The biggest improvement you can make to just about any motorcycle is to update the original suspension.
Most motorcycles are built with bargain suspension as standard.
Even “exotic” or “luxury” brands tend to come with compromised suspension components and only special models have high-grade forks and shocks.
While many riders tend to replace mufflers and engine management systems to get greater power, the biggest improvement they can make to a bike’s performance is via the suspension.
We all know that better suspension will improve the bikes handling, but what does that actually mean?
Good handling isn’t necessarily stiffer suspension.
It can result in “plusher” suspension that makes the bike corner better, steer more precisely and ride smoother over bumps.
It means the forks and shocks will respond faster to bumps keeping the wheels in contact with the ground which translates as better acceleration and braking.
This is no more important than on adventure bikes that travel on much more demanding terrain.
Even if you like the standard suspension on your adventure bike — and some of it is quite good — adventure riding on rough roads can take a heavy toll on suspension which could need updating in just a couple of years.
In 2014, German adventure accessories company Touratech started producing a range of high-end suspension tailored specifically for adventure riders.
Touratech Suspension already has the Travel range for adventure bikes and dual bikes and Black-T series for custom bikes, scramblers and new heritage bikes.
Now they have introduced a new E1 series of adventure suspension so their brand now covers more than 400 motorcycle models.
Touratech E1 suspension
Touratech Suspension’s E1 adventure series includes mono shocks, twin shocks and replacement spring sets for the fork and the original shock absorber.
The step-less progressively wound springs are claimed to combine sensitive response with high puncture resistance.
And there are replacement spring sets for some models to lower the bike for shorter riders.
The base parts are milled from the solid and a “generously dimensioned” damper rod made of 16mm thick chrome-molybdenum steel.
The big damper tube ensures optimum heat dissipation so the temperature balance of the damper remains stable, even under heavy use.
Rebound damping of the shock absorbers can be adjusted over 50 clicks and the springs have a progressive rate that offers a plush ride on harsh bumps without bottoming out.
The preload of the spring can be adjusted manually.
The E1 series spring elements are manufactured in Europe and come with a two-year warranty.
But don’t expect them to come cheap. A rear shock alone can cost up to $A2000.