2011 Kawasaki ZX-10R | First Ride Video

2011 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R

The 2011 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R was one of the most anticipated sportbike releases of the year. This YouTube video shows some motorcycle journalist, including Ultimate Motorcycling’s Tristan Shoenewald, taking their first ride on the machine at Road Atlanta.

Throughout the video, the moto-journalists discuss the power and handling of the all-new Ninja ZX-10R, and also the high-tech "Sport-Kawasaki Traction Control.

S-KTRC crunches numbers from a "variety of parameters and sensors – wheel speed and slip, engine rpm, throttle position, acceleration, etc." Kawasaki says the S-KTRC system relies on complex software buried in the new ZX-10R’s Electronic Control Unit (ECU), the only additional hardware is the lightweight speed sensors located on each wheel.

Unlike the KTRC system on Kawasaki’s Concours 14 ABS sport tourer, which primarily minimizes wheel slip on slick or broken surfaces as a safety feature, the S-KTRC system is designed to maximize performance by using complex analysis to predict when traction conditions are about to become unfavorable, Kawasaki says.

In this official Kawasaki video, the journalist also discuss egonomics, and of course the power plant, which starts with the 2010 Ninja ZX-10R engine platform: a 16-valve, DOHC, liquid-cooled inline-four displacing 998cc via 76 x 55mm bore and stroke dimensions. Then the changes start, which are designed to "optimize power, power delivery, center of gravity and actual engine placement within the chassis."

Kawasaki says a primary goal of Kawasaki engineers was linear power delivery and engine manageability throughout all elements of a corner: the entry, getting back to neutral throttle at mid-corner, and heady, controllable acceleration at the exit.

Peak torque was moved to a higher rpm range, which eliminates the power peaks and valleys that make it difficult for racers and track-day riders to open the throttle with confidence.