Kawasaki Ninja H2 Videos Hint at Tech Details

October 17, 2014
Bart Madson
By Bart Madson
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Bashing away at the MotoUSA keyboard for nine years now, Madson lends his scribbling and editorial input on everything from bike reviews to industry analysis and motorcycle racing reports.

UPDATE: Article originally posted on Oct. 9, 2014, with dateline updated when various videos were added to the post.

Having debuted its H2R at Intermot, Kawasaki continues to reveal details of its supercharged Ninja prior to the release of the street version at EICMA in November. Team Green maintains its slow-tease video marketing campaign, with the most recent updates hinting at the technical details powering the 300-horsepower design.

Supercharger Planetary Gear

The first video features planetary gear technology developed by Kawasaki’s aerospace division at work in the H2’s forced induction system. A planetary gear drives the H2’s supercharger impeller. It is driven via chain drive connected to a step-up gear-driven shaft – with the step-up gear running off the crankshaft. In the video, Kawasaki claims the crankshaft, spinning at approximately 14,000 rpm, will increase to 16,000 rpm through the step-up gear drive, and in turn spin the impeller up to 130,000 rpm. While not specified in the video explanation, it appears the step-up drive has two different ratio gears.

Combustion Chamber

The second video titled “The Combustion Chamber” states: “To achieve high power, preventing combustion knock is extremely important. Anti-knock technology found in Kawasaki’s 18-cylinder 7.5 megawatt Green Gas Engine was used in the design of the Ninja H2.”

Engine knock, aka detonation, presents an engineering challenge for forced induction engines because of increased compression and heat generation. Kawasaki gives no further explanation in the video, but invoking development from its gas turbine engine provides some clues. Kawasaki press materials dated back to 2007 states the Green Gas Engine features “an optimized combustion chamber form and individual control of each cylinder to improve anti-knocking performance and cycle efficiency.”

Robot Arms

While there are no major revelations with the next H2 video installment, Kawasaki demonstrates the robotic welding process for the Ninja’s steel trellis frame. (UPDATED Oct. 10, 2014.)

Impeller Fabrication

Kawasaki’s video reveal for the H2 continues with close-up view of the supercharger impeller construction. A CNC machine carved the impeller from billet aluminum, with contours then verified by Coordinate Measuring Machine (CMM).

Electronics Suite

Kawasaki’s latest H2 teaser video reveals some of the electronic controls sourced by the supercharged Ninja. The electronics suite includes some familiar Kawasaki acronyms, with the video listing: KIBS (Kawasaki Intelligent anti-lock Brake System), KTRC (Kawasaki Traction Control), KQS (Kawasaki Quick Shifter), ESD (Electronic Steering Damper), KLCM (Kawasaki Launch Control Mode) and KEBC (Kawasaki Engine Brake Control). The video also provides a close-up of the H2’s dash, which features an analog tach redlining at 14,000 rpm with overrev to 16,000. A right side LCD houses digital speedometer. The LCD also showcases a “Boost” indicator.

Stay tuned for more technical updates on this article page.

Kawasaki Ninja H2 Photo Gallery

Kawasaki bills the Ninja H2R as a closed-course production model  with a street version promised for the EICMA show. The most dramatic pieces of the Kawasaki Ninja H2s carbon fiber bodywork are the wing-like  downward sloping fins flanking the windscreen and mid fairing. Wind tunnel design also played a hand in the carbon fiber cowling upper fairing  which channels air Kawasaki has laid down the forced induction Superbike gauntlet with a staggering 300 hp claim with the supercharged Kawasaki H2R.