1974 Suzuki TM-125L Challenger

1974 Suzuki TM125L Challenger We’ve seen its bigger and slightly older brothers, the 1972 TM-250J Champion, and the 1973 TM-250K Champion in other showcase submissions. Today we look at a stellar restored 1974 Suzuki TM-125L Challenger. This 1974 Suzuki TM125 Challenger showcase is shared from owner Bill Denzer of Arizona.

1974 Suzuki TM125. I found this bike in southern California, and drove out from Phx, AZ to see if it was as good as it looked in the pictures. The guy selling it was a former motocross racer from the 70’s and 80’s who had a few bikes tucked away in an old shed on his property. The bike barely ran, but It was obvious that it wasn’t abused and probably never raced. Other than the gas tank, which was there but not on the bike, everything was original including a functional oil injection system.

Over a 4 month period, I completely tore down the bike, sandblasted and re-painted parts, re-plated all the hardware, rebuilt the crank and installed a new piston, rings and seals, installed new fork seals, and reassembled the bike with new plastics, cables and tires.
The biggest headache was the tank because it leaked. I took it to a local radiator shop for repair and then it was off to the painter. The bike’s not perfect, but it turned out looking pretty good.

1974 Suzuki TM125L Challenger Gallery

1974 Suzuki TM-125L Challenger

1974 Suzuki TM125 Challenger Webco Head1974 Suzuki TM125 Challenger1974 Suzuki TM125 Challenger Webco HeadToday’s eye candy comes from proud owner Steve Hansell.

I bought a 1974 TM125 that had been used by a farmer to get around his property, the engine and everything was in great shape. I cleaned her up with fresh paint to the frame and gas tank and finer details. New decals and top end. Just for fun, I bought a spare top end and took my Dremel tool to the ports to match and smooth them as required. I did not go crazy I simply lightly modified the top end.

I also bought all new parts if the buyer or I eventually want to install them when/if the time comes, but right now she is running on her original hardware and running very well. I did go ahead and install the Hi-compression Webco head and a new pipe which flattens out the power delivery while increasing the overall HP and torque. I still have the stock pipe which I actually like better in its looks than the upgraded one.

All new handlebars, levers and grips are currently installed as well as new chain and both sprockets. She is my favorite Suzuki, I have 2 gorgeous TS185s as well. I have a 1972 and my favorite TS185 is my 1973 Blue with Red striped tank TS185.

1974 Suzuki TM-125L Challenger Info

The 1974 TM-125L featured a distinct hooked green stripe outlined in white, changed from the ’72’s black striped tank. The ’74 Suzuki TM-125L Challenger’s air-cooled 123cc engine produced 17.5 horse power with a 5-speed gearbox. This Suzuki is a light and nimble machine weighing in at only 189 pounds (86kg).

What do you guys think? Did you have one of these Suzukis? Do you still have one? Leave your comments below!

Thanks for sharing your killer Suzuki Steve!

Published: July 25, 2015 10:38 pm Categorized in: ,

1974 Suzuki TM-125L Challenger & Parts

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  • David Rowe says:

    I had a 125tm and wanted to show my son what i had. Great to see it on line. It was a screamer. Then moved to a 250 yamaha 6 speed. The 250 was faster than the honda 500 4 stroke. Im 61 yrs now and want to go out and buy one now.

  • Mark says:

    I have a running tm125 right now for sale

  • Steve Bennett says:

    I had the first one in west Texas long ago, removed the oil pump, rode the heck out of it, won lots of races . Great bike for it’s time. Skipped 1st period in h.s. to practice almost daily. MX was a hoot back then. Thanks for reminding me. Steve B.

  • Greg Coyne says:

    I have a all original 74 TM125. All it needs is a left side engine cover and I am having lots of trouble finding one. I guess everyone broke this part when they were running. Any help in finding a good one would be deeply appreciated. Thanks Greg

  • Roger says:

    Hi I have a tm125l motor with a webco head, it’s all apart, but in ok shape.

  • Tom says:

    I owned two TM 125’s, both purchased new and also worked for a Suzuki dealer in the 70’s. This is a decent example but has a number of incorrect and missing parts. Even so it is nice to see an effort made to save another older bike.

  • Hugh MIller says:

    Wow! I had one of these bikes and loved it. All my friends had Hondas and I took a lot of flak but come race day, I left them “in the dirt”. The only modifications I made was a pipe that looks the same as the one in the picture and a swing-arm that allowed for forward mounting of the shocks which was really radical at the time.

  • MIKE Loftus says:

    I have 1500 burning o hole in my pocket if you would like to get rid of the TM125

  • Gregg Wilson says:

    I too had a 1974 Suzuki TM125 L Challenger when I was in the 6th grade. I loved that bike and had many great childhood memories riding the bike in the desert in Arizona. I came across you’re website and smiled when I saw the picture . I hope you enjoy your bike. It looks like you have done a great job restoring it!


    • Mark drake says:

      Love TM s had a 74 250 when I was 16 , now at 49 i’m restoring a 73 250, a getting ready to buy a 74 125, that is a nice one you have!

      • Anonymous says:

        Mate my first bike i bought brand new was a 74 tm 250 when i was 16 too. Great bike i still have a few tms and rms in the man cave.

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