• 2018 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE

    Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE Kawasaki adds electronic suspension to its new member of the ZX-10R class
  • Sits in between the ZX-10R and the RR
  • Sleek LED headlamps and revamped front fairing with larger wind sheild
  • Neon green accents across the bike
  • RbW and Kawasaki Engine Brake Control (KEBC) and a bi-directional quick shifter
  • Lightweight crankshaft and piston with titanium-alloy inlet and exhaust valve system
  • Three riding modes - Road, Track, and Manual
  • Launch control, Traction control, Engine Braking Control
  • Includes a Bosch IMU that inputs 6 degrees of freedom
  • Kawasaki’s Intelligent ABS (KIBS) with Radially mounted aluminum Brembo calipers
  • Price: $ 21,899 available in pure-stealth Metallic Flat Spark Black / Metallic Matte Graphite Gray
  • Lightweight Marchesini wheels
  • Kawasaki Electronic Control Suspension (KECS) 43mm Showa Balanced Free Fork (BFF)
  • Revised tail section with new LED tail lamp and fender
  • Four stroke, liquid cooled, inline four, 998cc engine pumps out 197 hp of power and 83.3 lb-ft of torque

Kawasaki adds electronic suspension to its new member of the ZX-10R class

With their bikes dominating the WSBK championships, we can see the direct impact of this on Kawasaki’s street products. With the integration of technology and electronics from their motorsport experience, they have continuously pushed the limits for better handling and a thrilling ride experience along with ground-breaking technology catering to the rider’s needs.

One such addition is the semi-active suspension unit that the folks from Kawasaki have equipped their new 2018 ZX-10R variant. Suffixed as ’SE’, the bike sits right in the middle of the ’R’ and the ’RR’, and is ready to slay the competition as one of the one of the most user-friendly and equally precise-to-use supersport in the world.

  • 2018 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE
  • Year:
    2018
  • Make:
  • Model:
  • Transmission:
    6
  • Horsepower @ RPM:
    197
  • Torque @ RPM:
    83
  • Displacement:
    998 cc
  • Price:
    21899
  • Price:
  • Overall:
    8.7/10
With the integration of technology and electronics from their motorsport experience, they have continuously pushed the limits for better handling and a thrilling ride experience along with ground-breaking technology catering to the rider’s needs.

STYLING

left right
Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE

From a distance, you might as well take this as the standard Ninja ZX-10R, and we wouldn’t blame you for that. But get close and you will love what the folks from Kawa have done with their paint scheme on this SE model. A pure-stealth Metallic Flat Spark Black / Metallic Matte Graphite Gray paintjob, and being a Kawasaki, you get green accents of course.

The Ninja ZX-10R SE comes with the same curvaceous headlamps and revamped front fairing which made their debut on the latest Ninja ZX-10R, which mimic that of the bigger Ninja ZX-14R. The central air scoop between both the headlamps, which is now in neon green, has been kept intact, so is the LED pilot lamp above it.

2018 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE Exterior
- image 781667
Revised tail section
with new LED tail lamp and fender

Keeping in mind the customer feedback, the front windshield is now larger than before, and a bit swooped out at the rear to deflect wind blasts at higher speeds; also gets green accents on the sides. Neon green lined strategically placed vents also take care of improved airflow around the engine and cockpit.

The side fairing, as well as fuel tank, carry forward their respective designs from the standard Ninja ZX-10R. However, the wheels on both the ends are new lightweight Marchesini units borrowed from the Ninja ZX-10RR, which look better than those of the standard Ninja ZX-10R. The revised tail section with new LED tail lamp and new fender which premiered with the standard Ninja ZX-10R has been retained on the Ninja ZX-10R SE as well. The exhaust pipe too has been lifted off from the standard version of the Ninja ZX-10R.

2018 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE Exterior
- image 743896
Neon green accents across the bike

Like the overall design language, the fully digital instrument console too has been shared with the standard Ninja ZX-10R. This particular unit comes with a rainbow shaped tachometer, below which sits a rectangular LCD panel showing the readouts for speedometer, odometer, trip meters, engine temperature gauge, gear indicator, clock, selected ride mode, et al. The rear view mirrors are all new, but they still have integrated turn indicators in them.

Though the Marchesini wheels and a new paint job makes the SE look more striking than the standard Ninja ZX-10R, we would have liked to see more noticeable cosmetic changes on the new Ninja ZX-10R SE; especially when it asks for a $ 6,000 markup from the standard ZX-10R.

