Suzuki GS500

Suzuki GS500

The Suzuki GS500 is a popular entry level motorcycle manufactured by the Suzuki Motor Corporation. Suzuki produces two forms of the bike; the GS500 or GS500E from 1989 onwards and the fairing model GS500F from 2004 onwards.

GS500 / GS500E

The naked version of the GS500 was released into the US in 1989 under the model name GS500E. It was equipped with an air-cooled 487 cc (29.7 cu in) parallel twin engine derived from the earlier GS450. The bike is widely used for commuting purposes due to its good horsepower, decent torque, light weight, highly reliable engine as well as its excellent fuel economy. They are also a popular choice for beginner riders because of their low price and cost of ownership.

1994 Suzuki GS500E

The GS500 is able to be restricted (or is under the maximum power to weight ratio) for use in countries where restrictive motorcycle licenses are issued (such as the UK Class ‘A’ motorcycle license) which added to its worldwide popularity. In 2002, Suzuki stopped producing the GS500E for the US market and didn’t release a GS500 for 2003. In 2007, Suzuki dropped the GS500E from its U.K. range though still continues to be sold in many other countries.

In 2008 the GS500 and GS500F models appear in the official UK Suzuki Dealers “on road” motorbike.

Suzuki is known to drop the bike every few years to release a updated model.


Suzuki GS500F with full factory fairing.

2004 GS500F

In 2004 after a year hiatus, Suzuki came out with the GS500F to fill the void left (in the US market) by the GS500E. This bike was very similar to the previous E model, but now comes with a fully enclosed fairing. The fairing offers a sportier, aggressive look and improved rider comfort by providing wind protection and better aerodynamics. An oil cooler was also added. As with the previous E model, the F is able to be restricted for use in countries where restrictive motorcycle licenses are issued. The GS500F was dropped from the U.K. Suzuki range in 2007.

In 2008 the GS500 and GS500F models appear in the official UK Suzuki Dealers “on road” motorbike.

The GS500F is still available in the U.S., Canada, Australia, Germany and France.


The difference in performance between the GS500E and GS500F is minimal. Standing quarter miles are said to be 13.5 seconds. Top speed is about 115 mph (190 km/h). The light weight means minimal effort is needed for turning.

Model History

  • 1989 GS500E introduced to North America
  • 1990 Clip-on handlebars replaced with standard bars.
  • 1994 Gunmetal colored rims and slightly different frame color for this model year.
  • 1996 Front brakes changed from small and large brake pistons to two equal sized brake pistons.
  • 2001 Tank, rear plastics, seat, and tail light redesigned. Carburetor changed from a two-circuit design (pilot jet and main jet) to a three-circuit design ( pilot jet, mid-main jet, main jet) to help with better carburetion throughout the rev range. Loss of “E” designation.
  • 2003 No GS500 model sold in the US.
  • 2004 GS500F introduced. A full fairing and oil cooler added.

GS500 / GS500E Specifications

1989 Suzuki GS500E with factory fairing and chin spoiler.


  • Type: four-stroke, air-cooled In-Line Parallel Twin Cylinder, DOHC, two valves per cylinder
  • Displacement: 487 cc
  • Bore/Stroke: 74.0 mm x 56.6 mm
  • Fuel System: Mikuni BSR34SS
  • Ignition: CDI, maintenance-free battery
  • Compression Ratio: 9.0:1
  • Engine Redline: 11,000 rpm
  • Horsepower: 47 hp @ 9200 rpm (34.3 kW)
  • Torque: 29.5 ft·lbf @ 7500 rpm (40 Nm)
  • Fuel Economy: 50-60 mpg (4.7 to 3.9 litres to 100 km)

Drive train

  • Transmission: 6-speed
  • Final Drive: #520 chain
  • Front Sprocket: 16 tooth
  • Rear Sprocket: 39 tooth


  • Front: Single hydraulic disc 310 mm, Dual-Piston Calipers
  • Rear: Single hydraulic disc 250 mm, Dual-Piston Calipers

Wheels and Tires

  • Front: 110/70-17 tire
  • Rear: 130/70-17 tire


  • Front: Telescopic, coil spring, oil damped
  • Rear: Link-type, 7-way adjustable spring preload

Dimensions & Geometry

  • Length: 2080 mm (81.9 in)
  • Width: 800 mm (31.5 in)
  • Height: 1060 mm (41.7 in)
  • Seat Height: 790 mm (31.1 in)
  • Wheel Base: 1405 mm (55.3 in)
  • Ground Clearance: 155 mm (6.1 in)
  • Rake (89-00): 25° 30′
  • Rake (00+): 25°
  • Trail (89-00): 95 mm (3.7 in)
  • Trail (00+): 97 mm (3.8 in)
  • Weight: 174 kg (384 lb) (dry, manufacturer claimed)
  • Fuel Capacity: 20.0 L (≈1,220 cu in)


  • Suzuki offers a 24 month unlimited mileage limited warranty.

GS500F Specification differences

2007 GS500F with non-factory touring accessories.

  • Weight: 180 kg (397 lb) (dry, manufacturer claimed)
  • Height 1150 mm (45.3 in)
  • MPG: 58 MPG


  • 2004: Yellow/Gray, Blue/White
  • 2005: Black/Red, Blue/White
  • 2006: Black/Silver, Greenish-Blue/White, Dark Blue/White (Canada)
  • 2007: Pearl Blue/White, Pearl Black/Metallic Grey (Australia)
  • 2008: Blue/White, Black/Silver.

Comparative Reviews

In February 1992, Cycle World magazine, in an article titled “Bargain Blasters,” compared the Kawasaki EX500, the Yamaha Seca II, the Suzuki GSF400 Bandit, and the Suzuki GS500. The Seca II came in first, with the Bandit, the EX500, and the GS500 following in that order.

In April 1994, in an article titled “Bargain Hunters,” Cycle World compared the Kawasaki Ninja 500, the Suzuki GS500E, the Suzuki Katana 600, the Yamaha FZR600, and the Yamaha Seca II.

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