Suzuki SV1000 or Triumph Speed Triple? Advice about buying used.

Discussion in 'Road Warriors' started by Patmich, Jul 5, 2010.

  1. Patmich

    Patmich Adventurer

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    Hey, how ya doing. I hope this is the right forum for my question.
    Well I have been looking for a bike for about two damn months.
    Way too long. I have narrowed it down to two bikes. Both are
    2005. Both are private seller. The SV1000 has only 2000 miles on
    it, and he has finally come down from $4500 asking price to my
    offer price of $3800. This happened just this evening. So $3800
    for the 2005 SV1000 in case you get confused easily.
    The Triumph Speed Triple has 7,000 miles. He has accepted
    $4250 for it. So now I have these two
    great deals waiting to be had. (sorry I haven't test-driven either one).
    I have the cash. But need a little more experienced input about
    which bike might best suit me, which bike is better overall, or anything else that might help me.
    I am 49 years old, my only experience with motorcycles was a KLR 650
    which I owned a few years ago, and drove primarily on pavement,
    and a Genuine Buddy 150cc which I owned last year and got pretty good splitting lanes with. So I am experienced, but
    not hugely. I want a bike to explore the back roads with,
    maybe go into the Foothills (I live in Denver). No interest
    in driving around town, sitting in traffic, I never expect to get above 80 or 90 MPH. I want
    a seat of my pants experience, lots of torque, lots of 0-60 acceleration.
    Mostly I plan to explore with it, though. So comfort is important, too.
    I appreciate your input. I plan to buy one or the other in a day or two. Thanks again.
    #1
  2. veetwo _tls

    veetwo _tls RENOVATIO:

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    #2
  3. Patmich

    Patmich Adventurer

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    Thanks Mate, I forgot to mention that the SV1000 is the "S" version, meaning it is half-faired. The Speed Triple is naked. Reading Wikipedia,
    it said that the SV1000 sold poorly, unlike its smaller sibling the
    SV650 which was wildly popular. Any idea why the SV1000 sold poorly?
    #3
  4. veetwo _tls

    veetwo _tls RENOVATIO:

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    ? beats me there a top engine.
    i have the TLs
    #4
  5. duckman

    duckman co conspirator

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    the sv1000 sold poorly because people that wanted a suzuki sports bike purchased a gsx600, 750 or 1000 .if they went in the other direction they got a dl1000 or 650.japanese 2 cyl sport bikes don't sell well in the first place look at the honda superhawk or rc51.i sold a ducati monster because i didn't want to change cam belts every couple of years. i'll never sell my sv1000, i had a dl1000 first and it was t-boned and written off by my insurance company.The sv 1000 is the sweeter running motor.i liked the long travel suspension of the dl but the sv ran great from day 1.the dl needed a throttle body sync and yosh box tune up not a major problem but the dealer refused to do it as part of the purchase price.as a result i rode it for a year popping and pooping in the air box from 3000 to 4500 rpm and running ruff at highway speeds. where the sv1000 needed nothing it ran like an electric motor. [​IMG]
    #5
  6. jfurf

    jfurf Been here awhile

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    I just bought an SV1000(naked) two months ago and have ridden it almost 5,000 miles since then. So, yes, I think it's just about the perfect bike (for me at least). There's very little I don't like about it.

    - Tons of torque
    - Sounds great
    - Super reliable for me so far
    - Very comfortable riding position (on the N at least). The clip-ons on the S are a bit lower, but I do know you can convert to handelbars. There are tons of online tutorials on how to do it.
    - Very confidence-inspiring and an "easy" bike to ride fast, imo.
    - Fully adjustable suspension is plenty good for the street, imo.
    - Great owners who care about their bikes and VERY unpretentious.

    I also considered a Speed Triple but just happened to get a good deal on an SV. I think you'll be very happy either way. Don't be put off by the relative rarity of the 1000 cc SV. That engine is absolutely proven. It's used in the DL1000 and is the step-child of the old TL1000 lump.
    #6
  7. elementalg20

    elementalg20 Been here awhile

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    If it were the SV1000n I'd say go for it. Being the half fair version, I'm not so sure. If it fits you and you find it comfortable thats all that is important here, but personally I found the ergos way to agressive for my taste, different rear sets and a set of LSL superbars would probably make it a favorite for me though. I think both are great bikes with the suzuki likely being a little softer all around, not entirely a bad thing.
    #7
  8. PeteN95

