ZX12A & B had the same displacement. There really should be a 14R section. Two totally different bikes. I think the 14s just don't want to accept it but the are a distant #2 now.
1352cc vs 1441cc and a lot of other differences.
The prior ZX14 has 1352cc's and has the "14" designation making me believe that if over 50cc's then they designate it's number, so I really think the only thing that held Kawasaki back from calling this amazing new motorcycle a "ZX15R" was 9cc's! *Please keep the comments coming in. *Just to be clear, the ONLY, and I repeat ONLY reason I wouldn't buy the zx14 now is because the NEW ZX14R is so great! I feel it would be worth saving the extra money and worth the extra time and hours at work to get the money for it.*
Please read this information from gizmag.com*before you make up your mind. *The link to the entire article is listed at the end.*
The swept volume has been increased by 89cc from the current model's 1352cc to 1441cc with a 4 mm increase in stroke, giving each of the four cylinders dimensions of 84 x 65 mm. Interestingly, the combustion chambers have been reshaped, and are now surface milled instead of relying on the accuracy of the casting.
The intake ports have also been reshaped to improve air-flow and for the first time in a mass volume motorcycle engine, the inlet tracts are hand polished - this method of extracting the last bit of flow available is the time-honored process of "porting" an engine, though Kawasaki already has the shape it wants, and the porting is designed to remove any minor production blemishes where they will count most.
Even the intake valves are new, being longer and using different materials than the previous model's.
The forged pistons are lighter than the old model, and by virtue of a new oil-jet cooling system that keeps the pistons cooled with a constant spray from underneath, the thickness of the piston has been reduced while the the compression ratio has been boosted from 12.0:1 to 12.3:1. This results in less reciprocating mass and higher combustion efficiency and lower temperatures.
The attention to every detail is astounding. The conrods are re-designed from a new metal with bigger small-ends and the crankshaft main journals are now 2 mm bigger at 40 mm.
The accuracy of valve control has also been increased with a stronger cam chain and the tensioner system has been redesigned, all helping to ensure the engine can run stronger for longer.
The camshafts are all new in both timing and lift and although the fuel and air are still mixed by the same Mikuni DFI, there's now automatic idle adjustment and the mapping has been tweaked to achieve lower emissions. Though 44 mm throttle bodies still supply the air, breathing has been improved by redesigning the air cleaner filter so it not only has 10 percent more surface area for improved cleaning, but 40 percent better airflow, for the improved breathing necessary in producing the world's most powerful motorcycle engine.
Just to complete the process holistically, the exhaust system now begins with all-new tapered header pipes and concludes with larger-volume mufflers with dual catalyzers to ensure emissions are as low as possible.
The cogs in the gearbox have also come in for a different manufacturing process, with different heat- and surface-treatments from the previous model, while the biggest improvement in the transmission area is in the form of a slipper clutch, which will smooth downshifting and help prevent rear wheel lock-ups when the engine is revving hard and you're on the limits of tire adhesion under brakes.
The torque is apparently robust enough to pull away from standstill in second gear and fuel economy is 8 percent better than the current ZX-14.
The rest of the bike is revised and upgraded in every way.
The inverted 43 mm forks and single rear shock have better resistance to bottoming and entirely revised internal settings to enable better roadholding, which has also been improved with new 10-spoke wheels that each reduce unsprung weight by 3.3 pounds (1.5 kg).
Those massive disc brakes may have the same dimensions, but they're made of a more rigid material and the brake pads have also been improved.
Weight is of course the enemy of performance-related cars, boats and motorcycles, and it's interesting to see that the new ZX-14R weighs 265 kg (584.4 pounds), an increase of 8 kg (17.6 lb) over the current ZX-14. Its new weight is almost exactly the same as the 2011 Hyabusa but it has a fair bit more mid-range grunt.
The ZX14R also features KTRC (Kawasaki TRaction Control) which has three settings other than "off" to cater to different conditions and two stage Power Mode selection offers Full Power + Low Power (about 75% of Full). The ABS has also been improved to work better on bumpy roads.
While the 2012 ZX-14R might look kinda similar to the old ZX14, the whole bike is new and comes with a level of attention to internal detail never before bestowed on a production motorcycle.* Kawasaki's 2012 ZX-14R will be the most powerful production motorcycle ever
If this were a Chevrolet forum would you agree "a Corvette is a Corvette is a Corvette" even after it has had so many changes over the years or if a Ford forum, "a Mustang is a Mustang, is a Mustang"? I'm sure they probably have subcategories for the different generations no matter what similarities there are from one generation to another.*
I really think if this new 2012 ZX14R had 9more CC's, we'd (the forum) already have our own ZX14R category. Don't you agree it should at least have it's own subcategory within the Zx14 area AT LEAST?
Thanks to Jack Martin for his article.