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Suzuki V-Strom 800RE (2024) - Review

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2024 Suzuki V-Strom 800RE Review Details Price Spec_250
2024 Suzuki V-Strom 800RE Review Details Price Spec_208
2024 Suzuki V-Strom 800RE Review Details Price Spec_154

Original Technical Review: Ben Purvis – 6th October 2023

Riding Review: Simon Hargreaves – 31st October 2023


Price: £9,699 | Power: 83.1bhp | Weight: 223kg | Overall BikeSocial Rating: 3/5

Adventure bikes are without doubt Range Rovers of motorcycling – despite offering a world of potential most of them spend the vast majority of their time firmly on Tarmac where all their off-road prowess becomes a limitation rather than the boon it promises to be.

Be honest, do you really need knobbly tyres, wire wheels and long-travel suspension? If the answer is ‘no’ but you still like the commanding riding position, comfort and practicality of an adventure bike, the new V-Strom 800RE might be just what you’re after. ‘RE’ might be a new tag, standing for ‘Road Explorer’ (as opposed to ‘Dual Explorer’ for the existing V-Strom 800DE), but in essence this is the ‘base’ version of V-Strom 800: stripped back to be cheaper and lighter than the DE, and perhaps all the better for it.


  • £1000 cheaper than the V-Strom 800DE

  • 19in front wheel and road tyres for conventional handling

  • 7kg lighter and 30mm lower seat height than the DE

  • Up-spec brakes

  • Less off-road ability

  • Plain colour options

  • Lower-spec suspension

Suzuki V-Strom 800 RE (2024) REVIEW

From 18:00 - 31 Oct 2023

With a 19in front wheel, lower seat height, less weight and lower price, is the 2024 Suzuki V-Strom 800RE the best real-world option in the V-Strom range? Simon Hargreaves investigates while on the press launch in France.


2024 Suzuki V-Strom 800RE Price

What could you do with a spare £1000? The list is probably pretty long, and by opting for the V-Strom 800RE instead of the V-Strom 800DE you can make a start on it because that’s how much cheaper the new model is. Sliding in at £9699 it’s well under the psychologically-important £10k mark and even further under the £10,699 of the V-Strom 800DE.

It’s also, vitally, £200 less than the Honda XL750 Transalp that’s arguably its main rival, and more than £700 less than the new BMW F800GS.

Reaching dealers in late October, the V-Strom 800RE is coming in three colour options, but  the choices are a bit on the dull side. However much ‘Metallic Matt Steel Green’ is “intended to reflect an organic sense of natural beauty as experienced on a misty morning in a deep forest” – Suzuki’s words, not ours – it’s still bland. The alternatives of ‘Pearl Vigor Blue’ or ‘Glass Sparkle Black’ aren’t much more exciting, particularly when paired, as they are, with black wheels. Surely offering the DR Big-style yellow and blue of the V-Strom 800DE wouldn’t have added much to the bottom line?



2024 Suzuki V-Strom 800RE Engine & Performance

Suzuki’s new, 776cc parallel twin engine is already proving to be a triumph in the existing V-Strom 800DE and GSX-8S models. Its peak power of 83.1bhp might not make it the market leader in its capacity class, even for parallel twins, but it’s won plenty of fans already with its smooth, fuss-free performance, largely thanks to a long-stroke design that prioritises low and mid-range thrust over headline-generating peak power figures. The bore and stroke are 84mm and 70mm respectively, contributing to a peak torque of 78Nm (57.5lb-ft) that arrives at only 6800rpm, while power peaks at 8,500rpm.

The 270-degree crank is pretty much the norm these days, giving a V-twin-esque throb, but Suzuki has added its own patented twin balancer shaft system, and the compact, under-seat airbox has two different length air intakes to tune the flow. It exhausts into a two-into-one system with a two-stage catalytic converter and drives the six-speed box via an assist-and-slipper clutch and a bidirectional quickshifter to allow clutchless changes both up and down, including an auto-blipper to rev-match the downshifts.

