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Dunlop SportSmart TT impresses at Suzuki GSX-8R launch

Dunlop SportSmart TT was the chosen tyre of Suzuki to equip the launch of its new GSX-8R in January, helping to extract maximum performance out of the new model.

The launch took place at the same Monteblanco Circuit that Dunlop used to launch SportSmart TT six years ago.

The Suzuki GSX-8R, announced at EICMA in 2023 and commercially launched in January 2024, is based on its naked GSX-8S predecessor, but features a host of updated features to focus it more as a sport bike.

The GSX-8R comprises an exposed 776cc parallel twin-powered engine and seat rail, and is equipped with a fairing and separate handlebars, making it suitable for track riding.

Engineered for versatility across road and track riding, the Dunlop SportSmart TT was expertly placed to highlight the advanced capabilities of the GSX-8R, with both products demonstrating the ability to strike an impressive balance between sporty, track riding and comfort.

A track-capable bike requires a track-capable tyre. In fact, the TT in the tyre name refers to ‘Track Technology’ and signifies Dunlop’s commitment to superior performance on track.

SportSmart TT’s NTEC RT technology allows for its rear pressure to be lowered for track use, giving more grip by enlarging the tyre’s contact patch.

Its Speed Vent Tread, meanwhile, is a tread groove pattern that opens and closes when the tyre turns, improving heat dissipation.

On the front tyre, a revised dynamic mould profile gives the rare balance between lower steering effort and optimum turn-in grip, delivering enhanced feedback and confidence when braking and turning.

Suzuki invited 50 journalists from more than 10 countries to the test, many of whom commented favourably on the bike’s behaviour with the SportSmart TT tyres, noting it had “improved” when turning into corners, and that the tyre gave “much more support” for the bike, resulting in good grip, stability and control when riding on tarmac.

Roberto Finetti, marketing manager, Dunlop Motorcycle Europe, said: “We developed SportSmart TT to allow riders to combine road and track riding, and are proud that this successful collaboration with Suzuki serves as a testament to the capabilities of both the GSX-8R and SportSmart TT. Congratulations to Suzuki for a highly successful launch.”