The Suzuki SV650 - Two decades and counting

POSTED: 12/09/2022

Real-world fun and affordability

The Suzuki SV650 has been on the naked motorcycle market for two decades. Over this time, Suzuki has paid the model great attention with various model upgrades, remodels and refinements into what we see today. Although the model has received many upgrades, it still remains one of the more affordable motorcycles on today's market. 

Let's take a look at this model over the years, and find out how it got to where it is today.

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The Suzuki SV650 History Banner

So where did it all begin?

The SV650 1999 Model

The First Generation

The "Curvy" with carburettors 

Due to its curved metal bodywork, the original SV grew the nickname "Curvy" SV650. Rocking this rounder design the bike pumped out a satisfactory 64hp within a 645cc, 90-degree, L-twin, two carburettor, liquid-cooled 8-valve engine. Although the power wasn't something to write home about, the bike weighed a mere wet weight of 189kg and achieved 0-60mph in 3.5 seconds.

This SV650 is one of the new century's biggest success stories, and it all stems from the model keeping riders happy. Suzuki also offered a faired version, which boasted a more "race" style.

The Suzuki SV650 2003 Model

The Second Generation

Enter the fuel injector

In 2003, Suzuki updated their much loved model considerably. Although production was underway, these models were almost entirely sold in the States - only if you were lucky, you'd find one on the English market at the time. The biggest changes with this model included fuel injection - a game-changer in engine innovation, offering an improved cold/hot starting performance. Other improvements include a digital display, updated frame, increased durability and performance tweaks - giving more power and torque, now offering 73hp and 64Nm of torque.

Like the traditional model, the second-gen was available both naked and faired, meaning it was open to a broader appeal amongst riders worldwide. With the increased power, the bike could keep up with middleweight inline-four motorcycles until highway speeds, due to the bike's low-down torque and feather-like weight.

The SV650/SFV650 Gladius 2009 Model

The Challenge Emerged

Something fresh takes the stage

In 2009 Suzuki replaced the SV with the SFV650 Gladius, in an effort to keep the model new and exciting for customers. The model kept most of the original looks, besides the headlight and small parts of the motorcycle fairing. This model took centre stage with an improved engine, producing more low-down torque and bolstered mid-range power. With the styling and engine, refinements resulted in a slightly heavier motorcycle, now sitting at a wet weight of 202kg.

Although an upgraded version, sadly the SFV650 received a lack of interest compared to the more original SV650 models and didn't quite make that "cult status", making them almost a rare find on the used market today. You may find one at a reasonable price and if it's in good condition, it'll still offer you fantastic Suzuki durability.

The SV650 2016 Version

The latest version

Bringing sexy back

After a much-anticipated return, Suzuki brought back the SV650 and made sure it would not only reappear, but also trump previous versions on the spec sheet. With aims to keep weight to a minimum, they did so successfully at 195kg - even with ABS! The engine was once again remastered, with updates for higher power and similar torque, giving riders what they sought. One component that did remain from the Gladius was the low seat, with a height of just 31 inches.

Suzuki has now implemented a similar version of the SV650 named the SV650X. This is a "Cafe Racer" style SV650 and comes with various other upgrades, (mostly cosmetic), including a paint scheme, fairing fowl, clip-on handlebars and tuck & roll seat. 

Is the SV650 worth the purchase today?

In our opinion, Suzuki has nailed the latest model of SV650. Through refinement and re-tuning, they've managed to create an exciting bike in an affordable price bracket - it definitely becomes a benchmark contender for middleweight naked bikes. They've managed to cut back on weight whilst giving the rider more features, such as low RPM assist, ABS, a modern display and an easy start system. This bike is light and nimble, allowing for great handling and it's packed with premium brakes and a punchy twin engine - ready for any street riding you desire.

The Suzuki SV650 2022 Model
The Suzuki SV650X 2022 Model

Have questions about this model? Or want to try one out for size? 

Contact us today on 01622 681765


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*Laguna exclusive offer on the Suzuki SV650 ends on 30 September 2022.

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