Ride-by-wire means there’s the usual array of modes and settings, with all the initialisms to go with them. The Suzuki Intelligent Rider System (SIRS) incorporates the Suzuki Drive Mode Selector (SDMS) to offer three throttle maps. Mode A gives the sharpest response, Mode C the softest, and you can probably guess where Mode B sits.

Then there’s Suzuki Traction Control System (STCS) with three settings, each allowing a different level of wheelspin before intervening, plus the ability to turn it off altogether.

More tech appears in the form of Suzuki’s Easy Start System, allowing a single quick press of the starter button, and the firm’s Low RPM Assist to help prevent stalls when you’re pulling away.

On the road, the RE’s motor, unsurprisingly, feels identical to the DE’s because it is – it’s literally cut and pasted from one bike to the other. Prioritizing midrange performance over top end revs and peak power might mean the Suzuki motor is some 10bhp down on Honda’s twin from the Transalp – but it compensates with a fat midrange blip between 5000 and 6000rpm that trounces the Honda where, arguably, it matters more. So although it’s fair to say the RE engine lacks top end sparkle – it won’t astound or amaze with pyrotechnic power curves and isn’t what you’d call a thrilling motor – it makes up for it with deeply substantial, satisfying bottom-end and midrange heft that encourages grunting out of corners. Blatting-great overtakes past traffic with a big handful is an absolute gas. And especially when short-shifted through the Suzuki’s up/down quickshifter – not the quickest quickshifter out there, but metronomically reliable and the only bike in this class to come with one fitted as standard. The V-Strom 800RE has a brilliantly useful engine, and does much of its work before other engines have woken up.

Reservations about potentially annoying engine vibration at launch of the DE proved largely unfounded in subsequent use on the roads in the UK – putting in over 1000 miles around Wales on the DE and over 2000 on the GSX-8S, vibes are only noticeable cruising at an indicated 80mph (74mph actual speed, just over 5000rpm in top) on the motorway, mostly through the pegs. Vibes are subjective – they feel different for everyone – but the V-Strom’s will be well below the annoying threshold for most riders, and the RE – again, unsurprisingly, feels just like the DE.



2024 Suzuki V-Strom 800RE Handling & Suspension (inc. Weight & Brakes)

The essence of the V-Strom 800RE’s chassis is identical to the DE version, a steel tube design with a bolt-on subframe, but when it comes to the suspension the RE version establishes its own, quite different credentials.

The forks are Showa SFF-BP upside-downers, but without the full adjustability of the DE. Where the higher-spec, off-road model lets you tweak the preload, compression and rebound damping, the RE’s front end can only be adjusted for preload. With 150mm of travel, it’s a much more street-oriented setup than the DE, which has 220mm of movement, and the RE’s ground clearance is reduced from 220m to 185mm.

At the back there’s a monoshock with remote preload adjustment and adjustable rebound – still a step down from the fully-adjustable one of the DE – and again suspension travel drops from 220mm to 150mm.

The wheels are the next big difference, with a 19-inch front and 17-inch rear – both cast aluminium – instead of the 21-inch and 17-inch wires of the DE. The RE’s alloys mean it can, and does, use tubeless tyres, with Dunlop D614s as standard, tailormade for the 800RE and measuring 110/80-19 and 150/70-17. They might not have the deep tread and off-road ability of the DE’s tyres, but with more rubber on the tarmac they promise more grip on hard surfaces.

That means the RE can use stronger brakes, gaining four-pot radial Nissin calipers grabbing two 310mm discs where the DE has smaller, axially-mounted stoppers. A single pot caliper and 260mm disc appear at the back, and there’s two-mode ABS, with different settings for hard and loose surfaces.

