Road test: Daytona 1200Se v Super Blackbird v ZZ-R 1100

Source: Motor Cycle News, july 1998
(Excerpt from the original article)

... Both the Honda and the Kawasaki will break the 170mph barrier thanks to their ram-air system. (Huh? I don't think the Honda has a ram-air system! Jeroen) .
The Honda has always topped the Kawasaki in MCN's back-to-back tests. The ram-air on the Kawasaki takes longer to cut in. On roll-on acceleration in top at 50 and 70mph the Kawasaki is left in the wake of the Honda and the Triumph.
At higher speeds the effects of the pressurised air work in favour of the ZZ-R. Honda seems to have its system sorted. The Blackbird was the fastest in roll-on tests at any speed.


... The Kawasaki is held back by the low footpegs and exhausts. Hard cornering seems to have been left out the reckoning in the design brief.

Big, heavy bikes like these need good brakes to bring them down from their blindingly fast top speeds.
... Kawasaki has done a reasonable job with the ZZ-R, but compared to the Daytona they lack feel and initial bite. Again, the soft front forks reduce feedback.

At speed the Honda and the Kawasaki are really comfortable. You could cruise all the way to the Bol d'Or at 140mph.


Top Speed163mph172mph177mph
Standing 1/4 mile11s @ 127.2mph10.7s @ 130.6mph10.6s @ 134.7mph
Fuel Consumption
Ridden Hard32mpg26mpg32mpg
Range200 miles144 miles190 miles
Rider comfort**************
Pillion comfort************

By: Andy Ibbott