It is finally time for the Kawasaki Ninja H2R to become officially official. No more teaser videos with weird chirps, no more fake news stories for pageviews, no more leaked photos (x2)…now we finally get to see what all the hype is about with this hyperbike.

Though now that the time is here, it is hard to say something new about the 2015 Kawasaki Ninja H2R that hasn’t already been said. Rebirthing a name that is synonymous with the original superbike war between the Japanese manufactures, Kawasaki has reinstated an old game, and made a bold first move.

At the heart of the new Ninja H2R is a supercharged 998cc inline-four engine which produces 300hp horsepower. You did not read that figure incorrectly. Wrapped around it is a fetching steel-tube trellis frame.

Building a machine that conformed only to Kawasaki’s own desires to make the ultimate motorcycle, it is perhaps refreshing to see a sport bike that isn’t constrained by the rules of a racing series — though Kawasaki has some racing in mind with its carbon-fiber dripping Ninja H2R model.

Essentially a rolling showcase for Kawasaki Heavy Industries, the Japanese OEM hopes that the H2R will serve as a halo product for the rest of the company’s motorcycles, similar to what the Ducati 1199 Superleggera does for the Italian brand, as well as the Japanese firm’s work with its other subsidiaries.

Built as a closed-course model only, i.e. it is not street legal, the Ninja H2R features a centrifugal supercharger, with a focus on outright acceleration. The unit was built from Kawasaki’s extensive knowledge with turbines, as can already be seen on its personal watercraft offerings. Other components were built and design with help from Kawasaki Heavy Industries’ vast knowledge.

For example, the carbon-fiber upper and lower winglets were designed with assistance from Kawasaki’s Aerospace Company. Kawasaki says that these parts increase stability when riding in the ultra-high speed range, and that they were critical to the H2R’s overall design.

And while the 2015 Kawasaki Ninja H2R might best be known now for igniting a hyperbike ward within the OEMs, it likely also means the dawn of a new era in the motorcycle industry when viewed in retrospect, where smaller capacity engines with forced induction start replacing the naturally aspirated status quo.

Expect to see the Kawasaki Ninja H2 street bike debut at EICMA…Let the Good Times Roll.


















Source: Kawasaki

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  • tonifumi

    OMG !!! I need to change my pants !!! That is so awesome !!!

  • chester

    Did they make it a rideable 300hp?

  • sunny

    That’s it. THIS is the most beautiful thing I have seen in my life.

  • Terry

    Stunning, hats off to them. A quantum leap in motorcycling and a real shot in the arm for the industry as a whole.
    Will the street version H2 be blessed with 300hp also?
    Chapeau Kawasaki!

  • k1200rider

    Absolutely stunning! Sex on wheels!!!!!

  • Mtech

    Can they race this in WSBK?

  • ZootCadillac

    According to MCN:

    The Facts – Ninja H2R
    Engine Type: Supercharged liquid-cooled inline-four
    Displacement: 998cc
    Supercharger Type: Centrifugal, scroll-type
    Maximum Power: 296bhp
    Frame Type: Trellis, high-tensile steel
    Tyres: F: 120/600R17 Bridgestone V01 slick R: 190/650R17 Bridgestone V01 slick

    I don’t like it stylistically but then I’m not the Batman.

    Too angular, too sharp too…pointy. I like a smooth, rounded style.

    What seems clear is that the unofficial gentleman’s agreement is finally over ( it has been for some time i guess ) and that the top speed wars will commence again. Which will lead to regulation for sure.

  • Ian john

    Near naked with that trelly frame. I guess she run mega hot.
    Cup holders?
    Run out of room in the garage on a rainy day, you can peg clothes on all the pointing out bits.
    Can’t wait to see what they do with the street model.

  • Frenchie

    2 things intrigue me

    – there isn’t a single picture with the exhaust hidden behind a lower fairing…so they spent hours (and yens) developing the aeros of a bike…without lower fairing???
    Or maybe they can’t fit one because the pipes are running really hot?
    – why is there a rear light on the H2R, the so-called closed-course version? No front lights, no turning signals, no mirrors…why did they bother with a rear light???

