New Suzuki V-Strom 1050 XT and V-Strom 1050 adventure bikes

Styling takes the V-Strom closer to the legendary DR-Z and DR Big

New Suzuki V-Strom 1050 XT and V-Strom 1050 adventure bikes

WE rode the V-Strom 1000 XT just a few months ago, but now Suzuki has unveiled two updated V-Strom models, the V-Strom 1050 XT and the V-Strom 1050.

You’ll be able to see both models in the flesh at Motorcycle Live next week (16-24 November at Birmingham’s NEC) with Suzuki dealerships stocking them in the spring.

The styling of the 1050 XT and the 1050 take the V-Strom even closer to the looks of Suzuki’s legendary DR-Z race bike and DR Big production machine so you’ll see the ‘beak’ and the shape of the fuel tank is close to the shape on the DR-Z.

Further to that the colour options for the V-Strom 1050XT pay further homage to the DR-Z ‘Desert Express’ coming in that similar orange and white to the original DR Big (our favourite), while a yellow version links to Suzuki’s motocross and off-road pedigree.


We also really like the new vertically stacked rectangular LED headlight and the cockpit display.

So what else is different? The cylinder heads, clutch cover, alternator cover and water pump case are finished in a classy bronze and there are now LED indicators and an LED tail light. The handguards are more angular and the shape of the mirrors are new.

Slim fuel tank with a 20 litre capacity gives a range of over 250 miles (400km) between fill-ups based on the official WMTC fuel consumption of 57.65mpg (4.9-litres/100km)

It’s not just a styling exercise though; there’s a new Euro5 version of the flexible and characterful 90° V-Twin engine producing 107.4PS (79kW), a 7% increase over the previous generation. This is achieved with re-profiled intake and exhaust cams, with increased lift duration and less overlap. Twin-plug heads remain, along with lightweight three-ring-type forged pistons. A new radiator increases cooling capacity by 15%, and there is a new oil cooler. A slipper clutch aids smoother downshifts and lighter lever action. There’s also a new ride-by-wire throttle with three selectable engine modes and a three-mode traction control system.

There’s a height-adjustable seat (plus a lower option available as an accessory for further adjustment)

The flagship V-Strom 1050XT gets new Suzuki Intelligent Ride System (SIRS) which features a full suite of electronics including an inertial measurement unit (IMU), lean-angle sensitive ABS with two settings, linked brakes that can detect and adapt to load and inclines, plus hill hold control and cruise control.

The front forks (43mm) are from KYB and are fully-adjustable, upside down forks from KYB. The rear shock is preload and rebound damping-adjustable. Front brakes are radially-mounted Tokicos, biting twin 310mm discs for dependable stopping power.

A tapered handlebar is rigid and lightweight, with ergonomic considerations taken into account when riders are both sitting and standing. New footrests have a tougher design and make it easier to stand when off-road.

Wheels are lightweight DID aluminium, wire-spoked rims, with a 19-inch front and 17-inch rear for dependable performance on a variety of surfaces and in different riding conditions. They wear Bridgestone Battlax Adventure A41 radial tyres.

While there is a USB outlet on the left of the instrument cluster, there’s even a 12V DC outlet under the pillion seat which is the first time we’ve seen this on a motorcycle 

A centre stand, handguards, and engine bars, plus integrated luggage mounts that make for easy fitment and removal of panniers, add even more practicality as standard to the V-Strom 1050XT.

Moving on to the V-Strom 1050 and there are a few differences to enable a lower price. Firstly, this model has cast aluminium wheels instead of the spoked wheels. And it doesn’t have the Suzuki Intelligent Ride System, cruise control or Motion Track Brake System with linked brakes, hill hold, slope and load control and switchable ABS modes. However it does still have the same three-mode traction control system and three selectable engine power modes.

Note that the 1050 has cast wheels instead of the spokes on the red and yellow 1050 XT versions

Colours-wise it comes in two choices, either white or grey colour schemes, the LED tail-lights are finished with red lenses instead of the clear finish of the XT and there are no LED indicators. It also loses the standard-fit engine bars, centre stand, handguards, and lower cowling of the XT.

A comprehensive catalogue of genuine Suzuki accessories will be available for both models, including heated grips, side stand extender, aluminium and plastic luggage kits plus two tank bags, sump guards and engine bars, fog lamps, mirror extenders and decal kits.

The new V-Strom 1050XT and V-Strom 1050 are due to arrive in authorised Suzuki dealerships in the spring of 2020, with pricing to be announced.

See more here.