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A Trained Ear Can Tell Us A Lot About Kawasaki’s Ninja H2 – Have a Listen


The video below (which we posted earlier, and nobody paid attention) is number 2 in a series of teasers by Kawasaki for the Ninja H2 which will be unveiled at Intermot. We wrote about this yesterday. If you can’t tell the difference between Mozart and Weird Al Yankovic, don’t bother … But if you have been listening to internal combustion engines, including those with forced induction, and have a discerning ear, tell us what this sounds like? By the way, we are not so sure this isn’t a large displacement engine (a 600 would rev higher, wouldn’t it?). Sounds rather deep and throaty.


  1. Lenz says:

    Forced induction for smaller capacity / lighter bikes makes perfect sense to me. As to the relative merits of supercharging Vs turbocharging I can only suggest they each have their place. However the feasibility of utilising both forms of forced induction on a minimal format / weight sensitive platform such as a motorcycle is unlikely. The KAD32 Volvo diesel on my boat works well with both but for a bike, supercharging is the desirable tool for the job with useful boost earlier with no lag.

    The supplied audio file of the engine suggests a dyno run with a 4 cylinder format – I couldn’t hear any wastegate operation during gear changes. I honestly hope Kawasaki don’t oversell this developing promotion – the big tease cuts both ways if the finale turns out to be nothing special just dressed up in smoke and mirrors.

  2. Norm G. says:

    here’s a question lads, do you think this kit will be naked…? or tupperwared…? with the recent trend, I was assuming naked, but I just read some ironic news (out the UK of all places) and they’re anticipating fully faired. the hell you say…?

    naked in the states, faired in Europe…? the world is upside down.

  3. Howard says:

    It’s an air shifter. You only hear it upon gear shifts and it stays on as they are slamming down gears at the end.

  4. PN says:

    I suspect it’s a quick-shifter, not an automatic. Could this actually be a two-stroke? There has been a lot of research in cars, motorcycles, and powersports in the last 5-7 years.

  5. Norman Whiteside says:

    The legendary H2 is a triple 750cc naked with an attitude..This surely has slipper clutch..The supercharged 4 cyl superbike is mostly the ZX series

  6. Rich Downer says:

    750cc, cross plane crank, triple, grabber/slipper clutch……..

  7. YZEtc says:

    1,500cc in-line 4 with a supercharger.

  8. pat depp says:

    4 cyl, electric turbo

  9. J Young says:

    I think the sound on this video is irrelevant, as undoubtedly, the dustbin exhaust the bike will come with, will be promptly removed and replaced with some after market exhaust, being fitted.

  10. Artem says:

    it’not an R1. I mean normal 1000. It’s a beast in sound.

  11. Norm G. says:

    the power of this graphic compels me to post a link to Buffalo Springfield. dunno why, but it seems to fit the mood. there’s something happening here, what it is ain’t exactly clear, so stop children, what’s that sound…?

  12. Jam says:

    The chirping is the tyre fighting for grip. Seriously.

  13. Klaus says:

    Here’s another question: what do your ears tell you where the redline is at?

    To me it sounds like it’s revving to the moon!

    15,000+ rpm?

    • Dave says:

      Doesn’t sound anything close to that to me. My initial thought was that it sounded like an old CB750 or KZ with a chirp added.

      • Klaus says:

        My bike revvs to 9,000 rpm – this bike sounds like it’s revving almost twice as high.

        • Dave says:

          Mine rev to 9.5 & 10.5k (both twins) but I’ve ridden several I-4’s that all sound much higher near of the top of the rev range to me. Could be that I’m listening through laptop speakers..

  14. Steemin says:

    500cc 4. Cyl 4 stroke turbo charged

  15. azi says:

    The ’80s rang and wanted their denim jacket back

  16. Mitch Paj says:

    Ah for F#$k sake (quoting a line from the comedy series Little Britain) Manufacturers are often quoted as being “boring” and “copy cat” of other brands. So a manufacturer has the balls to build something like a new version of a (possibly) supercharged bike and they are wankers for doing so….. Wake up people and stop writing blogs to merely fill your life with some sort of meaning….

  17. Gronde says:

    Supercharging/turbocharging has been around since before WWII. What a job marketing has before it to try and convince us how creative they are by putting a charged engine into a bike. Do you really want the expense, complication, heat issues and servicing nightmares that this type of machine brings? My guess is if you need a bike like this you’re compensating for ah, other “limitations”.