Smaller wheels and shorter suspension mean the V-Strom 800RE is a useful 7kg lighter than the 800DE, coming in at 223kg wet, and you can expect quicker steering too – the suspension and wheel changes mean the RE’s rake is 26 degrees compared to 28 degrees for the RE.

And the RE’s front wheel size and suspension travel produce the most significant riding dynamic differences between it and the V-Strom DE – even with the same frame, swingarm and detachable subframe (still a nice touch), shorter-travel suspension means less weight transfer under braking and acceleration, and a lower centre of gravity. It transforms the RE’s cornering – like most bikes with a 21in front and long-travel springs, the DE divides cornering into four discrete phases: brake in a straight line as the forks compress and all the weight goes on the front, then come off the brakes and wait for the forks to return and settle, then turn, and get on the gas and transfer weight to the rear as the bike comes upright. It’s a point-and-squirt style; trail braking and carrying corner speed is limited. The DE can be persuaded to resist all its weight transfer, courtesy of having fully adjustable Showas front and rear – whack everything (literally) on max and the bike’s movement is much reduced.

But the RE corners like a roadster – with less weight transfer (or suspension movement), and more conventional steering, grip and feedback from the 19in, 110/80 front tyre (a surprisingly grippy Dunlop D614), it blends braking, steering, mid-corner and exit into a connected single action. And while its Showas don’t share the DE’s range of adjustment (preload only at the front, remote hydraulic preload and rebound at the back), they don’t need to – there’s less travel to control.

Ride quality is good too – the suspension eats up bumps pretty well and, more importantly, it doesn’t lose control and compromise grip or stability like rival budget springs are prone to do.

The RE also boasts plenty of steering agility, due in part to its 150-section rear tyre – good for flickability if not style points – but also shaving 7kg off the kerb weight, down to 223kg, helps.

What we end up with is a cracking all-round chassis dynamic – nicely poised on the road, even when going completely radge, the RE never loses control of affairs, or feels suddenly unpredictable and out of its depth. Overcook it into a corner and the Suzuki gives a gentle shimmy as its ABS kicks in (through excellent GSX-8S-style radial Nissin four-pots, not the DE’s axial two-pots), and a subtle stroke on the rear brake pulls the plot back on line without drama. Even ridden like an idiot on bumpy, over-banded French tarmac at the launch in Montpellier, the RE remains steadfastly composed and far, far quicker than an equivalent rider on a bike with a 21in front and 200+mm of suspension travel (including the 800DE).



2024 Suzuki V-Strom 800RE Comfort & Economy

The reduced ground clearance, smaller front wheel, shorter suspension and lower, 825mm seat alone would make the V-Strom 800RE feel substantially different to the DE on their own, but they’re far from the only changes made to make the road-biased model more suited to its task.

The bars are 15mm narrower, 13mm lower and positioned 23mm further forward than the DE’s, while the footpegs (aluminium rather than the DE’s steel ones) are 7mm higher and 14mm further back, contributing to an overall riding position that’s suited to sitting rather than standing. The RE’s screen is taller and wider than the DE’s too, since owners are likely to spend more time at highway speeds.

Fuel consumption is an impressive 64.12mpg under WMTC conditions, the same figure that’s claimed for the DE version, giving a theoretical range of more than 280 miles. However, our test of the V-Strom 800DE returned 46mpg, which means the tank would be dry in 200 miles and you’re realistically going to stop to fill up every 180 miles or so.

Out in the wild, the RE’s riding position doesn’t feel radically different to the DE’s – which is a good thing. Its forward-canted bars and pegs put noticeable weight over the front end, but it’s a fairly subtle change; the RE still has an upright, adventure-style riding position. The reduced width of the bars, grip to grip, is the most noticeable difference – but, if anything, that makes the RE feel more natural. Adventure bikes with wide bars can sometimes feel like paddling a canoe, and riders with nerve or muscular issues in their shoulders sometimes find the traditional adventure riding position tiring and, eventually, painful. No worries on the RE – its riding position ergonomics are pretty much perfect (it’s worth noting although Suzuki claim the footpegs are higher, that’s only relative to the seat height – in absolute terms, they’re actually closer to the ground than the DE’s peg height, and ground clearance is accordingly less).

