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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Questions for the Australians

Hi.

I have some questions for the Australians submitted in reverse order in honor of your sub-equatorial status.

1. I was at Alice's restaurant here in California (a popular bike hangout) and I was asked by a passerby what kind of bike I had. I paused, stunned for a moment then looked by the seat of my bike to make sure the ZR-7 stickers were still there. They were. I looked at my questioner trying to figure out if he was trying to be funny. He wasn't.
"This is a ZR-7" I said.
My questioner replied, "Oh, a Ninja"

Sigh.....

I stared around the parking lot full of Shadows and V-Stars and Monsters and Softails and Elites ( just joking about that last one) and wished that my bike too had a cool sounding name.
From what I understand, the ZR-7 was and still is marketed in Australia as the "Zephyr". When I told my girlfriend about this she thought that I was making up some kind of name kind of like the GSX folks call their bikes "Gixers".
This is not because my girlfriend doesn't know what a zephyr is. This is because she couldn't imagine someone buying a bike with a name that is so... well... faggy.
I guess that the Australians are a lot more comfortable with their sexuality than us Americans. I just don't have the cajones to be seen in public on something with that moniker attatched in BOLD LETTERS on both sides of the bike.
Of course, with the education system in the U.S. being what it is, 90% of the people could be fooled into thinking that "Zephyr" means "Kickass" in German.

Here is my list of possible bike names on a gayness scale of 1-5 with 5 being the most blatantly swish.
1. Hurricane Such a cool name for a bike it has been taken.
2. Tornado Again, I think someone took this name for another bike.
3. Storm A name taken by a crappy sportscar.
4. Zephyr God, please don't let my friends find out what they call my ride down under.
5. Breeze A name that should be strictly reserved for mopeds.

So do they still call the ZR-7 "Zephyr" in Australia? Is the word written on the bike anywhere?

My second question has to do with how you find out about bike models in Australia. I have a powerfull reason for asking. You see, when a guy in the U.S. wants a bike, he hops on the internet and goes to Kawasaki or Yamaha's site and looks at the newest models as well as those that have not been released yet. This is cool for us except that the selection of bikes SUCKS.
(particularly for touring and models under 600 cc)
If you want something good you invariably have to get it from Japan or Europe which leads me to believe that the selection in these countries is WAY better than what we can get here. So, how do you find out about what is available in your country? Is there a secret Australians only site for Kawasaki? If so, will you divulge this secret to us? Pretty please?
 

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Excellent questions Blue. There are several downunderlings which should be able to shed some light on these most pertinent querries. Did I say querries?

Maybe Kawasaki is test marketing the name Zephyr to go with the 2002 purple ZR-7S. And maybe that's why the passenger seat slopes forward too! Hmmm.

Maybe they're trying to make the ZR-7S as much of an icon as the Ford Zephyr. Nice ride!

Or maybe the Kawasaki marketing department has their head up their *** and isn't paying attention to anything other than their glamor sport bikes and MXers. They probably don't give a rats behind about the ZR-7 because it's so low volume, so they put their pimple faced new-hires right out of school on this project. I don't know, but it stinks that they don't market this most excellent bike better than they do.

And the coolest name for a bike: Interceptor. Cool name and cool bike.

Dumbest sounding name for a class of bike: Supermotards. It must lose something in the translation. The super-retard jokes from the H-D guys and the sportbike riders would be ceaseless. Hey buddy.. do you have to wear superleotards when you ride that thing?!?!

Just rambling....

kelly
 

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Wheelie for Safety
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Hi Blueraja,

I'm sorry I missed you at Alice's. I would have know what kind of bike you have.

Regarding the Australian Kawasaki web site. Its at http://www.kawasaki.com.au/

The ZR-7 and the Zephyr are not the same motorcycle. The Zephyr line consisted of a ZR400, ZR550, ZR750, and ZR1100. These bikes were produced between 1991 and 1999.

You can get more info on the Zephyr at: http://www.parlorcity.com/pkahlert/zephyr/

The ZR-7 was introduced in 2000 and it replaced the Zephyr 750.

