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Gixxerboy 05-29-2001 04:05 AM

Re: MO
Stylist working overtime??? Maybe in a museum.

Drifter = Indian, W650 = Triumph, ZRX/ZR = ancient kawks. (gotta admit, I love the zrx12 though).

Below average price... er, um, good point ;-)

Copper 05-29-2001 04:46 AM

Re: Kawi
Niggles and whatnot:

1. Lose the crazy graphics. The big air scoops don't help either.

2. Kawis long have been known to be long on motor, short on handling. The 9R needs help in the handling department should Kawi choose to compete in this market segment. The 7R is an antique. To have a 750cc displacement machine that competes with Suzuki without putting the rider on a rack would be scarfed up by the teeming masses. The 6R is plain silly; it needs to lose weight and get real forks, brakes, rear linkage, etc. There have been enough posts about the shortcomings of the 12R.

3. I think their cruiser line is doing well. I can't ride 5 miles without seeing a Vulcan of some sort.

4. The ZRX is a great bike. Ditto the W650.

5. The Concours has a very loyal following. A great market may be developing this bike into a 21st Century machine.

springerman 05-29-2001 04:47 AM

Re: MO
I dont know much about the sport bikes, but I have ridden green dirt bikes for a long time. PLEASE PUT GOOD BRAKES ON THE KLR 650, I've seen go-carts with better brakes. Also what about a dual sport that is aimed at more dirt rather than street. The KLR 650 is an ok bike, I have one, but its way more street than dirt. I Think if they could make a street leagle bike that preformed like the KX 500 it would do good in the D-S market

jonnyspeed 05-29-2001 05:34 AM

Re: MO
Kawasaki invented the 900cc sportbike......NOT Honda. Kawasaki plans to redo the 9R to compete under the new rules of World Superbike where up to 990 or 1000 cc is alowed.

Arrow 05-29-2001 06:11 AM

Re: Kawasaki
I think Kaws are great, I owned 3 of them up till now, so no surprise there. But I do think Kawasaki is napping, so here is my list of improvements.

I think Kawasaki should...

- Bring a brand new ZX7R, which does not only match but exceed GSXR750's performance. It is arguably one of the most beautiful looking bikes out there so don't change the styling too much. New superbike rules mean they will probably ignore this suggestion but I believe there is a market out there for 750s.

- Update the ZX6R with new suspension/fuel injection. Bring the weight down.

- Do the same with ZX9R. It will probably need a slight capacity hike in order to match others.

- Update the Dual-purpose line. KLR650s are terrific, but I think time has come to completely update them, less weight, more power, sharper handling and better brakes are the way to go. Styling should be updated too.

- Drop the ugly cruisers such as Vulcan 88 and 750 from the line-up.

- Create a new standard based on ZX7R engine as suggested by another MO user. I think that's a terrific idea! Don't neuter the engine either.

- For God's sake stop building current Concours and Voyager. Use the new ZRX 1200 engine and build new tourers. And don't just match the competition, beat them!!

- Update the ZX11&6 with new suspension, fuel injection and less weight (I heard Kawasaki is actually working on such a project).

- Update the current 500 Ninja. Why do you ask? Please look at Suzuki SV650 if you need any convincing.

- Improve the fit & finish, maintenance requirements and decrease the break-in periods. Look at Honda for example.

- Please improve the suspensions on all your bikes. Look at Suzuki.

- Keep improving the bike after you release it!!

Right now Kawasaki seems like a stagnant company, which plays it too safe/conservative. They only try to match the competition, not to beat it. I just hope Kawasaki's top management read all the comments posted in this page and react. We shall see come 2002 if they are at least on the right track.

tbuse 05-29-2001 06:15 AM

Re: MO
After riding my buddy's Concours last Sunday, and then riding with him on my Triumph Trophy 900 this weekend, I have to agree that the Concours is in desperate need of updating. From the styling (it LOOKS late 80s), to the ergonomics (feet too high, butt too low), to the fit and finish (panels that have been loose since delivery) to the engine (buzzy) the whole package needs updating. The basic price is incredibly cheap, but the cost of making the bike rideable quickly adds to the base price.

CUTTER 05-29-2001 06:16 AM

Re: MO
Actually, Kawasaki Heavy Industry, which includes the motorcycle division, is by far the biggest manufacturer of all of them. They have as much money as the higher-ups decide.

panthercity 05-29-2001 06:28 AM

Re: The VFR Killer...
I was with ya right up till the chain thing. Keep it shaft. The torque effect can be eliminated as it is on my current bike (BMW R1100RS). Properly engineered, the weight is a non-issue when you're coverin' 700~900 miles a day, day after day compared to the maintenance issues of a chain.

panthercity 05-29-2001 06:32 AM

Re: W650
Actually, the W650 is an updated version of one of their bikes from the late `60's, early `70's which was a copy of the BSA, not the Triumph.

tbuse 05-29-2001 06:45 AM

Re: Kaw can improve and take market by storm!
The comment on dealer quality hits home in this area. The three buddies I have with Kawis won't take them to the local dealer. The service is terrible and the mechanics apparently know nothing about Kawis. One works on his own (he also drag races old Kawis. Says they're bulletproof.); one takes his two counties over to another dealer; & one takes his to the Triumph/Ducati dealer (A great guy who says half his business comes from Japanese bike owners.).

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