    Jensen, I’d like to get your feeling on this: do Kawasaki intend to enter this bike in any sort of competition?
    Since it cannot race in WSBK, 2 things come to my mind:
    Senior TT (I quote the regulations ” Other machines admitted at the discretion of the organisers”, like the Norton definitely not FIM homologated)… and World Endurance Championship…could it run full gas for 8 hours say near Suzuka around July?

  • Kawasaki made it pretty clear that this was a bike designed outside the confines of racing regulations. I could see it at Bonneville pretty easily. Presumably it could run the Senior TT as well at the Isle of Man.

    The way it was pitched to me by Kawasaki is that it’s a halo bike, similar to how the Superleggera is.

  • Damn

    Hardcore porn! Amazing!!!!

  • Nick

    I hate to be the first naysayer, but hey, at least I’m first at something. First, I can’t believe they invested all this time into styling and aero just to leave the lower fairing off. I first thought they removed the fairings for better show/tell, but every photo I’ve seen looks the same. Did they really think this looks good? The Batman analogy is spot on.

    Basically, it looks like Kawi made an engine (and a kick-ass one, at that). Personally, I was hoping for more than some hot rod. Sure, 300 hp/liter is damn impressive, even with forced induction. But otherwise, we have shim under bucket valvetrain, port fuel injection, and otherwise pedestrian looking construction. I hope there are some Easter eggs in there, because right now “yawn”. Sorry. And a steel trellis frame on their halo bike? Again, I’m not looking to diminish their in-house engineering effort on the supercharger and aero, but this is a let down. Looking back at the Desmosedici, Superleggera, Buell/EBR’s, etc., you’ll find innovation and technology. Was hoping to see some truly disruptive technology here to shape the future.

    Back to the horsepower. My first thought was ‘awesome!’ – followed immediately by ‘ crap, the govt is going to regulate motorcycles in new and exciting ways once the masses get a hold of this’. I was temporarily assuaged by the “closed course competition only”, but I’m not buying it. As mentioned earlier, we have a tail light. Look a little further and we have an ignition key, indicator arrows in the cluster, and a locking fuel cap. Look deeper yet and you’ll see cast rearsets and other ‘production-intent’ items. They clearly put some work into getting this thing ready for something other than just the track.

    Please, Jensen…please…tell me my cynicism is misplaced!

  • Paul

    Re: the tail light – why wouldn’t you want a tail light on a race course? F1 cars have them for crap weather.

  • Nick

    I’m reaching here…but I suspect bike’s don’t use tail lights in most forms of racing because they create much less spray than cars. Every track org or race organization that I’m aware of requires them to be removed or taped…again, the ones I’m aware of.

  • Ryan


    I think the winglets may serve other purposes than just aero. If we compare them to when Ducati used it for the GP10, they seem to be much larger here. Could be for cooling purposes as well (see link)? And maybe the aero studies concluded that they wouldn’t need the lower fairing to stay streamlined? Win-win in my opinion, less weight, cooler engine (temp).


    Overall, I think it’s a great development in the Japanese sportbike sector. Finally a bit of a change, rather than just a new paint-scheme. I’m really excited to see how the ‘street’ H2 comes out.

  • Harb

    Track-only novelty. Let us know when I can buy one and slap a license plate on the back.

  • Jaybond

    This bike is insane!!!!

  • Gutterslob

    That skinny trellis doesn’t even look like it’ll contain a horny hamster, and yet they’re bolting a pornographic 300hp supercharged 998cc motor to it. I still love the fact that this bike exists, even if I’ll never own one.

  • ZL1Corvette

    Single-sided swingarm? Hasn’t that been deemed more show than go?

  • chris

    i think what they mean is “collectors only model”

    unless they left it off for these pics, let me know when you find a sanctioning body (or track day org) that doesn’t require a belly pan.

  • Keet

    Engineering wise, kudos to you Kawasaki.

    Styling wise, KILL IT… KILL IT WITH FIRE! That is the most horrendous bike I have ever seen… EVER! In fact, I think I threw up in my mouth a little

  • Elton Alwine

    I applaud Kawasaki for this bike. The fact that they made this is incredible insight to where superbikes are headed, and it’s a stunner, too. I really hope the street H2 has more than a passing resemblence to the R model.

