It's been nearly 40 years since we first saw the original and almost a year since Suzuki announced its return, but in just over a month you'll finally have the opportunity to buy a Katana.
Suzuki officials announced the price and availablility of the new Katana (as well as a second color) at AIMExpo today. The bike will be in dealerships in November and the MSRP will be $13,499.
As Andy reported almost a year ago, the new Katana revives the style of the original from the early 1980s by using the GSX-S1000F as a base. In addition to the "mystic silver" model that matches the look of the original, Suzuki is also offering a black version (shown above), which was unveiled for the first time in the United States at AIMExpo.
"When we launched this bike a year ago, we had the vision of finding an original. But the challenge is how do you find a 40-year-old motorcycle that's worth showing," said Kerry Graeber, Suzuki's vice president of sales and marketing. The obvious first place to look: the Barber Vintage Motorsports Museum's collection of 1,600 motorcycles.
It turns out Barber did have a 1983 Katana that had never even been run and they let Suzuki borrow it and display it along with the new one over the past year. It started out with less than one mile on the odometer, but now it has 2.3 miles on it just from being pushed around in and out of shows.
In thanks for the loan of the 1983 Katana, Suzuki donated a new one to the museum so they could be displayed side by side.
The styling may be inspired by the early 1980s, but underneath the new Katana is modern, with three-level (plus off) traction control and ABS. It is powered by a previous-generation GSX-R1000 engine that Suzuki says produces 147 horsepower.
With other manufacturers drawing on their past and issuing new models with classic styling, the Katana gives Suzuki an entry into a segment of the market that consists of both those who remember the original and younger riders who simply like the throwback style.