    • DaveA says:

      Please give us some details about all of these horrific problems on a bike that nobody has ever seen or ridden. My guess is that for you to post a reply like this you’re compensating for ah, having nothing interesting to say.

      • Home Skillet says:

        The 2015 Volvos have a 4 cylinder super charged AND turbo charged 2.0L engine.
        It’s putting out 305hp.

        • Provologna says:

          Very cool. I presume this is further evolution of the twin turbo theme. Compared to one larger turbo, twin smaller turbos provide quicker spool-up at low-mid RPM with similar high RPM power.

          Possibly super and turbo charging provides absolutely highest quality and magnitude of power throughout the rev range from just off idle to beyond redline. By “quality” think absolutely no turbo lag. Your Volvo specs confirm this. 152.5 hp/liter was previously reserved for only the most highly tuned performance oriented cages such as Mitsubishi Evo and Porsche Turbo.

          Very interested to read about this motor.

          • Norm G. says:

            Re: “Very cool. I presume this is further evolution of the twin turbo theme.”

            It’s known as compound charging or compounding. It’s been done in diesel world for some time. I think Caterpillar were the first with their C series…?

            now that school is back in for the “yoots”, well ya know all those 40+ passenger, big yellow school buses you see gettin in your way and slowing up your morning and afternoon commutes…?

            Well if its sporting an International badge, and its like 2011 or newer, it HAS a straight 6 (the DT) charged by dual compound turbos (primary blows into a secondary).

            it’s as much for emissions as it is performance (their single turbo V8 is actually faster, the V8’s the same engine Ford one rebadged as Powerstroke btw), but unbeknownst, your kids ride to school in HOTROD.

          • Tom K. says:

            Detroit Diesel manufactured a very successful two-stroke diesel that was both supercharged and turbocharged, all the way into the 1990’s. I never worked on one, but remember their having a very unique sound (say…ya think?….nah).
            Anyhoo, I remember a guy telling me that in a “no start” situation, to make sure the supercharger belt was intact, I guess the belt would break on shutdown and the engine would not start without the supercharger (although it would run without it after starting due to having the turbo being able to make it breathe – unlike gasoline two-strokes, it used mechanical valves). Lots of different stuff has been tried over the years, we’ll see if Big K’s latest iteration will earn a footnote in the engine history books (or if not, in the marketing history books).

          • Norm G. says:

            re: “Detroit Diesel manufactured a very successful two-stroke diesel that was both supercharged and turbocharged, all the way into the 1990′s”

            ah that’s right. series 92. there’s some supercharged (only) ones that run regularly not too far away. actually more people than not know that sound, they just don’t realise what it is.

    • Norm G. says:

      re: “Supercharging/turbocharging has been around since before WWII.”

      let’s focus on this for a minute.

      re: “Do you really want the expense, complication, heat issues and servicing nightmares that this type of machine brings?”

      right then, since we just celebrated the 70 anniversary of D-Day, is their any chance that industry has learned a thing or 2 about forced induction in that amount of time…? any chance at all…?

    • Tom Shields says:

      My SeaDoo boat has a 1500 cc Rotax 3-cylinder 4-stroke with an integrated, intercooled supercharger that is good for 255 HP. It’s reliable and heat is not an issue. It’s compensating for “not having a great hole shot with a less powerful engine.” 🙂

      • Klaus says:

        How does it sound? Anything like the bike in the video?

        • Tom Shields says:

          No, nothing like it. A triple has a really raspy sound. My other jetski (an older Kawasaki) is a 3-cylinder 2-stroke carbureted engine and it has the same characteristic triple raspiness.

          Neither of them sound anything like the sound clip above.

  18. rapier says:

    It sounds fast. It doesn’t sound particularly affordable? With the ZX14 and the 10R I’m thinking why another stupid fast bike? The company doesn’t need it and I’d guess the total sales of those don’t add up to a lot.

    If it’s a system/platform that can be adopted to hyperbike, standard and lightweight touring maybe it makes sense.

    Hat’s off to the tuning fork guys for striving to make more affordable real world bikes.

