Husqvarna 510SMR (2005 - 2010) review

Ben Cope's picture
By Visordown on Sat, 1 Jan 2005 - 12:01

Details
Manufacturer:
Husqvarna
Category:
Supermoto
Price:
£ 6595
Overall
4
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Small and agile with stacks of power.
After 20 miles your bum will be in agony!

The SM 510R is as true to the supermoto ethos as you can get. It’s a lightweight, single cylinder moto that looks and feels barely more than a converted crosser. Which is exactly what it is. Husky doesn’t see the need to compromise with its supermotos, and it shows. On its side stand the 510R looks all sweetness and frills, with its neat anodised touches and purposeful beauty, but this bike is anything but sweet.

It may appear basic, but with a new chassis, beefier forks and an injected engine for 2008 in reality it’s packing a mean punch. Something it demonstrates happily at every opportunity.

You don’t mess with the Husky, it doesn’t play well with other road users. From the moment you push the starter and the raucous single barks into life you know this isn’t a bike to fiddle around with. It doesn’t want to win any friends, it’s raw, purposeful and focused.

It’s also the most uncomfortable bike I have ever ridden. 20 minutes on that seat shaped piece of granite is enough to cause major discomfort, 10 minutes more and this becomes almost intolerable and another five and you are looking for the closest A&E to check into for an arse graft. It’s horrific and if the actual bike wasn’t so much fun to ride it would easily be enough to put you off riding motorbikes. Forever.

And the Husky is fun, enormously good fun. The single cylinder engine punches forward with real speed. Crack the throttle open and it snaps to attention, catapulting the bike forward with urgency. Singles used to be big, lolloping engines, slow revving and heavy; not anymore. The 510R picks up revs so fast it feels like a two-stroke, the internals weigh next to nothing, but the vibrations remind you there are complicated lumps of metal flying around inside there. And boy does the Husky vibrate.

I’d love to lie and say it’s unobtrusive, but that’s like saying you hardly notice the 777s when you live under a flight-path. It’s bloody obtrusive, and combined with the seat makes riding a fairly unpleasant experience when it comes to creature comforts. But what did you expect?

This is a proper supermoto, and along with the vibrations comes one of the most insane bikes you can ride on a twisting backroad. In any of the first three gears the 510 powers onto its back wheel, and once there will merrily keep the front aloft while the rider throws any number of throttle pumps to keep it airborne.

You want true lunacy? Then try a 53bhp single that weighs just 118kg, roughly the same as a 125cc learner bike. Any rise in the road, slight crest or simply an occasion to drop down into second gear is enough of an excuse to mono-wheel the 510R. It doesn’t so much request you play the fool, it demands it.

JIM THINKS
The Husky is just stunning and clean from every angle and has a top notch build quality. You can see the whole motor without frame rails, bodywork or cables. Beautiful. The 510 sounds sharp, handles sweetly up to 80mph (they all get a little fidgety above this) and gives the full-on SM experience without the horrific pain of the Aprilia or the slight uncoolness of the KTM. Another sweetener is the 2-year warranty that has to be a first on such an extreme motorcycle…. Bad points? Yes. The turning lock is sportsbike bad. It certainly got on my nerves after a few hours.

Read more: http://www.visordown.com/road-tests/pack-instinct-sm510r-vs-690smc-vs-sxv550/5927.html#ixzz0zPtNoRlp

The SM 510R is as true to the supermoto ethos as you can get. It’s a lightweight, single cylinder moto that looks and feels barely more than a converted crosser. Which is exactly what it is. Husky doesn’t see the need to compromise with its supermotos, and it shows. On its side stand the 510R looks all sweetness and frills, with its neat anodised touches and purposeful beauty, but this bike is anything but sweet.

It may appear basic, but with a new chassis, beefier forks and an injected engine for 2008 in reality it’s packing a mean punch. Something it demonstrates happily at every opportunity.

You don’t mess with the Husky, it doesn’t play well with other road users. From the moment you push the starter and the raucous single barks into life you know this isn’t a bike to fiddle around with. It doesn’t want to win any friends, it’s raw, purposeful and focused.

It’s also the most uncomfortable bike I have ever ridden. 20 minutes on that seat shaped piece of granite is enough to cause major discomfort, 10 minutes more and this becomes almost intolerable and another five and you are looking for the closest A&E to check into for an arse graft. It’s horrific and if the actual bike wasn’t so much fun to ride it would easily be enough to put you off riding motorbikes. Forever.

And the Husky is fun, enormously good fun. The single cylinder engine punches forward with real speed. Crack the throttle open and it snaps to attention, catapulting the bike forward with urgency. Singles used to be big, lolloping engines, slow revving and heavy; not anymore. The 510R picks up revs so fast it feels like a two-stroke, the internals weigh next to nothing, but the vibrations remind you there are complicated lumps of metal flying around inside there. And boy does the Husky vibrate.

I’d love to lie and say it’s unobtrusive, but that’s like saying you hardly notice the 777s when you live under a flight-path. It’s bloody obtrusive, and combined with the seat makes riding a fairly unpleasant experience when it comes to creature comforts. But what did you expect?

This is a proper supermoto, and along with the vibrations comes one of the most insane bikes you can ride on a twisting backroad. In any of the first three gears the 510 powers onto its back wheel, and once there will merrily keep the front aloft while the rider throws any number of throttle pumps to keep it airborne.

You want true lunacy? Then try a 53bhp single that weighs just 118kg, roughly the same as a 125cc learner bike. Any rise in the road, slight crest or simply an occasion to drop down into second gear is enough of an excuse to mono-wheel the 510R. It doesn’t so much request you play the fool, it demands it.

JIM THINKS
The Husky is just stunning and clean from every angle and has a top notch build quality. You can see the whole motor without frame rails, bodywork or cables. Beautiful. The 510 sounds sharp, handles sweetly up to 80mph (they all get a little fidgety above this) and gives the full-on SM experience without the horrific pain of the Aprilia or the slight uncoolness of the KTM. Another sweetener is the 2-year warranty that has to be a first on such an extreme motorcycle…. Bad points? Yes. The turning lock is sportsbike bad. It certainly got on my nerves after a few hours.

Read more: http://www.visordown.com/road-tests/pack-instinct-sm510r-vs-690smc-vs-sxv550/5927.html#ixzz0zPtNoRlp

Price: £6,595 Engine: 501cc, lc, 4t, single Power: 53bhp @ 8,000rpm Torque: - Front suspension: 50mm USD fully adj. Rear suspension: Monoshock, fully adj. Front brake: 320mm discs, four-piston Rear brake: 240mm disc, one-piston Dry weight: 118kg (claimed) Seat height: 920mm Fuel capacity: 7.2L Top speed: 88mph Colours: Red, White, Black

Read more: http://www.visordown.com/road-tests/pack-instinct-sm510r-vs-690smc-vs-sxv550/5927.html#ixzz0zPtXz4aN

Score Breakdown
Overall
4

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