A weekend at Korea, Soul turned out more interesting the expected. Korean friends had arranged a rental motorcycle, I have to amid that I was a bit shocked when seeing a Hyosung GT650S motorcycle waiting for me. I tried, uselessly to explain that I wanted a Honda CBR-600RR or something similar.
My Korean friends, two of them, did not stopped laughing and to me 'Give it a chance', as I get my first look at this Hyosung GT650S. But the cheap and cheerful mid-size-all-rounder really does nothing for my riding in Korean dreams. I always tend to buy the fastest, scariest thing I can afford, with no compromise, okay this change a bit after I meet the wife.
So forgive me if my initial reaction to the Hyosung GT650S is one of underwhelmed ingratitude. But it's not all bad. I'm pleasantly surprised by the Italian-red paintwork and the sharp, angular lines. My heart fill with hope and I ignore the snigger's from the rest of the riders, who of course where all able to get Japanese branded bikes, as I swing a leg over my Korean beauty. There's another surprise, the seat height is low and, at first I'm bit scared as I'm 195cm tall, but the riding position is pretty good, even the wife with 165cm can easily put both feet on the floor.
Flick the starter and the engine doesn't exactly burst into life: cough, splutter, misfire, then nothing. My heart sinks. I look around the simple but neat little dash and find a choke lever, not exactly hi-tech, then. I try again and we're off and running. First impression coming off my last long-term bike, the Ducati 1098S, is that it's dull. It accelerates all right but there's no real urgency, and it does slow down, eventually. But then I compare it to a Ducati 1098S, one of the worlds most powerful bikes, I can easily keep up with a Honda Hornet who tried about everything to lose me...
The Hyosung GT650S, it's stable at speed and turns well. Take it for what it is and there's some serious fun to be had. Carve through a few bends, maintain your speed, stay smooth and it's raise a smile.
The smile got even bigger after several stops for gasoline, the Hyosung GT650S is not only cheaper in purchase price it is also pretty good in saving on fuel consumption, the Honda Hornet and some other Japanese bike used remarkable more fuel then my little Korean wonder.
At the evening, most of the other riders, who before laughed at me driving a Korean build bike are now more interested in the Hyosung GT650S. Myself I was wondering if Hyosung will ever bring this bike to Thailand.