    The steel trellis is a total surprise.

  • Halfie30

    Kawasaki would like to thank all the haters. This bike was created to get an intense reaction. Love, or hate. Hats off to them. I think the concept far exceeds the styling, but the styling is strong in nature. Kawi is the smallest of the “big 4” factories, but they just made a huge statement.

  • Andrew
  • Kaw4Life



    Purpose would be …. what?

  • Keet

    Yeah, Kawasaki made huge statements, we can put more HP on a bike than even a GP rider can use, AND, we can make a bike uglier than anybody else. clap… clap… clap… clap… clap…

  • weldoid

    Cool. 300 horse might be excessive but I really, really wanna ride it!

    I dig the trellis frame and single side swingarm. It actually looks pretty good except for the wings and superstreet wheels. Hope the streetbike version is similar but toned down a bit.

    I think the song lyrics from the video must be a direct quote from the singer when she rode on the back of the H2 “OOOOOOHHHHHHHEEEEEEEEEEEEAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHOOOOOOOO!!!!!”

  • Rob

    Certainly neat to see someone push the boundaries. While I’m definitely more of a ‘homologation special’ type of guy, this shit is undoubtedly cool. And to all those ‘govt will regulate bikes now’ etc. etc…bring em on. In the end, the people always get what they want. How do you think we have highest hp/kg bikes now than we ever have?

    Techie stuff: Not sure at all the amass of compromises this bike holds. I’m sure it isn’t light, which I would understand if the components are going to make 300hp stay straight and not fold into a pretzel. But as mentioned previously, SSA, steel trellis frame? Trying so hard to be Ducati. Be distinctly Kawasaki in every respect. I would love to see interviews with the team to get behind the reasoning on some of the engineering decisions, I bet it would be interesting.

    Engine wise – surely epic. But kinda bummed to not see DI or even an intercooler (!) from the looks of it. This bike will certainly be a hyabusa replacement and nothing else.

  • Jonathan

    It really does look like something out of a movie. I would love to take it out to a long straight desolate road.

  • steve

    Tail light? Nobody watches MotoGp races in the rain I guess?

  • brian

    no passenger seat?!?
    sheesh, c’mon Kawasucki!

  • clevatreva

    ….AND the chick singing on the video just ruined it for me.. WHAT IS THIS? LORD OF THE RINGS MEETS ENYA- BARF
    Their marketing department needs restructuring, kinda pathetic.

  • This thing looks like Ben Afleck’s new BatBike!!

  • Single sided swingarm? To handle all that power?

  • John Mith

    Dramatic styling and massive power. Impressive!

    The big question. How much does it weigh and can it make it around the corners at a race track as fast as the competition? The big concern here of course is it’s a “mega Hayabusa”. Lets hope not.

  • Alclab

    Increible machine, haven’t been this surprised about a new bike since…. Maybe the latest R1? Props to Kawasaki for pushing the envelope!

    If you don’t like the styling, well that’s just your opinion! Personally I love it (and haven’t liked th styling Kawi was going with until the H2), and absolutely love the winglets (the fact that they chose to incorporate them to help control the power rather than increase the wheelbase to not lose turning capability is awesome!).

    Also they have said that the 300 ho version is NOT street legal, and comes with special slicks purposebuilt by Bridgestone. I read that they plan on releasing a street legal version with around 200 hp.

    Love it, would definitely want to ride it and own it!

  • Alclab

    *correction* I have not been this surprised about a new bike ever. And i was blown away by the last R1 and the Panigale, but just no…

  • eugenio

    to me that front tire looks like a 125, not a 120.

  • Paul Cypert

    I know it’s mean to say, but I’ll enjoy the flood of fail riding videos this bike is going to produce. Who on earth needs this bike? LOL

  • ThatMexicanFromNOLA


  • Bluestreak

    All of this styling, aero design and horsepower means jack until you show us the lap times. Has anybody seen how much this weighs? Can’t find it.

