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Suzuki DR750S/DR800S Big

Here's a short history of the DR Big (also known as Desert Express) with pictures, specs, magazine reviews and stuff, as i know it. Many thanks to Hans from Holland for sending me a whole bunch of DR Big scans (no, I don't understand Dutch either, don't ask me about the articles).

Suzuki 1988More Suzuki models from 1988
1988 Suzuki year code: J
DR750 Big

1988 DR750 S Big. Click to enlarge.


No standard bike has the larger cylinder displacement than DR Big. The engine is although narrower than any twin offroad engine. The enormous single suits well for those who think twins are too clumsy and need more power than the smaller singles can offer. Naturally, no large single cylinder like low. But slow cruising with the highest gear is not what DR Big was meant to. That’s the limitation you have to live with if you buy a DR Big.

No, DR Big is a bike for riders who don’t want to ride fast, and not just on the tarmac. DR Big is a mass production model of the DR-Z, rode by Gaston Rahier at the Paris-Dakar rally (you can even find pictures of the DR-Z on this page).

If you have long legs, the form of the gasoline tank could make your life a bit miserable. You knees simply wouldn’t fit into the sunken tank sides. The problem was solved in 1991 year’s model when the gasoline tank was totally redesigned.

DR800 replaced the DR750 in 1990. The engine got six mm longer stroke (the bore was unchanged 105 mm), the cylinder displacement increased from 727 cc to 779 cc. Otherwise it was still just about the same bike.

DR Big saw a major update in 1991. The gasoline tank was decreased with five litres, now being ”only” 24 litres. The form of the tank was also new; the scooping on the sides of the tank was made wider for riders with long legs. The saddle was wider and more comfortable and even the suspension was upgraded.

For being a large offroad bike the DR Big has always had an unusually well balanced suspension and long suspension travel. You can actually take it for a spin on a cross circuit without risking a heart attack.

The models before 1991 are the best choice for really long distances with their enormous gasoline tank and the possibility of getting lots of packing with you. The exhaust was placed relative low that makes it possible for fastening saddlebags without risking burning them up. On the other hand, the saddle is not that comfortable on the older models.

Although the models after 1991 were more comfortable and perhaps better looking, the new exhausts (now two pipes instead of one) were not as practical and even raised the weight balance.

Suzuki DR750 S BigDR 750 S Big 1988
Overall Length: 2,255 mm (88.8 in)
Overall Width: 945 mm (37.2 in)
Overall Height: 1,295 mm (51.0 in)
Seat Height: 876 mm (34.5 in)
Ground Clearance: 240 mm (9.4 in)
Wheelbase 1,510 mm (59.4 in)
Dry Weight: 179 kg (394 lbs)
Engine type: Air and oil-cooled 727 cc single cylinder four-stroke, SOHC, four valves. 52 hp (38,3 kW)/ 6,600 rpm, 58 Nm (5.9 kg-m)/ 5,500 rpm.

Suzuki DR750 S BigDR 750 S Big 1988
Overall Length: 2,255 mm (88.8 in)
Overall Width: 945 mm (37.2 in)
Overall Height: 1,295 mm (51.0 in)
Seat Height: 876 mm (34.5 in)
Ground Clearance: 240 mm (9.4 in)
Wheelbase 1,510 mm (59.4 in)
Dry Weight: 179 kg (394 lbs)
Engine type: Air and oil-cooled 727 cc single cylinder four-stroke, SOHC, four valves. 52 hp (38,3 kW)/ 6,600 rpm, 58 Nm (5.9 kg-m)/ 5,500 rpm.





1988 DR750 Big introduction in a Dutch magazine, three pages. Click to enlarge.






1988 DR750 Big test in a Dutch magazine, six pages. Click to enlarge.


Suzuki DR-Z

1988 DR750 Big presentation in Dutch Suzuki Motor Magazine 1/1988
followed by a picture of Gaston Rahier's DR-Z.
Click to enlarge.





1988 DR Big at Paris-Dakar. Article in a Dutch magazine.
Click to enlarge.




Suzuki 1989
More Suzuki models from 1989
1989 Suzuki year code: K
Engines:
SR 41 B     (DR 750 S and DR 750 SU) 1988 - 1989
SR 42 B     (DR 800 S and DR 800 SU) 1990
SR 43 B     (DR 800 S and DR 800 SU) 1991 - 1997

Suzuki 1990More Suzuki models from 1990
1990 Suzuki year code: L
Suzuki DR800S BigDR 800 S Big 1990
Overall Length: 2,265 mm (89.2 in)
Overall Width: 865 mm (34.1 in)
Overall Height: 1,325 mm (52.2 in)
Seat Height: 876 mm (34.5 in)
Wheelbase: 1,520 mm (59.8 in)
Ground Clearance: 230 mm (9.1 in)
Dry weight: 194 kg (427 lbs)
Engine type: Water-cooled 779 cc single cylinder 4-stroke. OHC, SACS, 4 valves. Dual carb. 54 hp (40 kW)/ 6,600 rpm, 62 Nm (6.32 kg-m)/ 5,400 rpm. 5-speed.


