2018 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE Review

2018 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE

2018 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE 2018 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE 2018 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE 2018 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE


2018 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE Review on Total Motorcycle:

Complementing the Ninja ZX-10R and track-focused Ninja ZX-10RR, Kawasaki proudly introduces a new high-grade edition to its supersport line-up. The Ninja ZX-10R SE features Kawasaki’s new, highly advanced electronic suspension. Both on the

street and on the track, the suspension’s superb damping character offers a level of ride comfort that almost makes you forget you are riding a machine with race-ready suspension. Rest assured, the Ninja ZX-10R’s high circuit potential is undiminished. Comfort and Performance. The new Ninja ZX-10R SE really does offer the best of both worlds.


The Kawasaki Racing Team and Kawasaki factory in Japan forged a performance partnership to develop the new Ninja ZX-10R. Tested, refined and approved by World Champion’s Jonathan Rea and Tom Sykes, this is as close as it gets to being part of the official Kawasaki World Superbike team. Ninja ZX-10R Get Closer.



2018 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE Totalmotorcycle.com Key Features

Available in Metallic Carbon Gray/Metallic Matte Carbon Gray paint.




Riders can choose from three modes: Road, Track, and Manual. Road and Track modes provide softer or firmer base settings to suit streetriding or circuit riding, respectively. Manual mode allows riders to tailor the rebound and compression damping base settings to suit preference and/or riding style. The manual settings (15 levels each) are selected electronically via the instrument panel. In all three modes, KECS adjusts damping for vehicle speed, stroke speed and deceleration.


Marchesini Forged Wheels

7-spoke multi- directional forged aluminium wheels jointly developed with Marchesini contribute to lighter handling – especially when changing direction.



Kawasaki Quick Shifter, Dual-direction KQS system allows both clutchless upshifts and downshifts, facilitating circuit riding. (On the standard model, clutchless downshifts are only possible with the race kit ECU.)

Designed for effective sport riding, KQS can also be used on the street at rpm above 2,500 min-1.


Electronic Suspension

Jointly developed with Showa, KECS adds electronically controlled damping to the high-spec Balance Free Front Fork and BFRC lite (Balance Free Rear Cushion) rear shock equipped on the Ninja ZX-10R. The semiactive system adapts to road and riding conditions in real time, providing the ideal amount of damping called for. Combining advanced, race-developed mechanical components with the latest electronic control technology, KECS offers both the suppleness to handle a wide range of street riding situations, and the firm damping needed for circuit riding. The tyres feel planted, delivering confidence when cornering.


1 millisecond

Control is via a solenoid valve with direct (single-stage) actuation. This results in extremely quick reaction time: 1 millisecond – much quicker than systems that rely on step-motors, or those that use pilot valves (two-stage actuation), which slow the system’s responsiveness. The quick reaction time makes KECS ideal for supersport applications, where natural feeling is crucial to feeling at one with the bike.



Built-in stroke sensors on both the fork and rear shock – a feature unique to the Ninja ZX-10R SE – provide real-time stroke speed and compression information. The sensor coils provide input to the KECS ECU every 1 ms. This is complemented by information provided by the IMU (acceleration/deceleration) every 10 ms, and the FI ECU (vehicle speed) every 10 ms. The KECS ECU then directs current to the solenoids to adjust damping as required by the situation.



2018 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE Totalmotorcycle.com Features and Benefits


Power Modes (with variable middle mode)

Power Modes allow available power and throttle response to be selected to suit conditions. On the supersport Ninja ZX-10R, three modes are available: Full, Low (which limits power to about 60% of Full) and Middle mode, which falls between the two.

More than a simply bisecting the Full and Low mode power curves, in Middle mode performance characteristics vary depending on engine speed and throttle position. At less than 50% throttle application, engine performance is essentially the same as in Low mode. However, opening the throttle past 50% allows performance up to that of Full power to be accessed. This advanced engine management system allows mild engine character for normal riding situations, with the option to tap into greater power for a quick burst of acceleration.

Variable Middle Mode offers riders the ability to alter engine performance and delivery by conscious use of throttle control (either for ease of control when riding in the city, or for greater response when the rider calls for quick acceleration). This kind of technology allows supersport machines to be enjoyed in a broader range of situations.


Launch Control Mode

In motocross racing, getting a good start is critical. A few tenths of a second can make the difference between getting the holeshot or not. In slippery conditions, getting the maximum drive from a motocrosser requires precise control of the both the clutch and throttle.