    • Norm G. says:

      re: “It doesn’t sound particularly affordable?”

      well not that it should be…? the burden is ALWAYS on us to exercise discipline and save for the things we want REGARDLESS of what they are, but I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised.

      good news, this is a very economical (dare I say cheap) approach to supercharging. the brilliance is in the fact that it’s even MORE economical if you’re already an engine manufacturer (read Big K, YAHHTZEE!) and one of your boffins DELIBERATELY decides to integrate it in to kit you already build (DOUBLE YAHTZEE!).

      once the turbine and it’s associated plumbing are done away (as is the case here) the only complex thing left is the compressor wheel, and even that’s not that complex here in “future year” 2014. the volute, the BOV, the shaft drive, the bearing, the oiling system, possible intercooler, any gears etc, are all things that could be handled by a SINGLE engineer if they were so inclined (499 need not apply).

      my call…?

      this could be done by a consortium like K-Heavy, and it wouldn’t cost YOU (John Q. “Fansumer”) any more than coming off the dime for say, the ABS version of a bike…? versus it’s non ABS counterpart.

      just the same, SYP (stack your pennies). do that…? and you’re covered either way.

      Q: I’m thinking why another stupid fast bike?

      A: so various marketing and sales departments can write ad copy that brags “We Have The Most Stupid Fast Under One Roof”.

  19. Don Fraser says:

    Chrysler developed a supercharged 2-stroke a couple decades back, wonder if that is what we are hearing. Would have to be a triple, maybe 750 cc or why tack on the H2?

  20. Provologna says:

    Sounds like Kawasaki’s marketing division is a lot better than Ducati with their lame Scrambler tease website at Facebook.

  21. Home Skillet says:

    Sounds like the hamsters spooling up their ferris wheel.

  22. Butch says:

    Supercharged triple.

    Should sell like prophylactics at a whore house . . . . . . . .

  23. ABQ says:

    Sounds electric with a shifter, or a rotary.

  24. t says:

    I’m going to go against the “Norm” – 750 or less.

  25. carl says:

    Another bike nobody will buy not because we wouldn’t like to but only ones who can afford the insurance are “old”. Biking is dying a slow death around here with very few young taking up riding because of insane insurance prices under 25.

    • Norm G. says:

      re: “Biking is dying a slow death around here with very few young taking up riding”

      that’s not a problem, that’s an OPPORTUNITY. (a lil’ chestnut a high ranking individual once hit ME over the head with)

      an opportunity for what…?

      an opportunity for YOU to pass on your love of riding to the next generation. therein, you mentor and educate “these minds filled with mush” on what constitute responsible behaviour. responsible behaviour not just on a motorcycle…? but also OFF.

      if not now, when…? if not you, WHO…?

      it’s everybody’s burden regardless of whether we choose to accept it.

      • carl says:

        Other than offroad it will be years before my kids will ride on the street. I’m a 3rd generation family rider but when they want $6-$8000 to insure my 20yr old on gsxr600 its called simple economics. Maybe where you live insurance is more rider friendly.

        • Jeremy in TX says:

          I think what they are saying is that they DON’T want to insure your 20-yo on a GSXR600. 🙂

          That is a crazy amount of money.

          • Norm G. says:

            re: “I think what they are saying is that they DON’T want to insure your 20-yo on a GSXR600.”

            and there it is. Jay you have just been promoted in rank to #2. I shall call you…

            #2. (dr. evil voice)

            now here, put on this eye patch, this and a few other perks come with the promotion.

  26. Slob says:

    To my ears it sounds like could even be a triple, but that might just be the super/turbo charger…

  27. RRocket says:

    Definitely sounds like a blow off valve…

  28. J Wilson says:

    Now I’ve got it: It sounds like my insurance agent thinking of how he’s going to quote me a rate on this earthbound cruise missile with a straight face . . . .

  29. Michael H says:

    My trained ears hear subtle changes as air flows over and around a beak. The air is travelling southeast to northwest, and the relative humidity level is 58%. It’s the middle of the afternoon, in early June. At :35, I hear a nightingale sing.

  30. Jim says:

    Let Kevin Cameron listen to it. He’ll tell us what it is.

  31. -D says:

    That is a middleweight 4 cyl turbo. End of discussion.

