Suzuki is a Japanese manufacturer that’s more well-known for its motorcycles than cars, Sidekick notwithstanding. The company began life as a weaving loom manufacturer in 1909, transitioning to motorcycles in the 1950s. By 1953, Suzuki was producing 6,000 bikes a month, and today Suzuki produces cars, ATVs, and even outboard motors for boats.
High-performance rockets with cool names like the Hayabusa and Katana are Suzuki’s top-of-the-line speedsters, and the brand takes a lot of pride in its racing division, but the company also makes a number of cruisers, dirtbikes, and adventure motorcycles. Those are generally considered reliable, affordable, and easy to maintain, with the discontinued Boulevard S40 cruiser and SV650 topping the list of low-maintenance, high-reliability options.
The SV650 is a smaller, naked bike that’s recommended for beginners while still maintaining its appeal for experienced riders. The 2003-2009 models, after the carburetors were removed but before the Gladius generation of SV650s, are some of the more sought-after Suzikis because of their hardiness and general ease of operation. However, even more recent models like the 2023 pictured above have great reviews and, at under $8,000, won’t break the bank on initial purchase or maintenance.