Traverse 06 - Page 107

punch to pull away and keep pulling. It’s a high revving engine and therefore needs the revs kept up to pull away down low however, once above 4000rpm to goes, and goes very well. The initial pulling away could be problematic for some riders, something that perhaps Suzuki has acknowledged by adding a Low RPM Assist feature that increases engine revs when the clutch is released, it’s a great touch and does indeed work. In the dirt or rougher stuff, the high revving nature of the engine can be a little annoying, a minor nuance that makes finding the right gear a challenge. Feathering the clutch becomes something you need to be an expert in, it doesn’t matter, the V-Strom’s clutch is one of the best around. It works well and is quite forgiving, the action is light and perfect for the off-road riding, something highlighted by the hydraulic system rather than cable. The V-Strom’s engine is a little characterless, the power and torque curves are quite flat making overall riding quite easy, at least above 4000rpm. It’s perfect for all standards of rider. Engine braking is superb on the V-Strom. The large v-twin slows immediately when rolling off the throttle. It comes into its own on the dirt; roll off and you slow, head down hill and you rarely find a need for the brakes, the engine will do it all for you. The traction control system on V-Strom is as good as anything in the class, if not better; three settings allow for all conditions. Off road, it’s best to reduce the TC, keeping it on demonstrates how good it is which can cause issues in the dirt. Fully off, or midway, are the way to go. The V-Strom's handling is what you'd expect from an adventure bike, good in most situations, better in some than others. On road is where it feels most comfortable, the factory settings are well suited to highways or country roads. Although the suspension could be considered a little stiff it is still supple enough for a comfortable long-distance ride, the upright seating position helps with this. Turn in, on the bitumen, is a little lazy something attributed to the 19inch front wheel, yet once into the corner the V-Strom behaves like a sport bike, it’s responsive and forgiving, any level of rider will find it a delight. Taking on the twisties with the V-Strom is a pleasure, a hell of a lot of fun. Hit the rough stuff and the V-Strom’s handling does fall a little. Rebound is a little stiff and takes a little TRAVERSE 107