Suzuki have revealed updates to the V-Strom 1050 in the form of a new DE version for 2023, which seems to be aimed at boosting off-road performance, or the more hard-nosed adventure style capabilities.
New features found across both models for 2023 will be the full-colour TFT display, and bi-directional quickshifter which fall into the quality of life category for me. Styling in comparison remains pretty similar to the previous editions, with a range of colour options that should keep most happy.
That’s in addition to an extensive electronics package, including an IMU, with lean sensitive ACS, slope and load control, hill hold, linked brakes, cruise control, three power modes and three traction control settings. Control is via an elegant ‘rocker switch’ on the switchblock.
However the V-Strom 1050DE upgrades to a 21 inch front wheel in that move to offering a more rugged adventure, and Dunlop Trailmax Mixtour tyres are fitted for a slightly more capable tyre straight off the showroom floor. For comparison the standard 1050 retains the 19/17 inch setup, with Battlax Adventure A41 tyres.
The upgrades go further than that however, with increased travel suspension care of fully adjustable KYB units, alongside revised geometry and ergonomics according to Suzuki. That includes a 40 mm longer wheelbase, with new swingarm with better torsional rigidity. The main frame has also been updated and we’re told it’s both lighter and stronger, with the seat rails updated and a new seat with fixed height that saves 700 grams.
A smaller screen is apparently to aid visibility although increased airflow will also help in adventure settings, with the front fender a sturdier design, alongside a more protective sump guard, with engine bars standard fitment for extra protection.
The standard 1050 retains the adjustable screen, aluminium footpegs, height adjustable seat, and doesn’t get those engine bars in comparison.
Part of DE package is also a set of wider bars, adding 20 mm on either side in comparison to the standard 1050, for a wider stance, and wider steel footpegs are also fitted, ensuring a more durable peg that’ll survive the rigours of being dropped and get you home, as well as a better foothold.
The ABS system also offers a second mode to disable the rear, which is the preferred loadout for those getting into the rough stuff. No mention of being able to disable the ABS entirely however, although these days the consensus seems to be that the ABS systems are good enough you shouldn’t need to, if you can just turn off the rear.
There’s also an off-road specific traction control setting called G-mode, which obviously is designed for low traction use. That means allowing more rear slip, while preventing excessive wheel spin.
Tweaks to the 90 degree V-twin include hollow, sodium filled exhaust valves for better durability and temperature control, alongside a taller first and sixth gear. On the DE there’s also a heavier duty drive chain, with it’s own shift lever more suited for off-roading.
Additional features worth mentioning include a 12V socket under the seat and USB socket next to the dash, standard centre stand and hand guards, with the accessory range offering luggage options and additional features like heated grips and fog lights.
Now this isn’t an immense model update in realistic terms but it seems like Suzuki is listening to riders in wanting a more serious off-road option alongside the base V-Strom 1050, and that’s a win for us as riders.
Pricing here in Australia is set at $22,990 ride-away for the standard model or $1000 more than the outgoing version, and $24,690 for the top spec 1050DE.
I can’t spot official pricing for the UK or USA however, but the outgoing 1050 pricing in the UK is £9999 for the base model and £12,399 pounds for the 1050XT, with US pricing starting at $14,849 on the base and $17,049 on the XT. I’d guess we’d expect a small bump in all those figures.