Andy
 

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MotoMacGyver
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I like the "Interceptor" as a cool name, but I think one of the most bad-*** names around (at least currently) is the Brutale by MV Agusta. Man, what a... a... well... bad *** bike. Simple as that. And I want one really really really bad.

Emrah
 

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Andy is right about the Zephyr being a different bike to the ZR-7.
The Zephyr was sold in Australia until 1999 when it was replaced by the ZR-7. The Zephyr was available as a 550, 750 and 1100. It is still sold in Japan I believe. The Zephyr 750 used much the same motor as the ZR-7. With the ZR-7 the motor got a few mods such as more oil flow to the cooler, tighter clearances in the valve train and throttle position sensor. (And a coat of black paint)
The Zephyr uses a twin shock rear end and the cool eccentric chain adjuster which all bikes should have.

As far as the name goes I think the name relates to a Zephyr being a breeze - never really thought of it being poofy myself.
The 1100 Zephyr is pure testosterone looking - maybe one day a ZR-11.

Don't know about the other Aussies but I get most of my info about new models from magazines - thats where I first read about the ZR-7. It got great reviews but still doesn't sell well here.

Another bike we get here which I don't think goes to the US is the Suzuki GSX 1400. This is going to be my next bike - it doesn't look quite as stunning as the ZR-7, but that motor pumps out brutal torque from idle to redline.

Best wishes to you all for a safe and happy Christmas.
Cheers
Glenn
 

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OK, here goes ... in random order.

Kelly, I don't mind you writing "querries" but I do object to being referred to as "which". :laugh: :laugh: :laugh:

I honestly can't remember how I stumbled across the ZR-7 ... probably via the Net. But I do know where I got just about all my information ... again the Net. All you have to do is search on something like "zr-7 review" or "zr-7 test" and tons of stuff comes up. BTW, we do all speak English (most of us, anyway), although around 30% of the population of Melbourne and Sydney speaks a language other than English within their homes.

The name "Interceptor" has been taken by a car marque, namely Jensen, as in the "Jensen Interceptor".

The GSX 1400 mentioned by Glenn is briefly reviewed in the Jan 2002 edition of Two Wheels, as one of the contenders for Bike of the Year.

The ZR-7 is probably still supported because it sells so well in Europe - eg. a short while ago I posted some news that said it was the seventh most popular bike in Germany.

Alice's Restaurant is, of course, the song made famous by Arlo Guthrie (have I got that the right way around, ie. the son, not the father?). He also sang another which goes "I don't wanna pickle, just wanna ride on my motorsiccle" etc. This may be one reason why Alice's is so popular with bikers ??

Have a nice Xmas everyone - only one more sleep to go !
 

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A bit of a bird theme going around with bike names at the moment, what with the Honda Blackbird, Cagiva Raptor etc.

I think the greatest pisstake is the Suzuki Hayabusa. Named after a Japanese peregrine falcon which supposedly hits 300km/h in dives, and eats blackbirds for dinner haha. For the Japanese that is very droll
:)

The Zephyrs were a horn looking bike, especially in burgandy.



:)
 

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Dirty Harry.... Moderator
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Forget about bikes for a second....

Years ago, about 15-18 years, I liked to listen to an Aussie band called "Men at Work." Question #1: I happened to read about an Aussie golfer eating a snack on the golf course, a certain sandwich that was referred to in a Men at Work song called a "vegamite sandwich." What is it? and Q#2, what in the world happened to the group known as Men at Work, those guys were awesome!! Tom Scottmac, you should know this better than anyone on the globe!? Or you too, Titomike, AP............
 

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I'd rather know what ever happened to Olivia Newton John. Or why do they call them Koala Bears when they aren't really bears? And why don't you just shoot all them rabbits? And how come Australia never gets in any wars? Do you even have a Navy? Does Outback Steakhouse really serve food like the aborigines eat? Is Paul Hogan still a stud down there? I can't help it... I'm bored.

kelly
 

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Kelly, your'e messing up my questions!! Rent the movies "Grease" and "Crocodile Dundee" and then test drive the Subaru "Outback" and eat at Outback, then ask some thug if it's really a knife?.....box a kangaroo, and yea it's a Bear...quit messing up my post!!! Oh, just kiddin' man....I'm bored too!! Tom :D
 

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The Men at Work performed in the Olympic opening ceremony sing their old favorite. The lead singer went on and won 5 GPs and retired as Mick Doohan. Crocodile Dundee just won the SBK title and called himself Troy Bayliss. Oliver Newton John had a sex change but still riding the sexiest bike in SBK and raced with Aprilia as Troy Corser. Last I heard, Aprilia has switched to Haga for 2002 season.

