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Kawasaki GPZ900R

The Kawasaki GPZ900R (ZX900A) was a sportbike manufactured from 1984 to 1996.

The GPZ900R was a revolutionary design, in that its 908 cc liquid cooled 16 valve engine was a first for Kawasaki, and delivered 115 brake horsepower (86 kW) (depending on market). Although its steel frame, 16 inch front and 18 inch rear wheels, air suspension, and anti-dive forks were fairly standard at that time, it took Japanese Superbike performance to a new level. Water cooling and 16 valves allowed additional power, and the frame used the engine as a stressed member for improved handling. It had a top speed of about 155 mph (248 km/h) (holding the record for the fastest production bike at the time), and a standing quarter mile time of just 10.55s was recorded by specialist rider Jay "Pee Wee" Gleason. It won the 1984 Isle of Man Production TT at an average speed of 105 mph ridden by Geoff Johnson.

The 1984 GPZ900R was the first Kawasaki bike to be officially marketed (in North America) under the Ninja brand name.

Although superseded in the US market within 3 years, the 900R remained popular in Europe and Asia for many years. In 1990 the A7 model saw the deletion of the anti-dive units, front fork diameter increased, and front wheel diameter increased to 17 inches. Although no longer competitive with the cutting-edge sportsbikes of the day it was marketed as a competent sports-tourer. Emissions controls meant that it ceased to be sold in Europe in the late 1990s. Kawasaki ended production for Asian markets in 2003 with the final models being significantly reduced in power due to emissions and noise requirements.

It was superseded by the Kawasaki GPz1000RX in 1986, although critics noted the newer machine was heavier and handled less well than its predecessor. It was also featured in the movie Top Gun.