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2009 Kawasaki ZX-6R Review (video)

9-9-2009

by Pascal Bastien , moto123.com

One swing of the magic wand by the Green Giant and the ZX-6R gets a complete overhaul -- lighter chassis, more powerful engine, upgraded suspension, improved mass centralization and new, well-executed styling inspired from the larger ZX-10R.

Powerful, easy to ride hard and with quality components, the 2009 Kawasaki ZX-6R has all the ingredients to satisfy track riding enthusiasts.

The team at ARC Turn2 recently invited us to try out the 2009 Kawasaki ZX-6R at Calabogie, the beautiful technical race track near Ottawa. There might be no better venue to assess the performance of Kawasaki’s revised superbike.

Fan of high-revving action
For decades, Kawasaki has delivered exciting motors, as evidenced by the tarmac-burning 600cc and 1000cc sport bikes. Well, the new 600 stays true to the brand’s reputation. Mounted 16mm higher into the frame and slightly more forward-tilted than the 2008 model, this 4-cylinder powerplant is also 3-kg lighter, a bit torquier at medium revs, and like its predecessor, it explodes from 10,000 to 16,000 rpm. The sound of the new exhaust system, now under the engine for optimum mass centralization, enhances the feeling of power and the overall riding experience at higher revs.

A longer intake manifold, larger cylinder ports and valves, 12-percent higher-capacity ignition coils and a more effective ram air intake help deliver 132 hp to the crankshaft, an incredible 220hp per litre. The ZX-6R also benefits from revised gear ratios for reduced RPM drops during shifts and a more even power delivery to the rear tire.

Designed for high performance
The little ZX gets a lighter aluminum frame that is particularly rigid around the steering column to better handle the forces generated by the more powerful front braking system. Like the 2009 GSX-R1000, the new 6R uses a BPF (Big Piston Fork), which improves fluid control, reduces foam buildup and ensures more progressive action. Additionally, compression and rebound damping adjustments are located at the top of each fork tube for easier access in everyday riding as conditions and load change.

A more effective ram air intake help deliver 132 hp to the crankshaft, an incredible 220hp per litre.
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