GEN­ER­A­TION

Brother the ZZR1400, but which bike is the best on the strip, street and cir­cuit? THE TESTS Day One Flat-out speed dat­a­logged test­ing at Brunt­ingthor pe Prov­ing Ground Day Two A full day’s road rid­ing every­where from high streets to mo­tor­ways A full day o

Motorcycle News (UK) - - This Week - By Adam Child SE­NIOR ROAD TESTER

Just a few years ago the ZZR1400 was the fastest pro­duc­tion mo­tor­cy­cle in the world, nar­rowly pip­ping Suzuki’s Hayabusa – it­self a pre­vi­ous claimant – to the man­tle. But then Kawasaki pulled a trump card on its own cham­pion, the Ninja H2 mov­ing the game on into a whole new glad­i­a­to­rial arena. No­body can ar­gue that the ZZR isn’t fast, it drives so hard from low down in the rev range, and then it just keeps on go­ing like a jumbo jet strain­ing for take-off. It feels bal­lis­tic, and trav­el­ling at 180mph is not to be taken lightly, es­pe­cially when it only takes 22.69 sec­onds to get there from a stand­still. But by com­par­i­son the H2 is a Euro Fighter, pro­pel­ling you into obliv­ion like the ul­ti­mate jet fighter.

The need for speed

The H2 is fright­en­ingly fast in a straight line – it’s by far the quick­est-ac­cel­er­at­ing pro­duc­tion bike MCN has ever tested. It’s hard to put into words how shocking it feels to un­leash an H2 for the first time. While the ZZR is awein­spir­ingly quick, it only takes the su­per­charged H2 a mere 14.33 sec­onds to get to 180mph, and it’ll reach 150mph from a stand­still in un­der 10 sec­onds. Just to help you vi­su­alise what that ac­cel­er­a­tion means on the ground, the H2 takes just over 350 me­tres to reach 150mph from a stand­still. It’ll be tank­ing on at 180mph – or three miles a minute – af­ter just 708 me­ters. There are very few times when that sort of poke won’t feel like too much.

In com­par­i­son it takes the ZZR1400 a full 1300 me­tres to reach 180mph – not far off twice the dis­tance – and that was the quick­est-ac­cel­er­at­ing pro­duc­tion bike on the planet be­fore the H2 ar­rived. That’s the speed of progress.

Th­ese fig­ures only tell half the story though. Ac­cel­er­at­ing hard on the H2 is a vi­o­lent af­fair, and with the TC de­ac­ti­vated it’s al­most im­pos­si­ble to bal­ance the throt­tle and power de­liv­ery be­tween wheel­spin and wheel­ies. The H2 will spin a cold rear tyre at 100mph in third gear, and even fourth if pro-

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