2018 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE Exterior
- image 743897
Sits in between the ZX-10R and the RR
But get close and you will love what the folks from Kawa have done with their paint scheme on this SE model. A pure-stealth Metallic Flat Spark Black / Metallic Matte Graphite Gray paintjob, and being a Kawasaki, you get green accents of course.

Overall Dimension

Make Model 2018 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE Yamaha YZF-R1M Honda CBR1000RR SP
Length 82.3 in 80.9 in 81.3 in
Width 29.1 in 27.2 in 28.14 in
Height 45.1 in 45.3 in 44.30 in
Wheelbase 56.7 in 55.3 in 55.27 in
Seat height 32.9 in 33.9 in 32.2 in
Wet weight 458.6 lb 443 lb 429 lb
Fuel capacity 4.5 gal 4.5 gal 4.2 gal

POWERTRAIN

2018 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE Exterior
- image 781665
Four stroke, liquid cooled, inline four, 998cc engine
pumps out 197 hp of power and 83.3 lb-ft of torque

Apart from a minor cosmetic change carried out for the Ninja ZX-10RR, the basic powertrain of the motorcycle too has undergone a couple of small changes as well. With inputs from the WSBK experiences, Kawasaki has updated the already potent ZX-10R engine with new engine enhancements and stronger, reinforced engine cases to uplift the performance package on the ZX-10R SE.

On the new Ninja ZX-10R SE, the overall engine and gearbox combination has been carried forward - the engine is the same four stroke, liquid cooled, inline four, 998cc engine, which pumps out 197 hp of power and 83.3 lb-ft of torque. With the help of ram air input, the power can be bumped up to 204 hp as well. Nonetheless, riders can set their preferred power delivery modes (Full: 100%, Middle: 80%, Low: 60%).

2018 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE Exterior
- image 743887
RbW and Kawasaki Engine Brake Control (KEBC)
and a bi-directional quick shifter

The engine gets DLC (Diamond-Like Carbon) coating for reduced friction loss along with lightweight crankshaft for a quick revving and increased throttle response configuration. Electronic throttle valve and Kawasaki Engine Brake Control (KEBC) contribute efficient sync of electronic rider aids for that precise feel and control. The bike comes equipped with a back torque limiting clutch and a bi-directional quick shifter for clutchless gear actions for aggressive riding situations above 2500 rpm.

It gets a large 10-liter airbox and air filter that improves engine response and eventually increase the low to mid-range power dispatch. The throttle body has also grown in size with 47 mm valves that are electronically operated to give the rider precise throttle response. Increasing the weight-reduction elements of the bike, lightweight crankshaft and piston, titanium-alloy inlet and exhaust valve system makes use of special heat-resistant alloy proprietary to Kawasaki. It helps in improving the power-weight ratio and heighten the motorcycle’s styling as well as the engine’s peak performance while giving you a cracking exhaust note.

2018 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE Exterior
- image 743889
Lightweight crankshaft and piston
with titanium-alloy inlet and exhaust valve system
With inputs from the WSBK experiences, Kawasaki has updated the already potent ZX-10R engine with new engine enhancements and stronger, reinforced engine cases to uplift the performance package on the ZX-10R SE.

Engine Specification

Make Model 2018 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE Yamaha YZF-R1M Honda CBR1000RR SP
Capacity cc 998 998 999
Bore/ Stroke in 76/55 76/55.1 76/55
Output 197 bhp 200 hp @ 13500 rpm 189 hp @ 13000 rpm
Torque 83.3 lb.-ft 87 lb.-ft @ 10000 rpm 85.5 lb.-ft @ 11000 rpm
Type 4-stroke, Inline 4 cylinder, DOHC, 4-valve, Liquid-cooled Liquid-cooled inline 4 cylinder DOHC; 16 valves Liquid-cooled 4-stroke 16-valve DOHC Inline-4
Clutch type Wet- Multiplate with slipper assist Multiplate assist and slipper clutch Wet- Multiplate with slipper assist
Transmission 6-speed, Kawasaki Quick Shifter (KQS) 6-speed with Quick Shift System (QSS) an “auto-blip” downshift 6-speed with quick shifter and auto-blipper

RIDE AND HANDLING

2018 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE Exterior
- image 743891
Three riding modes
-* Road, Track, and Manual

The chassis has been completely re-modified with optimized geometry for ultimate feel and feedback. Both frame and the swingarm contribute to sharp handling and excellent cornering speeds. The steering stem and the swingarm can be adjusted as well to suit track and city riding conditions.

