The Kawasaki Z1000 is nothing if not attention-grabbing, and for 2015 it will be back in Kawasaki’s lineup of motorcycles. Team Green calls it “Sugomi” styling, which combines its sculpted shape – invoking a crouching predator – with painstaking details like its special “Z” ignition key, machined aluminum steering stem bolt and the intricate “Z” motif seat cover. This is wrapped in a new color scheme for 2015 that combines Golden Blazed Green with Metallic Spark Black to create a dramatic motorcycle.
The 1,043cc, DOHC, liquid-cooled, 16-valve engine features intake cams that boost the low- and mid-range torque – where most street bikes spend their time. Cylinder connecting passageways strengthen performance in the mid- and high RPM range by reducing the pumping losses associated with displacing air inside the crankcase.
The pronounced intake growl at low RPM, combined with its intoxicating howl on full-song, will put a smile on any rider’s face. Four 38mm Keihin downdraft throttle bodies inject the optimal mix of fuel and air into each combustion chamber thanks to the advanced ECU. It is supplemented by a cool air intake system that routes fresh air to the airbox via extra ducts in the front fairing. The airbox is fitted with a non-woven filter element that improves flow at high RPM, while four equal-length velocity stacks help provide snappy throttle response to further increase the engine’s fun factor.
Digital Timing Advance contributes to the increased low- and mid-range power, while spark plug-mounted ignition coils help ensure perfect and powerful timing for each cylinder.
It’s the ideal engine for a road-going sportbike – aggressive, powerful, flexible, and blessed with the legendary reliability associated with Kawasaki sportbikes.
A beautifully styled 4-into-2-pre-chamber-into-2 exhaust offers a growl that is well-matched to the aggressive tone of the Z1000’s intake system. A butterfly valve in the right-side muffler not only helps reduce noise at low speed, but tunes back-pressure waves to further enhance low-speed engine response.
In the transmission, short overall gearing complements the more responsive engine to deliver astounding thrust at the rider’s command. When the road opens up, this stylish streetfighter can stretch its legs thanks to a tall sixth gear that maintains a more comfortable cruising RPM for highway riding.
There’s plenty more to say about the Z1000, but Content Editor, Tom Roderick, said most of it in his first ride review here. You can also see how it fared in the track and street portions of our Super Streetfighter smackdown.
Go to Kawasaki.com for more information.