    PeteN95 Long timer

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    I own the SV1000 naked and love it, but the were only sold for one year in the US, 2003. You can simply drill the upper triple clamp on the S model and bolt on tubular bars clamps, then mount any bars you want. If you stick to lower, "superbike" type bars, the stock cables will probably work. Lots of info on these at the SV-portal.com
    #8
  9. darkstarmoto

    darkstarmoto Am I evil? Yes I am

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    I own an 09 Speed Triple and I'd say for the money you're better off on the SV. I also had a TL1000R (basically same engine as SV) and it was a ton of fun bike. The SV will give you better ergonomics (which are easy to mod to your riding needs) than the Speed and if you plan to ride any distance you'll probably appreciate the fairing. The SV also has more "touring" options than a Speed.

    Speeds are alot of fun, but only if you dig being in the wind (like me). :evil
    #9
  10. Patmich

    Patmich Adventurer

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    I appreciate the good responses to my question. The biggest thing I learned was the S version of the SV1000 has lower handle bars, and
    thus more aggressive riding position than the naked. It's something
    I hadn't known despite a lot of reading. One of you guys gave a stab
    at the reason why the SV1000 didn't sell well. I think he was saying
    guys who like sport bikes don't like two cylinders, and thus the reason
    SV1000 didn't sell well. (sorry if I didn't get it right). I do know
    the seller wants to sell it so he can get a crotch rocket. He said
    something about not liking the twin cylinder and wanted a real
    sport bike like a crotch rocket. That one statement of his over
    the phone has me a little worried. Obviously this dude likes speed.
    And the SV1000 wasn't doing it for him in the speed department.
    I makes me wonder how hard he rode it? Did he race it? Did he
    take it to the track? But then again, it only has 2000 miles on it.
    He has been bugging me to get the deal done as soon as possible
    so he can get his crotch rocket. I am dragging my feet.
    #10
  11. veetwo _tls

    veetwo _tls RENOVATIO:

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    a good tuned TLS/TLR/SV1000 will give the I4's a run for there money & the italian V2's that is a fact & been proven :deal

    like i said before jump on www.tlzone.net all you want to know is there & lots more :thumb
    you will get your answers from guys that know these bikes inside out.

    WARNING if you end up with the SV & on the zone be prepared to part with the $$$ :rofl lots of billet goodies on there.

    regarding the low clip-ons that's an easy fix with numerous options.


    MY97 TLS
    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
    #11
  12. Bike#8

    Bike#8 Been here awhile

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    I have a 2007 SV1000S. Outstanding bike for the $ imho. Engine is a gem, shifting is optional on the back twisty road. A vtwin that pulls hard down low, but still revs to 11,000 rpm. Main thing I like is the low weight vs cruiser type vtwins. The SV makes my former Honda 919 seem top heavy and semi-piggish. I'm good for a hour or two of riding, and I'm no spring chicken :)
    #12
  13. Tripped1

    Tripped1 Bitch called me a feminist.

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    It didn't sell well because it was ghastly overpriced new. You either had to be TOTALLY SV faithful or you would pay the extra (what was it) $500 and get a GSXR if you were looking for a sport bike. If you wanted a Tourer the bike was FAR more expensive then the bandit, which is more versitile, and in the same league as the Fizzer pricewise.

    It didn't stack to the sportbikes despite its price, and there were better options for Sport Touring.

    My take, the bikes are REALLY close. The 1050 Triple may handle a little better, DEFINITELY has better brakes and is slightly more comfortable then the SV1000S I spend time on. I couldn't tell you about a SV naked, I've never ridden on.

    I like both bikes.
    #13
  14. rauchman

    rauchman Been here awhile

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    I haven't been on a 1050 SP, but my buddy used to have a 2004? 955 SP. The one thing I remember from that engine, was it's smoothness. Build quality was so-so and it seemed to carry it's weight a bit high.

