Ninja 1000 Demo Ride Review
Yesterday I had the opportunity to ride the Ninja 1000 at Kawasaki's Ticket to Ride event. It was well worth the time to schedule a demo. I try to avoid riding anything that I think I'll like and don't exactly "need" to buy at the time. This time I violated my own rule and may regret it.
The demo ride was an escorted group ride for about 30 minutes through various industrial areas and on the highway. When I first started up the Ninja 1000, I was surprised by the extremely low vibrations. The engine sounds so smooth and ready when revs are added. The rider position was pretty much perfect for me. Slightly sporty and forward, but upright enough that very little pressure was transferred to my forearms. The stock seat was nice and firm and most importantly flat without a tendency to slide the rider forward.
The biggest immediate impression was how all-around smooth the bike is. Very low vibrations. The mirrors are rock steady all all RMPs. Smooth shifting and easy to clutch. The power delivery is really perfect for the street. In sixth gear, a twist of the throttle would send it rocketing. I hit 96 mph indicated and I'm sure there was plenty more available.
The fairing and stock windscreen are really well designed to reduce noise and buffeting. The windscreen on the demo I rode was adjusted all the way lowered and I still had no complaints. Even at 80 mph on the highway I was surprised at how smooth and quiet the airflow is around the motorcycle.
Coming from the Versys, the lower center of gravity on the Ninja 1000 was a nice change as well. I'm sure it was all in my head, but I felt I could be more aggressive cornering. The added weight wasn't noticeable at all.
In all, the ride left a huge smile on my face. I wish I could have had a couple of days with it. Of course the list price of the Ninja 1000 is double what I paid for my 09 Versys. It did help me decide to set up my Versys as an adventure orientated super-KLR and someday down the road add a Ninja 1000 or similar as more of a performance sport tourer.
Last edited by WV76X; 05-22-2011 at 03:05 PM.