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Kawasaki ZX-6R Sports Motorbike Review

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Kawasaki ZX-6R motorcycle review - Riding
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MCN overall verdict rating is 5

The hardest 600 of modern times just got a little softer – and a little better, too. The Kawasaki ZX-6R's track-intent is still present and correct, but thankfully the suspension is more responsive and less harsh. Its new slippery shape means that 170mph is just a following wind away. Also new for 2005 is a slipper clutch and petal discs.

Engine

MCN rating rating is 5
Owners' rating rating is 4.5

Good Lord, the Kawasaki ZX-6R's DOHC, 16v motor is so close to being perfect. The exquisite fuelling, the easy mid-range, the searing power, the screaming airbox….incredible. It makes a genuine 115bhp at the back wheel, which easily makes it the most powerful middleweight motor of its time.

Ride and Handling

MCN rating rating is 4
Owners' rating rating is 4.5

The most appreciable difference between this and the Kawasaki ZX-6R it replaced is the quality of the ride. The swap from Kayaba to Showa means a plusher, more sophisticated suspension that, mated to a new, stiffer chassis, makes the 2005/2006 ZX-6R so much easier to push hard. There’s a new radial master cylinder for improved braking up front and new ‘petal’ discs for the all-new Tokico radial brakes to bite on, too. It all works flawlessly.

Equipment

MCN rating rating is 5
Owners' rating rating is 4

You couldn’t add more toys to the Kawasaki ZX-6R if you tried. There’s a slipper clutch to smooth out hurried downshifts, a lap timer, an underseat exhaust with a mid-range boosting exhaust valve.

Kawasaki ZX-6R (2005-2006)

Detail Value
Dealer used prices
£3,480 (2005) - £4,090 (2006)
Private used prices
£3,050 (2005) - £3,680 (2006)
  View full used price info
Engine size 636 cc
Power 114 bhp
Top speed 168 mph
Insurance group 15 of 17
  MCN ratings Owners' ratings
Overall rating is 5 rating is 4.5
Engine rating is 5 rating is 4.5
Ride & Handling rating is 4 rating is 4.5
Equipment rating is 5 rating is 4
Quality & Reliability rating is 5 rating is 4.5
Value rating is 5 rating is 4.5

Quality and Reliability

MCN rating rating is 5
Owners' rating rating is 4.5

The Kawasaki ZX-6R is well finished and well built. There’s nothing that stands out as worth y of attention, but it’s worth checking any secondhand bike carefully for damaged lock stops, chipped wheels, under-fairing damage etc.

Value

MCN rating rating is 5
Owners' rating rating is 4.5

The only thing that counts against the 2005/2006 Kawasaki ZX-6R is its newness. Dealers tend to ask silly prices and a brand spanking new 600 isn’t that much of a leap away from that kind of money. Find a Kawasaki ZX-6R for sale.

Insurance

Insurance group: 15 of 17

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Model History

2005: Kawasaki ZX-6R introduced.
2007: Model set to be replaced by all new, 599cc ZX-6R.

Other Versions

ZX-6RR: This is a 599cc machine homologated for racing in Supersports competition. It boasts refined engine internals, a close ratio gearbox, stiction-reducing fork coatings, revised suspension and a boss for a steering damper. Kawasaki can also supply a racing kit to help push the power up towards 140bhp.

Specifications

Top speed 168 mph
1/4-mile acceleration 11 secs
Max power 114 bhp
Max torque 52 ft-lb
Weight 164 kg
Seat height 820 mm
Fuel capacity 17 litres
Average fuel consumption 40 mpg
Tank range 150 miles
Annual road tax
Insurance group 15 of 17
Engine size 636 cc
Engine specification 16v in-line four, 6 gears
Frame Aluminium twin spar
Front suspension adjustment Preload, compression, rebound
Rear suspension adjustment Preload, compression, rebound
Front brakes Twin 300mm discs
Rear brake 220mm disc
Front tyre size 120/65 x 17
Rear tyre size 180/55 x 17

See all Kawasaki ZX-6R motorcycles for sale

Kawasaki
ZX-6R

8889 miles

£5,595

Kawasaki
ZX-6R

11010 miles

£3,295

Kawasaki
ZX-6R

16500 miles

£3,695

Kawasaki
ZX-6R

15387 miles

£3,199

Kawasaki
ZX-6R

2649 miles

£5,499

Owners' Overall Rating rating is 4.5(24 reviews)

  • I bought the bike in July for £5499 OTR with '0'% finance great deal.

    ianto0evans

    Average rating rating is 4.5

    Show Details

    Overall
    Ride and Handling
    Equipment
    Quality and Reliabilty
    Value
    Engine

    I believe it's a great all rounder for new or experianced riders as the new ZX6-R is shorter and handles very well.