You have to move with time.
 

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My opinions to Aussie and the ZR-7

Aussie bikes new and old can be viewed at www.bikepoint.com.au

As you all well know different models are sold to different country from my observation Europe has the largest variety of bikes for sale. In Aus we don't have ZR-7S, but it is interesting to note that in Kawasaki New Zealand "News" they are saying that the ZR-7S will soon be imported to that country.

Most major counties including Japan have a Kawasaki web site and it is interesting to see the various models available at these sites. Japan recently upgraded their web site and deleted the some of the Zephrys they had previoulsy displayed.

Using the search engine "google" one can find many links to the ZR-7, another site I sometimes visit at "google" is motorcycle, maintenance

I am digressing

Keep up the good work on the forums and keep upright

Graeme Gould at Byron Bay the most Easterly part of Aus
 

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O mi god ...

Years ago, about 15-18 years, I liked to listen to an Aussie band called "Men at Work." Question #1: I happened to read about an Aussie golfer eating a snack on the golf course, a certain sandwich that was referred to in a Men at Work song called a "vegamite sandwich." What is it? and Q#2, what in the world happened to the group known as Men at Work, those guys were awesome!!
I'd rather know what ever happened to Olivia Newton John. Or why do they call them Koala Bears when they aren't really bears? And why don't you just shoot all them rabbits? And how come Australia never gets in any wars? Do you even have a Navy? Does Outback Steakhouse really serve food like the aborigines eat? Is Paul Hogan still a stud down there?
For anything you ever wanted to know (and quite a bit you didn't) about Vegemite, go to http://www.vegemite.com.au. Many Australian kids grew up eating vegemite sandwiches in their school lunches.

For anything you ever wanted to know about Men at Work, go to http://members.aol.com/babsjdonne/menatwrk/general.htm

For anything you ever wanted to know about Livvy, go to http://www.onlyolivia.com/

We don't call them Koala Bears, you do. They aren't bears. They are marsupials (give birth to live baby which is reared in a pouch ... just like a kangaroo does)

Re Australian participation in wars ... you may have heard of WW1, WW2 (you guys were a little late for that one :)), Vietnam etc.

Re the Navy question, ditto.

What's the Outback Steakhouse? Sounds like the sort of place and Australian would want to avoid.

Paul Hogan was never a stud.
 

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Oops - forgot to say that we don't shoot all the rabbits because there are 5 zillion trillion kajillion of them. Just too many.

In any case, as Titomike (I think) has already pointed out, most (98% at a guess) of Australians do not own a gun of any type. It's just not in the culture. And it is illegal to own any form of automatic weapon. [Is it Nevada where you can have a machine gun in your house if you want to? Crazy stuff].

This is why:

Percent of households with a handgun, 1991 (1)
United States 29%
Switzerland 14
Finland 7
Germany 7
Belgium 6
France 6
Canada 5
Norway 4
Europe 4
Australia 2
Netherlands 2
United Kingdom 1

Handgun murders (1992) (2)

Handgun 1992 Handgun Murder
Country Murders Population Rate (per 100,000)
-----------------------------------------------------------
United States 13,429 254,521,000 5.28
Switzerland 97 6,828,023 1.42
Canada 128 27,351,509 0.47
Sweden 36 8,602,157 0.42
Australia 13 17,576,354 0.07
United Kingdom 33 57,797,514 0.06
Japan 60 124,460,481 0.05

1. Where We Stand, Michael Wolff, Peter Rutten & Albert F. Bayers III and the World Rank Research Team (New York: Bantam Books, 1992), pp. 297,289.

2. Handgun murders: Handgun Control, Inc. Population Figures: July 1992 count for each country as reported by CIA World Factbook, 1992.
 
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