• Chassis # GT750-60238
  • Engine # GT750-79576
  • Showing Just 16,355 Miles From New
  • Finished In Delightful Jewel Grey Metallic
  • A Highly Original Example In Good Running Order
  • Includes 2 Keys And Factory Owners Manual
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This car is currently located in: Philadelphia, PA

The Overview

The early 1970s were an exciting time for the motorcycle industry worldwide. Manufacturers across the board had started offering higher horsepower 4-cylinder machines which continued to push the boundaries of speed and rideability. Up until this point, Suzuki had been known largely for their small displacement and two-stroke machines, but they knew they would need a big powerful machine to break into the gold mine that was the critical American riding market. They decided to take a very non-traditional approach to their problem and developed a 739cc water-cooled three-cylinder two-stroke engine, based on a current production 550cc two-stroke twin. Upon its launch in 1971, it would be groundbreaking in the fact that it was the first production Japanese motorcycle with a  liquid-cooled engine and was later included in the Society of Automotive Engineers of Japan’s 240 Landmarks of Japanese Automotive Technology.

The innovative engine configuration was mounted in a sport-touring chassis featuring a 5-speed manual transmission with a chain final drive and drum brakes front and rear. It would weigh in at 482 lbs dry and was good for a (claimed) top speed of 100 mph. Multiple changes were made through the early years of production, a constant refinement and bettering process to the bike. The biggest changes came for the 1974 M model in the Japanese Domestic Market. The M model saw the addition of dual disc brakes in the front, replacing the anemic drums, which was a first for manufacturers at the time. Changes were made to the exhaust to increase road clearance, the carburetors were upgraded to 40mm Mikuni CV types, a gear position indicator was added to the dash, and the engine was re-tuned bringing the horsepower up to 70 bhp. Most of these changes would be seen when they were released to the rest of the world in the form of the 1975 Suzuki GT750 “L” model. The bike now handled and stopped better but was also capable of 120 mph on the top end. As with all two-stroke machines, stricter emission regulations in the late 1970s choked out development, and the GT750 model was canned in 1977 in favor of the now more traditional 4-stroke engines. 

The GT750 was a brilliant piece of machinery, with an extremely smooth engine that produced the same horsepower numbers as the CB750 with which it was originally designed to compete with. It introduced technology that has become standard in today’s bikes, such as water cooling and dual front disc brakes. Although it was a technological marvel, it was received a bit critically by the public. Over the years it garnered nicknames like “Water Buffalo” thanks to its portly size and weight. In the UK it was called the “Kettle” and the Aussies referred to it as the “Waterbottle”. Despite its reputation at the time, the GT750 remains an extremely important and collectible piece of not only Suzuki’s history but classic bikes in general. Many were ridden hard and not kept up with when it came time for maintenance, so finding a good original example with low miles has become extremely difficult over the years. 

The example on offer here, frame number GT750-60238 and engine number GT750-79576, is a 1975 model year Suzuki GT 750 finished in Jewel Grey Metallic. It is what appears to be a highly original low miles example, showing just 16,355 miles from new, and is complete with its correct 3-into-4 exhaust in place, and many original finishes and components. It appears very correct with many pieces that often go missing over the years such as the unique turn indicators, still included on the machine. In a true statement of the originality of the machine, there is a 1979 inspection sticker from Indiana still located on the left side lower fork tube. Factory stickers are still present on the top of the fender underneath the seat and on top of the radiator cap which is mounted in the front of the fuel tank. The only non-stock item appears to be the seat which was swapped out for a more British-style “tuck and roll” type seat. 

The early history of the machine is a bit muddled, but the current owner and consignor purchased the GT750 in 1998 and lovingly kept it in top condition since then. As the story goes, he had lusted after the “Suzuki Kettle” growing up in the UK in the early 70s but could not afford one, being fresh out of high school. In particular, in 1975 when the new Jewel Grey Metallic color was released, an infatuation began and he knew he had to have one someday. Fast forward to 1998 when he moved from the UK to the US and purchased a home in the North East area of Pennsylvania, a short distance from New York City. One day he was cruising the back roads near his home and stumbled upon a sparkling grey motorcycle with a for sale sign on it. Much to his surprise, it was the exact 1975 Suzuki GT750 in Jewel Grey Metallic that he had lusted after all those years ago. He was looking it over when the owner’s dog came out and chased him from the property. Unfettered, he showed up the next day and this time the owner came out, with no sign of the dog this time! The bike had belonged to his father, who had recently passed. Unfortunately, there was no paperwork or real history, but the current owner purchased it on the spot and rode it home, leaving his car behind and coming back to pick it up the next day. The bike was in fantastic shape and showed low miles at the time. Over his years of careful ownership, he did basic service items like tires and brakes but other than that the bike remained largely as he purchased it, a clean and low miles example of Suzuki’s innovative machine from the early 1970s. Most recently the bike had a number of basic service items attended to such as new front brake pads, fork seals, new fork oil, wheel bearings, new tires and tubes, air filter, as well as replacing the carb boots. Total service amount was $3,364.85. 

As it sits today this GT750 remains completely stock (with the exception of the seat change) and in good running and riding order. It started easily when we received it and seems to idle well and run strong. Much of the finishes appear to be original and it does have some patina that comes along with the territory. There is some minor paint chipping in high-wear areas as well as some very minor oxidation to metal surfaces in some areas. The tank and side covers show fantastic paint and while we see no signs of them having been painted, the condition is such that it is very possible that they were redone at one point. The tank remains clean and straight with no dings or dents. The inside of the tank appears original and uncoated, and while it does look to be clean, there are a few spots of chipped paint immediately inside, likely from gas-filling nozzles over the years. The engine itself is in good condition cosmetically, appearing original with good shine and a bit of haziness to the finish. There are no signs of any mechanical issues from the outside. There is some minor corrosion forming on some of the hardware of the engine, but again, it is consistent with the highly original nature of the machine. The tires appear to basically new Dunlop F24 units with the factory lines still on them, ample tread, and solid sidewalls. 

The Suzuki GT750 was an incredibly innovative machine when it came out, built to compete with the other big-name bikes of the day that have seen far more appreciation over the years than these iconic “Water Buffalo’s” have. These days it is growing increasingly difficult to find a good original example of the GT750 as many were ridden hard and the parts and expertise to fix them when they did break just weren’t there. This example has the originality and low miles that would make it the perfect addition to any collection surrounding important Japanese collectible bikes and its careful ownership over the years means it can be ridden and enjoyed as it should. 

Included with the sale of this GT750 are 2 keys and the factory owner’s manual.

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