KIWI RIDER 10 2018 VOL.1 - Page 37

The GS has a Telelever front end and Paralever rear suspension set-up that is electronically adjustable and it initially feels ... ' unique '

The GS has a Telelever front end and Paralever rear suspension set-up that is electronically adjustable and it initially feels ... ' unique '

Sure , when the tank is full it is noticeably more top heavy , but with a 600km range it is quite unnecessary to fill it up ... well , errr , ever for NZ conditions . I wouldn ’ t recommend putting any more than 20 litres of fuel in for gravel riding and you will still have a roughly 350-400km range . The GS-A has a Telelever front end and Paralever rear suspension set-up that is electronically adjustable and it initially feels ... ' unique '. The big difference riding with the Telelever system is that it will not let the front dive under braking , although there is slight initial movement , while bumps are still absorbed normally . This means when you pull the front brake lever , the front suspension doesn ' t compress , tighten the steering head angle and give a resulting tighter turn in . While this may seem a minor thing , for someone who has ridden bikes with telescopic forks for over 40 years , the feeling is strange ... it gives the illusion of sluggish turn in and the tendency to run wide particularly on gravel – despite the very light , effortless steering feel . However , all that is required is a little adjustment time and a slightly different approach in turns . Both GS models love to lay into a turn early and will hold their line in a stable way . To alter line mid-turn I found I tended to physically steer more than usual with the bars in tighter going , actually putting a little lock on . While in fast turns they prefer to be laid over more or less to alter line ; whereas with telescopic forks a light brush of the front brake will compress the forks a little , tighten the steering angle and therefore your corning line . On loose gravel , especially off camber turns the inability to compress the forks under brakes does mean you end up taking a slightly wider line . The best plan is to look for the hard pack where the grip is , or any sort of a berm that is safe to lay it in to , to aid turning ... but really that is the same game plan for any bike . Once you learn how the GS works best , it can be pushed quite hard and even with road tyres in the gravel , this big girl can be made to hustle confidently .
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