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Motorcycle News, Editorials, Product Reviews and Bike Reviews

Next Kawasaki ZX-6R to be 636cc?

Kawasaki has done this previously on more than one occasion . . . producing a 636cc ZX-6R (one version of which we tested here), together with a limited edition 599cc version legal for supersport racing.  We have heard the rumor enough times now that we must report a distinct possibility the new 2013 ZX-6R will be available with this larger displacement.  Along with most revised 2013 models, expect a formal announcement from Kawasaki later this Fall.


  1. starmag says:

    “Who cares” is a reference to sales numbers of supersport 600’s since 2008.

  2. Ken Springhetti says:

    Kawasaki knocked it out of the park with the ZRX, and then the Ninja 1000.
    Sexy, modern power with sensible ergos. I am surprised there is not a 600 version.

    Name it and dress it sexy like a ZX-10R or a ZX-6R, but have low pegs and high bars. Dont detune it, or dumb it down.. Just make it comfortable and price it the same.

    Ergos are the complaint across all marque’s for me. Im 38, I couldn’t ride a supersport bike for more than 20 minutes when I was 19, and I can’t now either. I want a bike that handles and performs at the bleeding edge, and I want to be able to ride it for more than 15 minutes.. Dont make it naked, “tuned for torque”, “A sport tourer” , or otherwise retro. Just make it comfortable

  3. BrainSnap says:

    OMG Redneck heaven on here…..
    I just love the way judgement gets passed out on the manufacturers for trying to manufacture product to meet consumer demand.
    Pity thats not what the story is about…
    I think you lot need to find a new sandpit to play in… or get a job !!!

    PS The Z750 has been available in Australia for many years….. cos it sells. LMAO

    • Hefner says:

      Yeah, it sells… But it is a completely neutered engine up top, and will get smoked by any 600 from the past 10 years. I think the point of this bike is something a little more than the current 600’s, but not quite so much as the 1000’s. The Z750 is not a bad bike, it’s just not playing the same game.

  4. starmag says:

    Who cares? well, except maybe 20 yr olds who cant get a loan for one. Here’s a rad idea, how about a few beautiful, ergonomically unpunishing roadsters with modern wheels and brakes (for example the Bonneville SE)to sell to the 40 yr old +’s that actually can still buy something.

    • Hefner says:

      The simple fact that you mention a Triumph Bonneville means this bike isn’t meant for you. Well… That and the fact that you opened your comment with “Who Cares”.

  5. Charlie says:

    Maybe it will be a naked bike to compete with the Triumph Street Triple?

  6. todd says:

    if it’s power they’re after, why not just make it a 1000? Oh wait, they already have one of those. From what I understand, most people buy the 600’s because they are less expensive (and more approachable insurance rates) than the 1000, look “cooler” than a KLR, and implies they aren’t a beginner – unlike the 250R that also fills all those requirements. More experienced riders go for the 650R.

    Save yourself the effort, Kawasaki, keep it a 600 and get to work on the other gaps in your lineup.

  7. Vrooom says:

    I’m with everyone else here, bold as that is. Both BMW and Triumph have had success with 800’s, and Suzuki is still selling the GSXR-750. It’s an ideal displacement, Kawasaki should land in this range with a model and keep one that complies with supersport rules.

    • blackcayman says:

      yep / +1

    • Norm G. says:

      re: “and Suzuki is still selling the GSXR-750.”

      you mean MANUFACTURING the 750 as a spin-off of tooling already in use for the 600 and the 1000. you’ve forgotten the devaluing mentality the modern day “fan-sumer” has towards the japanese. BMW, Triumph, etc are exempt. this mentality is a deal-breaker for the foreseeable future. remember, when you see nothing meaningful happening with the manufacturers, understand it all comes full circle back to piss poor consumer behavior.

