We tested the Suzuki
TL1000s and found it to be a fantastic bike with
plenty of grunt. Those who think the TL is a bad handling
machine probably haven't ridden one with the front steering
damper removed, or have chosen the wrong tyres or setup.
Sure the bike is a but twitchy but so is any sports bike
with that much power and torque.
A report from
the owner: Ricky Mullis
(Team Physio for DoctorDanger.com)
Owners Report: This
is the only brand spanking new thing I've ever owned (and
I'm still paying it off after nearly 5 years!!). I think
that it's worth every penny though. The torque of the engine
and the noise it makes just turns you into a hooligan whenever
you ride it. The original fuel injection mapping caused
the power delivery to be a bit abrupt. Well actually, it
came in with a real bang as you opened the throttle, and
I believe that this was a large part of the problem that
was reported in the first road tests (people were complaining
of being spat off on bends, and of the front end getting
a bit nervous when you crack it open). Naturally, the handling,
chassis and the innovative (unfamiliar) rear rotary damper
got the blame, but I reckon people used to smoother less
torquey bikes were just a bit disrespectful of a potent
Suzuki's typical corporate
response was along the lines of... there isn't a problem
with the handling of the TL1000S…. but we'll retro-fit a
rock solid steering damper anyway just to cure the problem
that never existed in the first place. I kept the damper
on for a good while, just out of ignorance really. When
I finally decided to bin it, it just made the whole bike
feel so much lighter and turn much quicker I wish I'd done
straight away. I've not had any nasty incidents, it can
get a bit lively when cranked over on white lines, but what
sports bike doesn't?
I've had the fuel injection
remapped by Steve at Symtek Racing, and it's a revelation.
The power delivery is just so much more controllable. You
can get on the gas much earlier out of corners without upsetting
the handling; again it's light years ahead of the original
I've still got the original
size tyre on the back (i.e. 190 section). A lot of folks
reckon that going down to a 180 section tyre helps the bike
flip over from side to side quicker, so I might give it
a try next replacement time.
I've only had a couple of
problems. The first is well known. Basically the oil-bathed
clutch slips if you use fully synthetic ultra-slippy oil.
Secondly, I had a problem
with the fuel tank not venting properly. I've mentioned
this to a number of dealers and to Suzuki UK direct and
been told it's not something they've ever come across before.
The first thing I noticed was that the petrol tank was mysteriously
sunken inwards on top (like somebody had sat on it!). The
bike had been running fine. When I opened the fuel filler
to check out what was going on the thing popped back into
shape like magic. The next time I rode it, after about 10
miles the tank started to implode on itself. Again the bike
was running fine. What was happening was that the fuel pump
(powering the fuel injection) was sucking like a good'un,
while the tank vent (around the filler cap) was not breathing
(i.e. not allowing air in to replace the fuel being used).
The resulting partial vacuum was causing the tank to literally
implode. On most bikes, and especially those with a gravity
fed fueling system, the engine would simply cut out with
fuel starvation. Once I sussed out what was happening, a
tiny spacer placed under one of the tank filler mounting
bolts fixed it instantly. Am I the only person on the planet
to have experienced this problem?