Classic Steel

GP’s Classic Steel #43 – 1982 Suzuki RM125-Z

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Comments (5)
  1. It wasn’t high CG, cost or complexity that doomed the original Full Floater to the history books, but rather a lawsuit against Suzuki by the guy that designed it.

    1. Funny I was curious about a year ago after I picked up a 86 Suzuki LT250R as a project, I was looking for a 2 stroke sport Quad to build and ride, since I missed out on that short period of time they were produced. At 14 I got my first real bike, the above mentioned 82 RM125Z . So I knew how good the Full Floater was, not to mention how it was always praised by all the riders and magazines at the time. I knew embarrassingly little about the LT line up, I knew there was a 250, and of course a 500(Qaudzilla), So seeing the 85-89 models had the Full Floater, but the 90-92 models used a version of what every bike would eventually have, had me more curious. So I actually researched it and yes a 15 year old kid in CA had come up with the idea first. The sad part was Suzuki supposedly courted the kid, took him to Japan, had him talk to their engineers, and then hung him out to dry. So he sued, and he won. So in 87 it was fazed out and was gone after 89 I think. This article, and your comment are the few times I have heard the real story mentioned.

  2. In 1982, along with the 82 YZ 80, this bike was the bike in the garages of every So. California teenager who rode motorcycles. I can name at least 10 of my friends who had one, and they all added the Blue CEET brand safety seat to it. My dads friend was close buddies with Dave Arnold, a Honda off road big wig who got me a one off (lightly used Honda test bike) 1982 CR 125, along with the black HRC steel motorcycle stand, an HRC gear bag, box of Honda custom pistons, a blue Honda made safety seat, rings, a Honda aluminum silencer and 2 pair of Pirelli Sandcross tires. All for $625.00. My bike also had been tuned by Arnold, so the engine and suspension were just awesome. I know the 1982 CR125 was a mid pack bike in all the shootouts, but it upgraded nicely in the hands of a Honda guy. Still, the 82 RM 125 was king and I truly admired the bike and could stare at it for hours while hanging out in my friends garage.

    I remember being the odd man out with my 82 CR125R at the track, when everyone, and I mean the entire starting line was on the 82 RM 125. Also that original Full Floating system with those articulating arms were a engineering marvel. Ah, the Golden Era of motocross with newly designed bikes every year. No 3-4 year plan and ridiculously priced motorcycles as we see today. What dad wants to spend thousands on a dirt bike when in the old days you could pick up a nicely used race bike for a few hundred dollars.

  3. I owned one. In 1982 I used all of Dirt Bike Magazine hop ups to the engine, and the RM 125 became a fire breathing dragon. This bike was so fast, that I could pull 6 bike length hole shots on it. I started in second gear, when the gate dropped, I let out the clutch with the throttle wide open and it tractored out of the gate fast. Slip into third and hold it wide open. It was amazing. And the suspension was great. The only thing was the front brake. It would glaze over and stop being efficient. You needed all fingers with a white nuckle squeeze to even get it to slow down.

    I sold it, and wish I still had it. It was the best days for Suzuki. I wish they would get off of their own pity party and get back to making bikes that destroy the competition. Susuki had it made in the shade.

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