Suzuki Motor of America has issued a recall for as many as 210,000 units of its 2004-13 GSX-R sportbikes, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). The bikes are being recalled because of corrosion of the brake piston (in combination with older brake fluid) inside the front brake master cylinder that generates gas that may result in reduction of fluid pressure transmission to the front brake. As a result, front braking power may be reduced and increase the risk of a crash.
The bikes being recalled include certain model year 2004-2013 GSX-R600s and GSX-R750s and 2005-2013 GSX-R1000s.
Suzuki will be contacting owners of the affected units, who in turn can take their GSX-Rs to Suzuki dealers for a free replacement of the front master cylinder. The recall will begin on November 4.
In a letter dated October 18, 2013 Suzuki Motor of America said: “After a long-term service life of the motorcycle without changing the brake fluid, the brake fluid can deteriorate and absorb moisture. The brake piston inside the front brake master cylinder may not have uniform surface treatment. This combination of conditions can lead to corrosion of the brake piston.” This corrosion contributes to the generation of gas and due to the side position of the reservoir, may not be “adequately purged from the master cylinder.”
As the gas accumulates the front brake lever “may develop a ‘spongy’ feel and stopping distances may be extended, increasing the risk of a crash.”