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Suzuki GSX-S1000F or Kawasaki Ninja 1000

Discussion in 'Bike Reviews, Questions and Suggestions' started by vahramh, Aug 7, 2016.

  1. Hi guys,

    I've decided to upgrade - after all, my ER6F is 8 years old...

    The two bikes I'm considering are Suzuki GSX-S1000F and Kawasaki Ninja 1000. They seem to fit my riding needs well - daily commuting, occasional track days and day rides to the twisties, and once a year 1-2 week rides around neighbouring states with the wife on the back.

    I did some reading, and the choice seems to be very tough. I even made a spreadsheet with pros and cons of each bike, and they came up with equal scores :)

    They have one issue each that I'm not sure about, and was hoping that current owners could share their experiences.

    A couple of reviews of the Ninja 1000 mentioned engine vibration at above 6000 rpm on freeways. How bad is it, could spoil the fun while touring?

    And a couple of reviews mentioned jumpy initial throttle at low speeds on the Suzuki. Again, is it universal, does it affect the commuting / filtering experience, can it be adjusted / rectified / gotten used to?

    I'm taking them both for a test ride next week thanks to the city Peter Stevens, but apparently I can only ride them around the block. While it should be enough to get a sense of the jumpy throttle issue, I won't be able to test the Ninja vibration on the freeway.

    Any help would be appreciated.

    Cheers, Vahram
  2. Too bad you're in Vic, I've seen this bike and I know it's been well maintained and I'm guessing you after new also.

    [NSW] - 2012 Kawasaki Z1000

    Looks like you have selected two really nice bikes to check out good luck with it.
    • Like Like x 1
  3. olympicwizolympicwiz has the Suzuki that he just picked up.
    icemakericemaker can comment on all things Z1000 related, as well as Senator17Senator17.

    Ever considered an MV Agusta Brutale?
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  4. Thanks Andrew,

    I just intended to buy second hand, but my wife insisted on a new bike :)
    • Like Like x 3
  5. Well certainly in this case wife knows best WIN WIN WIN (y)
    • Like Like x 1
    • Agree Agree x 1
  6. Yes, it was on my initial list, but in the end I decided I like fairings
  7. Tough choice vahramhvahramh. I love my Ninja not because its the quickest or most technologically advanced but because it does alot of things really well. Ive done multi day tours, track days, weekend scratching, the lot with no dramas.

    As for the vibrations I personally dont really notice it that much nor does it bother me when i do. When you test ride it roll on the throttle in 2nd and 3rd up to 7000rpm and see what you reckon. On the hwy at 110km/h youll be sitting around the 5 mark so you should be able to feel it with a short lap.

    Touring wise its awesome and i find it very comfy. Done multiple 700 - 800km days no prob, the intergrated panniers work really well and you can comfortably get 300km out of a tank if your not being silly. This is where the Ninja has an edge over the Suzi I reckon, it has the better luggage options and if your leaning more toward touring you could do alot worse than going with the Ninja. If your thinking more track work maybe the Suzi is better, dunno havent ridden one, but the Kwaka aint no slow coach either.

    Happy to answer any questions you have.
    • Like Like x 1
  8. #9 olympicwiz, Aug 7, 2016
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2016
    Thanks GeorgeOGeorgeO


    Here are my 2c. I had Suzuki GSXS1000 (without F) for a while now and can say I could not notice any throttle scratchiness.
    Apparently the issue had been rectified on the units built past Feb/Mar 2016 and if not, Suzuki Australia will replace the ECU via your dealer to rectify this problem. Some guys on the GSXS forum reported that they did TPS adjustment (half an hour job) that helped to rectify said snatchy throttle. I am not touching my bike as I feel it runs perfect as is.

    Just remember it is a powerful bike and expects to be treated with respect when it comes to the throttle. But I can effortlessly maintain a constant max legal city speed on 2500-3000 RPMs on my bike that was actually built late 2015.
    And when you do open that throttle .. oh boy... Compared to my ex Brutale 1090, it feels light and nimble and yet feels more powerful. The engine sounds amazing (Gixxer K5 1000 heritage) and the stock exhaust is awesome. The only mods that I have done is tail tidy for less than $100. It seriously doesn't need anything else done to it.

    It is reasonably economical and insurance was cheap relatively speaking. I was told that the maintenance is typical of Suzuki. Cheap. Plenty pf parts readily available should anything go wrong in a very unlikely case. I ride just about every day to work so for me the reliability and the ease of maintenance was a prime factor. It built like a tank, has just enough gizmos such as ABS and a simple but effective TC and very easy and comfortable to ride. I find that filtering is not an issue

    It has a comprehensive bright and easy to read LCD dash with everything you need to know like even Gear indicator and a fuel gauge.

    i am very happy with it. It exceeded my expectations.

