Suzuki Shows Five New Vehicles

American Suzuki Motor Corp. (ASMC) unveiled five new vehicles Sept. 29, during kickoff ceremonies to the company’s dealer meeting in Las Vegas.

As previously reported, the OEM’s plans for 2009 include an all-new GSX-R1000 and 650cc V-twin-powered bike called the Gladius. Also destined for dealerships in the coming year: a 1462cc power cruiser called the M90; a retro looking air-cooled, fuel-injected unit called the TU250X; and a King Quad 500 with electronic power steering.

The GSX-R1000 (MSRP $12,199) is to be delivered in March, the Gladius ($6,499) in February, the M90 ($9,999) in October, the TU250X ($3,499) in March, and the King Quad 500AXi Power Steering ($7,599) in December.

Suzuki executives made it clear that they understand the woes dealers are experiencing due to troubles in the economy, but said they’re prepared on multiple fronts to help retailers overcome those issues.

In June, ASMC announced a plan to consolidate its independent business units — Automotive, Motorcycle/ATV and Marine, along with corporate operations — under a new president, Kinji Saito.

Saito says his immediate plan is to understand what retailers need and want, and says he intends to visit stores throughout the country as part of his initial discovery process.

Comments made by Masaaki (Mac) Kato, president of ASMC's Motorcycle, ATV and Marine Operations, mirrored those by Saito: “We must make our customers happy, and you are our customers,” Kato told dealers assembled for the event at The Rio hotel in Las Vegas. “We are committed to work with you, to give you the assistance you need.

“We are looking for new ways to help you, and new ways to drive your business. The factory hears you, and we will be getting the product you need. Talk will lead to action.”