The Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R is Kawasaki's follow-up to the ZX-9R sport bike. It was originally released in 2004 with minor revisions in 2005, it combines ultra-narrow chassis, low weight, radial brakes, and strong engine make it a very competitive package for its Japanese rivals: Suzuki's GSX-R 1000, Honda's CBR1000RR and Yamaha Motor Company's R1. In 2004 and 2005 the ZX-10R won Best Superbike from Cycle World magazine and the prestigious international Masterbike competition. It is known to be the most 'hard edged' or race oriented out of the Japanese one-liter inline four cylinder motorcycles, with relatively quick steering and a ferocious powerband.
A complete overhaul to the ZX-10R in 2006 sees the most comprehensive round of changes since the bike was introduced.
The 2008 model has an MSRP of USD $11,549.
Kawasaki engineers utilized a "stack" design for a liquid-cooled, 998 cc inline four-cylinder engine. The crank axis, input shaft and output shaft of the "Ninja" ZX-10R engine are positioned in a triangular layout to reduce engine length, while the high-speed generator is placed behind the cylinder bank to reduce engine width. With a bore and stroke of 76 x 55 mm, the ZX-10R engine's one-piece cylinder and crankcase assembly reduces weight and increases rigidity. The DOHC are machined from chromoly steel billet for strength, four valves per cylinder improve high-rpm breathing, and the forged, lightweight pistons offer high heat resistance to further enhance the bike's power-to-weight ratio.
In addition to liquid cooling, the ZX-10R engine features an oil cooler adjacent to the oil filter to reduce oil temperatures. "Slosh" analysis was also used to design the internal structure of the oil pan, thereby reducing windage losses and helping to maintain low oil temperatures. The radiator is provided by Denso and helps reduce weight.
A multi-plate wet clutch with a back torque limiter transfers power to a six-speed, close-ratio transmission ideal for closed-course competition. The back-torque limiter automatically disengages the clutch under hard braking and deceleration to prevent rear wheel hop during corner entry, commonly known as "backing it in" (looks good when done correctly). This also ensures complete control under hard braking.
A new six spoke wheel design is claimed to be almost as light as special purpose race wheels. The sidewall profile of the rear tire has been increased from 190/50/ZR17 to 190/55/ZR17.
The 2006 ZX1000D6F model carried over to the 2007 model year, with only color scheme changes. The most noticeable difference between 2006 and 2007, is that the heat-shields on the exhaust pipes are black on the '07 ZX10R, and '06 came with silver ones. The ZX-10R is expected to be all new for the 2008 model year.
Initial introduction for the 2008 is now active on the official Kawasaki website, including first images.http://www.kawasaki.com/Products/detail.aspx?id=257&content=introduction
According to the National Institute of Highway Safety, The ZX-10R has the highest theft and damage loss claim rate of any registered motorcycle