Against stiff competition the all-new Suzuki GSX-8S came out on top to be named as the MCN naked bike of the year for 2023 in their annual MCN Awards, as chosen by the road test team.
When announcing the 8S as the winner, MCN described its naked bike of the year as "ticking all the boxes", while being "novice friendly, suited to daily commuting, good value, and offering performance that will satisfy experienced riders too." Road tester Chris Newbigging also commented how "on paper, the new GSX-8S looked like it could miss the mark... Bike bikes aren't ridden on paper."
Summing up, MCN said, "it manages to pull off the old: 'the whole is better than the sum of its parts' trick and then some."
Launched alongside the new V-Strom 800DE at Eicma in 2022, the GSX-8S is a brand new bike in every sense, featuring an all-new parallel twin engine, new chassis layout and futuristic styling. A tubular steel subframe, aluminium swingarm, 43mm upside down front forks and rear shock from KYB, lightweight aluminium wheels, and wide aluminium ‘bars provide the perfect blend of stable roadholding, agility and all round manoeuvrability.
At the heart of the 8S is the long-stroke 776cc twin providing punchy torque with three rider modes to match the rider's style and a bi-directional quickshifter allowing for crisp changes. The patented cross-balancer system and 270-degree crank ensure that the GSX-8S suppresses vibrations creating a smooth riding experience, while also delivering a V-twin esque character and feel, while the 5-inch colour TFT dash, aggressive looks and agile handling complete what MCN have dubbed “the new middleweight king”.