Wherever The engine bolts in solidly, stressed-member style, at three places, and in a rubber mount at the upper rear of the crankcase for great torsional rigidity and solid handling. Similar in concept to the frame of the Ninja ZX-10R sportbike, the frame beams curve over the engine, resulting in a narrow bike that’s easy to grip with the knees. Previous Z1000s used a steel frame, but this one gets its own all-new aluminum one. The seat’s low and narrow at the front to make ground contact easy, and it flows beautifully rearward to end in a futuristically retro LED taillight behind a red lens.
Following the lines rearward, the eyes will next encounter a dynamically designed steel gas tank, flared on the sides to let you grab it with your knees, and trim at the rear for a snug fit. Just below that a long, narrow headlight represents Kawasaki’s first use of a line-beam unit. A sharp new front cowl sloped back at an acute angle highlights the Z1000’s new nose, followed by a tilting instrument panel, visible through an orange lens, that can be angled to suit rider preference. Even more important, though, is the feeling this one provides every time you twist the throttle. If the new Z1000 knocks your eyeballs out, that’s exactly what we had in mind.
With this latest in a long line of naked Kawasaki streetbikes, we threw out the old rules and started with a clean sheet, drawing upon more than 35 years of experience in giving the people what they want.