Launch Control Mode helps riders get a good start by complementing high-level technique with engine management. Featured on a mass-production motocrosser for the first time on Kawasaki’s KX450F, the system activates a separate engine map designed to get a more efficient start off the line. The system is designed to the same specifications as that used by our factory racers competing in the AMA Supercross and Motocross championships.

Launch Control Mode is activated simply by pressing the button on the handlebar. The Launch Control map slightly retards ignition timing to help tame the engine’s strong torque and reduce wheel spin off the start. Launch Control Mode is only active in the first two gears off the start, disengaging and returning to the standard engine map automatically once the rider shifts into 3rd gear. The system gives riders a great advantage when lining up at the gate and puts them in a better position to win.


Horizontal Back-link Rear Suspension

Compared to Kawasaki’s traditional Uni-Trak rear suspension, which mounts the shock unit vertically, with Horizontal Back-link rear suspension, the shock unit is almost horizontal. Kawasaki’s original suspension arrangement locates the shock unit very close to the bike’s centre of gravity, greatly contributing to mass centralisation. And because there is no linkage or shock unit protruding beneath the swingarm, this frees up space for a larger exhaust pre-chamber (an exhaust expansion chamber situated just upstream of the silencer). With a larger pre-chamber, silencer volume can be reduced, and heavy exhaust components can be concentrated closer to the centre of the bike, further contributing to mass centralisation. The result is greatly improved handling.

Another benefit is that the shock unit is placed far away from exhaust heat. Because it is more difficult for heat from the exhaust system to adversely affect suspension oil and gas pressure, suspension performance is more stable. Horizontal Back-link rear suspension offers numerous secondary benefits like this.


Economical Riding Indicator

Using high-precision electronic control for engine management, Kawasaki models can achieve a high level of fuel efficiency. However, fuel consumption is greatly affected by throttle use, gear selection, and other elements under the rider’s control. The Economical Riding Indicator is a function that indicates when current riding conditions are consuming a low amount of fuel. The system continuously monitors fuel consumption, regardless of vehicle speed, engine speed, throttle position and other riding conditions. When fuel consumption is low for a given speed (i.e. fuel efficiency is high), an “ECO” mark appears on the instrument panel’s LCD screen. By riding so that the “ECO” mark remains on, fuel consumption can be reduced.

While effective vehicle speed and engine speed may vary by model, paying attention to conditions that cause the “ECO” mark to appear can help riders improve their fuel efficiency – a handy way to increase cruising range. Further, keeping fuel consumption low also helps minimise negative impact on the environment.


S-KTRC: Sport – Kawasaki Traction Control

S-KTRC, Kawasaki’s original predictive traction control, uses the same base technology as the Kawasaki works machines that competed in MotoGP, the pinnacle of motorcycle racing. This technology continually controls the rear wheel slip that occurs when power is applied, ensuring optimal acceleration. In general, maximum forward drive requires a certain amount of slip (usually between 20-30% slip ratio, i.e. the rear wheel is turning 20-30% faster than the front). To ensure the most effective transfer of power to the tarmac, S-KTRC monitors the slip ratio in real time, and governs engine power delivery to optimise rear wheel traction.

S-KTRC monitors a number of parameters, including front and rear wheel speed, engine rpm and throttle position. Conditions are confirmed every 5 milliseconds, at which time the system looks at each of the parameters as well has how much they are changing (i.e. their rate of change). This unique Kawasaki method makes it possible to interpolate and predict how the bike will behave in the next instant.

Unlike 1-mode KTRC, which cuts power as soon as rear slip is detected to allow rear traction to be regained, S-KTRC uses minimal power drops to ensure the slip ratio for optimal traction is maintained. Because its goal is to maximise acceleration, as long as sufficient forward motion is observed, this sport riding system will allow power wheelies as the bike comes out of corners.


Kawasaki Engine Brake Control

The Kawasaki Engine Brake Control system allows riders to select the amount of engine braking they prefer.  When the system is activated, the engine braking effect is reduced, providing less interference when riding on the circuit.


Electronic Throttle Valves

Kawasaki’s fully electronic throttle actuation system enables the ECU to control the volume of both the fuel (via fuel injectors) and the air (via throttle valves) delivered to the engine.  Ideal fuel injection and throttle valve position results in smooth, natural engine response and the ideal engine output.  The system also makes a significant contribution to reduced emissions.

