Suzuki's GT750 motorcycle was launched in 1971.
The GT 750 was Suzuki's competitor in a market
populated by the likes of Honda's CB 750 and
the Kawasaki Z1. The GT 750 was also nicknamed
the "Kettle" (UK) and the "Water Buffalo"(USA),
for its liquid cooling system (and also in the
latter case its substantial weight).
The GT 750 was unique amongst the other 750CC
motorcyles because it had a 3 cylinder water
cooled 2 Stroke engine, with a total loss oil
lubrication system incorporated in the combustion
process. The writing was on the wall for large
2 stroke engines due to emission regulations
that were starting to be enforced in the 1970's.
Suzuki brought out a 4 cylinder 4 stroke 750
and dropped the 'kettle' 750 2 stroke in 1976/7.
Never intended as a sportsbike, the GT was
targeted more at the tourer market, hence the
'GT' nomenclature. Power output of the early
models was a claimed 67 BHP, not especially
impressive for the time. Handling and braking
would, by modern standards, be considered alarming.
Top speed in contemporary road tests was around
In modern times the GT has acquired something
of a cult status, mainly due to its two-stroke
engine and the historical rarity of liquid cooling
in this class.
As an aside, the GT 750 motor was the basis
for the 180 MPH racing bike on which Barry Sheene
had his infamous high-speed Daytona accident
in March 1975. He went on to win the world 500
CC championship in 1976 and 1977.
The race track version (TR 750) was the father
of this classic machine, without doubt the GT
750 and the TR 750 have played a major part
and shaped the motorcycle world into what today
we all take for granted, design, brakes,suspension
and especially tyres are thanks to the suzuki
team not least the GT 750 and TR 750.
Suzuki were certainly experimenting with the
large motorcyle in the 1970s, they also again
uniquely, produced the RE5 a 1000cc rotary (Wankel)
engined bike at the same time as the GT 750.
Although in some countries the engine measurement
system classified it as a 500cc.
The Suzukis's 750 two stroke 3 cylinder watercooled
engine proved very poular through the 70's and
80's with motorcycle side car racing teams using
the power plant, the engine required little
tuning and was often fitted with a dry clutch
which held it's own against the more advanced
and more powerfull engines of the times.