The 1986 Suzuki GSXR750 motorcycle came along at a time when the sportbike battle was growing ever-more intense. The machines themselves were getting closer and closer to street-legal racers.
Introduced for 1985, this latest entry from Suzuki was intended to reflect the technology learned from winning the World Endurance Championship in 1983 with a factory-prepared GSXR. Differences between the two were minimal.
The GSXR's four-cylinder engine represented the third step in a technological progression.
The GS of the late 1970s was a four cylinder with two valves per cylinder, the GSX of the early 1980s had four valves per cylinder, and the GSXR added oil cooling for better heat dissipation.
Horsepower of the 750-cc version rose from 83 on the GSX to 100 on the GSXR -- quite a boost. But that wasn't the bike's only advantage.
Wrapped around the engine was a box-section alloy frame that weighed significantly less than the former tubular steel one while being stiffer to boot.
A crouched, racer-like riding position and full fairing further mimicked the competition version.
In all, the GSXR750 represented a quantum leap forward for Suzuki, if not the entire industry. And better still was yet to come.
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1986 Suzuki GSXR750 Pictures
The 1986 Suzuki GSXR750 motorcycle was designed with a race-like riding position. The air-oil-cooled engine was completely hidden by the fairing, but its presence could be verified by the dominant tachometer; it redlined at 11,000 rpm.