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Suzuki GSX 1300R - Hayabusa

Nice bike if you can get it!

It was the rage at the motorcycle show in Japan last fall. Suzuki leaked out early photos on the web site as soon as the 99 models were announced. At the Seattle Motorcycle show it was unveiled locally and dealers began to place their orders. It's Suzuki's new Hayabusa, one of the most talked about sport bikes ever introduced.

For the last three months motorcycle magazines around the world have been singing its praises. A first gear that boasts a range of 0-85 m.p.h., the fastest sport bike in production hands down. Styling that just won't quit. And on and on.

So where can you see one? Well, that's the grabber. Suzuki based their production against the sales of the 1998 TL 1300 which sold ok, but wasn't hugely successful. So when dealers placed their orders it was all for not since Suzuki had already scheduled production - and it didn't add up to demand.

This is actually a common occurrence in the business of motorcycle sales and any first year models, or models that arrive with significant changes over last year. One dealer on the south end of Puget Sound ordered 10, but instead received one for the entire year. When the bike arrived and was being taken off the truck a customer ran out and said "that's mine." It was sold before it reached the showroom floor.

Aurora Suzuki fared slightly better having been allocated 12 and selling them all by June. They've since been scrambling about looking for inventory that isn't selling in some markets. "We got one more from Hillsboro, Oregon," notes sales manager Randy McAllister, "So we'll probably sell a total of 13 for the year."

It's expected that for the 2000 model year Suzuki will be better able to supply the demand for the Hayabusa. Until then the moral of the story is if you've got your sights set on a new model bike, you may want to seriously consider ordering one from your dealer in advance.

Patrick Thomas/July 99


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