New road-focused Suzuki V-Strom 800RE arriving soon

As soon as Suzuki announced the V-Strom 800DE last year, speculation immediately began about a more road-focused version.

After all, the 800DE seemed to be an outlier in the V-Strom catalogue, with its fully adjustable suspension, 21-inch front wheel, and handling made for exploring off-road.

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Nevertheless, the 800DE is superbly capable on the road, but what about those people who want to ride on the road 99% of the time?

Well, Suzuki has listened, because it has just announced the V-Strom 800RE.

This is what’s new.

Road-going wheels and tyres

To improve the road handling of the V-Strom 800RE, Suzuki has switched out the 21-inch front wheel in favour of a 19-inch hoop.

The wheel remains 17-inch at the rear, but the wheels themselves are now cast aluminium rather than the wire-spoked designs on the DE.

This means that they are now set-up to run tubeless tyres, which come standard in the form of Dunlop D614 tyres.

This will be a welcome change for those who spend the majority of time on the road and who prefer the ease of fixing tubeless tyres.

The front brakes have also been upgraded from a twin-calliper set up to more powerful four-piston, radially mounted callipers.

Suspension changes

The 800RE has suspension provided by Showa specifically for road-touring which provides 150mm of wheel travel front and rear.

Suzuki says the suspension has been chosen for long touring distances, with the spring rate optimised for cornering performance and straight-line stability.

The fork is adjustable for preload, while the rear shock can be adjusted for preload and rebound damping, which is handy for when carrying a pillion and luggage.

As a result of the shorter suspension travel, the ground clearance has been reduced to 185mm (220mm on the DE), while the seat height is a lower and accessible 825mm compared to the 855mm on the 800DE.

Bodywork changes

Up front there’s a larger, three-height adjustable windscreen which should provide far greater wind protection than the DE’s short screen.

The handlebars are also different, and are now 13mm lower, 15mm narrower and 23mm further forward. Along with new aluminium footpegs that are 7mm higher and 14mm further back, the riding position should now be more suited for long-distance yet active road touring.

The 800RE also loses the sump, hand, and radiator guards found on the DE, and gains new colour options which are black, green/grey, and blue.

The RE weighs 223kg wet, which is 7kg less than the DE.

Pricing and availability

The Suzuki V-Strom 800RE will be priced from £9,699, a full £1,000 cheaper than the 800DE, although you get less-adjustable suspension and less protection.

However, the inclusion of a 19-inch wheel, cast alloy rims, tubeless tyres, and a touring screen as standard makes the V-Strom 800RE a highly tempting choice for those who spend the majority of their time on the road.

The 800RE is expected in UK dealers towards the end of October 2023.