1995-2020 Twenty Five Years of the Ninja ZX-6R

POSTED: 14/12/2020

Such was the impact of the first Ninja ZX-6R in 1995 that it contributed to a whole new class of motorcycle, the Supersport 600. Challenging the efforts of other manufacturers in the class, the Ninja ZX-6R was the first aluminium beam frame in its class. Pretty much straight away all other Japanese manufacturers accelerated development of true Supersport 600’s; but the Ninja from Kawasaki, is for many, the definitive mid-weight Supersport machine.

Now 25 years since the ZX-6R first wowed the motorcycle world with its incredible performance and power to weight ratio, here we take an affectionate look at a quarter of a century of innovation, racing success and engineering excellence.

But what was life like pre-6R?
Well – appropriately – Kawasaki were already big players on the mid-weight performance scene so it was natural that this experience would spawn the ZX-6R. First true sports model in this segment for Kawasaki was actually a member of the GPz family, the GPz550 of 1981.

Offering quite stunning performance the Kawasaki advertising of the time told a very accurate story, this was truly a “Red Revolution”. The first bright red air-cooled, four-cylinder GPz550 twin rear shock models made way for Uni-Trak suspended machines and – certainly in terms of four stroke motorcycles – the rule book about cubic capacity and performance was more or less torn up.

Then in 1985 – a full ten years before the first Ninja ZX-6R - the GPz600R appeared. Water-cooled with a 16 valve cylinder head and a perimeter style frame plus16 inch (40cm) front and rear wheels, the stunning GPz was for sure a “line in the sand” and an indication of things to come from Kawasaki.

The experience gained over those intervening years allowed Kawasaki engineers to dream of a logical next step, a true Supersport mid-weight machine with racetrack looks, race track handling and race track performance; and in 1995 the Ninja ZX-6R was unleased onto the world stage.

From more information please contact our team today online here or by phone on 01224 584855

© Copyright 2022 Shirlaws. All rights reserved

You can also see our motorcycles for sale on Used Bikes UK

Shirlaws Limited are authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority under FRN Reference number: 661213. Finance Subject to status. Shirlaws Limited is authorised as a CREDIT BROKER and NOT A LENDER. This means we work with a number of carefully selected credit providers who may be able to offer you finance for your purchase - click here to read our Vehicle Finance Status Disclosure in full.