The RE’s screen is substantially wider and taller than the sliver of plastic fitted as standard to the DE. Same four-Allen-bolt brackets and same 15mm range of adjustment (basically, hardly any) – but now instead of the wind blast hitting the rider square on from head to chest on the DE, the RE’s screen creates more turbulence behind it – so yes, it’s quieter, but yes, there’s more buffeting. Managing wind blast is subjective; there’ll be plenty of companies offering alternatives – Pyramid Plastics, Puig, Powerbronze, MRA etc, as well as Suzuki’s own – and it’ll be a personal choice which works and which doesn’t.

The RE’s seat is, thankfully, the same (or a very similar) shape to the DE’s. This is a good thing because it’s very comfy. The RE seat has a denser foam (so it should be firmer) to give more support over longer distances. Either way, it’s well-sculpted to fit human bottoms – for some reason, at the end of the test ride, it felt warm enough to mistaken for a heated seat; not sure if that’s something to do with my ZeroFit leggings (toasty layers) or some strange heat effect from the bike. The only slight caveat is the RE’s more forward-leaning riding position tends to guide the rider towards the thinner part of the seat, meaning you end up with less girth between your legs, so to speak. We’d need to ride the RE for more than the 150 miles of the launch route to confirm whether it significantly alters overall ride comfort.

What is the same between the RE and DE is the tank size – in fact, the tank is actually the same. At 20 litres, it’s got an easy 150-mile range to reserve at the launch consumption figure of around 44mpg. Like all Euro5 motors, cane the RE and the figure drops rapidly; nurse it and the consumption goes the other way – over 55mpg is easily achieved without undue restraint, and 200 mile-range is on the cards. The more careful you are, the higher it gets (but Suzuki’s claimed 64mpg is, like all claimed manufacturer’s figures, actually back-calculated from emissions measurements, so it’s as much use as a chocolate teapot).



2024 Suzuki V-Strom 800RE Equipment

The RE’s on-board tech is unchanged from the DE, with a 5-inch colour TFT with day and night display modes, a USB port and control for all the essential settings and systems. It’s the same story for other electronics, including the stacked LED headlights and the bar control units, but the lower cost of the V-Strom 800RE shows in some kit that’s removed, including the under-engine cowl and the hand guards, which are both standard on the DE.

There’s also a different front mudguard, required for the smaller front wheel, but other than that the RE and DE models are largely the same.

That means the existing range of options for the V-Strom 800DE can also be used on the RE, including both cosmetic and protective under-engine cowls, handguards, heated grips, alternate seats either 20mm lower or 30mm taller than standard, and a wide array of different luggage options. There are also auxiliary lights, a centre stand, a 38mm taller screen and – unique to the RE variant – the option of wheel decals to add a much-needed flash of colour.

What the V-Strom doesn’t come with is cruise control – neither the RE nor DE, nor GSX-8S. The reason, according to Suzuki (and it sounds refreshingly honest) is the factory product planners, when spec’ing the platform four years ago, didn’t feel cruise was a viable option for their price targets – and no rivals had it (and none do now). So it wasn’t spec’d, and it seems unlikely to be fitted anytime soon unless Suzuki feel the absence is seriously denting sales – technically it’s not difficult (the bikes are ride-by-wire, and the switchgear is used on the larger V-Stroms) but it would add cost to the bikes in the range.

The RE also doesn’t come with a lot of standard equipment – quickshifter yes, but heated grips, centrestand, hand guards and luggage are all optional extras. Having said that, not many bikes are better-spec’d at a sub-£10k price point.


