2019 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R First Look
For the ninth time since the original Ninja ZX-6R was launched in 1995, Kawasaki has updated its supersport machine.
The last major update arrived in 2013, when Kawasaki overhauled the bike and returned from the 599cc inline-four powerplant to the more powerful – and more street friendly – 636cc powerplant.
Kawasaki made this change in 2013 because it said more than 80 percent of ZX-6R buyers were strictly street riders.
This thinking once again came into play for the latest generation. Meet the 2019 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R, which retains the previous generation’s 636cc engine and chassis, but gets a hosts of other updates.
We will have a First Ride review soon from Las Vegas Motor Speedway, but for now here’s our first look fast facts.
1. The 2019 Ninja ZX-6R returns with the Euro4 compliant 636cc engine that features a longer stroke for added mid-range power – something favorable for real-world street riders. The engine remains unchanged, but power delivery should be stronger due to a new smaller countershaft sprocket. This shortens the final drive, which will further emphasize the engine’s low-rpm power.
2. Just like its older brothers – the ZX-10R and ZX-10RR – the 2019 ZX-6R arrives from the factory with Kawasaki Quick Shifter (KQS). This “contact-less potentiometer-type quick shifter” was designed for seamless upshifts. Read – this is only for upshifts, and clutch use is still recommended for downshifts due to no auto blipper.
3. The ZX-6R arrives with the latest in Kawasaki electronics, including three levels of traction control (with the ability to shut TC off), and two power modes. ABS is optional.
4. The chassis, suspension, and brakes remain unchanged, but they were optimal to begin with. The ZX-6R uses:
- Perimeter frame for low weight (curb weight is 428 pounds non-Abs; 430 ABS) and high rigidity
- Showa Big Piston fork that has all adjustments located on top of the fork tube
- Uni-Trak gas-charged mono shock with 25 clicks of rebound damping
- Dual 310mm front discks squeezed by Nissin monobloc calipers
5. For added comfort, the clutch lever now features five positions of adjustable.
6. Also adding to comfort is the revised seat, which is 32.7 inches tall. The seat and new tail section is shorter from front to back, allowing for better rider movement. It also narrows at the front which helps keep the rider’s feet planted when stopped.
7. The 2019 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R receives updated Bridgestone tires. It arrives with Battlax Hypersport S22 tires for lighter handling and increased grip.
8. The new Ninja ZX-6R receives new styling that not only ads to sharper looks, but also better views of the road ahead. The styling updates include:
- All-new front cowl with lower dimensions that provide a better view of the road ahead
- New LED headlights that feature high and low beam plus a position lamp, and LED taillight inspired by the Ninja ZX-10R. The LEDs also provide increased brightness over its predecessors
- The new tail cowl has upswept lines and overlapping and interwoven sections
- New muffler finishing treatment and redesigned end cap
- Redesigned heel guards
9. The instrumentation was tweaked, and now features a new tachometer needle that changes colors from white to pink to red to indicate shift timing. The Shift Indicator can now be set between 5000 and 16,000 rpm in 250 rpm increments (previous generation started at 10,000 rpm).
10. For easier access to the battery, a revised seat lock location releases the rider’s seat instead of the passenger seat.
11. The 2019 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R is available in four color options, and, the best fact yet, is offered much cheaper than the previous generation. Base non-ABS models now start at $9,999 vs $11,699 for the 2018 model.
2019 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R Specs:
- Type: 4-Stroke, Liquid-Cooled, DOHC, 4 Valve Cylinder Head, Transverse In-Line 4-Cylinder
- Displacement: 636cc
- Bore x Stroke: 67.0 x 45.1mm
- Power: 52.1 ft/lbs @ 11,500 rpm 12.9:1
- Fueling: DFI® with Keihin 38mm Throttle Bodies (4) TCBI with Digital Advance
- Transmission: 6-Speed with Positive Neutral Finder, Kawasaki quick shifter (up shift only)
Chassis and Suspension:
- Front Suspension: Big Piston SFF-Style 41mm Inverted Cartridge-Type Fork w/
- Adjustable Preload, Stepless Compression and Rebound Damping
- Rear Suspension: Uni-Trak with Adjustable Preload, 25-Way Rebound Stepless High and
- Low Speed Compression Damping Adjustment and Adjustable Ride Height
- Front Brakes; Dual 310mm Petal Discs with Radial Mount, Opposed 4-Piston Calipers, Available KIBS
- Rear Brake: Single 210mm Petal Disc, Available KIBS
- Front Tire Size: 120/70-ZR17
- Rear Tire Size: 180/55-ZR17 55.1 in.
Dimensions and Capacities:
- Rake/Trail: 24.5.°/4.0 in.
- Front Wheel Travel: 4.7 in.
- Rear Wheel Travel: 5.9 in.
- Wheelbase: 55.1 in.
- Seat Height: 32.7 inches
- Curb Weight: 428 pounds non ABS; 430 pounds ABS
- Fuel Tank Capacity: 4.5 gallons
2019 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R Colors:
- Base model: Pearl Storm Gray / Metallic Spark Black, Metallic Spark Black / Metallic Flat Spark Black
- Ninja ZX-6R ABS: Pearl Storm Gray / Metallic Spark Black,
- Ninja ZX-6R ABS KRT: Lime Green / Ebony / Metallic Graphite Gray
2019 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R Prices (MSRP):
- Ninja ZX-6R $9,999
- Ninja ZX-6R ABS $10,999
- Ninja ZX-6R ABS KRT $11,299