Just Got a 2018 N1K to Replace My 2012

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Just Got a 2018 N1K to Replace My 2012

This is a discussion on Just Got a 2018 N1K to Replace My 2012 within the 5th Gen Z1000/Ninja 1000 forums, part of the Kawasaki Z1000, Ninja 1000, Z800, Z750 & Z-750S category; Just got a brand new 2018. It is much smoother it than the 2012. Guess 30,000 miles will take its toll on a bike. Seems ...

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Thread: Just Got a 2018 N1K to Replace My 2012

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    Up-And Comer Pltzr's Avatar
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    Just Got a 2018 N1K to Replace My 2012

    Just got a brand new 2018. It is much smoother it than the 2012. Guess 30,000 miles will take its toll on a bike.
    Seems like there is nothing that is competitive with the Ninja 1000. Test rode FJR, Versys 1000, and BMW R1200RS - they just are not as nimble or quick.
    HilbillyKat likes this.

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    Supreme Being kenors's Avatar
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    I pretty much agree. And looking through mags and on-line, it seems the N1k gets slighted all the time. Local dealers too.

    The only other bike I'd consider is the FJ-09 (now Tracer). I've taken 2 test rides now and it does feel lighter and nimbler than my '14 N1k, has luggage, a decent range, etc. What kept me away was low end and mid-range. Rolling along at highway speeds, twist the throttle on the N1k and things happen. To get the same things to happen on the FJ-09 you have to tap the shifter a time or two when you twist the throttle.

    Anyway, a comparison between your old vs new N1k would be nice to see. You mentioned smoother already and that's my main complaint about my '14, it's kind of buzzy at higher RPM.
    2014 Ninja w/bags, Motowerks lowered pegs, Sargent Seat, Vstream tour screen, Givi XS306 tank bag, WOLO BadBoy, Aerostitch Roadcrafter.

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    Rising Star spectorman's Avatar
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    I'm not in the market again but if I were, the Tracer 900 would be given serious consideration. Power would not be an issue for me and as I get older, I firmly believe in "lighter is better". The amenities- cruise control, hard bags, centerstand, grip heaters, etc- are a huge win in my book too. But I love my '11 N1K; I've got her modded to almost exactly where I always wanted a lightweight ST to be and don't see it leaving the stable anytime soon.

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    Up-And Comer Pltzr's Avatar
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    The weather cooled off so I took the new 2018 out for a ride today. Engine is smoother, almost like a turbine. Maybe Kawasaki is doing a better job in balancing the engine parts. It still revs high (some say it's geared too high, but it makes it more sporty that way) but seems to have more torque. The transmission is amazing; upshifting without using the clutch is much easier than on the 2012 - just preload the shifter a little and let off the gas and it slides right in with no effort. Normally I don't like the stock tires but these grip well and give good road feel. The seat is ok but seems a little longer so you can slide back a little more to adjust your position. It has a temperature bar gauge but is calibrated on the high end (I think it has 5 bars and was showing 4 bars during my ride) so I don't think it will be useful. The display will show cruising range based on how much gas is in the tank, plus you can toggle for your MPG or the outside temperature (down to -4ºF). The gear indicator is a nice feature. It has traction control and a rain power mode and it's easy to select the level you want. The new Bosch six-axis IMU is standard. Measures yaw, pitch, lean angle etc and adjusts the ABS & traction control accordingly. Probably will never need it but nice to have if **** happens and you make a mistake. Overall I am very happy with it, especially since I got it for $9,999.

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    Supreme Being twowheeladdict's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kenors View Post
    To get the same things to happen on the FJ-09 you have to tap the shifter a time or two when you twist the throttle.
    Sounds like someone is getting ready to move over to automatics. J/K.

    Motorcycles and Cars that require shifting to stay in the power band are more engaging and that is what I enjoy about manual transmission vehicles. When I test rode a Mustang V8 GT manual the salesman said the nice thing about the car was that you could pretty much leave it in 5th gear driving a curvy hilly road. I told him that was a negative for me. I guess that is why I have owned a Triumph Spitfire and a Pontiac Solstice instead of a V8 Muscle Car.

    I saw a Tracer 900 the other day and sat on it. It does look better in person than it does in photos but it is another tall adventure styled bike. If I were putting down the miles like I had been over the last 12 years I would definitely consider one. Now that I am going from an average of 25,000 miles a year to maybe 5000 that style of bike just doesn't appeal to me.
    Skill is what keeps you on two wheels.

    Situational awareness combined with skill is what keeps you out of harm's way.

    ATGATT combined with Situational Awareness and Skill means you might live to ride another day when that deer runs into your bike or that drunk blows through that stop sign.

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    Supreme Being twowheeladdict's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pltzr View Post
    Just got a brand new 2018. It is much smoother it than the 2012. Guess 30,000 miles will take its toll on a bike.
    Seems like there is nothing that is competitive with the Ninja 1000. Test rode FJR, Versys 1000, and BMW R1200RS - they just are not as nimble or quick.
    Congrats. 30,000 miles in nothing on a well maintained motorcycle. I found the 2011 Ninja 1000 to be buzzy at a few different RPMs. Glad to hear the '18 is an improvement.
    Skill is what keeps you on two wheels.