Best value adventure bike

Three similar bikes go head-to-head: CFMoto 800MT Sport vs. Triumph Tiger 850 Sport vs. Suzuki V-Strom 800RE

2024 Suzuki V-Strom 800RE Rivals

The V-Strom 800DE might look cooler, but the RE is arguably going to be a bike that’s more use to more people for more of the time. However, it’s heading into a tough segment of the market that’s got even more competitive in 2024 with the recent launch of the BMW F800GS (confusingly powered by a near-900cc engine) to replace the old F750GS. Meanwhile, Triumph’s Tiger Sport 660 offers a different take on the same theme with a three-cylinder engine and a bargain, sub-£9k price.

Of course the closest 800RE rival is the Triumph everyone forgets about – the Tiger 850 Sport. The triple is larger, at 888cc, and revs harder – but peak power is roughly the same, and so is much else: weight, seat height, wheel sizes, brake spec, tank size and electronics spec – apart from the Suzuki’s addition of a quickshifter (it’s an extra on the Triumph). The Tiger 850 Sport is around £500 more expensive than the Suzuki.


Honda Transalp | Price: £9,699

Power/Torque: 90.5bhp/55.2lb-ft | Weight: 208kg (kerb)


BMW F 800 GS | Price: £10,205

Power/Torque: 87bhp/67.1lb-ft | Weight: 227kg (kerb)


Triumph Tiger Sport 660 | Price: £8,945

Power/Torque: 80bhp/47.2lb-ft | Weight: 206kg


Triumph Tiger 850 Sport | Price: £10,095

Power/Torque: 84bhp/47.2lb-ft | Weight: 215kg




2024 Suzuki V-Strom 800RE Verdict

Suzuki’s V-Strom 800RE is not a sexy bike – it’s the vanilla V-Strom; modest, quiet, unassuming, anonymous. But it’s hugely capable and highly functional – it’ll beat you around the head with a sensible bat until you submit to reason and go and buy one. It’s completely viceless and will provide years of rewarding, but maybe not terribly exciting, ownership.

And, compared to the DE, the RE is undeniably a better road bike dynamically – more confident in the corners, more manageable, cheaper and, arguably, better wind protection. If that’s enough to win the argument and you’ll never ride off road, the V-Strom 800RE is in dealers as we speak.


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2024 Suzuki V-Strom 800RE - Technical Specification

New price

From £9,699



Bore x Stroke

84 x 70mm

Engine layout

Parallel twin

Engine details

Four-stroke, DOHC, liquid-cooled


83.1bhp (62kW) @ 8,500rpm


57.5lb-ft (78Nm) @ 6,800rpm


Six-speed constant mesh, bidirectional quickshifter, assist-and-slipper clutch

Average fuel consumption

64.12mpg claimed

Tank size

20 litres

Max range to empty

282 miles

Rider aids

3-mode traction control, 2-mode ABS, quickshifter with auto-blipper, 3 throttle maps


Steel tube

Front suspension

Showa SFF-BP USD forks

Front suspension adjustment

Preload only

Rear suspension

Oil-damped monoshock

Rear suspension adjustment

Preload and rebound damping

Front brake

2x 310mm discs, four-piston Nissin radial calipers

Rear brake

260mm disc, single-piston sliding caliper

Front wheel / tyre

7-spoke cast aluminium wheel, 19-inch, 110/80R19M/C 59V tubeless Dunlop D614F

Rear wheel / tyre

7-spoke cast aluminium wheel, 17-inch, 150/70R17M/C 69V tubeless Dunlop D614

Dimensions (LxWxH)

2,255mm x 905mm x 1,355mm



Seat height



223kg (kerb)


2 years / unlimited miles


600 miles, then 7500. Valves at 15,000

MCIA Secured Rating

Not yet rated



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What is MCIA Secured?

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  • A steering lock that meets the UNECE 62 standard

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  • An alarm system

  • A vehicle tracking system with subscription

The higher the star rating, the better the security, so always ask your dealer what rating your bike has and compare it to other machines on your shortlist.