  32. Don says:

    Don’t they already make a 1500cc supercharged/intercooled in-line 4cyl. jet ski that makes 310hp? Why don’t they just stick that engine in a bike and drop the current 1400? My Tuono would be history in a heartbeat.

  33. jim says:

    At the 4, 5, 6 second mark you can hear something winding up, especially when the RPM’s dip momentarily. How about hybrid electric?

  34. david says:

    Considering that the big deal about this engine is the supercharger, why would the teaser sound be related to anything else?

  35. Kim says:

    Shifting sounds similar to the paddle shifters in indy cars,they make the same clicking sound .

  36. Tank says:

    Sounds expensive.

  37. Roberto says:

    Sounds like either a speedshifter or a sequential manual transmission is being used. I definitely hear something that sounds like a waste gate, possibly from a supercharger. The downshifts sound like they are controlled by a combination of a slipper clutch and electronics. They definitely have me sitting on the edge of my seat.

  38. scott from NY says:

    Speculate all you’d like, given Kawasaki’s propensity for celebrating their past, the answer is in the name: a 750 triple, guaranteed.

  39. Mike says:

    It’s a supercharged triple of unknown displacement.

    • Dave says:

      The word “triple” does not appear anywhere on that page, 4 spark plug caps do appear in the CAD drawing.

  40. Ed says:

    If it’s a wastegate, why do we only hear the chirps on the 3-6 shifts and not on the 1-2 or 2-3 shifts. Granted, the 1-2 shift is neither full throttle or high rpm, but the 2-3 shift is definitely wound out at full speed, and if it’s a blowoff valve then you would get it for that. Way too mysterious, Kawasaki, way to keep me in my seat…

  41. Tim says:

    There is a distinct sound of a blow off valve that’s associated with some type of forced induction. As for what displacement that’s possible… My guess is that it’s a larger bore design due to the deeper sound associated with a liter bike & not the whine of a six hunn-ed… Either way, I’m pretty excited about factory forced induction!!!

  42. Jeremy in TX says:

    I think it is a super-charged engine around 1000cc’s.

    To form that opinion, I used my keen sense of inference and deduction to decode Kawasaki’s announcement a year ago when they stated were developing a super-charged engine around 1000cc’s. Combine that cryptic message with the fact that they already build a large super-charged I4, and it is hard to believe it will be anything else. A lightweight 600cc? When faced with the choice between “less filling” and “tastes great”, Kawasaki always goes with “tastes great.” I think it will be big and fast rather than light and nimble.

    Anyone getting giddy for a 2-stroke has clearly breathed in too much oil smoke as a youngster.

  43. JasonB says:

    I come here just for the comments and MD’s readers never disappoint.

  44. Provologna says:

    This is generally a great website. Even Joe Montana lost a few Championship games. This is friendly criticism from a musician and a person with moderately well trained ear for music, audio, and recording technology.

    The task of describing a motorcycle engine by listening to an audio track requires someone who knows internal combustion engines and knows how cylinder quantity, cylinder layout, firing sequence, 4 vs. 2 stroke, and atmospheric vs. forced induction affect the sound of that engine. Ditto the aural differences between transmission types. Ditto the aural differences between motorcycles recorded on a dyno vs. the vehicle being ridden as it was intended in normal use.

    A person can meet all the above criteria and know nothing of the musical differences between Mozart and Wierd Al.

    (This “test” if one may call it that, is particularly difficult because there’s no recording of a known quantity to compare to the unknown recording. For instance, they could play back a recording of their 1000cc open class race replica, then the unknown bike with exact same recording parameters…oh well, certainly the marketing department had no scientific goals and desire only to market this bike which is either very cool or extremely over sold or both.)

    • Norm G. says:

      re: “The task of describing a motorcycle engine by listening to an audio track requires someone who knows internal combustion engines and knows how cylinder quantity, cylinder layout, firing sequence, 4 vs. 2 stroke, and atmospheric vs. forced induction affect the sound of that engine.”

      Norm G. goes Horshack…

  45. George says:

    I really seriously doubt anyone will ever bring back a 2-stroke streetbike.

    It is a shame but I doubt it will ever happen due to the emission regulations and the current technology to sufficiently clean up a 2-stroke make the 2-stroke engine just as complex as a 4-stroke…

    If it is not 2-stroke, then it should be a triple to maintain SOME connection to “H2” name.

