As a life long big Ninja fanatic, I bought an '00 ZX-12R inspite of early warnings about it. It was a phenomenal motorcycle, but a flawed one. It was an unfinished product, obviously rushed to market without thorough development.
I hope the ZX-14R isn't like that.
But my greater disappointment with the 12 was the realization in the light of the GSXR1000 and others, inluding the ZX-10R, that this bike didn't need to be this heavy. Bikes of this category are an excuse for the manufacturers to be lazy about weight control. I am large and tall and appreciated the 12's spacious ergos, and accept that the power and space had to make it a bigger bike than the 1000s, but it weighs 540lbs wet. thats just sheer laziness on the part of engineers. Now it looks like the ZX-14R is also going to be a fat pig.
It would serve Kawasaki right if suzuki came in with a rival that under cut the 14 by 75lbs. I am not looking for a 1000cc class type featherweight. I do want real world comfortable ergos and wind protection. But I am not convinced that these bikes need to be this heavy and this big to give me that.
I will get excited about the ZX-14R if its significantly lighter than the 12, doesn't take as much muscle to get it to change direction, is lots more flickable, isn't top heavy, has spot on throttle behavior, and has a perfectly refined and smooth engine with no harshness and nasty vibes.
nearing 20 years as a kawasaki fan, I have now lost the need to forive kawasaki its sins. Do it right if you want my respect. The ZX-14R looks huge and heavy, so I am not holding my breath.