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Discussion Starter #1
[I'll be posting up pics as I recieve them. Still getting them from different sources]

This past weekend I was able to attend a Kawasaki Z1000 Press Ride. Kawasaki Motor Corp so gracefully asked 6 moderators from different moto-websites to spend 2 days testing out their new 2010 model. I unfortunately wasn’t one of them but by stroke of good luck (and extremely bad for Hoser. Sorry bud) I was heading to Cali on Friday night.

The event kicked off that same night where some apparel was handed out and some technical data about the bike was provided. I missed it but in all honesty, all that technical mumbo jumbo bores me to death. I much prefer to tell you all what the bike feels like than what the specs of it are. I’ll leave the marketing to Kawi. But to be quite honest, I don’t even know why they would need to since this bike, once you ride it, you wont need anything else to want to own it.

We headed out early Saturday morning to pick up the bikes from KMC. They all had shiny new tires. That was the first thing I noticed. The other was that when I sat on the bike I thought that I would probably be needing a steering damper as the front end felt really light and the rake steep. Throughout he day I’d determine that unless you’re riding really hard or at the track that one is not needed. The bike feels rock solid even when hitting an instant sweeping exit coming straight out of KMC and then riding through the absolutely horrible California freeways.

For those who have come to know me well through this forum know that I ride. I ride a lot. So what I look for in a motorcycle first and foremost is comfort. That’s why I bought my ZX6R and curiously enough, the reason I sold it as well when I started to ride even more than your typical weekend rides. The ZX was comfortable for a sportbike but not comfortable for riding back to back to back 500 mile days like I am known to do. So from what little I knew of this bike coming into this I already liked since it seemed to address my major gripe with streetbikes nowadays. Not sacrificing comfort for a more aggressive race-replica design to appeal to every wannabe Ricky Racer out on the street.

The Z’s ergonomics are spot on for a street bike. Kawasaki is strongly marketing this bike as a comfy supersport. And that, it quite certainly is. There’s no denying that this bike is a power plant. The engine is super smooth and even with the stock crap grips I didn’t feel much vibration at my hands. It has handlebars so the upright position makes for a nice smooth comfortable ride. I didn’t tinker with the suspension at all. Felt great both in the twisties and in the freeway. So at phase one, this bike was a winner.

The other thing I really look for in a bike is for it to be flexible. Not only do I want it to go for days but I want it to go quick when the roads bend. We took a couple of passes through beautiful Ortega Highway where the roads massage the mountain with grace. And graceful was the Z, slicing through it. Mind you we are all on brand new bikes that do not belong to us. The pace was set and we howled along with big stinkin’ grins on our faces.

After lunch we headed back and over Ortega and 3 of us were split from the rest of the group as we got caught by 2 red lights before heading up the mountain. This was an opportunity for us to see what the bike really had. After a couple of miles of nonstop twisty action we stopped at Hell’s Kitchen for a bit. The 3 of us couldn’t stop talking about how fun that small stint of the ride was catching the rest of the crew. The engine is so strong that I didn’t need to shift gears at all. I could park it either in 2nd or 3rd gear and throttle or chop as desired. Quite impressive for a completely stock bike. It really didn’t didn’t miss a beat.

After hitting a few more spots we headed back to KMC and later to a Supercross event which I’ll talk about on a separate ride report of the entire weekend. By the conversations among us I can tell you that Kawi really has something special with this motorcycle. It’s actually quite a shame that they’ve apparently been having a hard time selling it on the US market. IMO, all you have to do is take it for a spin and you’ll be wanting one in your garage ASAP. I sure as have been trying to figure out how to do so for the past couple days.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Effortless cornering

I described it as a big supermotard. The thing really tuns effortlessly.
 

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By the way how do you adjust the chain on that thing?

Is that an eccentric on the rear axle?

Excuse my ignorance, but I just noticed it.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
One bad thing I did find was that when I got up on the balls of my feet, my heel would touch the mammoth exhaust. I assume this would be the first mod that anyone would do to this bike as I think it looks hideous anyway. Other than that, the bike has killer looks.





 

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Pretty cool! I drove the 03 and that thing was crazy! Same power as a 6r, but comes so much quicker! I was more shocked of the power of the z1000 than that of the 09 R1
 

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Discussion Starter #13
By the way how do you adjust the chain on that thing?

Is that an eccentric on the rear axle?

Excuse my ignorance, but I just noticed it.
Yeah it's kinda weird. Taken from the old ZRX's. As you adjust you turn the knob. I had to ask as well as I've never dealt with anything of the sort.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Pretty cool! I drove the 03 and that thing was crazy! Same power as a 6r, but comes so much quicker! I was more shocked of the power of the z1000 than that of the 09 R1
Actually the guy in that last pic above with the green jacket has an older Z. He says that the difference between these and his is insane. The thing doesn't lack power anywhere. I really can't say enough about this bike. At the end of the day I asked the rep if he could get me a deal on one. :D
 

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One bad thing I did find was that when I got up on the balls of my feet, my heel would touch the mammoth exhaust.
I have the same issue on my 250. I just got used to it. Then it felt weird when I got my CBR because the exhaust isn't there anymore.
 

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Nice write up. I do like the looks of the bike. Would have one in a sec if I had some cash around.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
I have the same issue on my 250. I just got used to it. Then it felt weird when I got my CBR because the exhaust isn't there anymore.
I'll say this, the heat shield was doing its job. I never felt any heat on my leg even though the exhaust is right there.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
The Crew

What a great bunch of guys. Kudos to all these excellent riders and reps.

 
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