    If it is neither a 2-stroke, nor a triple, Kawasaki should be ashamed of themselves for connecting the bike to the iconic H2 name.

  46. david says:

    This shouldn’t be much of a surprise since there have been pictures of the engine with the supercharger on it out there for a while now.

  47. Fmdbh says:

    Air assisted shifter

  48. ApriliaRST says:

    Since everyone now agrees it is 4-cycle, I think it’s just another over-sell of basically the same thing from a motorcycle manufacturer. Light weight is king when moving and accelerating wheeled vehicles, especially around curves and this bike is not likely to set new standards of weight reduction. After the hype, Kawasaki scores big snore. Maybe they’ll jazz it up with a beak. LOL

  49. Philip says:

    I’m going with the Supercharged 750 theory. It would create some individuality for Big K in the “mid” displacement range.

  50. mickey says:

    I hear chirping 24/7. 49 years of riding without earplugs lol. Can’t tell you what kind of motor this is, although it’s fun reading the responses from all who ” positively” know what it sounds like, but no two agree. Typical.

  51. George says:

    I think someone doesn’t understand the difference between “video” and “audio”.

  52. PN says:

    It’s sounds like my 650 Versys motor with a supercharger:)

  53. kpinvt says:


    • kpinvt says:

      Can I get a larger font here? H Y D R O G E N. No one seems to be paying any attention to the fact that this is not a dino-fueled bike.

  54. Andrew M says:

    I would definitely go with turbo from the sound factory blow off valve which is normally much quieter than an aftermarket unit and usually chirps as per sound when the rider downshifts. Too deep to be a 600 more likely to be around the liter mark. You don’t have to hear a whistle for it to be a turbo especially if it is small to go with a small displacement, compared to say a diesel with a much larger turbo making a lot more boost even in stock form.
    P.S. I love turbos not matter the size or boost level.

  55. Michael Watts says:

    We truly live in the best of times!
    Thanks for motorcycledaily keeping us updated.
    So many choices for high quality bikes big or small.
    Cruisers, superbikes, inexpensive smaller displacement bikes,
    Redo’s of the touring bikes.
    No looking through rose colored glasses.
    Just the facts!
    Excitement and so many choices.
    There are lots of other products companies can make and sell but
    it is so refreshing to see many manufacturers engineering excitement.
    Looks or speed or utility. Nirvana!

  56. Norm G. says:

    wait, i forgot Special K doesn’t have a 600. could this be 636 based…?

  57. Rich says:

    I was bummed it wasn’t a 2-stroke……”H2″, remember?

  58. Norm G. says:

    re: “if you have been listening to internal combustion engines, including those with forced induction, and have a discerning ear, tell us what this sounds like?”

    you rang…?

    right then, it’s an I4 (definitely NOT a triple or tumor). no real revelation there at this point I guess. the engine’s driving a centrifugal supercharger (not a turbo ’cause there’s no turbine spool/whistle, any self-respecting diesel guy had better KNOW this sound), and it’s displacement is 750cc to a liter (well 1043cc). pitch is deeper than your school boy 600, but not deep enough for your 1200-1400 hyper bikes.

    there’s a guy who frequently rides down my street during the season on a Busa, but I hear him droning in a mile away before he even gets to the development. I can always tell it’s him and he must be an older, respectful guy ’cause he deliberately keeps the noise down.

    in contrast, you know the youngsters, they’re the one’s playing “throttle jockey” out on the main road as they’re constantly cycling between 3,000 rpms to 10,000 rpms and back (if not banging off the limiter). bike never gets out of 2nd gear. they WANT everybody to hear them.

    • Tom Shields says:

      I vote with Norm. I4, highly integrated centrifugal supercharger (a la Rotax maybe?), bigger than a 600 for sure, likely no bigger than a liter. Maybe a 900?

    • Curly says:

      Ding ding ding. Norm wins again. Kawasaki missed a good chance to jump on the Triple ship though. A supercharged 750 or 900 triple would have been a sweet motor and a legit tie in with the triple of old.

  59. PABLO says:

    Im very confident that the chirp is a re-circulation valve (blow off valve to some).
    Defiantly either turbo or super charged. Going by the way it builds boost i would guess turbo, however the patent drawings sugest supercharger. Displacment is a bit harder to guess, but 600-800cc would seem like the likely choice and inline 4 cylinder.

