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Kawasaki’s ZZ-R1200 takes on its rivals

Published: 22 April 2002

Updated: 19 November 2014

In the new MCN, out Wednesday April 24, we’ve taken some of the world’s fastest tourers and pitched them against Kawasaki’s blistering new ZZ-R1200.

It went head-to-head with Yamaha’s belting FJR1300, the accomplished Honda Blackbird and the tourer’s favourite, the BMW K1200RS.

You can read the full test in the new MCN, out April 24,but here are our first impressions:

*On a selection of fast A roads and motorways, the Honda and the ZZ-R1200 vie for sports honours, with the BMW and the FJR hot on their heels.

*Even twisty roads fail to unsettle the ZZ-R since the suspension is firmer than its rivals, but where the FJR swoops out of bumps, the ZZ-R can kick back.

*The ZZ-R proves awkward with soft luggage – the tail is wide and there’s a lack of obvious bungee points.

*The fuel gauge on the ZZ-R is a pain. It registers full for ages before slumping to half-full. The ZZ-R averages 35mpg, the FJR 37mpg, the BMW 42mpg and the Blackbird 40mpg.

*The BMW never gets behind with its cracking mid-range and mid-corner speed.

*While the Blackbird is six years old the looks are still sharp – a bit like the fuel-injection.

So, has the ZZ-R reclaimed its top fast tourer crown? Catch the full story in the new MCN, out April 24.

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