Kawasaki's ZX-6R has a reputation of being a serious track tool, wild to the point of instability. The 2007 model is both heavier and less powerful. Is this progress or a backward step for the 6R?
Kawasaki's ZX-6R has a reputation of being a seriously banzai machine. Fast, uncompromising, and focused, you can forget about user-friendliness: the 6R is all about buzzsaw action. Take the motor for a start. Raw, rev hungry and - for its size - very powerful. To be fair, that's been due in no small part to the 636cc engine, an unnatural advantage when it comes to comparisons with other 'true' 600s. Call that an 8bhp advantage over the rest of the pack, you'd have to be seriously useless to waste that advantage on the road or track. And given the latest generation ZX-6Rs from the 2003 B1H onwards have a sharp chassis and state of the art suspension and braking packages, that advantage hasn't been wasted.
Well, that was then. Now is 2007, and as of this year the ZX-6R no longer has that 36cc advantage. Kawasaki have pulled their neck in so the ZX-6R is now 'just' 599cc - yes, fully supersport-rules legal (and we're overlooking the RR homologation specials of the recent past here). Now the '07 also has to come fitted with the full monty in emissions clean-up kit, as per Euro3. Catalytic converters, Lambda sensors, ECU-governed throttle responses, all of that bloody mess which is clogging up the latest range of superbikes. All that clobber weighs a fair bit, making the new, smaller, ZX-6R some six kilos heavier. And of course that paraphernalia does a fair job of blunting performance.
That sets the context of this Splitting Heirs. Can the new '07 ZX-6R stand any chance of beating its '05 predecessor? It's got to be a big ask.
Continue Splitting Heirs: 2005 vs 2007 ZX-6R 2/3
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