Of course, the Suzuki engineers were given only the Gixxer chassis and the engine to work with. But what they have done with these is remarkable. You reach out to the front of the visor to slot in the key and turn on the ignition, and the familiar LCD instrument console pops to life. You sit low on the saddle, with the handlebar grips set wide apart and front-set footpegs. Despite the edges on the tank, you get a good grip on it. The contour on the saddle offers a great support for the tail bone, and the seating position is easily one of most comfortable ones in this market space.
The engine has the same growl as on the Gixxer, but it sounds louder, probably due to the bigger airbox and revised exhaust system. Once you get on the move, engine is very tractable, and you can ride as slow as 10kmph in the second gear. This should be great news for those who spend a major chunk of their commute in slow moving traffic. Even for stop-and-go traffic, the clutch feels very light.
Wring the throttle hard and you are met with an addictive burst of torque, thus introducing you to the hooligan side of the Intruder. The rev-happy engine delivers 14.6bhp and 14Nm of torque, and there is an abundance of low-end and mid-range torque. Suzuki claims that the bigger airbox and an additional tooth in the rear sprocket makes the Intruder quicker than the Gixxer, although I couldn’t make out the difference. We would have to pit the bikes against each other to know for sure. Nevertheless, the smile which appeared upon my face when I first caught sight of the Intruder refused to leave as I hooned it through the twisties of Lavasa.
The Intruder feels very eager to be flicked into corners, and thanks to a taut front suspension, it holds the lines well irrespective of any minor bumps you might encounter. Even the rear is a little stiff and biased towards offering a sporty ride. However, this setup has also taken a toll on the ride comfort. With my weight, every bump and dip on the road was making its presence felt through my back. The rear suspension is seven-step adjustable for preload, playing around with which might make the ride more comfortable. The front brake offers a good initial bite, although the progression and feel could have been better. Nevertheless, with the ABS looking out for you, you can jam the front brake without any fear.