By John Burns
I thought I was picking up a new Z H2 naked at Kawasaki, but there was some miscommunication. I got this H2 Carbon instead, the full-zoot sport version barely removed from the track-only H2R instead of the slightly tamer naked I was expecting. Damn the luck! I’d really prefer to be sat a bit more upright. When I climbed on and reached for the clip-ons, the H2 Carbon hurt my lumbar and impinged upon my liver compartment. Then it cracked my knees when I picked my feet up onto the pegs. And the way the thing revved and the supercharger chirped in the parking lot frankly was a bit frightening. It seemed angry. This is ridiculous. Nobody needs a motorcycle like this outside of the Bonneville salt flats.
Eight minutes down the road, I realized again what an ass I am. I was so busy aiming and zotting along, whatever complaints my back and knees had were drowned out in the wind and adrenaline. Like being dead after a long disease and disconnected from all pain, suddenly I was nothing but a pair of veiny Von Dutch eyeballs attached to a primordial brainstem blasting through space. While trying to not get a really expensive ticket.
The tachometer goes to 14,000, but I don’t think the needle ever went past about 8000 and maybe half throttle, which was more than enough. With the supercharger positively shoving perfect mixture into every cylinder-full, the H2’s not even trying. You barely need to rotate your wrist to get to 100 mph instantly (luckily there’s a back way between me and Kawasaki), and you barely need to move your left foot to shift through the auto-blipping dog-ring gearbox.
Nobody needs a motorcycle like this, but everybody should definitely …read more