If you ask me why it took so long to develop the new Suzuki GSX-R1000. The answer is that the 2017 Suzuki GSX-R1000 is the most important model for Suzuki, and it was frustrating that we couldn’t release a new model until now. Some years ago, Suzuki’s motorcycle focus switched to the Asian market and small motorcycles, but after that they started to think again, and ask: ‘What is the strong point of the Suzuki brand?’
The answer is sportbikes, so then we could restart the project. But I had to explain very carefully, to the management, why we need to make such a motorcycle, because the normal customer can’t use such high performance.
The Suzuki GSX-R1000 is not specifically developed for track racing or road use, I think the divider between road and track is 50:50. If we engineers think to change something, we always think first about racetrack performance. But if it’s not good for street performance we have to rethink it, because if we throw away the street performance it’s not a GSX-R.