Is the Suzuki Hayabusa suitable as a first bike? (2nd Gen)

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Last Updated : 02 July 2012

Following on from the release of the new 2nd Generation Hayabusa in October 2007 (2008 model) but still designated GSX1300R, I have to rewrite the original  recommendation.

The quick answer is a conditional NO.

BUT the answer is more conditional than my last post on this question.  That's only  because the Hayabusa has S-DMS (Suzuki Drive Mode Selector) The first manufacturer to release in production models - I believe.  Note that Suzuki announced the 2008 GSX-R1000 with the system before the Hayabusa.

So what's the difference?

The Hayabusa's S-DMS helps new riders by giving them the ability to reduce the power of the engine to 3 different modes.  Hence if you are still not confident or on the cautious side, set the engine to a different mode.  With the new modes anyone with decent physical and mental coordination may find it easier to learn to rider on the Hayabusa. 

Suzuki's Drive Mode System does work very well and it does help you gain control of the Hayabusa. That said, any high powered motorcycle with a similar system that works as well Suzuki's version will make beginner's life easier.   However, remember that just because you can now control power output it can considered a beginners motorcycle.  There's more than power to contend with when learning to ride.

A learner motorcycle rider WILL ride just as badly on a 600cc sports bike or a Hayabusa used the lowest power setting!  Yes even if the model is the best of the class in terms of handling.  Needless to say a learner on the 'world's fastest production bike' - that's scary for everyone.

Everyone has different abilities and some simply don't have the ability to ride a motorcycle as easily as others.  Hence the fear factor from those who can't ride (and other psychological issues). These are probably the same people who can't drive a car properly either. 

So why specifically is the Hayabusa, technically a bad choice?  It's a big and relatively heavy motorcycle.  Learners will not understand the simple basics or low speed manoeuvring, balancing and throttle control.  I've seen others and myself as learners try to stop a motorcycle from dropping.  Let it drop you fool if you try to stop it you'll hurt your back, maybe get a hernia and any other number of physical injuries. When I did that stupid thing I dented my tank and scrapped the bike and hurt my back in the process. I had barely 6 months riding experience at the time.

Another common beginner error is not observing the traffic lights.  Often you see them busy trying to get the bike into neutral rather than watching what the traffic is doing.  Or even worst - having a 'rest'.  Sure if the lights take a long time change find neutral but if you're familiar with the road it is kind of wankerish isn't it. Self preservation issue really.

Anyway, trying different types and classes of motorcycles as a learner is excellent way of learning to ride and learning about yourself.  Only then can you appreciate what the Hayabusa is all about.

From the pre-amble you can see where I'm heading with this... Even with the ability to control power output there is so much more to riding a motorcycle safely.  It may sound all doom and gloom but once you get the hang of it you'll be fine. Just like learning to drive a car it is easier to start with small one and progress to the size and type that you're after.  It is no different for motorcycles.

There are lots of things to consider but I still believe that the 4 main elements are YOU the HAYABUSA the ROAD CONDITIONS and TRAFFIC.  It's all common sense really!  Click here to read more - Suzuki Hayabusa as a first bike ?

Just remember that the Hayabusa is fun - nothing like having the reputed fastest bike in the world between your legs.  Unfortunately it can be too much fun - why ?
The bike feels slower than it really is.  Speed on the Hayabusa occurs very quickly.
One minute your doing the speed limit the next few seconds your way over it.
To get the adrenalin going requires far greater speeds than the norm.  You will be tempted and more often than not you will succumb to that temptation. 

It's not all doom an gloom though.  As I always say if you really must have a Hayabusa, go for it : no-one except yourself can stop you.  After your first ride you'll understand why its not a Newbie machine.  If you do decide to get one - make sure go to all the training courses available.  The Hayabusa is only part of the equation.  Do track day sessions, try different types of bikes learn as much as you can about how far YOU can go and how to handle as many different situations as you can. To coin a phrase from Spider-man : 'With great power comes great responsibility' or something like that anyway.

Read up more about what you should look for in a cheap and learner motorcycle follow this link :
How to choose a motorcycle

The low capacity motorcycle range - not just for learners!


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