Kawasaki GT 550 Reviews - Page 2 of 2

1990 Kawasaki GT 550 from United Kingdom

Model year1990
Year of manufacture1990
First year of ownership2009
Most recent year of ownership2009
Acceleration marks 7 / 10
Roll-on Performance marks 6 / 10
Handling marks 6 / 10
Braking marks 4 / 10
Reliability marks 9 / 10
Comfort marks 8 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 7 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
6.7 / 10
Distance when acquired60000 miles
Most recent distance62000 miles
Previous motorcycleHonda ST1100 pan european

Summary:

Good cheap hack

Faults:

Back shocker bushes,

General Comments:

Pretty quick for what it is, I bought it as a do up hack and it's good fun. Cost me about £250 in total including the few parts I've had to buy to get it roadworthy.

Not for speed freaks, once you get near 100mph it gets scary, and you've no protection from the wind and rain.

Good on fuel, narrow for filtering in town yet powerful enough to overtake easily out on the A-roads.

Would you buy another motorcycle from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 28th May, 2009

1988 Kawasaki GT 550 from Australia

Model year1988
Year of manufacture1988
First year of ownership2008
Most recent year of ownership2009
Acceleration marks 5 / 10
Roll-on Performance marks 6 / 10
Handling marks 8 / 10
Braking marks 6 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 10 / 10
Dealer Service marks 7 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 8 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
7.5 / 10
Distance when acquired41000 kilometres
Most recent distance54000 kilometres
Previous motorcycleHonda CB125S

Summary:

Perfect, well built motorcycle

Faults:

Carby seals split - $20 fix.

Some electrical issues.

Wear and tear on the seat.

General Comments:

Not majorly fast, but still has a fair bit of go.

Comfy as.. something.. bloody comfortable.

'OK' on fuel.

Mega reliable.

Would you buy another motorcycle from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 9th February, 2009

1993 Kawasaki GT 550 from Republic of Ireland

Model year1993
Year of manufacture1993
First year of ownership1996
Most recent year of ownership2008
Acceleration marks 8 / 10
Roll-on Performance marks 8 / 10
Handling marks 7 / 10
Braking marks 7 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 9 / 10
Dealer Service marks 9 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 8 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.3 / 10
Distance when acquired5000 miles
Most recent distance87000 miles
Previous motorcycleHonda CB750 Nighthawk

Summary:

It won't let you down

Faults:

The seat has a few rips.

I've done in a few wheel bearings.

General Comments:

One of the best all round bikes I ever had, apart from my old CB 750 Nighthawk, which I still have and won't part with.

Would you buy another motorcycle from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 26th June, 2008

1989 Kawasaki GT 550 from United Kingdom

Year of manufacture1989
First year of ownership2007
Most recent year of ownership2008
Acceleration marks 6 / 10
Roll-on Performance marks 6 / 10
Handling marks 6 / 10
Braking marks 6 / 10
Reliability marks 9 / 10
Comfort marks 8 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 7 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
6.9 / 10
Distance when acquired35000 miles
Most recent distance37000 miles
Previous motorcycleSuzuki GSF600 Bandit (Unfaired)

Summary:

Like the Beatles, always with us

Faults:

Starter solenoid wore out, cost £17.50

General Comments:

Having ridden sports and off road bikes for some time, I always wanted a proper bike, a bike from my teens. I purchased a GT550 for £410 and watched my insurance drop to £75.00 (which has 3 speeding convictions to allow for). Luckily I am in my forties and my back can't take 100mph+ with my ass above my head and blue lights behind.

The GT was a wish of mine and hasn't disappointed; yes it isn't that quick, but can still exceed the speed limit.

Some say it's ugly, but it's all bike in that it has two wheels, a fit 550 engine, and on most urban or rural roads, keeps up with my friends on their superfast kill you quick or break your back trying R1s. I let those friends wait for me at motorway service stations while they straighten up and regain use of their limbs.