  60. xlayn says:

    even and high pitched sound… you already know what that means.
    but someone added the automatic transmission, may be a good thing to offer (for them to differentiate, that’s it) so it’ll be the automatic ninja.
    On my books another triple would be nice.
    triple turbo 450 on low weight would be even nicer, heck even four inline 450 would be nice

    but economy it’s not for that so mantis 600 for everybody (very sad face)

  61. mono12r says:

    I’m thinking a proper reborn H2 would have to sport a displacement of 750cc and a triple cylinder. Forced induction of some sort would be a good way to sweeten things up. Cool marketing idea, but what I can’t help wonder is if this H2 finally has the 1500cc supercharged engine that’s been in the watercraft now for a few years. Being an owner of a ZX14R, I can’t imagine a huge increase in power, but Kawi knows if they build it, we will come and get it. Listening to the sound clip though, it just doesn’t sound like a big bore.

  62. dave kingdon says:

    turbocharged triple makes the most sense. seem to hear waste gate and triple has torque without high compression being ness.

    • Norm G. says:

      re: “triple has torque”

      triples though have an unmistakable RASP that can’t be confused for anything else. (675’ers across creation nod their heads)

      • Klaus says:

        I agree that it’s an inline four but during the first few seconds, at low revs, it sounds like a triple to me, but just for a moment. At low revs it doesn’t sound like your run-of-the-mill inline four.
        My guess is that it’s smaller than 1000cc – if it has a turbo or a supercharger and is revving quite high the bike should be going 200 mph on that clip!
        I stick with my 750cc, around 150hp guesstimate.

  63. Mr.Mike says:

    It must be a 651cc four stroke, carbureted single with a flapping cam chain tensioner.

  64. Billy Atkinson says:

    Sounds like a 750 turbo. The turbo is the chirping sound. Next!

  65. Robert says:

    To me it sounds more like a twin a hopped up 650 maybe, but the shifting sounds like a semi auto trans

  66. GP says:

    My ears tell me its a 600cc turbo inline 4. It revs too high and too quick to be a 1000cc motor. Besides it should be good for liter bike HP with the turbo added. NO WAY would Kawasaki unleash a 1000cc turbo with 250HP for the average joe to wrap around a pole!

    • GP says:

      It probably will have a rather mundane compression ratio of 9 to keep the engine together for more than 5k miles too. I just hope they don’t go overboard and price it higher than the current ZX10R.

      • GP says:

        On a side note, the chirping and engine sounds alone make it a unique and cool sounding bike that should bring big grins.

  67. Shaunock says:

    I love all the comments demanding/pining for a two stroke.

    Let it go. It’s not going to happen.

    • xlayn says:

      same for the ones asking for low price, high performance, high tech machine (optional beak)

    • Norm G. says:

      I just hope it looks good.

      as my mantra goes, NAIL THE STYLING. you can stuff all the tech you want under the bonnet, but if the first glance doesn’t draw them in…? they’ll never bother to find out.

  68. Cagefree says:

    Since its a 4cyl maybe Kawi decided to put the 300hp turbo 1500cc from their watercraft into a bike and put everyone else on the trailer. I doubt it, but who thought Dodge would ever produce a street car with over 700 hp. Wouldn’t surprise me

  69. George says:

    Why not a 750 cc triple, that would mean you are hearing about 13k rpm instead of 10k rpm redline.

    a 750 cc triple would also be modularly expanded to 1000 cc by adding another cylinder. Conversely, could be 3/4s of the existing ZX10R.

    Chirps sound like wheel slipping on a dyno as the wheel hesitates for each up shift. The chirps on the downshifts are very similar sounds.

    I don’t hear a turbo waste gate.

    I don’t hear a supercharger whine either.

    • todd says:

      I’m with George. I immediately thought “tire slip on dyno drum.”

    • dino says:

      I hear some kind of boost rev up near the beginning, just before it really gets loud. Thought it sounded like a supercharger, but the chirping did suggest a blow-off valve, which a supercharger shouldn’t need, but a turbo would. But there was just something odd about the chirp, so maybe it is the slipping on a Dyno drum (never really listened for one before)..

  70. Buzz says:

    I’m just bummed it sounds like a 4 Stroke 4 cylinder.

    I was hoping for a street legal 2 smoke.