    I just noticed you plan to carry your wife as a pillion. Well ..unless she is a tiny as a gymnast, I would not recommend it on GSXS1000. As the matter of fact I noticed somebody trying to sell the bike on GSXS forum as they realized that it is not really designed with the pillion passenger in mind.
    • Like Like x 1
  9. Mate I would find a dealer that would let u ride one for more than around the bloomin block. I test rode a night rod a few years back and had it for 45 minutes. Both are great bikes though.
    • Agree Agree x 2
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  10. That is very true - there are not much in terms of storage options on Suzuki. I think the best option would be Ventura rack but it would ruin the overall look IMHO.
    Luckily the bag and mini panniers from the fallen Britale fit really well so I just need to work out how to adopt it.
  11. Yeah this is where I think Suzuki missed a trick. The GSX-F and GSX-S are identical apart from the F having a fairing. Why not give it a bigger tank, integrated pannier option, remote rear preload adjuster and a larger pillion seat to make it more touring and pillion friendly.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  12. I think an integrated pannier would take away from its looks and personality. I like its clean tidy look. And I don't think it was meant to carry a pillion either. Suppose it is hard to find a universal bike.
    It just suits exactly what I need in a bike but appreciate it is not for every occasion. Personally I dislike GSX-F looks as it looks bulky but that is just me.

    As for the fuel tank it has 17ltrs and I calculated the range would be about 280kms average on one full tank. Maybe 2 more litres would have been nice but certainly wasn't a deal breaker for me.
  13. Thanks guys,

    I'm not a big fan of integrated panniers - I prefer riding the bike as is. On my current ER6F I have installed a Ventura rack, which only comes on when we go touring. So that's what I intend to do whether I get the Ninja or the GSX. Of course I could take the Ninja integrated panniers off when not cruising, but they are too expensive to be used for 2 weeks a year :)

    For commuting a backpack has enough luggage space for me, and the rack and brackets come off.

    basejumperbasejumper - good idea to talk to other dealers about a test ride. After talking to Peter Stevens I assumed a quick test ride is the norm. But I just talked to Mick Hone motorcycles - they'll let me have a GSX-S1000 (not the faired version) for a proper test ride. Now I've gotta find a Kawasaki dealer that will let me do it.

    olympicwizolympicwiz - yep, pillion comfort is a consideration, but I took my wife to the store and she sat on both bikes, her impression was that they were similar, and both seemed more comfortable that my ER6F. So I guess I'm covered there.

    I'm starting to get a feeling that the Suzuki is a bit of a "raw" bike, with more focus on the riding side of things, whereas the Ninja is more about touring. But even these differences seem to be marginal. When I started looking, my baseline and goal was the Ninja. Now the Suzuki has a slight edge. We'll see what the test rides do to me :)

    Cheers, Vahram
  14. My Z1000 has the same engine as the Ninja 1000. I don't have any problems with vibration at any speed. Both bikes will need to be treated with respect regarding their power and torque. My preference goes to the Kawasaki.
    • Like Like x 1
  15. I just don't like the fact you only have a strap for the pillion to hold on to. No proper sturdy handle. The pillion would be at the mercy of the rear seat lock and I don't like it. I don't think it is safe to hold on to that strap. She would have to hold on to you.

    Not trying to confuse you, but I think the ideal bike for you would be Diavel 2015 low kms model.
  16. Thanks for your help guys,

    After the test rides, I liked the GSX-S1000F. Order placed, funds transferred, including the Ventura kit, Ventura pannier kit, and R&G Frame sliders. They didn't have my preferred colour (red/black) in stock, will probably pick up the bike some time next week. Looking forward to it!
    It should look like this (of course the Ventura stuff will only come on when touring): gsx-s-1000fa.
    • Like Like x 5
    • Winner Winner x 3
  17. congrats that looks awesome :)
    • Agree Agree x 1
  18. vahramhvahramh

    Congrats. Did you take both candidates for a long ride? What made you to choose Suzuki?
    Nice colour btw - that was my first choice also. I think Grey doesn't bring out the character of the bike.
  19. Congratulations.
    That colour combo is also my favourite but all the press bikes are blue.
    Both are great bikes and I'm sure you'd be happy with either one.

    Can we ask how much you paid?