A Grownup Version Of A Scooter

Largely carry-overs from previous years, the Burgmans in Suzuki’s dwindling 2017 lineup — called Skywave in Japan — consists of the 200 and the 650 Executive. Missing is the Burgman 125 available outside the U.S. market and the Burgman 400 not brought forward for 2017. Styled for classy good looks and a certain amount of sophistication, the Burgmans present a scooter that demands to be taken seriously in an otherwise ’wild spirit’ or retro-style scooter market.

Continue reading for my review of the Suzuki Burgman.

  • 2016 - 2017 Suzuki Burgman
  • Year:
    2016- 2017
  • Make:
  • Model:
  • Displacement:
    650 cc
  • Price:

Design

2016 - 2017 Suzuki Burgman
- image 733842

Burgman 400

The Burgmans offer the features you'd expect in a scooter, but with more sophisticated styling.

The 200 — like its stablemates — offers ample underseat storage spacious enough to stash two full-face helmets. The front control column offers three covered storage compartments: a large center compartment with a 12V DC power outlet for a GPS or to accommodate your electronic gadgets, and two smaller glovebox compartments.

The instrument cluster includes the speedometer and clock, temperature and fuel gauges as well as high beam and turn signal indicators. The Eco-Drive indicator helps you attain maximum fuel economy. It doesn’t make changes itself, but coaches you to adopt a riding style that trends toward economy.

The 400, like the 650, gives you a rider backrest on the cantle separating stadium seating for you and your passenger. Seat height is low at 28-to-30 inches and the cutout footboards and narrow saddle nose makes it easy to find the ground with your feet.

Left behind in 2015 was the Burgman 650. The 650 Executive that takes the place as the maxi-scooter in the family is the basic 650 model plus heated handgrips, heated seat for both rider and passenger, and a passenger backrest. The 650 also has two fully automatic riding modes — Drive and Power — plus optional manual shifting. More on that later.

Chassis

2016 - 2017 Suzuki Burgman
- image 734332

Burgman 200

Suzuki even went so far as to run with dual front discs on the 400 and 650 models, and the whole range comes with ABS. So in short, plenty of brakes and the ability to use them with confidence.

Suzuki built the Burgman on a traditional steel underframe, rather than relying on a stressed-skin, monocoque construction as so many manufacturers seen to do. The benefits of the underframe system become apparent when you need to replace a body panel after a minor fender-bender.

Frequently, underframe-type scooters will have a completely open step-through with a flat deck all the way across, but the Burgman range carries a partially-closed step-through that offers easy mounting/dismounting, but no extra between-feet cargo space. An aluminum swingarm finishes the structure and helps keep unsprung weight low at the rear wheel.

Wheel sizes vary depending on which specific model. The Burgman 200 comes with a 13-inch wheel up front and a 12 in back, where the 400 rolls on a 14 and 13, and the 650 Executive rolls on a 15 and 14. Hydraulic forks with oil-damped rebound supports the front, while coil-over shocks buoy the rear.

All models get hydraulic disc brakes front and rear, an oddity for scooters that usually run a mechanical drum brake on the rear wheel. Suzuki even went so far as to run with dual front discs on the 400 and 650 models, and the whole range comes with ABS oversight. So in short, plenty of brakes and the ability to use them with confidence.

Model: Burgman 200 ABS Burgman 400 ABS Burgman 650 ABS Executive
Suspension Front: Telescopic, coil spring, oil damped Telescopic, coil spring, oil damped Telescopic, coil spring, oil damped
Suspension Rear: Swingarm type, coil spring, oil damped Link type, coil spring, oil damped Swingarm type, coil spring, oil damped
Front Brake: Disc brake Disc brake, twin Disc brake, twin
Rear Brake: Disc brake Disc brake Disc Brake
Tires Front: 110/90-13 M/C 56P, tubeless 120/80-14 M/C 58S, tubeless 120/70R15M/C 56H, tubeless
Tires Rear: 130/70-12 62P, tubeless 150/70-13 M/C, 64S tubeless 160/60R14M/C 65H, tubeless

Drivetrain

2016 - 2017 Suzuki Burgman
- image 734288

Burgman 650 Executive

Both of these smaller mills run a conventional CVT instead of the electronic versionfound on the 650, but they offer the traditional automatic-shifting function with twist-and-go operation.