    • Tom K. says:

      I’m no expert, but I agree with Buzz, sounds like a suck/squeeze/bang/blow inline four somewhere around 750cc. I can’t make out exactly what the chirp is, maybe the sound guy had the hiccups? Or maybe it’s the electric motor assist clutch cycling. I don’t hear the “whine” of forced induction, but again, I’m no expert. I do know one thing; “Even the Ninja fears the Hurricane”. Maybe this will be the shot across Honda’s bow that will wake it up. Can I get some butter on my popcorn, please?

      • Norm G. says:

        re: “I don’t hear the “whine” of forced induction”

        you won’t, it’s not your classic roots type, it’s centrifugal like an aerocharger or procharger.

        (sorry in advance xlayn)

        • Tom K. says:

          Could be, Norm. You read my mind elsewhere, I was looking for the “whistle” of a turbodiesel but didn’t hear it (sometimes it’s a “hiss”) – that’s what I’ve been listening to for longer than I’d like to admit. Isn’t the term “onamanapea”, finding a word that sounds like the sound you’re trying to describe? This is kind of fun, it’s a party game for those who use “Eau Castrolla” aftershave.
          If it were only a concept bike, I’d still think there was an outside chance of some kind of “hook”, like an electrical motor/gen powered by a set of lightweight capacitors, that would give you about 30 seconds of “boost” before discharging, recharging with braking. But I don’t think that idea is ready for prime time, or would even be all that practical, it would be much easier just to give it better lungs.

    • dino says:

      me too… not really “changing the landscape” when they already tried turbo’s in the eighties.

      I guess just about everything has been tried (maybe a turbo-rotary diesel??) but a turbo on a 4-cylinder would be interesting to see how well they executed it…

  71. chase says:

    Uhhhhhhh.This thing is hardly a secret. has a photo of the motor. Supercharged 4 cylinder stroker.

  72. Starmag says:

    It should have been a 750cc 3 cylinder with supercharging if they were (slightly)honoring the past, but it sounds like a 800-1000ccish 4 cylinder with a supercharger and no more than a 9000-10000rpm redline. Which could have stupid power depending on boost PSI.I think there are turbo S100RR’s with like 350hp. MotoGp with 250hp? Whimpy! I doubt this will have anywhere near that though.

    • Chaz says:

      It may be that the H2 refers to the handling–Holy Highside, Batman.

      • Starmag says:

        Cook Neilson had some experience with that, Robin. Dig..

        I remember one time, after we’d published a particularly scathing road test of an H2 Kawasaki 750, I decided that I’d show the Kawasaki people exactly what I was talking about with regard to handling instability. There was this one corner on Mulholland Highway that was perfect for testing: fast and bumpy (it was on a section of that highway that became known as Racer Road). The Kawasaki guys showed up; I showed up. So I was whistling this 750 through this one very high-speed turn when it started to wobble. When that happened, the suspension started to oscillate, then the muffler on the left side started banging off the ground, then it high-sided me through a barbed wire fence and I ended up in the hospital (“Charge it!”) for a little while.

        • Cyclemotorist says:

          The Z-1s were also bad in bumpy corners.

          You didn’t have to be racing it to uncover this fault either.

          Although there frame deficiencies, the cause was mostly suspension related.

  73. JR says:

    You need to play the rest of the sound tape.. whereby the cops siren can be heard chasing him down and issuing a speeding ticket.

  74. bartman50 says:

    The last two entries have it. It is a 1 Litre(1000cc) four with a turbo. That “popoff” is the wastegate shedding extra boost between shifts. I can’t tell if it’s a two stage turbo or not. Would make a bunch of sense so to reduce turbo lag.

    BTW, Nigel, I accidentally hit report for your post…apologies!!!

  75. lynchenstein says:

    Sounds to me like squids getting squished. 🙂

  76. oldbeezer says:

    The chirping sounds like it might be a oneway clutch to keep the revs up on a super/turbo charger?

  77. david says:

    Pop off valve opening for the turbo

  78. Nigel says:

    To me it sounds like a Litre (1000cc) bike. There are a lot of whatifs and my adult boys are hoping for a 14. Love the chirp at the peak of the revs. Kwacka are being very cunning in the advertising of the H2. You would think 750 but I still reckon its very Ninja 1000.

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