    Situational awareness combined with skill is what keeps you out of harm's way.

    ATGATT combined with Situational Awareness and Skill means you might live to ride another day when that deer runs into your bike or that drunk blows through that stop sign.

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    Supreme Being kenors's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by twowheeladdict View Post
    Sounds like someone is getting ready to move over to automatics. J/K.

    Motorcycles and Cars that require shifting to stay in the power band are more engaging and that is what I enjoy about manual transmission vehicles. When I test rode a Mustang V8 GT manual the salesman said the nice thing about the car was that you could pretty much leave it in 5th gear driving a curvy hilly road. I told him that was a negative for me. I guess that is why I have owned a Triumph Spitfire and a Pontiac Solstice instead of a V8 Muscle Car.

    I saw a Tracer 900 the other day and sat on it. It does look better in person than it does in photos but it is another tall adventure styled bike. If I were putting down the miles like I had been over the last 12 years I would definitely consider one. Now that I am going from an average of 25,000 miles a year to maybe 5000 that style of bike just doesn't appeal to me.
    Ya know, for years I rode VFRs and rowed the tranny to stay near redline to keep up with the ZX9's & 10's & GSXR1k's I rode around with. The N1k is SO much easier to go just as fast with a lot less drama and, frankly, I really like it. I guess I am getting lazier in my riding habits as I age. I still like to go fast, I just don't have the energy I use to. Funny thing is, I remember saying the exact same thing about the automatic tranny in a discussion 20 years ago to someone who had to have a literbike for the same reason.

    The Tracer looked a lot better on paper to me than it felt in person. That's what got me out on a test ride in the first place. Compared to the Ninja it just kinda felt "cheap". Less protection, more exposed bits, less "refined" (whatever that means). Being taller is a negative for me as well. The included saddlebags are not large, flimsy and I doubt weatherproof. Not a total negative because the FJR bags will fit the brackets and they are fine. And remember, I'm comparing a box stock bike to my Ninja which I've put ~90k miles on (between the '11 and '14) that I've totally fitted to myself with all the options I want.

    And as TWA said, thanks for the review. Good to hear they've smoothed out the motor. My '14 only has 50k miles on it so I'm halfway to considering another bike.
    2014 Ninja w/bags, Motowerks lowered pegs, Sargent Seat, Vstream tour screen, Givi XS306 tank bag, WOLO BadBoy, Aerostitch Roadcrafter.

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    Supreme Being kenors's Avatar
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    Strange, got a server error when I first posted so I reposted and then there was a duplicate.
    2014 Ninja w/bags, Motowerks lowered pegs, Sargent Seat, Vstream tour screen, Givi XS306 tank bag, WOLO BadBoy, Aerostitch Roadcrafter.

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    Up-And Comer frogger3rddan's Avatar
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    I read somewhere, that the new ones have a little less power than last gen but are, being sold, as having the same. 'Kinda shady, if you ask me.

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    Up-And Comer Pltzr's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=kenors;1161866]Y
    The Tracer looked a lot better on paper to me than it felt in person. That's what got me out on a test ride in the first place. Compared to the Ninja it just kinda felt "cheap". Less protection, more exposed bits, less "refined" (whatever that means). /QUOTE]

    I had the same reaction. I test rode an FJ-09 two years ago and it felt tinny, not sturdy, like it would be falling apart after a couple of years. (Maybe my mistake was test riding the FZ-10 first - it will make any other bike feel 2nd rate). Here is an interesting commentary on the Tracer: https://www.motorcyclistonline.com/p...-tracer-900-gt

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    Up-And Comer Pltzr's Avatar
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    Two thing I forgot to mention in my original review. First the mirrors on the 2018 are a major improvement over the 2012. They provide great visibility for whats behind you. Second, the rectifier is now locate up high under the fairing next to the gas tank - no longer exposed to the dirt & rain thrown up by the rear wheel

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    Up-And Comer Pltzr's Avatar
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    Interesting, my 2018's wheelbase is .2" shorter than the 2012, 56.9" versus 56.7"

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    Up-And Comer Pltzr's Avatar
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    Now I know why the '18 is smoother than the '12. A secondary balancer geared to the crankshaft was added in 2017 to reduce vibration. Also Kawasaki made changes that improved throttle response and torque spread.

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    Up-And Comer Pltzr's Avatar
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    I previously posted about the 2018's wheelbase being .2" shorter than the 2012, 56.9" versus 56.7". Hard to believe but you can feel the difference. My 2018 definitely feels lighter and nimbler than the old 2012.

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    Supreme Being rcannon409's Avatar
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    The fueling is different, and that can change vibration patterns, but that balancer has been there all along. It is a part of the original design, dating back to the 2010 z 1000 that the ninja was based on.
    2012 Ninja 1000 all green - Brembo 330mm rotors - AK20 fork cartridges -Penske shock-slipper -Ivans reflash...Leo Vince slip on and Arrow header

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