If you look at the Kawasaki Z1000 you cannot wonder which is more important, form or function? Style or substance? Do you want things to look good first, or do you want the very best – after some time looking at the Kawasaki Z1000 you find that the Z1000 is near perfect in looks and functionality.
Modern motorcycles generally strike a good balance between form and function. There are exceptions – some Italian motorcycles are not exactly following the path of form and functionality. The Japanese tend to favor function – Suzuki's Hayabusa is for some a hideous looking motorcycle, but once you sampled its performance potential you didn't really care how it looks.
Kawasaki's generally look good, and the 2011 Kawasaki Z1000 is not exception. And ignoring the current in Thailand restricted ZX-10R you're generally proud to be the owner of a Kawasaki motorcycle. And the Kawasaki Z1000 is a beauty. A big, beefy engine laid out on display, with an audacious set of silencers out on the both sides, topped with a minimalist set of bodywork. In Kawasaki lime green, there isn't much to beat it in a motorcycle beauty contest. The Kawasaki Z1000, with its four-stroke, liquid-cooled, DOHC, four valves per cylinder, inline-four, 1043cc engine produces a claimed 136 real horsepower at 9,600rpm and 110Nm torque at 7,800rpm which is probably more than enough for the roads in Thailand.
Kawasaki uses for the 2011 Kawasaki Z1000 a new aluminum twin-tube frame type, which is actually less stiff than the old low-tech steel tube backbone type frame, Kawasaki claims that the new aluminum frame improves feedback. The neat looking aluminum swingarm look great but sadly is mostly hidden behind the huge silencers.
For the suspension of the 2011 Z1000, Kawasaki went for a 41mm inverted fork with stepless compression and rebound damping and spring preload adjustability at the, and for the rear horizontal back-link, gas-charged mono-shock, with stepless rebound damping and spring preload adjustability. Kawasaki claims this combines the comfortable feel of long-travel suspension, with the control need for sporty riding.
It's clear that the 2011 Kawasaki Z1000 appeal lies in its rawness. It's a motorcycle that will always give you the impression it's aline and kicking, and will always need to be grabbed by the scruff of the neck to get the best out of it. Not forget the Kawasaki Z1000 isn't a sportsbike at all – it's nakedbike with a sporty attitude.