Electronic throttle valves also enable more precise control of electronic engine management systems like S-KTRC and KTRC, and allow the implementation of electronic systems like KLCM, Kawasaki Engine Brake Control, and Cruise Control.


IMU – Enhanced Chassis Orientation Awareness

The strength of Kawasaki’s cutting-edge electronics has always been the highly sophisticated programming that, using minimal hardware, gives the ECU an accurate real-time picture of what the chassis is doing.  Kawasaki’s proprietary dynamic modelling program makes skilful use of the magic formula tyre model as it examines changes in multiple parameters, enabling it to take into account changing road and tyre conditions.

The addition of an IMU (Inertial Measurement Unit) enables inertia along 6 DOF (degrees of freedom) to be monitored.  Acceleration along longitudinal, transverse and vertical axes, plus roll rate and pitch rate are measured.  The yaw rate is calculated by the ECU.  This additional feedback contributes to an even clearer real-time picture of chassis orientation, enabling even more precise management for control at the limit.

With the addition of the IMU and the latest evolution of Kawasaki’s advanced modelling software, Kawasaki’s electronic engine and chassis management technology takes the step to the next level – changing from setting-type and reaction-type systems to feedback-type systems – to deliver even greater levels of riding excitement.


KQS: Kawasaki Quick Shifter

Designed to help riders maximise their acceleration on the circuit by enabling clutchless upshifts with the throttle fully open, KQS detects that the shift lever has been actuated and sends a signal to the ECU to cut ignition so that the next gear can be engaged without having to use the clutch. For some models, when a race kit ECU is used, clutchless downshifts are also possible.


KECS (Kawasaki Electronic Control Suspension)

KECS adapts to road and riding conditions in real time, providing the ideal amount of damping called for by electronically adjusting damping to suit vehicle speed and suspension stroke speed.  Deceleration is also taken into account, which allows the system to help manage pitching that may occur during braking.

Control via solenoid valve with direct actuation enables an extremely quick reaction time, making KECS ideal for sport riding applications, where natural feeling is crucial to feeling at one with the bike.  Built-in stroke sensors on both the fork and rear shock provide real-time stroke speed and compression information.  Input from the sensor coils to the KECS ECU is complemented by information provided by the IMU (acceleration/deceleration) and the FI ECU (vehicle speed).  The KECS ECU then directs current to the solenoids to adjust damping as required by the situation.

Selectable modes allow riders to choose softer or firmer base settings.




2018 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE – Totalmotorcycle.com USA Specifications/Technical Details





2018 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE – Totalmotorcycle.com Canadian Specifications/Technical Details
Canada MSRP Price: $24,599 CDN


Displacement        998cc

Type          4-stroke, In-Line Four

Bore and stroke     76.0 x 55.0 mm

Cooling     Liquid

Compression ratio             13.0:1

Valve system        DOHC, 16 valves (4 valves per cylinder)

Fuel system           Fuel injection: ø47 mm x 4 with dual injection

Ignition     Digital

Lubrication           Forced lubrication, wet sump with oil cooler


Front: type            Dual semi-floating ø330 mm Brembo discs

Front: calipers       Dual radial-mount, Brembo M50 monobloc, opposed 4-piston

Rear: type Single 220 mm disc

Rear: calipers        Single-bore pin-slide


Overall length       2,090 mm

Overall width        740 mm

Overall height       1,145 mm

Wheelbase             1,440 mm

Ground clearance 145 mm

Seat height            835 mm

Curb mass**         208 kg

Fuel capacity         17 litres (3.7 gal.)


Transmission         6-speed, return

Final drive             Chain

Primary reduction ratio     1.681 (79/47)

Gear ratio: 1st       2.600 (39/15)

Gear ratio: 2nd      2.214 (31/14)

Gear ratio: 3rd       1.944 (35/18)

Gear ratio: 4th       1.722 (31/18)

Gear ratio: 5th       1.550 (31/20)

Gear ratio: 6th       1.391 (32/23)

Final reduction ratio         2.294 (39/17)

Clutch       Wet multi-disc, manual


Type          Twin spar, cast aluminium

Wheel travel: front            120 mm (4.7 in.)

Tire: front 120/70-ZR17M/C (58W)

Wheel travel: rear 114 mm (4.5 in.)

