Tanshanomi's Snap Judgments

Suzuki Madura 1200

Tue, March 2nd, 2010

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1985–86 Suzuki GV1200GL Madura
Dyno output and drag strip times matched the V65 Sabre, and the engine just as smooth, but the carb response and power curve were not up to par in everyday riding.
Horrible shaft effect, little ground clearance, wiggly forks. Decent brakes, though.
Sure to be brought up in any 'ugliest motorcycle' discussion. I frankly don't think it's that much worse than many other Japanese cruisers, but it is graceless, cluttered and incohesive, with some truly wonky details such as the sky-high taillight.
The Madura was actually a well-built motorcycle, with many maintenance-friendly features. I'm making the usual deduction for age.
Like a '60s musclecar, this is an ungainly bike with more motor than it can handle. And since it was a 2-season sales flop, parts are sure to be scarce.
Even if you didn't mind the looks, I can't think of anybody I'd recommend this bike to, except those whose first priority is appearing weird and contrarian.
Riding a Madura is just baiting people to mock you.