  8. blackcayman says:

    why don’t they just make a 750??? It seems to be a great seller for Suzuki all these years. I happen to own a sweet low miles 2008 GSX R750 which I take to the track and short hops through the canyons…its an awesome machine! I am too old to ride it very far or very long…

    • Norm G. says:

      re: “why don’t they just make a 750??? It seems to be a great seller for Suzuki all these years.”

      because it won’t sell. truth is for the money most seem to be enamored with skipping over even the ZX10 and just buying the ZX14 so they don’t have to worry about peer pressure and “bike envy”. there’s a reason they have ricky hocking the big zed.

      • Hefner says:

        I would argue that anyone who considers a ZX-14 is not looking for the same category bike as someone looking at a 600/750. Yes, someone looking at a 1000 may go for a ZX-14 instead, because the straight-line crowd pays attention to the 1000’s. They’re fast. They don’t care that they handle well. The twisty crowd pays attention to the 1000’s because they handle AND they’re fast, so you may get someone who steps up from a 600/750 to a 1000. But not from a 600/750 to a ZX-14.

    • Hefner says:

      I’ll tell you why: Daytona, 2003 superstock.

      I can’t find any video of it, but Kawasaki has proven they can do the business with a 636.

      Well… That and they can simply do a 2mm overbore on their 599cc engine and get 636 without having to develop a new bike.

  9. Nick says:


  10. why not go the whole hog and bring back the 750 class?

    • blackcayman says:

      because Norm says everyone wants a ZX14…. Uhh NO. My guess is Norm doesn’t ride a sportbike. Even the 1000s aren’t as much fun for most track-day riders, as they are more work on the track. A ZX14 doesn’t belong on a road course, but you’ll see them at the drag strip. Suzuki has proven there is a market for a 750cc sportbike; with the weight of a middle class sportbike (6 pounds)and more power, its a natural choice for many track-day riders.

      • Norm G. says:

        re: “because Norm says everyone wants a ZX14”

        not me, just kawasaki and where they are putting their advertising dollars. hey, be sure to let me know when that television spot for the 636 arrives… okay…?

        • blackcayman says:

          that’s overly simplistic to imply that their advertising dollars are not going to be directed to a middle class sport bike and so a 750 wouldn’t sell – No one is doing TV advertising on Middleweights. They are tooting their horn on the big 14 because they finally bested the Mighty Hayabusa and have the new 800 lb gorilla. Cheers to them. Too bad it looks like a cartoon.

          • Norm G. says:

            re: “that’s overly simplistic”

            but not inaccurate, as evidenced by the zx14 banner ad (being shown to my ip address anyway) at the top of this very website…!!!

            re: “Too bad it looks like a cartoon.”

            cartoons, video games, angry birds, transformers, temple run… where you been, that’s all the rage with millenials. 🙂

      • Norm G. says:

        re: “Suzuki has proven there is a market for a 750cc sportbike”

        no suzuki has proven they can sustain an iconic model in their line-up by A. being the only player, and by B. being smart about their manufacturing. you’re confusing what is an abberation or EXCEPTION to the rule… for rule. no worries, it happens.

        • blackcayman says:

          True that the GSX R750 is iconic… Right on Right on – It’s more fun than a 600 and lighter and more nimble than the 1000, a great choice for a middle weight rider who doesn’t want to race 600s and likes a little more Zip (who doesn’t). The other Jap brands could play in this space – let’s hope the economy and the industry get back to glory days and then maybe we’ll see.

          • Dave says:

            Kawasaki promotes the ZX-14 for the same reason Chevy promotes the Corvette, to promote brand image. Neither makes meaningful money on those two models but their presence at the top of the market makes people feel a little better about buying their more accessible models.

            Kawi and everyone else sell many more 600’s than bigger bikes so there’s no need to advertise them heavily, just make sure they’re competitive in the magazine tests. My guess is Kawi is seeing all the success the Triumph 675 and Duc 848 have had despite nearly no race presence until this year, though they may be missing the fact that those are superior bikes in every way and the extra cc’s aren’t the whole difference (esp. in the case of the 675). All 600’s would be better to ride if they’d stop chasing peak hp and give them broader torque curves (which the 675, 848 and 750 have).

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