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How to Identify a Suzuki Motorcycle Engine

by William Bronleigh

Upon first glance at a Suzuki motorcycle, the engine size may not be immediately apparent. Without the aid of decals that indicate the engine displacement, one is forced to reference the vehicle identification number (VIN). Luckily, motorcycle manufacturers, including Suzuki, adhere to a international set of rules when numbering their motorcycles with a VIN, allowing for engine identification. Armed with a VIN decoding chart, identifying a Suzuki motorcycle's engine is quite simple.

Locating the VIN

Step 1

Find the VIN number on the Suzuki motorcycle. It will be located somewhere on the motorcycle's frame. VINs will either be on a sticker or a metallic plate.

Step 2

Write down the VIN number carefully. If the plate is not apparent, the VIN should also be embossed into the frame.

Check the engine for any embossed numbering on the casing. If there are any numbers on the engine, they are surely the engine displacement.

Decoding the VIN

Step 1

Look at the five characters immediately following "JS1" in the VIN number. JS1 signifies that this is a motorcycle from Japan ("J"), produced by Suzuki ("S"), and is a motorcycle ("1").

Step 2

Read the five characters after "JS1", also known as the Vehicle Descriptor Section (VDS), which will give the engine information. The first character will be a letter indicating the vehicle category, either a C (scooter), B (business model), N (single cylinder sport street), G (multiple cylinder sport street), F (family), S (off-road), V (V-type engine) or H (square four).

Step 3

Read the second character of the VDS, which will be a letter between A-Z. This letter will indicate a engine displacement range of the engine. For example, A indicates engines under 49 cubic centimeters (cc) and Z indicates engines over 1500 cc.

Step 4

Read the third character of the VDS, which will be a number between 1 and 7. This number indicates the type of engine, primarily whether it is a two or a four stroke engine.

Read the fourth and fifth character of the VDS. The fourth character is the design sequence, which may contain information regarding the engine. The last character of the VDS indicates a model variation.

Items you will need

  • VIN decoder chart

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