Thirty eight years after launching the sci-fi styled GSX1100S Katana at the Cologne Motorcycle Show, Suzuki was back at the same venue to pull the covers off a contemporary Katana, based on the current day GSX-S1000.
As in the Eighties, Suzuki employed a European design house to bring the concept to life, with Italian stylist Rodolfo Frascolo and technical consultants Engines Engineering carrying out the development work and bringing the project from concept to delivery in just two years.
As you can see from the pictures, the distinctive angular lines and metallic silver echo those of the 1981 original, although underneath the sparkly new dress lies what is ostensibly a GSX-S1000.
That’s no bad thing, as it means the lusty, 150bhp, 2005 GSX-R1000 K5 motor is at the heart of the new Katana, and brought under control by three stage traction control.
In addition to the Eighties Katana fairing (which still looks pretty futuristic nearly 40 years on) the Suzuki has a stubby rear tail unit and a cruiser style rear number plate hanger that’s attached to the rear swingarm. There’s also a neat LCD dash and full LED lights, although unlike the Eighties original (which was famed for it’s unforgiving riding position) the new Katana has relaxed ergonomics and an upright stance, which Suzuki says has been designed for comfort.
Back in the day, Suzuki applied the Katana colour and styling to a wide range of models in their range, so it will be interesting to see if the sub-brand extends to other GSX-S models, such as the 125 and 750.
No prices have been announced yet for the 2019 Katana. It’ll be on sale in the spring and you’ll be able to see it in the metal at next month’s Motorcycle Live.