On the new Ninja ZX-10R SE, the new revised frame and suspension combination developed by Showa sees the new Kawasaki Electronic Control Suspension (KECS). It will be the first such thing fancying a Kawasaki motorcycle, or any motorcycle in its segment for that matter.

2018 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE Exterior
- image 743892
Launch control, Traction control,
Engine Braking Control

Attached to the 43mm Balanced Free Fork (BFF), this semi-active electronic damper electronically adjusts the amount of damping after calculating the vehicle’s speed and modulation every millisecond. It does so via a stroke sensor and a solenoid valve with direct actuation rather than using step-motors or pilot valves.

It communicates using the bike’s IMU and ECU both and can be customizable through the three riding modes - Road, Track, and Manual. The Manual mode is what allows 15 levels of tuning for the rebound and compression circuits, adjustable via the dash. Some fancy stuff there. At the rear, you will find the horizontal back-link suspension setup that also carries the Showa Balance Free Cushion (BFRC) shocks.

2018 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE Exterior
- image 743893
Includes a Bosch IMU
that inputs 6 degrees of freedom

Top of the line Brembo brakes features dual 330 mm semi-floating discs that replace the petal ones used previously. Radially mounted aluminum calipers are the best ones available in any store that gives amazing braking force and feel to the rider. Confident stops are what they are all made of, and they deliver. Stainless steel braided lines provide the rider with a direct connection at the lever. Kawasaki’s Intelligent ABS (KIBS) system gives precision control to modulate brake pressures and ensure maximum traction to stop the beast.

Talking about electronics, this Japanese Green machine gets loads of it, all borrowed from the company’s WSBK stints. As expected, the new Ninja ZX-10R SE gets the same list of electronic aids as that of the Ninja ZX-10R. It includes a Bosch IMU that inputs 6 degrees of freedom to enable precise chassis orientation, corner management function, 3 level Kawasaki Launch control mode (KLCM), 5 level Kawasaki Sport Traction Control (S-KTRC), Kawasaki Engine Braking Control (KEBC), all of which work efficiently in making the riding as well as braking experience a bit more engaging in the part of the rider.

2018 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE Exterior
- image 743904
Kawasaki Electronic Control Suspension (KECS)
43mm Showa Balanced Free Fork (BFF)

It also gets bestowed with the top-of-the-line 7-spoke Marchesini forged wheels that are lighter than the standard 3-spoke alloys used on the ZX-10R.

Attached to the 43mm Balanced Free Fork (BFF), this semi-active electronic damper electronically adjusts the amount of damping after calculating the vehicle’s speed and modulation every millisecond.

Chassis Specifications

Make Model 2018 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE Yamaha YZF-R1M Honda CBR1000RR SP
Frame Aluminum perimeter Tubular steel Trellis frame Semi-double cradle, high-tensile steel
Suspension / Front 43mm inverted Balance Free Fork, KECS controlled compression and rebound damping, manual spring preload adjustability 43mm Öhlins electronic suspension w/inverted fork; fully adjustable Telescopic inverted fork with an inner tube diameter of 43mm, and an NIX30 Smart-EC (OHLINS) Front Fork with preload, compression and rebound adjustments
Suspension / Rear Horizontal back-link with Balance Free gas-charged shock, controlled compression and rebound damping, manually adjustable spring preload Öhlins electronic suspension w/single shock; fully adjustable Unit Pro-Link with gas-charged TTX36 Smart-EC (Öhlins) damper featuring preload and compression and rebound damping adjustment
Brakes / Front I Intelligent Braking (KIBS), Brembo dual semi-floating 330mm discs with dual radial mounted monobloc 4-piston calipers Dual 320mm hydraulic disc; Unified Brake System and ABS Brembo dual semi-floating 330mm discs with dual radial mounted monobloc 4-piston calipers, Gyro-Assisted ABS
Brakes / Rear KIBS-controlled, single 220mm disc with aluminum single-piston caliper 220mm disc; Unified Brake System and ABS 220mm dual piston Gyro-Assisted ABS
Tires / Front 120/70 ZR17 120/70ZR17 120/70ZR17 58W
Tires / Rear 190/55 ZR17 200/55ZR17 190/50ZR17 73W

PRICE

2018 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE Exterior
- image 743894
Price: $ 21,899
available in pure-stealth Metallic Flat Spark Black / Metallic Matte Graphite Gray

While Kawasaki has priced the Ninja ZX-10R starting at $ 15,099, the SE with electronic suspension comes with a price tag of $ 21,899. That is more than the ZX-10RR ($ 18,899). The SE is only available in this pure-stealth Metallic Flat Spark Black / Metallic Matte Graphite Gray. Being a Kawa, you get green accents of course.