    I own a 2007 SV1000S. My 1st bike was an 2002 SV650S that was bought new. In between I had a 2002 Yamaha Roadstar. After having the RS for a while, I wanted something that had a meaty engine, but handled w/ decent brakes and suspension. I came across the SV used and bought it. I knew going into it, that I'd have to mod for comfort. I found the stock clip-ons low are FAR away. After riding for 1/2 hour or so, I found myself getting uncomfortable. After 1 hour or so, I was done. I've since added Convertibars (which included adding lengthened new brake lines, clutch line and throttle cables). I now have at least 6" of rise and the bars are positioned considerably closer. I've also added Buell foot pegs (best $28 I spent on the bike) and Sargeant seat. While the comfort is not great, it's considerably better than what it was. Also, I became a practioner of suspension voo-doo'ery. Amazing what small turns of the stock suspension components can produce. I recently did a trip to PA, OH, WV, VA, back to PA and home to NJ. The longest stretch was 600 miles from Teaneck NJ to New Albany, OH (just outside of Columbus, OH). The trip was long, but the comfort mods helped tremendously.

    As other's have mentioned, the engine is a gem. 2005 and newer SV's make somewhere between 103 and 113hp w/ roughly 70-73ft lbs. Brakes or OK, but not great. The newer SS brake lines helped a bit. I have yet to put better pads on. In stop and go traffic up to 25 MPH or so, the motor can get jerky / snatchy. I think this is with any twin at low speeds/revs. I used to experience the same w/ the SV650 I used to own. Once the motor gets above 3K on the tach, it really smooths out. Above 4k, it pulls really nicely...very linear in acceleration. I do think the Triumph motor will be smoother at low revs though.

    Hope this helps.
    #14
  15. PeteN95

    PeteN95 Long timer

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    One of the reasons I got the SV was I wanted to do track days. I used to race an SV650, so I know they handle well. I never had an issue with the brakes, but installed a GSXR fork instead of just re-working the stock suspension and it has the newer radial brakes. It now handles very well with the correct springs for my weight and I can run with most sport bikes on the track. Here is a vid of a recent track day from my bike:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1Ze5FFQ084U
    #15
  16. veetwo _tls

    veetwo _tls RENOVATIO:

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    nice sample of a modded one (gsxr front end swap)

    [​IMG]
    #16
  17. jwdub

    jwdub Been here awhile

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    Three years ago I bought a used 2003 SV1000S. I drilled the top triple clamp and installed bar mounts with FZ6 handle bars and bar end weights and added Buell footpegs. I was able to use the existing brake lines and throttle cables but had to reroute them. The riding position is comfortable for me for up to 200 miles. I'm 6"2" and 65 yrs young - without the bar and footpeg mods, I was in pain within 15 miles. I did my own valve shim adjustment at 18K -- all but one shim needed to be changed but the SV1000 engine is very easy to work on. Love the V-Twin sound and instant power (geared one tooth down on the countershaft).
    #17
  18. Patmich

    Patmich Adventurer

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    All of your newest posts were very good. Thank you. I do not think I will be getting the SV1000. I know mods are available. but I just don't want to
    have to mess with mods. I don't know dick about mods to begin with,
    and I live in a 1BR apartment to boot so I want a bike that is ready to ride,
    as is. I learned a lot here, and you helped me make a decision. Thanks much.
    #18
  19. skortch

    skortch mmm... curvy

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    Good luck with it - post a pic or two when you get the chance. Did you buy the yellow S3 that was on craigslist?

    I just picked up an '03 SV1000S last Friday. I'm going to reserve judgment on it until after I get a new chain, sprockets, and tires installed, but the engine's a peach. The riding position is close to a full-on sport bike, though the clipons are a bit higher than typical SS fair. It sounds like that would have been something you'd want to change, either with helibars, convertibars, or installing a handlebar. Really makes me wish manufacturers would give options with regard to clip-on rise.

    On the plus side, the front fairing does a great job, producing a nice turbulent-free flow of air right around shoulder height.

    I test rode a Speed Triple a few weeks ago. Great bike, wonderful engine, and more comfortable, though the footpegs are a little high and didn't seem to match the handlebar position. Not many choices for wind protection, though I would at least go with the flyscreen. It's a great choice for riding around in the mountains. Probably the one I'd choose, given the minimal price difference.
    #19
  20. jfurf

    jfurf Been here awhile

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    To be honest, I don't think you can wrong with EITHER the SV or the Triumph... BUT ...

    You really should at least take a test ride on an SV1000S if you can't find a naked one. The ergos might actually work for you. I was at the National SV Rally last month with a whole bunch of SV-S owners and didn't hear complaints about the riding position. ADV tends to skew older, too, so you hear a lot of complaining about back pain on here. That's just the way things are.

    Take a test ride before you decide the riding position won't work for you.
    #20