Possible changes to Indian homologation regulations could make this the first Japanese 600cc supersport for India!
Specification details for Kawasaki’s upcoming 2019 ZX-6R have been leaked. These details include the upcoming motorcycle’s power, weight, dimensions and top speed. Surprisingly, the figures aren’t as exciting as the outgoing model.
While this 2019 bike is still under wraps, the specifications made their way out because of two sets of official emissions certification documents that have been leaked. The new bike uses a three-way catalytic converter (two-way on the old one) and emissions numbers are said to be down by half. While the current ZX-6R is not Euro-IV compliant, the new model will be. What’s also a possibility is that the new ZX-6R could come prepared to meet the Euro V norms that will come into effect by 2020. But doing so will come at a cost, and while this motorcycle still uses its class-leading 636cc engine, there is a drop in power figures and a marginal increase in weight.
The 2019 bike will make 128hp at 13,500rpm, 1hp down from the outgoing bike. However, the figure is still more impressive than the Euro IV figures of the new Yamaha R6 which dropped 5hp, going from 122hp to 117hp to meet the emission target. In terms of weight, the new ABS-equipped 2019 ZX-6R will weigh 196kg, compared to the 194kg of the outgoing ABS-equipped model – the increase in weight is due to the heavier catalytic converter. There is also a difference in the top speed; while the older one did 260kph, the upcoming model is rated at 248kph.
Beyond this, changes in dimensions also suggest that the new supersport could have different bodywork. The new bike will be wider (by 5mm), shorter (by 60mm) and lower (by 15mm). The motorcycle will also have a marginally longer wheelbase, up from 1,395mm to 1,400mm.
The 2019 ZX-6R is expected to make its official debut in October or November this year. While the Japanese 600cc supersport class has traditionally been absent in India, there is the outside possibility that this could change with next-gen 6R. The reason for this is that the Indian government recently proposed a change in the homologation requirements that will allow manufacturers to import a limited 2,500 motorcycles per year without the need to undergo homologation. Instead of demanding a domestic homologation, the proposed regulations state that the process carried out on the machines by a number of recognised foreign bodies will also be accepted.
If these regulations do come through, it would then make the path much easier for Kawasaki to import these bikes for sale in our country. And if the regulations do permit it, the company could even import kits and assemble them locally – as it did with the ZX-10R recently – which would result in a very competitive price. Mind you, supersport 600s aren’t much cheaper than their 1,000cc siblings, but if Kawasaki follows the same road, a price around the Rs 10 lakh mark is possible.
Of course, there’s still a long time to go and many cards need to fall into place for this to happen. But, for the first time in years, there’s finally a glimmer of hope that we might get a proper 600cc supersport in India. Our fingers are crossed!