Ride Report; Virtues of Cluch Assist feature - Suzuki GSXS1000 Forum
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post #1 of 1 Old 08-07-2019, 03:47 PM Thread Starter
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Ride Report; Virtues of Clutch Assist feature

Took a nice backroads ramble on Sunday from Sacramento to Lake Berryessa, to Calistoga, up to Middletown, back down to Napa, on to Cordelia and Rio Vista and back to Sacramento. The GSXS handled it all, from straight-line freeways blasts to tight corners with dramatic elevation changes. Things I liked: comfort (no backache, no sore saddle, no left-hand cramping (that clutch is light for a bike with big torque), no buzzy hands (that inline-4 is smooth), firm but well-damped suspension), liter-bike ripping power (I thought it would take me forever to get to Middletown; it didn't, thanks to hundreds of horses pulling me there ). Things that could be improved: brakes a tad soft (not dangerous, but could use a bit more bite), handling still a bit twitchy (in the tight turns up to Middletown, it takes a little bit more concentration to keep the bike on the right line; maybe I need to adjust the fork/shock settings).

Underrated and much appreciated feature: the low RPM clutch assist. This feature came in very handy as I was making my way down Highway 29 in Napa which is very popular and clogged with tourist traffic. I lane-split for at least a half mile all the way to the front at the traffic light without using much throttle at all. Instead, in second gear I just released the clutch, the RPM would rise, and the bike moved forward smoothly at an appropriate speed delta (+5 mph relative to cars). Conceivably you could lane-split like this, and rest your right hand on the tank (cover your rear brake, though; there were times when I took my hand off the right controls in order to wave at cars that moved over to make room for me to pass, and I was still able to accelerate slightly by releasing the clutch). Suzuki doesn't mention this feature in their website for the GSXS (but it does mention it for the SV650). I imagine the GSXS would be a great commuter bike because of this.

My average fuel economy for the 240+ miles was 44.8 mpg. Not bad considering the mix of roads, elevation changes, and aggressive throttle use.

Also, the miles to empty reading on the dashboard is accurate. At one point, the fuel warning light was flashing and the dashboard said I had 1 mile of range remaining (luckily the gas station was about 500 yards away).

Tip: eat breakfast at Cowpoke Cafe in Middletown. Good service, good food, relaxing atmosphere, nice place to spend 30 minutes off the bike.

Last edited by montana928; 08-07-2019 at 04:10 PM.
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