The radical Katana’s design was attributed to Hans Muth ex-chief of styling for BMW motorcycles. The pre production design was a 650 cc model called the ED-1 (European Design 1). This design featured a forward nose and a shaped, blended fuel tank with a merged fuel tank-to-seat arrangement at a time when squared off fuel tanks and flat-faced bolt-on accessory fairings were the norm. The design also incorporated favorable aerodynamics, with a special emphasis placed on high-speed stability, and was repeatedly wind-tunnel tested. The production Katana of 1981 differed only slightly from the prototype; changes included a small wind deflector screen, paired mufflers, and black accent paint on the front fender and air box covers. In late 1980’s when the GSX1100S Katana hit the street, it was claimed by Suzuki to be the fastest mass-production motorcycle in the world, ensuring the new looks were matched by unprecedented performance levels. So radical was the design departure from previous mass-market cycles that most major motorcycle magazines of the era thought the design would not appeal to the masses. Nevertheless, it was a sales success, and the motorcycle had a lasting impact on motorcycle design. Portions of the design ethos are still visible in many current sport motorcycles, including the faired-in seat and fuel tank.
This 1100cc version from 1987 was imported recently from Europe and registered here in the UK, in generally very good overall condition the bike is supplied with a UK V5C logbook, MoT until Dec. 2016 and is said to be in good working order, showing 21,632 Kms.