2013 Suzuki Boulevard M90: RIDIING IMPRESSION

Kit Palmer | June 18, 2013

Suzuki probably isn’t one of the first manufacturers that pops into your head when it comes to cruisers, but it should be. I was again reminded just how good some of Suzuki’s cruisers really are after logging a few miles on a couple of its latest Boulevard models  – the C90T B.O.S.S. and M90.

Although the company has offered cruiser models in the past, like the Marauder and Intruder, it really wasn’t until the mid-2000s when Suzuki really became a force in the cruiser market. That’s when Suzuki overhauled its cruiser line, giving them fuel injection, a more rough-and-tumble look and a new name – Boulevard. All of a sudden, the new Boulevards made it a whole lot easier to be seen while cruising on a Suzuki. And, not to mention, easier to be on them.

The M90, which bridges the gap between the smaller M50 and the monstrous and popular M109R Boulevards, took on a fairly major overall for the 2009 model year, just in time for the economy and the entire motorcycle industry to collapse. Like many other motorcycle manufacturers, Suzuki suddenly found itself with a warehouse full of bikes it couldn’t sell. As a result, Suzuki put the M90 – and many of its other models –on hold until it was safe for them to come out again. And that time is now.

The 2103 M90 picks up where the 2009 M90 left off (there were no official 2010-2012 models). It’s powered by a 1462cc (89.2 cubic inch) 54-degree V-twin fuel-injected motor, hung in a double-cradle steel frame. It takes its “muscle” styling cue from its bigger and badder M109R brother and you have to look real hard to spot the differences, but it’s not really worth trying.

A lot like the C90T B.O.S.S. that I just got parked (and very much enjoyed riding), the M90 feels big and long, but maybe not quite as long or as tall in the seat. Still, the M90 is a big motorcycle, not to mention heavy. Learning of its nearly 730-pound curb weight after picking it up off its sidestand for the first time didn’t surprise me one bit. But what did surprise me was how responsive and easy it was to lean it in and out of the corners.

The bike, with its low CG, felt far sportier than I was expecting. But I quickly came back to earth when the footpegs started scrapping the tarmac through a seemingly innocent sweeper. Still, for big cruiser, the M90 is quite agile and fun on the twisties.

The M90 certainly has the power and torque to back up its masculine looks. Torque makes its presence known right away before it slowly transitions into pure power as you wring out all five gears and let the rpm climb and the speed increase. To me, even fitted with the same motor, the M90 felt a little livelier than the B.O.S.S., but its not hauling around nearly as much weight or pushing as much plastic (bags and large windscreen) through the air as the B.O.S.S. It just goes when you open it up.

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