Suzuki's GSX-R600 has always stayed one step ahead of the rest of the 600cc class. The groundbreaking SRAD era passed, and with the first fuel injected bikes Suzuki kept progress moving forward. From a performance standpoint, the all-new 2004 model broke ground on all fronts. The motor, for instance, sported titanium valves, lighter pistons and a feathery valvetrain. The redesigned mill was claimed to churn out 4 percent more power than the previous model for a grand total of 124 HP at the crank when pressurized by the ram-air ducts.
The motor mods were significant, but the new inverted forks and radial brakes were trendsetting additions to the 600cc class. Along with the racebike front end, the Gixxer also got an all-new aluminum frame with revised geometry and yet another revolutionary addition; a removable subframe.
After two short years Suzuki introduced an all-new bike for the 2006 model year. This killer again caught the class by surprise with a host of trendsetting mods. At first glance the under-slung pipe left most onlookers awestruck; it looked great and was as loud as most slip-ons. Along with the hard-hitting pipe, the baby Gixxer now sported integrated rear turn signals and mirror-mounted front units for a slippery new look. Altogether the 2006 model looked like it was doing 100 mph sitting still.
But more than just looks, Suzuki carved and cut away at the platform to make a smaller, more powerful package. The big S stacked the transmission shafts for a compact layout and along with more motor tweaks and a higher rev ceiling, the 600 was good for 123 HP at the crank without the ram air in effect. Other engine upgrades included the Suzuki Dual Throttle Valve system (SDTV) with double injectors per hole and an all-new slipper clutch. A new frame also found its way into the mix along with a beefier swingarm, new suspenders and even bigger brakes.
The 2004-'07 GSX-R600s are as bulletproof as they are fast, and being that heaps of them were sold, finding parts after a tip-over is just a click away. Along with a surplus of aftermarket and OEM support, the baby Gixxers also play well at just about any style. You want to stunt, sure. How about track days or bike nights? Even a little touring and commuting? The Gixxer has no problem with the lot.
For 2004 Suzuki flattened the field with a powerful package that sported a fuel injected motor good for 103 HP and 45 LB-FT at the rear tire. Wet weight checked in at 429 pounds and it even featured radial brakes and inverted forks; both virtually unheard of in the middleweight market. When put to the test it was good for 10.58 @ 130.5 at the drag strip and a few ticks over 150 mph flat out. With its angular bodywork and slash cut exhaust tip it also looked the biz.
The 2006 model year brought with it an all-new bike packing a more compact motor with stacked transmission shafts and Suzuki's new twin injector Suzuki Dual Throttle Valve system (SDTV). The new motor churned out a healthy 109 HP and 44 LB-FT at the rear tire and sprinted down the drag strip in 10.6 @ 133 en route to a gearing-limited 158 mph top speed. Along with its unrivaled performance, the new headlights and under-slung exhaust were both awe inspiring at the time.