Suzuki GT750 Le Mans — Classic Japanese Motorcycles — Motorcycle Classics

30 Мар 2015 | Author: | Комментарии к записи Suzuki GT750 Le Mans — Classic Japanese Motorcycles — Motorcycle Classics отключены
Suzuki GT 500

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Suzuki GT750 Le Mans

produced: 1972-1977

Total 71,000 (est. 1972-77)

power: 70hp @ 6,500rpm

Top speed: 108mph (est.)

type: Two-…, liquid-cooled, three-cylinder

Weight (dry): (1976)

Price then: (1976)

Price now:

For every action, there is an and opposite reaction.   — Isaac

It was 1971. Just two years Honda had made the action gained the attention of the motorcycling — releasing the four-cylinder Honda Now defined as the first Superbike, the big would turn out to be one of the most motorcycles ever built, and rivals scrambled to introduce machines.

Suzuki reacted by the Suzuki GT750, a water-cooled, 2-… triple, in late as a ’72 model.

An equal it was not, though it was the definition of

Smooth, quiet, refined and were all words the motorcycling used to define the Suzuki To be honest, the Honda CB750 was described with the same But the key here may be the words the press use to describe the GT: quick, powerful and

Basically a Suzuki T500 (a 2-… 492cc parallel with another cylinder on, the GT750 was an oddball from the But the bike’s inline-triple engine the only reason it drew a curious eye from the general Nor were the disco-esque colors it be ordered in — Candy Lavender, Yellow Ocher and Candy Blue.

The real difference this Suzuki and the other of the day was it’s liquid cooling. The GT750 was the first mass Japanese motorcycle with a engine, and Suzuki was the first company to apply liquid to a serial production bike the Scott two-strokes of the 1920s and

Water Buffalo

Known as the LeMans in America, the Suzuki somehow gathered the nickname of the Buffalo in the States and a variety of in other countries. In Britain it was as the Kettle, while Waterbottle in Australia. Regardless of what you it and where you lived, it was certainly

Created in a time before Valkyries and Triumph Rocket for 1972 the Suzuki GT750J was big in about every way. It was wide, and at 530lb it weighed 20lb more (dry) the Honda CB750. All of this would have been had it been faster.

Unfortunately for this was not the case.

Despite lauded by most who rode it as a touring machine, a unique, mount, and a capable high-speed many riders expected the to be a superbike. Though it came it wasn’t close enough for looking for a street-legal racer and an to the Honda. Testers routinely its lackluster performance, large and low ground clearance.

It was, a fairly powerful bike good manners — as long as it pushed too hard. It was really a instead of a Superbike, and its high-speed was praised. Its two-… 738cc pushed out 67bhp at 6,500rpm, was identical to the CB750.

It’s gearbox was fine, and the unusual exhaust added symmetry to otherwise could have an even odder looking But the lackluster performance of the bike’s brake left many scratching their heads.

the fact that most of this caliber were now twin-disc brakes on their wheels, the engineers at Suzuki to stick with a front Featuring a double-sided, twin-leading affair, the 200mm drum was amply sized, but it was still a nonetheless. Testers complained so that for the ‘73 GT750K model, a of 295mm discs replaced the drum.

Great in the dry but horrible in the wet, the were still an improvement. The year of production also more chrome plating.

The GT750L sported a revised system with more for improved ground clearance. The was slightly retuned to bump the power output to 70bhp, and the were upgraded to 32mm constant-velocity types instead of the carbs of the prior two years. The lost the gaiters they’d since the bike’s inception, and the of the air box were now chrome-plated.

Suzuki GT 500

The radiator got a grill, and the cooling fan became an extra. A gear position was also added.

The 1975 model brought changes in along with bigger, constant-velocity Mikuni carbs, and additional ground clearance to locating the mufflers higher and to the frame. The connecting pipe the left and right exhaust was also deleted. Suzuki the gearing (yes, again) for the GT750A and added a lockable gas along with new paint (which they did every year).

The final Buffalo, the 1977 had many small appearance but nothing mechanical of note.

In Suzuki debuted the Suzuki a four-cylinder, four-… motorcycle would bring about the end of the Water Buffalo. Despite the that the GT750 was probably the well mannered two-… of its day, two-… motorcycles in had gained nasty reputations for noisy, inefficient, and bad for the environment.


Although it’s nearly 30 years since you buy one new, the Suzuki GT750 is prized by riders who own and restore And even for riders who have raised on the fruits of two-… the big ‘Zook is still something

Paul Franchina, a central-Florida representative for the Vintage Japanese Club of North America, and the owner of the beautiful 1976 you see here, remembers to this day his of the first Water Buffalo he

My first ride [on a GT750] was in ‘78 or I was very impressed with its and handling. I had a 1972 Kawasaki H2  I new, Franchina says.

I the acceleration rush of two strokes, but the was too much a brute for my now old bones.

Franchina bought his GT750A, he’s nicknamed Kettie, three years ago. I it from a fellow I met at our local Night.’ He’d seen me in on various vintage bikes and me with this bike. It belonged to his brother and had been to Florida from Ohio.

for Franchina the Suzuki was in decent when he got it, and Franchina believes he is the second owner of the bike.

the gorgeous appearance of this it’s not a ground-up restoration, as people have guessed. The was original and complete, except for a repaint, when I purchased it, Franchina. It was very dirty, but not he says. After replacing the and rear fenders due to minor and dents, Franchina also the chain and sprockets, along one acid-stained muffler.

Beyond I’ve done a whale-sized of cleaning, polishing and detailing, he

Franchina has enjoyed bringing the back to its former glory, and the draws a good amount of at bike shows and gatherings. a great conversation piece and can a crowd just parked. The that know vintage love it because they they were unusual new and are relatively uncommon today, he

Franchina also mentions people who aren’t familiar vintage iron are surprised to out it’s as old as it is, not to mention it sounds so when it runs, he says.

The that it smokes, like all motorcycles do, is also a surprise to I was on a cruiser club ride it once, and when the ride was one of the ‘Wing Nuts’ that had following me nudged me and informed me my bike had been ‘smoking a on the ride. When I got a blank on telling him it was a two …, I thanked him and on, he says.

Maybe what he have said is It’s a thing. You wouldn’t understand. MC

more about the motorcycles in this article:

Suzuki GT 500
Suzuki GT 500
Suzuki GT 500
Suzuki GT 500
Suzuki GT 500


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