One of the advantages of actually going to the yearly EICMA show, as opposed to phoning it in like some other outlets do, is that you get see things that don’t find their way into a press release.
Take for example the Suzuki XRH-1 MotoGP race bike prototype that Randy de Puniet has been developing and Davide Brivio has been heading. On display at the Suzuki stand, it was perhaps the most technologically advanced motorcycle at EICMA, yet you would only know that if you went to Milan last week.
We have already seen the Suzuki GP bike testing in Japan, we have even published some of the first photos of the Suzuki XRH-1, all-the-while its absence was noted this week at the Valencia MotoGP test. Suzuki Racing had hoped to do some wild card entries for the 2014 season, but even that hope seems to have been extinguished, though the now-unemployed Randy de Puniet should still find some work test riding the Suzuki next year.
The Japanese OEM would be a welcomed addition to the current MotoGP Championship, and their return for 2015 is the cause for Eugene Laverty to sign with FIXI Crescent Suzuki for next year’s World Superbike Championship. In fact, many riders are hoping to bag a factory seat with Suzuki in 2015, which bodes well for the manufacturer, as long as it can come to grips with the 20-liter fuel restriction that is now in place.
Still using an ECU from Mitsubishi, Suzuki has more than a few hurdles to overcome before it is ready for the premier-class of motorcycle racing, and so the development continues. Taking a respite for now though, we get an up-close look at the company’s craftsmanship, and it is superb.
Finding an inline-four engine at its heart, Suzuki hopes to bridge the gap between MotoGP and street bike a bit with this entry, which is a good thing since the current generation GSX-R is going on its sixth model year. It appears until Suzuki re-enters MotoGP or builds a new superbike for the street, these photos are all we have to drool over from Hamamatsu. That will suffice…for now.
Photos: Jensen Beeler / Asphalt & Rubber – Creative Commons – Attribution 3.0