As the names suggest, the Burgman range comes in a variety of engine sizes. Starting at the top, the 650 actually runs on a twin-cylinder, 638 cc mill. Suzuki’s electronic fuel injection system works with the Pulsed-secondary AIR (PAIR) system and O2 sensors to keep emissions low and mileage up. Instead of the usual Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT) setup, Suzuki used its electronically controlled version, the SECVT. This system provides the rider with three separate driving modes; the fuel efficient “Drive Mode” and the sportier “Power Mode” with automatic shifts, and the “Manual Shift Mode” that simulates shifting through preset gear ratios with a toggle switch on the handlebars.

The 400 cc version comes in a thumper configuration and boasts Suzuki’s PAIR system as well as its Idle Speed Control (ISC) that helps smooth out rough idles and aid with cold starts, while the 200 cc model comes limited to the ISC feature. Both of these smaller mills run a conventional CVT instead of the electronic version, but they offer the traditional automatic-shifting function with twist-and-go operation.

Model: Burgman 200 ABS Burgman 400 ABS Burgman 650 ABS Executive
Engine: 200cc, 4-stroke, liquid-cooled, single-cylinder, SOHC 400cc, 4-stroke, liquid-cooled, single-cylinder, DOHC 638cc, 4-stroke, liquid-cooled, 2-cylinder, DOHC
Bore x Stroke: 63.0 mm x 53.4 mm (2.717 in x 2.102 in) 81.0 mm x 77.6 mm (3.19 in x 3.06 in) 75.5mm x 71.3mm (2.97 in x 2.81 in)
Compression Ratio: 11.0 : 1 12.5 : 1 11.2 : 1
Fuel System: Suzuki Fuel Injection Suzuki Fuel Injection Suzuki Fuel Injection

Pricing

2016 - 2017 Suzuki Burgman
- image 734331

Burgman 650 Executive

MSRP on the Burgmans hold steady at 2016 pricing.

MSRP for the 2016 Burgmans were $4,999 for the 200 in Brilliant White, $7,999 for the 400 in Metallic Matte Fibroin Gray and $10,999 for the 650 Executive in Metallic Matte Black No.2. The price holds steady for 2017. The 650 Executive comes in Pearl Bracing White and the 200 sees a nice Metallic Matte Titanium Silver finish for 2017. Suzuki covers your Burgman with a 12-month unlimited mileage, limited warranty.

Model: Burgman 200 ABS Burgman 400 ABS Burgman 650 ABS Executive
Warranty: 12 month unlimited mileage limited warranty. 12 month unlimited mileage limited warranty. 12 month unlimited mileage limited warranty.
Color:
2016: Brilliant White Metallic Matte Fibroin Gray Metallic Matte Black No.2
2017: Metallic Matte Titanium Silver NA Pearl Bracing White
Price: $4,999 $7,999 $10,999

Competitors

2017 - 2019 BMW C 650 Sport / C 650 GT
- image 698211
2016 - 2017 Suzuki Burgman
- image 733843
Since the price is nearly the same, the engine features are a trade off and looks are subjective, there really isn't much to choose between the two.

While there are plenty of scooters out there, not too many have anything as large as a 650 cc engine. For ease of riding, however, I can see why someone might pick a scooter instead of going for a motorcycle. To pick a head-to-head with a comparable engine size and styling, the C 650 GT from BMW comes to mind.

As far as looks go, both are rather swanky, ya know, for a scooter. I somehow envision young business people commuting around town in a jacket and tie when I look at either one of these rides, or maybe even a couple on a weekend day trip. As far as differences go, they look like different sides of the same coin.

The Burgman 650 with its 638 cc engine falls just a few cubes shy of the C 650 GT’s 647 cc mill, but honestly, that’s close enough for government work. Both liquid-cooled lumps run with fuel injection, but there are compromises to be made. Suzuki runs with a selectable rider mode for different power delivery profiles and shift options, but the Beemer comes with BMW’s automatic stability control (ASC) that moderates engine output to prevent wheel slip due to overacceleration in poor conditions. I leave it to the reader to decide which is more important, because I can think of arguments both ways on that point.

With only around 400 bucks separating the $10,995 Burgman and the $10,595 C 650 GT, price is really not a point of contention here. Since the price is nearly the same, the engine features are a trade off and looks are subjective, there really isn’t much to choose between the two. I’m afraid only a couple of test rides can reveal the winner for you.

