is good enough for Indian riding conditions as the bike handles perfectly well on paved as well as undulated roads.

Suzuki Gixxer SF

Verdict

Suzuki Gixxer SF

The Gixxer SF is undoubtedly a good looking motorcycle. But then what else does it have to offer specifically different from the naked version? Both offer refinement, comfort and good looks unmatched in their respective price range. Some might then want to settle for the Gixxer itself instead of paying about ten grand more for the Gixxer SF, right? May be! 

But the SF is more comfortable at high speeds due to the aerodynamic design. Also the SF caters to a different set of audience, one looking for an affordable faired motorcycle. And the Gixxer SF wins here with ease.

                      Suzuki Gixxer SF

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