You can also get accessories and Race Kit parts to make your machine really yours. You can equip your SE with frame slider sets, front axle sliders, knee pad sets, and an Akrapovic slip-on exhaust system.

Make Model 2018 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE Yamaha YZF-R1M Honda CBR1000RR SP
MSRP $ 21,899 $ 22,999 $ 19,999

COMPETITION

Yamaha YZF-R1M

Yamaha YZF-R1 and YZF-R1M Superbikes gets updated for 2018 Exterior High Resolution Wallpaper quality
- image 746001
The power-mill remains the same
which oozes out 197 hp and 150 lb-ft of torque

Touted as the sharpest and most track-focused supersport bikes you could get your hands on, Yamaha has updated their mad YZF-R1M superbikes with recalibrated equipment and a couple of new features keeping the competition alive and well. Most of the updates are mostly underneath the skin, which itself gets a new Silver Blu Carbon paint job on the R1M.

The new Yamaha R1 comes bolstered with the same liquid-cooled, parallel four-cylinder engine which oozes out 197 hp and 150 lb-ft of torque. The engine is coupled to a 6-speed gearbox with slick up-shifts on tap. For 2018, the folks at Yamaha have given the Quick Shift System (QSS) an “auto-blip” downshift technology that can now accommodate clutchless downshifts along with the up-shifts. And the best part of it all, the rider can disengage the function through the Yamaha Ride Control (YRC) settings found in the newly updated TFT instrumentation.

Another electronic gadget present to aid the rider called the Lift Control System (LIF) also gets further refinements to prevent the front end from lifting off the ground during those hard acceleration scenarios. Thanks to the new Bridgestone RS10 tires, the rider now gets a better grip and feedback to hoon the track around. The YZF-R1M has one another trick up its sleeve with the Öhlins Electronic Racing Suspension (ERS) getting updated with the latest Smart EC 2 ERS system. It can now be fine-tuned via the YRC settings using a smartphone app connected to the motorcycle’s Communication Control Unit (CCU).

Honda CBR1000RR SP

2017 Suzuki GSX-R 1000/R
- image 718284

Honda’s SP is said to be an evolution rather than a revolution because close to 70 percent of the parts that make up this bike is completely new as opposed to the previous models. Although the overall geometry of the new blade remains similar to the previous model, the fairings have been thinned down by reducing the material around few areas while exposing the motor surfaces.

Honda has continued its weight loss program with the engine as well by overhauling the motor for the 2017 CBR. The in-line four pot uses, for the first time, a throttle by wire control helping the power gain to 185-190 hp (11bhp more) while the red line now goes all the way up to 13000rpm from the previous 12250 rpm with peak torque of 81.79ftlb @ 10,500rpm. The compression ratio is up to 13.0:0 from 12.3:1. The power to weight ratio has increased by 14 percent. The new slip-assist clutch system makes use of the quick shifter for those clutchless upshifts and electronically assisted downshifts with auto-blipper.

The CBR1000RR is one of the few bikes that don’t go wrong in the handling department. They have always been touted as the best handling bike by enthusiasts. This updated model, however, ups the game by introducing a wide range of electronics aiding the rider into a more aggressive rideability and at the same time keeping him/her safer than ever. The brand new five-axis Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU) works tirelessly to keep the bike under control in all situations the rider is capable of maneuvering. Other riding aids include traction control, ABS, slide control, engine brake control, rear lift control and wheelie control.

VERDICT

2018 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE Exterior
- image 743903
Sleek LED headlamps and revamped front fairing
with larger wind sheild

Kawasaki has left no stone unturned in improving its standard Ninja ZX-10R, the efforts of which can be sensed in this latest iteration of the motorcycle, the new Ninja ZX-10R SE. Though the changes are very limited, as a periodic update, this has to be termed as quite praise-worthy, which explains the seriousness of Kawasaki towards modern engineering on two wheels.

With the bike dominating the WSBK championships, we can see the direct impact of this in their street products. With the integration of technology and electronics from their motorsport experience makes the rider feel the ultimate machine running on any tarmac across the world. Kawasaki has continuously pushed better handling, improved lap times and a thrilling riding experience with ground-breaking technology catering to the rider’s needs.

The manufacturer has managed to improve the motorcycle in every aspect – be it performance, dynamics and electronics. With the new Ninja ZX-10R SE, Kawasaki has really spiced up the game, and it is only going to lift the standards and benchmarks in the liter class supersport segment to new heights.

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