How much do we like the Kawasaki Ninja 1000? We like it enough to unveil it today as our Best Sport-Touring Motorcycle of 2017 Honorable Mention.  In honor of that choice, we decided to take the wraps off the video review for the big Ninja so that people who don’t like to read as much as we do can still learn about all the cool ways that Kawasaki changed the bike. Although whole sections of the motorcycle remain mechanically the same, some electronic changes affect both power delivery and braking of the 2017 Ninja 1000.

Best Sport-Touring Motorcycle Of 2017

The engine, one of the things we’ve always loved about the 1000, remains mechanically the same, and the updated EFI settings still provide massive acceleration at all rpm. However, a Bosch Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU) was inserted to work with both the Kawasaki Traction Control (KTRC) and the Kawasaki Intelligent anti-lock Brake System (KIBS). Using information gathered on five data points, the Kawasaki Cornering Management Function (KCMF) can intercede on the rider’s behalf when acceleration and braking requests exceed the limits of available traction. Unfortunately, the Ninja didn’t gain ride-by-wire which left cruise control out of the mix.

The 1000 received an updated fairing carries the Ninja family resemblance. Another small-but-noticeable tweak was the change in the rear suspension that makes the Ninja track more consistently through corners without needing the slight constant input of the previous generation.

The Ninja 1000’s $12,199 (without bags) makes the Ninja a great value choice for the Sport-Touring market. So, take a gander at the video to see why we love the Kawasaki Ninja 1000 so much.

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  • Jon Jones

    Will posses one of these exquisite motorbikes one fine day. A Ninja 1000 and a Versys 1000 both inspire lust.

    Just set your sights on a particular model, peruse the usual ads and venues, then pounce when appropriate.

    Works every time. Just allow time to work its magic.

    • Born to Ride

      I don’t know that lust is the right word for what they invoke in me. It just seems like a bike that begs you to ride it, all day, every day. And that is a wonderful trait to have in your bike.

  • Jon Jones


  • Sentinel

    I think Kawasaki has really got this bike where it should have been all along. When I rode the first gen, I found to be way too buzzy. I really couldn’t stand it, but since they’ve added the counterbalancer to the engine to smooth it out, I’ve heard it’s much better, but haven’t had the chance to try it since I haven’t been able to ride for over a year after being hit and run over, and left in bad shape. Hopefully I’ll be able to ride again soon. I’d love to see them come out with something more in-between this 1000 and the 650. Something with more power than the 650, and better millage and lighter weight than the 1000. That’s the bike I would want over the other two if it existed.

    • Jon Jones


      My very best to you.

  • elgar

    Thanks for the usual great review on a great Kawi.
    What happened to the usual great video quality?? I hope that it’s a ‘one-time’ only occurrence…

  • Ron Walters

    Are the upgrades enough to trade in a 2012? I love my 2012 but would love the electronic and suspension upgrades… Is the cost of the upgrade justified?

  • David Kraft

    I don’t understand why they make this when they have the Concours which is a Ninja with a different name.