The meanest and fastest Ninja – Kawasaki H2R

In 1972, Kawasaki had launched the high powered two stroke triple, H2. It left no room for competition and was the best buy at the price it was offered. Forty-two years later, its racing avatar H2R is reborn as a Ninja, with a massive power output of 300 horses. Launched at the 2014 Intermot Motorcycle show held in Cologne, Germany the Kawasaki Ninja H2R is the craziest “Kawi” ever. The name of the bike refers to the racing version of the crazy H2 Mach IV.

With the market shifting its focus towards the expanding segment of people with increasing disposable income, the limits are being pushed both at the end of the manufacturers and what they have to offer and the abilities of the buyers to consume. The mass produced commuters have since quite long been losing their touch, and having a strong visual character as well as a larger performance envelope is vital for any motorcycle and manufacturer’s success.

Kawasaki for starters, have grasped this information well. The new Ninja H2R isn’t your average, slow steering, power laden straight line or V. It is powered by a compact engine similar to the one that seen on the supersport bike class and is fed by a supercharger – the engine is stuffed with fuel and air mixture of a much larger unit than itself. A trellis construction chassis, and a body work evolved aerodynamically in a wind tunnel and formed in carbon fibre are the main methods employed of keeping the weight to a minimum.

A centrifugal type supercharger is employed for the purpose. In centrifugal blowers, a high speed rotating disc carries tapered radial vanes on one or both of its faces. As the air enters along the axis, it is flung outward by the vanes and accelerated to match speed. This air enters a surrounding scroll shaped passage in which velocity energy becomes pressure energy. The supercharger’s design was given by Kawasaki Heavy Industries’ Gas and Turbine machinery company.

The design details are simply beautiful. Without the green highlights and Kawasaki labels, and its European origin becomes visually diminished. The more brilliant part of the details include long carbon fibre tubes that draw RAM packed air in the supercharger’s intake and are swept around the body of the bike. Just about as big as the average thousand cc bike, the H2R’s design and build showcase how bikes will look in the near future. Greater power stuffed into smaller packets or at the least typical sizes. Forced induction is probably going to be the future of the motorcycle industry.

The switchgear is quite interesting with technological advancements in the sport bike electronics that Kawasaki has been wiring its bikes with lately. The details only give away so much and possibly Kawasaki are waiting for yet another chance to completely reveal their extent of efforts on this masterpiece.

The H2R draws power from a 998 cc inline four cylinder cradled in the steel trellis frame and churns out the unbelievable 300 bhp that’s taking away the limelight for it from the rest of the contenders which aren’t really there.

The supercharger has been specifically designed for the H2R. It requires extremely tight tolerances since the impeller is required to be smooth and fast at triple-digit speeds. The aerospace division handled the aerodynamics – vital to the bike exceeding 200 miles per hour.

Stable and safe too

The H2R doesn’t have a large crowd centric styling. You love it or you hate it. Although how few or how many would fall in the disappointed list, one can’t say. The styling is completely form driven by function. The many wings and vanes are probably for the direct flow of air for engine intake and cooling along with the generation of downforce and maximization of stability at great speeds. Kawasaki have stuck to the regular sports bike wheelbase instead of the longer one that would otherwise improve upon high-speed stability, but also affect handling. With all the thoughts gone into it, the bike is also sure to have safety aids like traction control, ABS, launch control etc.

There still isn’t any official launch date, pricing or other performance numbers but the H2R is sure to require extra effort both on the part of one’s pocket and riding skills and as can be seen in its very form and structure, is definitely not for the weak, stupid or faint of heart.