KAWASAKI ZZR1400 (2012-on) Review

Published: 05 April 2012

"The new king of speed and power, beating the formidable Hayabusa hands down"

KAWASAKI ZZR1400  (2012-on)

"The new king of speed and power, beating the formidable Hayabusa hands down"

  • At a glance
  • 1441cc  -  200 bhp
  • 45 mpg  -  180 miles range
  • Medium seat height (800mm)
  • £11,699

Overall Rating 5 out of 5

Simply put Kawasaki’s new ZZR is the new king of speed and power, beating the formidable Hayabusa hands down. It produces more power and torque, and accelerates quicker than any other road bike but unfortunately is still restricted to an agreed 186mph limit, but will get there in breathtaking time, hitting the limiter with ease, still with plenty in reserve. Not just a one trick pony either, now comes with ABS, power modes and traction control as standard.

Ride Quality & Brakes 4 out of 5

The ZZR is now slightly sportier thanks to revised suspension and chassis which means it handles far better than its size suggests. Stiffer springs have been fitted front and rear to give a sportier ride without compromising comfort. Peg scraping, knee down angles of lean are easily achievable but at the same time it's stable at high speeds.

Engine 5 out of 5

This is the ZZR's killer punch, the engine, one of the finest you’ll find on any motorcycle. Kawasaki is quoting 200bhp, 210bhp with ram air, backed up by a whopping 119ftlb of torque. The increase in power is the result of a virtually new engine, longer stroke with raised compression, and a fine tune to the cylinder head with reshaped and polished ports. Pistons have also been lightened and there’s new bypass holes to minimise pumping loss. It’s not all about performance - it’s also more fuel efficient than before.

Build Quality & Reliability 5 out of 5

Considering the very reasonable price; you are buying the fastest bike on the planet the level of finish and quality is very high. There’s no reason to question the reliability of the motor as previous engines have proven bullet proof even when tuned slightly. The level of finish is arguably higher than its closes competition from Suzuki.

Value & Running Costs 5 out of 5

Has to be five out of five, there’s a hell of lot of bike for the price. It’s officially the fastest production bike on the market and all yours for less than £11,500. Traction control, engine modes and ABS all comes as standard, makes it a bit of a bargain really, an accomplished attractive sports tourer, which is the current fastest accelerating bike on the road.

Insurance group: 17 of 17 – compare motorcycle insurance quotes now.

Equipment 5 out of 5

ABS comes as standard, as do the petal racing discs. But more importantly there’s an all new three-way traction control system which combines the best qualities of the ZX-10 and GTR1400 system. Modes can be changed on the move with the throttle in the closed position. Rear suspension has pre-load adjustment and the forks are fully adjustable. There’s also a huge list of aftermarket quality parts which include a top case and race Akrapovic exhausts.

Owners' Reviews

3 owners have reviewed their KAWASAKI ZZR1400 (2012-on) and rated it in a number of areas. Read what they have to say and what they like and dislike about the bike below.

We’re currently improving the way this section works, which means we’ve had to suspend the submission of new owners’ reviews for a short period. Please check back soon.

Summary of Owners' Reviews
Overall Rating 5 out of 5
Ride Quality & Brakes 5 out of 5
Engine 5 out of 5
Build Quality & Reliability 5 out of 5
Value & Running Costs 5 out of 5
Equipment 5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Personal Starship

03 November 2012 by warby57

I've ridden pretty much every kind of big bike - Blackbird, Triumph triples, FJ1200, 'busa, v-twins, flat-twins - and the big Z beats them all for its whizzo powers of acceleration combined with stable handling and comfortable day-long touring. I get... Read more mid-50s mpg too, which is unbelievably good considering the capabilities of its engine. Good grief, what an engine.

Overall Rating 5 out of 5
Ride Quality & Brakes 5 out of 5
Engine 5 out of 5
Build Quality & Reliability 5 out of 5
Value & Running Costs 5 out of 5
Equipment 5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Amazing all rounder

12 July 2012 by Anonymous

Jumping off a Yamaha Mt01 sports tourer and not testing ZZR sports tourer before purchasing was a big gamble, I love my Mt01 and can't believe anything could match it, well looks can't!. ZZR1400 2012 absolutely brilliant 110% better in every area... Read more than other bikes I've ridden, what a bike, endless power in the dry or wet with the electronic's of course, stopping is unbelievably easy and quick. On British roads you'll never over rev the engine in any gear unless you break the law, so should potentially last for ever. Rides at any speed with ease and smoothness endless torque, ideal for any style of riding. Pillion commented: "the most confy bike she's been on. Accelerating above 8000rpm's- I'm told- there's another power band to red line 11000rpm, it's mind blowingly quick upto 8000, track here I come after running in. You don't notice a pillion is with you and has no effect on performance. Quality of the bike is on par with the Mt01, vast improvement for Kawasaki. It Goes around corners with shear ease and confidence. The fuel consumption trip meter and gauge gives you average, instant and indicates when your riding economically unlike the MT01 which never had fuel gauge. With a few optional extra's the bike is even better. Kawasaki dealer ships are head and shoulders above Yamaha where I've had a bad experience with yamaha UK and local dealer. I've done 450miles so far, not quiet as comfy as Mt01 but there's no vibration like with a big vtwin. Gamble paid off and hope that this stay's a rare bike-I don't think. View based on my 2 year limited experience of bikes, returning to riding after 30 year gap. Did'nt want a tourer too slow and bulky and didn't want a sports bike with raw power and basic and uncomfy, now have the perfect compromise.

Overall Rating 5 out of 5
Ride Quality & Brakes 5 out of 5
Engine 5 out of 5
Build Quality & Reliability 5 out of 5
Value & Running Costs 5 out of 5
Equipment 5 out of 5
5 out of 5

What a bike

19 April 2012 by drjon

I have only test ridden a 2012 ZZR but I can safely say it handles like a sports 600 with almost unlimited power delivered in amazing smooth fashion. It also got 100% from my very expert pillion. I have put my money where my mouth is and I am... Read more awaiting delivery.

Overall Rating 5 out of 5
Ride Quality & Brakes 5 out of 5
Engine 5 out of 5
Build Quality & Reliability 5 out of 5
Value & Running Costs 5 out of 5
Equipment 5 out of 5
Read all 3 owners' reviews in full

Facts & Figures

Model info
Year introduced 2012
Year discontinued -
New price £11,699
Warranty term Two year unlimited mileage
Running costs
Insurance group 17 of 17
Annual road tax £80
Annual service cost -
Performance
Max power 200 bhp
Max torque 119 ft-lb
Top speed 186 mph
1/4-mile acceleration 10 secs
Average fuel consumption 45 mpg
Tank range 180 miles
Specification
Engine size 1441cc
Engine type 16v (84x65) inline-four, 6 gears
Frame type Aluminium monocoque
Fuel capacity 22 litres
Seat height 800mm
Bike weight 239kg
Front suspension 43mm fully adjustable
Rear suspension Single fully adjustable
Front brake 2x310mm four piston caliper
Rear brake 250mm disc single piston caliper
Front tyre size 120/70x17
Rear tyre size 190/55x17

History & Versions

Model history

2006: Model introduced

Other versions

None

Photo Gallery

  • KAWASAKI ZZR1400  (2012-on)
  • KAWASAKI ZZR1400  (2012-on)
  • KAWASAKI ZZR1400  (2012-on)
  • KAWASAKI ZZR1400  (2012-on)
  • KAWASAKI ZZR1400  (2012-on)
  • KAWASAKI ZZR1400  (2012-on)
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