Marfil Moto: Suzuki GS550 Resto-Customs

Suzuki GS550

Magic Middleweights: Two Suzuki GS550s from Poland… 

In 1977, Suzuki introduced the GS550, a smaller sibling to the GS750, which Cycle World called “a lithe and hot-blooded tiger that’s our pick for Best of Breed, 750 cc, and a solid contender for Best of Show, 1977.” That’s a tough act to follow for a little brother, but the GS550 soon proved its own mettle as a capable, fun, rock-ribbed middleweight contender:

“Suzuki’s 550 Four goes fast, looks terrific, and stops hard.” –Cycle, 1977

Suzuki GS550 Restomod

While the GS550 didn’t have the flash and outright sex appeal of the high-powered two-strokes or four-cylinder literbikes of the era, it ran faster quarter-miles than both the Honda CB550 and Suzuki’s own two-stroke GT550. All in all, it’s one of those well-rounded, superbly balanced vintage fours that owners and riders have come to love.

“Easy to ride and plenty of fun, will do a tadge over a 100 mph if you have a death wish, and you can lift the front fairly easily.” –Bike Chat

Recently, we heard from Maciek of Poland’s Marfil Moto, who has a small workshop where he works on the side giving vintage motorcycles a second life. When a client and friend brought him a pair of GS550’s for refurbishment, Maciek convinced his friend to green-light a few custom modifications while preserving the lines, silhouette, and charm of the original machines.

Suzuki GS550 Restomod

Maciek did all of the work himself. The engines were fully serviced, glazed, and polished, while the frames were powder-coated a slick piano black.

Suzuki GS550 Restomod

The bodywork has been repainted in candy blue-green and gray / black colorways, and Maciek changed the shape of the seats, reupholstering the foam in black suede and vintage leather.

Suzuki GS550 Restomod

He upgraded the suspension with progressive springs and re-laced the wheels with new stainless spokes, wrapping the rims in modern Metzeler rubber. He minimized the wiring loom and outfitted the bikes with hand-bent manifolds and a stainless exhaust.

Suzuki GS550 Restomod

Overall, these are two gorgeous Suzuki 550s that look like they just rolled off the showroom floor, decked with thoughtful upgrades and colors like limited edition specials straight out of the late 70s. Then there’s the riding experience:

“The experience of riding a restored motorcycle that’s over 40 years old is like a time travel to the years of our first motorcycle adventures.”


Below, we interview Maciek for the full details and backstory on these gorgeous GS550s.

Suzuki GS550: Builder Interview

Suzuki GS550 Restomod

• Please tell us a bit about yourself, your history with motorcycles, and your workshop.

Hi, I’m Maciek. I come from Poland where I work in the health industry on a daily basis. In my free time, I love old motorcycles, which prompted me to set up my small workshop where I give them a second life.

Suzuki GS550 Restomod

• What’s the make, model, and year of the donor bike?

Suzuki GS550, 1978.

Suzuki GS550 Restomod

• Why was this bike built and what the design concept?

One day, my client, who is a friend of mine brought two old GS550s to the workshop. He asked if I could refurbish his bike, keeping the original lines, but at my urging he gave the green light to make some custom changes to the bikes.

Suzuki GS550 Restomod

• What custom work was done?

The engine has been fully serviced, glazed and polished, refreshed along with the carburetors and all sealants.

Suzuki GS550 Restomod

The frame was powder-coated in its original condition with black piano colour.

Suzuki GS550

Andrew chose a candy blue green paint color with a hint of black on the tank and rear tail. The second motorcycle was painted black with a touch of gray. I changed the profile of the foam in the seat and it was upholstered with vintage black leather and black suede.

Suzuki GS550

The suspension has been upgraded with progressive springs. The rims were replaced with new braided stainless steel spokes and new Metzeler tyres.

Suzuki GS550 Restomod

The bikes also got hand-bent manifolds along with a stainless steel exhaust.

Suzuki GS550 Restomod

The electrical system have been modified and reduced.

Suzuki GS550

• Can you tell us what it’s like to ride the completed bike?

The experience of riding a restored motorcycle that is over 40 years old is like a time travel to the years of our first motorcycle adventures.

Suzuki GS550

• Was there anything done during this build that you are particularly proud of?

I am proud, above all, of the craftsmanship I have done. Despite the amount of work, I managed to complete this project on my own.

Suzuki GS550

• Is there anyone you’d like to thank?

First of all, I would like to thank my family, friends and my patients for the amount of time I had to put toward the GS550 project.

Suzuki GS550

Bike Gallery

Suzuki GS550 Restomod Suzuki GS550 Restomod

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  1. Great job. The blue one is to die for.

  2. Clive Coombe

    Both but is look great. I really like the way the restomods were not overdone. Well done 👍

  3. Clive Coombe

    Ment both bikes look great.

  4. Both bikes are gorgeous. By far the best restomod or customisation of a 1970s Suzuki GS that I have seen here.
    I bought a GS 550 new in 1977, then sold it, and I purchased recently a 1979 GS 1000 E in very good condition that I have ridden for approximately 1000 km/600 miles in a bit over a month.
    Normally I prefer more powerful motorcycles, but me think that the 550 was the better bike.

  5. Nice motorcycles!
    Clean and simple.
    I bought a 77 gs750 new. It was a good machine . I think the 550 is even a better all round ride.

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