    Strengths

    The braking system is very good and the handling into and out of bends is great given the excellent power performance at low rev's if you are stuck in the wrong gear or mis-judge a bend. The standard fitted Bridgestone tyres are also a good choice by Kawasaki.

    Weaknesses

    Engine 'Tappy' at low revs, no rear hugger fitted as standard and the brake fluid container can get in the way of reading the clock.

    27 July 2006

  • The best 600 on the market

    dwylie2

    Average rating rating is 4.5

    Show Details

    Overall
    Ride and Handling
    Equipment
    Quality and Reliabilty
    Value
    Engine

    I think its the best all round bike today, very good all round package, strong engine , good bakes , very good suspension (last bike was a ZX6R J2)looks very good in green . It has all the trick bits, and a very good on the road price. I dislike the small screen , no hugger as standard, and only one headlamp works on dip (as all the other new 600 are the same)must be an EEC directive thing. Fitted Kawasaki/MRA screen , Pyramids hugger, and Kawasaki tank pad. May fit a S/damper, front a bit twichey riding fast over bump roads & gets worse if you load up a tail pack !. what a tool. Strengths: Looks, speed, torquey motor . Kawasaski deal / price. Weaknesses: Screen too low for a 6'0 person to see the clocks. No rear hugger as standard. should have S/damper as standard like the 06 ZX10.

    07 July 2006

  • FANTASTIC A MUST HAVE!!!

    Ravon

    Average rating rating is 4.5

    Show Details

    Overall
    Ride and Handling
    Equipment
    Quality and Reliabilty
    Value
    Engine

    Bought the bike new March 2006 my first real sports bike 0% couldn't beat it. Looks the part with the gold forks and callipers plus the petal leaf discs look the business too. Very easy bike to ride and inspires confidence in both town and country riding. Wrists get a bit sore initially but that was sorted by moving the levers round a bit now not a problem. This bike looks like it should go like stink and it does. Now looks even better with the rear seat cowl on it, amazing!! Get one! Strengths: Power seems to be never ending and looks the business. Weaknesses: Very clunky going through the gears.

    04 July 2006

  • Plasma Blue, 55 plate.

    rich220383

    Average rating rating is 4.5

    Show Details

    Overall
    Ride and Handling
    Equipment
    Quality and Reliabilty
    Value
    Engine

    WOW! I passed my test last spring (2005) and was gonna get a CBR 600F. I saw the ZX-6R review in RiDE magazine and decided to 'have a look' at the Kawasaki dealer in Watford. Next thing I know I've bought my first bike! The looks the reviews the 0% finance I couldn't argue. I am the proud owner of the Ninja and love it to pieces. Hoping to get a bit of touring in the Summer (The Alps.) I'm a complete novice but the bike is so forgiving and smooth. I couldn't imagine riding anything else. If you want my opinion: remortgage, sell the wife, do what ever it takes. You need one of these! Strengths: Looks, sound, reliability, braking and grinning like a cheshire cat every time you twist the throttle! Weaknesses: The screen is a little low so you can't see the speedo unless you duck right down. If that bothers you, get the Kawasaki double bubble.

    05 March 2006

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ninja1980

ninja1980says

so excited

hi guys im looking to buy a 2005-2006 model in february, can anyone tell me what to look out for when going to look at one????

10 January 2008 18:44

DangerousDel

User's Badge

DangerousDelsays

What a rush!

I bought my 636 from new last Sept, having ridden an old G1 for a year. What a rush! Hit 8krpm and it takes off! It hugs the corners like its on rails and is comfortable two up (the missus). Some may not consider it the most attractive bike but its instantly recogniseable and turns many heads with its familiar growl. Some of the galvanised fittings are a bit naff and already showing some signs of salt corrosion, but then I do ride it in the wet all year round.

13 May 2007 16:07

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