Re: the ZX-12 was treated very unfairly by the press
Some magazines have criticized the 12's suspension compared to the Bus, but I haven't a clue what they are talking about. Its 2" shorter wheelbase, and its steeper steering geometery make it a lot quicker turning and more agile than the Bus. I don't see that get mentioned very often. A ZX-12R lapped the Kyalami circuit in south africa neck and neck with an R1. It was slower flicking side to side, but faster driving out of corners and on the straights. I don't see any magazine acknowledging the 12's superb handling (for what it is) The one thing I will aknowledge is that the 12's frame was very stiff originally and didn't provide as good feedback at the limit.
But again, this is not about better or worse than the Busa. Its about a balance of traits and characteristics. They are different and they are both very good. I just thought it damned unprofessional of magazines to reduce the bike to a top speed number, even if that was what Kawasaki was pushing. Any criticism that was leveled at it in that regard was justifiable, but it seemed that they were upset enough to start raking its character over coals, making its flaws look fatal and barely mentioning its strengths.
Consumers, I can understand, lost interest when it didn't do the only thing about it that captured their attention. But magazine editors are supposed to be more rational and responsible than that. its just shameful that they disguise their prejudice with reasonable sounding rhetoric. Not that I am upset any more. I see gixxers, R1s, Haybausa all the time, but I have seen only two other ZX-12s on the road. I appreciate the rarity, and I don't need anybody else to ooh and ah at my bike. After all, needing the oohs and ahs of your peers is what drives the development of the sportbike, isn't it?
also that $12k price was all hooey. I paid $9900 for mine, I know people who paid $8500, and few people paid much more than $10k.