He Said

My husband and fellow writer, TJ Hinton, says, “Scooters are getting more and more big-bike-like all the time, and the Burgman family seems to be reaching for scooter-bagger territory. Yeah OK, there are no hardbags per se, but the fairing, windshield and creature comforts should make this family fairly capable in the daily commute or on a weekend jaunt. I’m not sure I would want anyone I know to see me on it, but honestly, a ride on one would probably be OK up until that point.”

She Said

"Honestly, if I’m going to spend 10Gs on a scooter, I’d rather have one of those three-wheeled, parallelogram-front-end jobbers from Piaggio — the MP3 500 Sport. That aside, the Burgman lineup seems to cover all the bases except for the small less-than-100 cc range, but there are already so many choices there, who needs one more in the mix? The Burgmans are nice looking — kinda the grown-ups’ version of a scooter"

Specifications

Model: Burgman 200 ABS Burgman 400 ABS Burgman 650 ABS Executive
Engine:
Engine: 200cc, 4-stroke, liquid-cooled, single-cylinder, SOHC 400cc, 4-stroke, liquid-cooled, single-cylinder, DOHC 638cc, 4-stroke, liquid-cooled, 2-cylinder, DOHC
Bore x Stroke: 63.0 mm x 53.4 mm (2.717 in x 2.102 in) 81.0 mm x 77.6 mm (3.19 in x 3.06 in) 75.5mm x 71.3mm (2.97 in x 2.81 in)
Compression Ratio: 11.0 : 1 12.5 : 1 11.2 : 1
Fuel System: Suzuki Fuel Injection Suzuki Fuel Injection Suzuki Fuel Injection
Starter: Electric Electric Electric
Lubrication: Wet sump Wet sump Wet sump
Drive Train:
Transmission: Automatic, CVT Automatic Automatic, CVT
Final Drive: V-belt Drive V-belt Drive Gear Drive
Chassis:
Suspension Front: Telescopic, coil spring, oil damped Telescopic, coil spring, oil damped Telescopic, coil spring, oil damped
Suspension Rear: Swingarm type, coil spring, oil damped Link type, coil spring, oil damped Swingarm type, coil spring, oil damped
Front Brake: Disc brake Disc brake, twin Disc brake, twin
Rear Brake: Disc brake Disc brake Disc Brake
Tires Front: 110/90-13 M/C 56P, tubeless 120/80-14 M/C 58S, tubeless 120/70R15M/C 56H, tubeless
Tires Rear: 130/70-12 62P, tubeless 150/70-13 M/C, 64S tubeless 160/60R14M/C 65H, tubeless
Fuel Tank Capacity: 2.8 US 3.6 US 4.0 US
Electrical:
Ignition: Electronic ignition (Transistorized) Electronic ignition (Transistorized) Electronic ignition (Transistorized)
Dimensions and Curb Weight:
Overall Length: 2055 mm (80.9 in) 2270 mm (89.4 in) 2265 mm (89.2 in)
Overall Width: 740 mm (29.1 in) 760 mm (29.9 in) 810 mm (31.9 in)
Wheelbase: 1465 mm (57.7 in) 1585 mm (62.4 in) 1585 mm (62.4 in)
Ground Clearance: 130 mm (5.1 in) 125 mm (4.9 in) 125 mm (4.9 in)
Seat Height: 735 mm (28.9 in) 710 mm (28.0 in) 755 mm (29.7 in)
Curb Weight: 163 kg (359 lbs), 164 kg (362 lbs) CA model 222 kg (489 lbs), 223 kg (491lbs) CA model 278 mm (613 lbs), 275 mm (606 lbs) CA model
Warranty:
Warranty: 12 month unlimited mileage limited warranty. 12 month unlimited mileage limited warranty. 12 month unlimited mileage limited warranty.
Color:
2016: Brilliant White Metallic Matte Fibroin Gray Metallic Matte Black No.2
2017: Metallic Matte Titanium Silver NA Pearl Bracing White
Price: $4,999 $7,999 $10,999

References

See our review of the BMW C 650 GT.

All images featured on this website are copyrighted to their respective rightful owners. No infringement is intended. Image Source: suzukicycles.com, bmwmotorcycles.com

Press release
What do you think?
Show Comments
Motorcycle Finder: