• 2017 Kawasaki Ninja H2 Carbon

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Dark and handsome is just an understatement.

You are allowed to think that Kawasaki has mastered the dark arts and yet again cooked up this mad looking H2 Carbon from a parallel universe. There is so much more to the ‘Carbon’ than what meets the eye.

While we were still drooling over the radical H2 and H2R that can put any super sports to shame, Kawasaki thought the sci-fi needed a tweak and updated it with this possessed Carbon edition for 2016 Intermot.

Co-developed by Kawasaki’s motorcycle and aerospace division, this ‘world’s only’ supercharged hyper sport motorcycle got every purists into a realm of more content and less bitter ever since it was launched in 2015. And for 2017, there are more surprises in store.

  • Year:
    2017
  • Make:
  • Model:
  • Model:
  • Transmission:
    6 speed
  • Horsepower @ RPM:
    207 @ 11000
  • Torque @ RPM:
    133 @ 1500
  • Displacement:
    998 L

STYLING

Only Kawasaki’s breed of imaginative designers could have turned a blank design canvas into the H2 Carbon. It is all about shock and awe for this bike and all due to be given for its signature silver mirror paint job and sci-fi looks, to its electric green trellis frame and Ninja star wheels.

Looks are unlike any other Ninja as the H2 panels are coated in a solution of silver ions that forms a pure silver layer giving the bike a dark and moody yet highly reflective image when standing in the sun. But as night falls, it plays tricks on your eyes; almost like a stealth bomber for the road.

For the 2017 ‘Carbon edition’ the bike gets every raceboy’s favourite carbon panel feature limited only to the front fairings. And the paint job dons the matte black finish. This is a limited edition of just 120 units, and each will carry its unique reference number on a plaque on the supercharger plate.A choice of personal taste I would say.
Catching from every angle of your eye is the bright green skeletal trellis frame, a piece of art defining the shape of the bike’s midriff. Welding on this is a match to none and if you are into that sort of a thing, this is the epitome. Acknowledging this frame is a short wheelbase setup with the Ninja-star rear wheel on its single sided swingarm allowing for sharp handling and high-speed stability.

Coming to the fairings, they have major aero touches including the rear view mirrors to assist high-speed stability and downforce. And one cannot mistake the giant air intake surrounding the mono headlight projector reminding every one of the devouring spooling by the custom designed supercharger.

Overall Dimension

Overall length 2085 mm
Overall width 770 mm
Overall height 1125 mm
Wheelbase 1455 mm
Seat height 825 mm
Wet weight 238 kg

POWERTRAIN

What sets the H2 apart from every other two wheeler in production is the 998cc supercharged engine churning out a massive 207bhp@11000rpm. It’s an elegant artwork of supreme violence.

With strong lower and midrange power delivery, the acceleration only keeps increasing all the way up to 14000 rpm redline because of its 135Nm torque. The H2R gets to an impressive 144 Nm. And at a top speed of above 300 kph, you will be whipping into a furious lather with profanity leaving your soul whether you like it or not. 0-100 comes under 2.5 seconds.

The transmission has a 6-speed dog ring system found on MotoGP bikes. The updated model will feature aAssist and Slipper clutch that allows the clutch lever to be lighter and assist in downshifting and preventing wheel lock. To meet Euro IV emissions, the exhaust system is revised but that does not take away any of the reverberations found in places of hell.

Specification

Capacity cc 998
Bore/stroke mm 76/55
Output 207 bhp @ 11000
Torque 133.5Nm@10500
Type Liquid-cooled, 4-stroke, in-line four, DOHC, 16-valve
Valves per cylinder 4
Clutch type Wet –multi plate
Transmission 6-speed constant mesh

RIDE AND HANDLING

This Ninja is one lethal missile and riding this is an intimidating experience. That is because of the fairly heftier package for which one has to pull every muscle strength to heave this around corners. In simple terms, if you want to chase the stopwatch on a track, this isn’t the weapon of choice.

That being said, once you have trained those reflexes, the fun and thrill keeps getting a notch higher every time you urge to twist that throttle. You might feel the chassis flex lightly due to the compressed shock but eventually, the feedback you get gives you the confidence to keep pushing harder.

The 2017 update includes electronic rider aid kits like the advanced 6-axis IMU (Inertial Measurement Unit) system, updated KTRC (Kawasaki Traction Control) and KIBS (Kawasaki Intelligent Anti-Lock Braking System) that hopefully prevents you getting dangerously out of control. A 3 step KLCM (Kawasaki Launch Control Mode)will prevent wheel spin and minimise wheelies off the line. The quick shifter is now also enabled as an autoblipper for coming seamlessly back down through the gearbox.

Also blessing this time is the Genuine Accessories kit that allows riders to get the right riding position and an updated instrumentation that comprises of bank angle display, max bank angle recording function and boost indicator as an added feature.
To add a little more control and bling, the H2 gets Ohlins TTX shock offering more support and ride quality with 22 adjustment settings for every breed of riders. Updated linkage ratios apparently also improve its track manners.Dual semi-floating 330 mm Brembo discs 4 piston callipers do the job quite brilliantly with the help of ABS.

PRICE

There has been no word on price yet, but it’s likely to be set at a small premium over the standard H2, which retails at ₹ 29 – 35 lakhs. The H2 Carbon edition comes with the matte black finish with bright green trellis frame.

COMPETITION

Giving a fight to the H2 Carbon is the bike from the likes of the iconic Yamaha R1-M. The H2 provides a very different form of excitement to Yamaha’s 197bhp limited-edition flagship, which, thanks to its light weight and sophisticated electronics, is as easy to ride as it is fast.

Yamaha YZF-R1M

The Yamaha YZF-R1M is powered by a 998cc, in-line four, Along with liquid cooled engine which makes 200bhAlong with advanced electronics and five different control systems, it gets electronically controlled Ohlins suspension, lightweight carbon fairing and a digital interface that records racing information.

VERDICT

This Ninja is like nothing else. It’s rhetorical in its own way and that is the heart of the matter. People would go crazy over this bike even if it didn’t look stunning and ugly at the same time because it’s the first thing to roll out of a major factory with forced induction since a few ill-fated turbo experiments back in the 1980s.

So basically there is no rational reason for wanting one of these. It sounds amazing and it is the fastest accelerating thing on 2 wheels in production. And that is why you should be bonkers enough to buy it and take a grim from everyone passing by. What a time to live in!

  • Leave it
    • Recalcitrant throttle
    • Hefty weight
    • Large fuel bills

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