2003 Suzuki LS 650 Savage from United States of America
Pass on this one, not worth owning
Oil leaks pop up here and there, some disappear on their own, other persist.
Eats batteries, at least one a year.
Being a thumper, it is very sensitive to riding speed as to how much vibration you can stand.
If you let it sit without riding much, you'll have a lot of fuel delivery problems.
Very uncomfortable bike to ride for more than about 20 mile trips, a complete redo on the seat helped.
The lack of a trip odometer is inexcusable; cheap, cheap, cheap.
I've owned over 24 motorcycles, been riding almost 50 years, and this is the only bike that I would not buy again. Handling is awkward, suspension is really bad. Good for a beginner because of the low seat height and low weight.
Suzuki should scrap this bike. If I had not owned other Suzuki's before I bought this one, I would never buy their products. If you can afford to spend a little more money, and must have a Suzuki, try the SV650, it is one of the finest bikes I have ever owned, I'm looking for another one right now.
Would you buy another motorcycle from this manufacturer? No
Review Date: 20th March, 2011
24th Aug 2015, 11:48
If you visit the Savage forum, you'll find a fix to that cam chain problem. One of the members makes and sells a modified slack adjuster that more than doubles the cam chain life. It's an easy fix and a LOT less expensive than having the cam chain replaced. Google Verslavy.
8th Sep 2015, 23:06
I have looked at the cam chain extender and slack adjusters to extend chain life.
However, both of these modifications may not give you a much longer life, because both of these modifications make the chain bending angle sharper, which makes the rate of chain wear even faster. Besides, installing slack adjusters or modifying adjusters, adding 1 more hole, may not be such a simple job; adding 1 more hole requires you to do a welding job; installing a slack adjuster makes you remove other parts to clear the area, and the cost of a slack adjuster may not be so cheap.
Modifications may give you a little more chain life, but not too much I think.
4th Mar 2018, 23:48
The Verslavey cam chain tensioner has been around for a while, and is a superior set up to the stock cam chain tensioner. Will last the life of the bike. Suzuki Savage dot com is about the most extensive Savage site you can find. Lots of great advice on there.
Thanks, Tom W.
8th Jan 2015, 18:01
I have a 650 thumper. It's a great bike. I have had mine for 9 years now. Very dependable. It's not a real powerful bike, but it gets you to where you need to be.
Upkeep is low; oil changes, charging the battery, etc. Every 2 to 3 years you may have to change the cam chain, which is a bit pricey at around three to four hundred dollars.
It's fun to ride. Sometimes I forget where I'm going to because I am having a fun ride. It's like riding a mini chopper. I am always getting compliments on its style.
All around it's a great bike, and it's lightweight, so on the expressway you may get knocked around.
It's a great city bike. Good on gasoline; about 50 to 60 miles a gallon.
I have no problems with this bike. I've been riding for 16 plus years.