  • PatrickD

    Alot of people are looking for a class to put this in. Well, FWIW, something along the lines of the NR750 is a good start. No, you won’t be using it every day. But then again, you probably won’t be buying one either.
    Look at how car manufacturers release things like the recent hybrid McLaren, Porche, Veyron etc etc. This is the two wheeled equivalent. There are more useable sportsbikes. I doubt this will get round most racetracks faster. But as a marketing and engineering exercise, it is fantastic. It’s also the kind of thing that might get kids excited about motorcycles, which Japenese superbikes of the past 10 years will hardly do. We all had posters of bikes on our walls when we were young. What japanese bike would you have had of the past decade?
    Some of the NR750 promises were not delivered upon, most disappointingly oval pistons, but most things found their way onto the flagship vfr bikes – single sided swingarm, underseat exhausts, even the styling. This bike will hopefully kick on a generation of bike design, and superchargers might well hit a triple point of power-weight-emmissions to benefit all of us in the coming years.

  • Jw

    By virtue of having more comments than any other bike at the show.

    This will boost sales for the brand in general

    My hat is off to Kawasaki for having the balls to make another historical mind bending bike

    They have been very good about bringing to market stand out bikes in their time

    Remember when the mighty Honda 750 was handed the Z900?

    I still remember at age 14 riding in a school bus, a Kawasaki H2 passing us (with baffles out) thinking WOW!

    This new bike evokes the same emotion, WOW!

  • IKA

    I can’t see anyone else asking this: what kind of tyres is the bike using? Not an easy quest for a tyre…

  • 1100

    @IKA: Well if you trust the press photos and the fact that it’s a track toy only, I’m guessing any slick would do the job, for a very short period of time.
    Plus it’s a 5 bolts pattern rear wheel, wont be long until someone from Florida tries to stick a car wheel back there and take it to the drag :p

  • Ben

    Frame Type: Trellis, high-tensile steel

    I wish they used chrome molybdenum steel instead of hi-ten. Other than that, what a bike. Totally cool.
    I hope the next Ninja1000R would come with the same trellis frame. That I’d buy without hesitation.

  • p

    I need one.

  • Renn

    Well done Kawasaki! Shake it up and give us something more interesting then Ducati desmo’s and Super Light Panigale’s.

    I would love to own one but dang.. I think 175bhp is enough for me in my blade… on the street anyway.

  • Mtech

    Does it have traction control for all those horses?

  • Superlight

    I can see it now – a comparison test between the Panigale Superlegerra and this new H2. My bet is on the Ducati, which is an all-rounder compared to the one-dimensional Kawi. The H2 won’t be able to harness that power effectively and the bike will be many kilos heavier than the Duck, which will negatively affect performance.

    From the marketing side, however, hats off to Kawasaki, who now has the industry (and enthusiasts) talking about their products again.

  • Russ

    Lots of Cheers and Lots of Complaining. I am sure many will change their minds from one side of the fence to the other…. once the prices are announced on both bikes. Secondly, many will change their minds …..once they are looking at the real 3 dimensional bike in the flesh rather than 2 dimensional slicks. Thirdly, more will change their minds….. once the real specs come out for our review…..and lastly……a few American Bike Magazine riders write their experiences and feelings about this new Kawasaki in the twisties as well as the straight a ways. Until then, my initial nod is to Kawasaki until otherwise proven wrong. I like to eat asphalt……and I am not going to eat any whinny words when I don’t have to. Russ

  • Singletrack

    Kawasaki are showing they want the top power bragging rights back in a big way. Hard to believe they upped the ante by over 50% though. If a 180hp bike is a crotchrocket, then what is this?

    The batcycle look doesn’t work for me, but I like the bucket seat! Don’t want anyone sliding off the back, do we ?? That single side swingarm seems to say that twisty road work is the aim. No concessions made for the drag bike extension crowd.

    If (When) they bring out the street version, I would expect it detuned to 225hp for political reasons, with a much larger, uglier exhaust can. But I’m sure it will be easy to de-restrict it to attain the full power. :)

  • Drizzy

    If a 100hp bike can go 130+ and a 200hp bike can go 200+, can a 300hp bike go 270+?

    That is Extremely rarefied air for something “anyone” can buy…

  • It’s not quite that easy. Aerodynamic resistance is a square of velocity. To go twice as fast, for example, you need four times the power.

  • Michael Mires


  • rod ney

    Is it learner approved? :)