Suzuki’s Hayabusa has gone without significant change for what has now come to be almost two decades. The first one came out in 1999! Now twenty years later, some chatter on the interwebs has brought up some serious talk about changes to Suzuki infamous flagship. Three patents filled by one Hideaki Takahashi, who is usually the patents officer for Suzuki Transmissions, were filled one in Germany, one in the US and one in Japan. The patents seem to have a nifty new semi-automatic setup that mimics the traditional manual shifter on the standard Busa. Interestingly, Suzuki’s patents filled by Takahashi’s seem to call the new motorcycle semi-automatic technology an Automated Manual Transmission, which is quite unlike the kind that you would find on a Suzuki Celerio, say! The technology will allow the Busa to make shifts clutch-lessly via a left-foot pedal.
Once you’ve made the shift, the pedal relays a signal to the ECU saying that it is ready to initiate a gear change, which is where Suzuki’s technology is different from the Africa Twin’s DCT that also offers a manual peg shifter. Suzuki claim that their “Clicking mechanism” which gives the rider what Suzuki call the Tactile-sensation of changing gear traditionally.
Now on the Honda Africa Twin, the DCT unit does add 20 kilos, and we expect Suzuki’s albeit compact system to also add a few pounds to the already heavy Busa. Currently, Suzuki’s big-bug does wiegh in slightly pudgy at 265 kgs. There is however, also speculation that once launched, the Busa which is not yet Euro 4 complaint, might even get forced induction to lower emissions. While coincidentally taking on the likes of the Ninja H2 SE.
Now before we get our panties all up in a bunch waiting on the new Hayabusa, we should consider that, patents ARE NOT a guarantee for manufacture. Sometimes patent drawings are made to convey a product or function, that could make it to production. It is even possible that the technology could end up on another Suzuki motorcycle. That said, the Hayabusa with an AMT and a turbocharger does make a lot of sense for Suzuki, considering that they have mostly left the Hayabusa untouched since its launch.