The point where my 90mph armchair and I go past with half a tank left.

Yes it has faults! It's nearly 20 years old, however most can be fixed at the side of the road with a small tool kit. GT owners will know how reliable and repairable this bike is. Mine will remain in my ownership till some idiot pulls out and flattens it, and my little tool kit won't help... till then god loves a classic ride.

Would you buy another motorcycle from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 6th May, 2008

1st Aug 2009, 08:33

I am looking at one of these for sale online, and I wanted to see what others thought of it. I could have written this! It's written in my language, by someone with my sense of humour (poor chap!), of my age, size and bodily ailments (even poorer!). You have made my mind up - thank you! Will come back on and give a proper review if I'm not too late in getting it!

24th Aug 2009, 11:11

Mine has done a little over 50000 miles. I have had it for 17 years. Ten years it stood in the back garden unused whilst I used my VFR750. When I decided to put it back on the road, it took 3 days work and a secondhand exhaust and new battery. It is very scruffy now after a decade outside, the camchain rattles and needs replacing.

The clutch basket rattles at traffic lights and stops when you pull the clutch in. The clutch is heavy, but then I fitted new plates and GT750 clutch springs 16 years ago due to clutch slip at 5500-7000 rpm.

It is super comfortable, averages 60-65 mpg @70-85mph cruising, drive like an idiot you can get it to 45 mpg, or be frugal and you get over 75mpg. Goes from Lancashire to Norfolk on one tank of fuel, no numb bum or cramped legs.

Excellent bike for riding by myself or with my wife as pillion. Keeps up with brothers more modern er-5, and we can both go around on country rides without being stupid.

Yes my VFR750 is faster, stops quicker, handles better and is arguably better, but it only gets 43mpg no matter what speed you do until it drops off at 120mph plus - which is illegal in the UK, and uncomfortable to maintain even on autobahns.

The GT550 is also great for loading up with luggage for solo camping trips across to Europe. It has a flexible engine that pulls remarkably up hills, and from 1500 revs in top gear on the flat; smoothly if not quickly!

1992 Kawasaki GT 550 from United Kingdom

Year of manufacture1992
First year of ownership1992
Most recent year of ownership2004
Acceleration marks 6 / 10
Roll-on Performance marks 6 / 10
Handling marks 6 / 10
Braking marks 6 / 10
Reliability marks 6 / 10
Comfort marks 9 / 10
Dealer Service marks 7 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 7 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
6.6 / 10
Distance when acquired5000 miles
Most recent distance100000 miles

Summary:

Very reliable and well made

Faults:

Speed cables snap now and again.

rear suspension shot.

General Comments:

Introduced in the very early 1980's, this is a courier favourite. I came to them late in 1992, and it seemed a nice bike when new. My final drive on one was on a clapped out example in 2004. The suspension had either gone, or compared to a Honda Hornet, it has none. It is that bad. So I never want to ride another.

A tall upright bike with a 4 gallon petrol tank. A fuel gauge is included.

No wind protection is offered.

The speedo and rev counter break if the bike falls over, and they are very expensive to replace.

A rear carrier is fitted as standard.

It's quite ugly, not hideous like a CX 500, but just ugly.

Powered by a 50hp @ 9,000 rpm, 4 cylinder 2 valve per cylinder motor, it is no fireball. Top speed of around 110mph, and it returns 45mpg easily. It will cover high mileages without problems if not thrashed.

I have travelled thousands of miles on these bikes. They are dependable, having never broken down on me. Production stopped recently, so now only available second hand. A couriers bike or distance machine for a mature rider. Most are blue or red.

A dull but dependable machine.

Would you buy another motorcycle from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 27th July, 2006

22nd Oct 2007, 15:57

I am currently restoring a 1987 one. 9200 genuine miles.

It will make a nice plodder when done.

Average review marks: 7.4 / 10, based on 9 reviews