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Ninja ZX-6R Homologated for AMA Pro Racing

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Kawasaki is excited to announce that the new Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R has been homologated and is eligible for AMA Pro Road Racing for the 2013 season. The 636cc machine sits on the World SuperSport winning chassis fitted with new Separate Function Fork – Big Piston (SFF-BP) suspension, a 700-gram lighter aluminum slipper clutch, new Nissin Radial-Mount Monobloc calipers, and Kawasaki Traction Control (KTRC) for 2013.

“Kawasaki has a strong racing heritage,” said Racing Senior Manager Reid Nordin. “Our Ninja brand is synonymous with success on the track. When we brought back the 636cc engine we knew there would be interest in racing and we have taken the steps necessary to have the new Ninja ZX-6R on the track and out front in 2013.”

The ZX-6R will be eligible in the Daytona SportBike and SuperSport classes for the 2013 AMA Pro Road Racing series and can also be raced in several dozen different classes of the WERA, CCS, AFM, MRA, CVMA, CMRA and UtahSBA championships. In other words, the 636cc Ninja ZX-6R is the perfect choice for everything from recreational trackday rides and amateur club racing to pursuit of a national championship. AMA Pro Road Racing will kick off at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Fla., on March 14, 2013.

Visit ninja6r.kawasaki.com for more information on the 2013 ZX-6R.

RELATED CONTENT: Read MotoUSA's first ride impressions of the 636cc Ninja in the 2013 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R Review.


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bradvanhorn   March 7, 2013 02:21 PM
Hey AnthonyD, yeah I was talking about Ron. Perhaps ironically, Ron talked me into a 2009 ZX-6R for track day riding. He's been successful at converting a number of us to Kawis lately :)

I remain convinced the Kawi could be a contender if it had support such as the World-level teams are getting. Unfortunately, the factory is in hiding and teams with potential, such as Attack Performance, are focusing their efforts elsewhere.

I'm not sure what support, if any, Honda is giving this year but they seem a bit more visible than in the past couple years. Perhaps if Honda can make a good showing then maybe Kawi will gain interest in returning. It would be great to see both back on the grid in force.
SlowerThanU   March 7, 2013 12:01 PM
Looks like the Kawi will have to carry an additional 20lbs vs. the other 599cc inline fours. The problem is that there is no perfect formula. Yes, the new ZX-6R has an additional 37cc's but because it was achieved with stroke it gained almost no HP up top compared to last years 599cc model. Although I think 20lbs is a little much in the end it won't make a damn bit of difference with respect to attendance at the events.
AnthonyD   March 7, 2013 11:55 AM
Maybe someone from MCUSA will explain to us how the 636 actually got approved. Are there rules for this bike? Will there be restriction, rev limit, higher weight min?
cggunnersmate   March 7, 2013 11:05 AM
True displacement alone won't mean wins but what it will mean is more power. For more power you generally need either more displacement or more RPMs or both. That's why twins are allowed more displacement. Since they have two big pistons compared to an I-4's smaller pistons, they generally have lower RPM thresholds due to the greater reciprocal mass (though they often have air restictors and/or higher minumum weight, though there are no such restrictions on the 1199 in SBK this year, to start at least). This would be why they allow the I-3's a displacement advantage though it's not as big as the twins because they have one more cyclinder, so each piston has lower mass than a twins but greater than an I-4.

The 636 is different. It has 4 pistons still, so it's RPM threshold will be as close as makes no difference to the 600s. So if they allow an equal amount of engine mods as the 600s, the 636 would have a distinct HP advantage yet still handle as well as the 600's. So performance mods being EQUAL, the Kawi would have a noticeable advantage.

Hence they need either a higher minimum weight and/or a way to restrict power (air restrictor or few allowed mods) in order to keep the power to weight ratio equal to the rest of the field.

And yes, generally the more well funded/supported a team is the better they do though a skilled privateer can still do well if their skill is high enough and they can afford enough performance mods to be at least semi competitive.

Similar to the Beemer and its higher stock HP, the 636 may be attractive to privateers as they would need to do less to get competitive HP compared to other bikes.
AnthonyD   March 7, 2013 09:50 AM
@Bradvanhorn: You talking about Ron Rink? @CGGNNERSMATE: Kawi still doesn't have a factory racing effort in AMA. The only factory racing effort I see is Yamaha in Sport Bike. This is the first time a bigger team will be running a Honda in a long time (Team Hammer.) Displacement doesn't always mean wins, you need the talent and money to get there. Look at Jake Zemke. All the talent, all the displacement, not enough money. Look at Chris Clark, all the money and a factory ride, not enough talent.
cggunnersmate   March 7, 2013 08:05 AM
Yes, though I don't necessarily agree with them homologating a "cheater" bike as it were, there SHOULD be rules to maintain parity. That's supposedly what happened to the Buells and Aprilias in the DSB class. Using when and other restrictions to maintain similar power to weight ratios across all bikes. Then it SHOULD come down to the power delivery and handling charactertics of the bike and most of all, rider skill to make the difference. So some tracks the Buells were noticeably stronger, others less so. Though I still think the Buells and Apes had no business in that class but whatever. Moot now.

I'd imagine the 636 will either have a higher minimum weight and/or air restrictors similar to what they made the Ducatis run in other series. There should also be a clause that if any bike shows too distinct a perfomance advantage the rules will be adjusted to maintain parity. Though this is just a bandaid if the bike gets an early points lead then just needs to maintain.

Hopefully the Kawi won't be too much of an overdog, but it will be the newest of the Jap bikes and one of the newest on the grid. With only 2013 Daytona 675's and MV F3's (if any) as new as the Kawi. The rest of the Japanese 600's are still pretty stagnant development wise, with minor tweaks at best.
bradvanhorn   March 7, 2013 07:08 AM
While this is good news for Kawi fans, it ultimately is something of an empty gesture in my opinion. Few, if any, Kawasakis remain in the AMA Sportbike and Supersport paddock. Our local AMA Pro has been a Kawi (600) guy for many many years, and even he was talking of moving to an R6 this year (curiously he stepped up to a ZX10R instead). He's said this a number of times, the overall level of racing support for the Kawis simply is too low to genuinely be competitive when compared to the team efforts backing the Yamahas and Suzukis. Clearly the Kawis have the potential, as evidenced by their recent World Superbike and Supersport success, but it seems yet to be truly exploited here in the U.S.
AnthonyD   March 7, 2013 06:36 AM
Its all about weight guys. There is an 848 twin, a 675 triple, now 636 and 600 inline fours. What people forget is that there is a min weight with all of these motorcycles as well. The 636 has a little more displacement than the R6 and the GSXR but I bet it has a higher minimum weight in the rulebook as well.
natesland   March 7, 2013 04:16 AM
van12   March 6, 2013 10:26 PM
That seems reasonable. Bring back the 1125!