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Kawasaki ZR1100C ZRX1100 '99 In Corner

Kawasaki ZRX1100 '99

The first USA model ZRX was sold in 1999. I had seen a Euro '97 or '98 for the first time at the dealer expo in Indy. It had a lime green paint with lime green wheels. It had the flavor of a KZ1000R Lawson Replica, but so much more. I fell in love. So much in fact that I did not even research the actual US color before I laid a deposit on the first one to hit the dealership. I just asked the dealership if the US models were green and they said yes. Not until the bike delivered almost 2 months later did I realize it was Jade Pearl Green with semi-gloss black wheels. A slight letdown at first, but the color grew on me. Honestly, it could have delivered pink and orange and it would have made no difference. I wanted one!

Kawasaki ZR1100C ZRX1100 '99 OE Picture

Almost Too Good For Changes

From the first ride (in 15 degree weather) to this day, I have never had any buyers remorse. It has the best of all the worlds I like. Retro look, not too big and not too small, plenty of HP matched with a healthy mid range up torque delivery. It also handles and stops as a sport bike. The picture to the left shows a dead stock 1999 model as they came new.

Kawasaki ZR1100C ZRX1100 '99 Right Side Motor

It Did Not Take Long

Just a couple months and barely after break-in. I decided I needed more. I got a set of the Muzzy drop-in cams (basically stock ZX11 cams), K&N pod filters, and Hindle Stainless 4-2-1 exhaust system. Originally I installed the carbon fiber muffler, but I burned a hole in it at Putnam one day and went to the titanium style in the pic. I re-jetted and re-tuned the carbs and degreed the cams and WOW. The bike went from around 95HP @ 8500 with 69Flbs of torque at 4500 rpm to 131.40HP @10k with 81.4Flbs of torque at 6500 rpm. That is a huge bump for such minimal changes.

Kawasaki ZR1100C ZRX1100 '99 Right Side

Better is Better

I made a lot of other changes to the bike. I added Ohlins shocks to the rear and a Race Tech valve kit to the front. Removed some parts like the grab bars and rear pegs to clean it up. I replaced the original rearsets with Mikuni Rear Sets. I also changed the bars from a Euro cafe black set they come with to a chrome superbike cafe bar. I also did not like seeing my shoulder in the factory mirrors and switched to a much better Ken Sean set. I also switched the seat out for a more comfortable Sargent seat.

Kawasaki ZR1100C ZRX1100 '99 Ohlins ShocksKawasaki ZR1100C ZRX1100 '99 Mikuni Rear Sets Kawasaki ZR1100C ZRX1100 '99 HandlebarsKawasaki ZR1100C ZRX1100 '99 Seat
Kawasaki ZR1100C ZRX1100 '99 Front Angle

ZRXOA Guys Rock

Since there were many other besides me that loved these bikes, there were many cool items made. One imparticular is this new clutch pusher plate I got from a ZRXOA member who made the kit. It replaces the heavy factory shifter cover and removed a few pounds from the bike. All billet aluminum with stainless bolts. Also it allows for easier chain maintenance and you can keep this normally filthy area very clean. Looks awesome too and allows me to have that show the machine look.

Kawasaki ZR1100C ZRX1100 '99 Custom Clutch ReleaseKawasaki ZR1100C ZRX1100 '99 Front Sprocket
Kawasaki ZR1100C ZRX1100 '99 Left Side

Fill-it with Billet

I do like to replace items with trick and lighter billet replacements. So I installed a keyless gas cap, oil fill, lever adjusters, rear sprocket nuts and quite a few other under the surface items. One of which would be the Muzzy emission return caps on the valve cover.

Kawasaki ZR1100C ZRX1100 '99 Cornering

Track Time

The ZRX made it to Putnam park quite a few times. It was always fun when I showed up with this bike. Most that did not know better looked at it like I brought a square peg to a round peg convention. By lunch time, they would be singing another tune. Not many remember the GSXR or YZF that passed them, but they never forget the green retro bike with no plastic they could not catch. Not saying it was THE fastest, but it was WELL respected by all that saw it in action. The bike also always felt comfortable on the track. It never got too loose or unwieldy and was super dependable.

Kawasaki ZR1100C ZRX1100 '99 Track day

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