Suzuki 1991More Suzuki models from 1991
1991 Suzuki year code: M

New designed. Longer swing, new silencers, improved starter system, new instruments.

Colors available: Red, Blue.
Suzuki DR800SDR 800 S Big 1991
Overall Length: 2,265 mm (89.2 in)
Overall Width: 865 mm (34.1 in)
Overall Height: 1,325 mm (52.2 in)
Seat Height: 876 mm (34.5 in)
Wheelbase: 1,520 mm (59.8 in)
Ground Clearance: 230 mm (9.1 in)
Dry weight: 194 kg (427 lbs)
Engine type: Water-cooled 779 cc single cylinder 4-stroke. OHC, SACS, 4 valves. Dual carb. 54 hp (40 kW)/ 6,600 rpm, 62 Nm (6.32 kg-m)/ 5,400 rpm. 5-speed.
Suzuki DR800SDR 800 S Big 1991
Overall Length: 2,265 mm (89.2 in)
Overall Width: 865 mm (34.1 in)
Overall Height: 1,325 mm (52.2 in)
Seat Height: 876 mm (34.5 in)
Wheelbase: 1,520 mm (59.8 in)
Ground Clearance: 230 mm (9.1 in)
Dry weight: 194 kg (427 lbs)
Engine type: Water-cooled 779 cc single cylinder 4-stroke. OHC, SACS, 4 valves. Dual carb. 54 hp (40 kW)/ 6,600 rpm, 62 Nm (6.32 kg-m)/ 5,400 rpm. 5-speed.


Suzuki 1992More Suzuki models from 1992
1992 Suzuki year code: N



Click to enlarge.



DR750 used guide DR800 used guide

DR750 and SR800 used guide from a German Mopped magazine, two pages. Click to enlarge.




Suzuki 1995More Suzuki models from 1995
1995 Suzuki year code: S
.
Suzuki DR800SDR 800 S Big 1995
Overall Length: 2,265 mm (89.2 in)
Overall Width: 865 mm (34.1 in)
Overall Height: 1,325 mm (52.2 in)
Seat Height: 876 mm (34.5 in)
Wheelbase: 1,520 mm (59.8 in)
Ground Clearance: 230 mm (9.1 in)
Dry weight: 194 kg (427 lbs)
Engine type: Water-cooled 779 cc single cylinder 4-stroke. OHC, SACS, 4 valves. Dual carb. 54 hp (40 kW)/ 6,600 rpm, 62 Nm (6.32 kg-m)/ 5,400 rpm. 5-speed.


Suzuki 1996More Suzuki models from 1996
1996 Suzuki year code: T
.
Suzuki DR800S '96DR 800 S Big 1996
Overall Length: 2,265 mm (89.2 in)
Overall Width: 865 mm (34.1 in)
Overall Height: 1,325 mm (52.2 in)
Seat Height: 876 mm (34.5 in)
Wheelbase: 1,520 mm (59.8 in)
Ground Clearance: 230 mm (9.1 in)
Dry weight: 194 kg (427 lbs)
Engine type: Water-cooled 779 cc single cylinder 4-stroke. OHC, SACS, 4 valves. Dual carb. 54 hp (40 kW)/ 6,600 rpm, 62 Nm (6.32 kg-m)/ 5,400 rpm. 5-speed.




DR800S Big specifications

Engine Type 4-stroke, 1-cylinder, air-cooled with SACS, SOHC
Piston displacement 779 cm3
Bore x stroke 105 mm x 90 mm
Compression ratio 9.5 : 1
Carburettor MIKUNI BST33, twin
Starter system Electric
Transmission 5-speed constant mesh
Drive system Chain, 116 links
Overall length 2,230 mm (87.8 in.)
Overall width 865 mm (34.1 in.)
Overall height 1,325 mm (52.2 in.)
Wheelbase 1,520 mm (59.8 in.)
Ground clearance 230 mm (9.1 in.)
Seat height 890 mm (35.0 in.)
Dry mass 194 kg (427 lbs.)
Front suspension Telescopic, coil spring, air damped
Rear suspension Link type, coil spring, gas/oil damped, spring preload fully adjustable
Front brakes Disc
Rear brakes Disc
Front tyres 90/90-21 54S
Rear tyres 130/80-17 65S
Ignition type Digital CDI ignition
Fuel tank 24.0 L (6.3 gal.)
Body colours 33J: Pearl Novelty Black
Y98: Candy Forest Green


The production of the DR Big was officially terminated in 1997. But some machines have been made even after 1997 and it has been possible to buy a brand new DR Big as late as 2000.

This page is still under construction. Please send me more facts and pictures if you can!



More: Suzuki DR series

More: All Suzuki models

Sources: Swedish Bike magazine, DR Club Holland, DR Big Club Holland,
The Illustrated Motorcycle Legends: Suzuki


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