How Suzuki developed the latest generation of Hayabusa - an inside look

Your chance to see the inner workings of Suzuki developing a new motorcycle, with the process and decisions behind making changes to the iconic Hayabusa.

Suzuki Hayabusa 2021 2022 Development Process

SUZUKI revealed the latest third-generation of Hayabusa at the start of February, but what was the development process to design their perfect speed-addicted motorcycle? Their goal was to build a better ‘Busa, but how did they get there?

The key for the development team was evolution of the same formula. Suzuki quizzed current owners and riders of the Hayabusa from across the world, and apparently the over-arching response was: they all loved the current Hayabusa model, there was no need to make radical changes for the sake of change, and what they really wanted the most was improvements to the current formula - not a different bike with the same name.

New 2021 Suzuki Hayabusa | specs & info

New Suzuki Hayabusa 2021 | Suzuki Hayabusa specs, details, and features |

So that’s what they did. Except, that’s not to say the Hayabusa team didn’t toy with vastly different alternatives in the conceptual & design process when getting there. It seems it came down to the fact that you can’t mess with greatness - or, ‘don’t try to fix what ain’t broke’.

Alternative frame setups were trialed, engines with different displacements, or with a different number of cylinders were given a go, even turbocharged versions prototyped (their test rider must have had a brilliant time) but it all boiled down to the existing setup being far superior to any other alternatives, and only small tweaks to the original frame and motor were best-suited to the Hayabusa name for 2021. 

At face value it seems few refinements were made across the motorcycle, but it's the less visible changes (like introducing new electronic features & improvements) that are often the most visible on the road. These rider optimisations, along with a refined aerodynamic shape to optimise the already 'streamlined' look of the Hayabusa, all combine to create a more complete ride - but at the base of it all is the same signature Hayabusa feel, balanced in all aspects just like the first generation.

The design team even dubbed the design concept “the refined beast” - which says it all. 

Suzuki Hayabusa development process

Representative director & president of Suzuki, Toshihiro Suzuki, said:

“I wasn’t sure how I would feel about the prototype I rode while still in development, but was immediately impressed by how controllable and exciting I found it to ride.”

“I took it up to 112mph (180kph). The level of stability, even at speeds exceeding those normally used, left me with the impression this was a very different and notably improved bike that would leave customers completely satisfied.”

The key for Suzuki was to make the latest third-generation of Hayabusa a natural evolution from the previous offerings, and with updated parts throughout - but still offering the trademark ‘Busa speed, it seems like this could have been achieved. The design team even had a concept of “The refined beast” to follow!

Have a watch of the development video: 

Want more Hayabusa? Here's 10 things you may have never known about the 'Busa, or the reveal article (with all the specs and info).