Voted most helpful review
New DUrham , New Hampshire
Reviewed on December 16, 2005
After returning to motorcycling after 30 years I'm really glad I started riding again on this bike. It has plenty of spunk for a lightweight bike and it's easy to handle. I used it to practice riding "the cones course" as a prelude to taking my motorcycle license exam and was glad I did. Fifty pe...
After returning to motorcycling after 30 years I'm really glad I started riding again on this bike. It has plenty of spunk for a lightweight bike and it's easy to handle. I used it to practice riding "the cones course" as a prelude to taking my motorcycle license exam and was glad I did. Fifty percent of the people taking the test were riding cruisers and almost every one of them flunked the test. It seems like only those riding sport bikes or dual sports passed because of the more responsive handling aspects and smaller size of these bikes. <br /> I was also glad I bought the Dual sport because I have plenty of legally ride-able trails in my area that I can get to by driving a short distance on asphalt. By being street legal, I don't have to load my bike into the back of my truck just to get to the trails.<br /> The 2005 Suzuki DR-Z400S is great for short trips around town or riding the dirt roads. Great clearance and suspension that is able to handle a heavyweight like me. It's also perfect for taller riders. In fact, several of my friends that I've offered to ride the bike can't comfortably straddle the bike at a standstill. The rear suspension can be lowered, but I like it as it is because it's nice and high. One of my friends has described the seat as like sitting on a fence post. It really is uncomfortable at first and it takes some getting used to. For about the first week of owning it my butt went to sleep after about 30 minutes in the saddle. However, I must have toughened up because I don't notice it for up to an hour now. I know there are upgrade seats you can get for it, but I haven't bothered. Besides, while riding in the dirt you are standing on the pegs half the time anyway. <br /> Even though others say it's good at 60 - 65 mph, I feel that at those speeds the bike is pretty unstable. don't let them convince you that this is a highway cruiser because it's not. Windblast from larger vehicles should definitely be considered, and it blows around pretty well on a windy day. But on the asphalt of twisty side roads, and in the dirt it's great fun. <br /> So far I get about 110 miles on a tank of gas before I have to switch to reserve and head for a gas station. This translates to anywhere between 50 - 70 mpg depending on how hard I push this little one cylinder and on what terrain. I'm now looking for a larger, more comfortable highway bike for commuting to work. However, I'm definitely going to keep the DR-Z400S for weekend fun.