Patent filings indicate that Suzuki is working on a parallel-twin-powered successor to its ageing SV650 middleweight naked bike.
The Suzuki SV650 is widely considered a motorcycling staple, with its reputation of dependability and reliable performance.
However, the platform is beginning to show its age against key competitors, and the SV650 may require an overhaul if it is to seriously rival the likes of the Triumph Trident, which is due to launch next year.
The Suzuki SV650 originally launched in 1999, with the V-twin platform also underpinning the brand’s mid-sized V-Strom adventure bike.
While the SV650, and indeed its V-Strom stablemate have undergone regular facelifts over the years, the current range still borrows much from the bike of 1999.
Today’s LAMS-friendly SV650 is priced from a competitive $9999 rideaway, undercutting the popular Yamaha MT-07 ($11,849), while offering comparable performance.
The 2020 SV650 makes 35kW/56Nm in LAMS guise, or 56kW/64Nm with the full power tune, but perhaps lacks some of the refinement and new-age pizzazz of Yamaha’s offering.
What will surely be keeping both Japanese manufacturers on their toes is the recent news that Triumph would be entering the segment with its new Trident.
Triumph Motorcycles told INFO MOTO at a recent press event that it plans to disrupt the learner-friendly naked bike category, which is also occupied by the lauded Kawasaki Z650, with a model that stands apart thanks to a triple-cylinder engine and unique British styling cues.
Critically, the Triumph rides on a newly developed platform, meaning that it will likely boast modern technology features that are missing from its aforementioned competitors.
Triumph says that the Trident will compete in terms of both performance and price, but the addition of things like a colour digital display, fully adjustable suspension and rider modes would go a long way to attract would-be SV650 buyers.
Recently discovered patent filings from 2019 show that Suzuki is working on a fresh parallel-twin engine, and the Suzuki SV650 is the most likely candidate for an overhaul.
This could mean that the Suzuki middleweight will move away from the V-twin in favour of a twin-cylinder engine, as is used in the Yamaha MT-07 and Kawasaki Z650.
Suzuki fans have speculated that the brand could adjust its nameplate to something like ‘S650’ if it is to adopt the new twin.
The motor seen in recent patent filings seems to be a version of the unit used in the Suzuki Recursion concept bike from 2015, which initially sparked rumours of a new SV650 model.
Since then, Suzuki has made no official suggestion that an SV650 successor is on the horizon.
Spencer has a keen eye for hard news, and does some of his best living on deadline day. He loves more than anything to travel on his motorcycle, and is adamant that Melbourne Bitter is a world-class lager. He also knows how to operate the big computery thing in the office. By night, Spencer plays guitar with Melbourne punk outfit LOUTS.