Tire: rear   190/55-ZR17M/C (75W)

Caster (rake)         25º

Trail          107 mm (4.2 in.)

Steering angle (left/right) 27º/27º


Maximum Torque‡           114.6 N.m {11.7 kgf.m} @ 11,500 rpm


Suspension, front Horizontal Back-link, BFRC lite gas-charged shock with piggyback reservoir, KECS-controlled compression and rebound damping, manual spring preload adjustability, and top-out spring

Suspension, rear    ø43 mm inverted Balance Free Front Fork with external compression chamber, KECS-controlled compression and rebound damping, manual spring preload adjustability, and top-out springs


Warranty   12 months warranty

Factory Limited Warranty Owner’s Warranty Guide

This model comes with 12 months factory limited warranty.


* The Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price does not include freight, pre-delivery inspection or applicable taxes. The final price is at the discretion of the dealer. Prices and Specifications are subject to change without prior notice. The amount indicated as “Your price” may include an optional instant Mega Cash credit that is deducted from the manufacturer’s suggested retail price before taxes. This promotion is time limited and certain conditions will apply. See your dealer for complete details. Offer not available on financed purchases and cannot be combined with any other special offers. The final price is at the discretion of the dealer. Prices and Specifications are subject to change without prior notice.

** Includes all necessary materials and fluids to operate correctly, full tank of fuel (more than 90% of capacity) and tool kit (if supplied)

‡ Power / Torque figures measured at the crankshaft.

The specifications mentioned here apply to and have been achieved by production models under standard operating conditions. We intend only to give a fair description of the vehicle and its performance capabilities but these specifications may not apply to every machine supplied for sale. Kawasaki Heavy Industries, Ltd. reserves the right to alter specifications without prior notice. Equipment illustrated and specifications may vary to meet individual markets. Available colours may vary by market.




2018 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE – Totalmotorcycle.com European Specifications/Technical Details
Europe/UK MSRP Price: £ GBP (On The Road inc 20% Vat)


Engine type

Liquid-cooled, 4-stroke In-Line Four


998 cm³

Bore x stroke

76 x 55 mm

Compression ratio


Valve system

DOHC, 16 valves

Fuel system

Fuel injection: Ø 47 mm x 4 with dual injection



Starting System



Forced lubrication, wet sump with oil cooler

Performance & Transmission

Maximum power

147.1 kW {200 PS} / 13,000 rpm

Maximum power with RAM air

154.4 kW {210 PS} / 13,000 rpm

Fuel consumption

5.9 l/100 km

CO2 emission

162 g/km

Maximum torque

113.5 N•m {11.6 kgf•m} / 11,500 rpm

Fuel consumption 72 kW kit

6.5 l/100 km

CO2 emission 72 kW kit

165 g/km


6-speed, cassette

Final drive

Sealed chain

Primary Reduction Ratio

1.681 (79/47)

Gear Ratios 1st

2.600 (39/15)

Gear Ratios 2nd

2.214 (31/14)

Gear Ratios 3rd

1.944 (35/18)

Gear Ratios 4th

1.722 (31/18)

Gear Ratios 5th

1.550 (31/20)

Gear Ratios 6th

1.391 (32/23)


Wet multi-disc, manual

Brakes & Suspension

Brakes, front

Dual semi-floating 310 mm petal discs. Caliper: Dual radial-mount, opposed 4-(aluminium) piston

Brakes, rear

Single 220 mm petal disc. Caliper: Single-bore pin-slide, aluminium piston

Suspension, front

43 mm inverted fork with rebound and compression damping, spring preload adjustability and top-out springs

Suspension, rear

Horizontal Back-link with gas-charged shock and top-out spring. Compression damping: Stepless, dual-range (high/low-speed). Rebound damping: Stepless. Spring preload: Fully adjustable

Frame & Dimensions

Frame type

Twin spar, cast aluminium


107 mm

Wheel travel front

120 mm

Wheel travel rear

114 mm

Tyre, front

120/70ZR17M/C (58W)

Tyre, rear

190/55ZR17M/C (75W)

Steering angle, left / right

27° / 27°

L x W x H

2,090 x 740 x 1,145 mm


1,440 mm

Ground clearance

145 mm

Fuel capacity

17 litres

Seat height

835 mm

Curb mass

206 kg





Manufacturer Specifications and appearance are subject to change without prior notice on Total Motorcycle (TMW).

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