2019 is just a few days away and Honda has already opened bookings for its litre-class 2019 Honda CBR1000RR Fireblade. The new model has received electronic updates and remains the same on the engine and mechanical front. It continues to be one of the most potent litre-class bikes in India, however, it faces tough competition from the Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R and the Yamaha YZF R1. Let’s check which is the toughest on paper.
Being sportsbikes, all three of them boast of an aggressive stance with nicely designed fairing and high-set tail section. The CBR1000RR Fireblade had received a major design shift in 2017 only to look more butch. The YFZ R1 also carries new clothes and looks radical and futuristic. Carrying the traditional Ninja styling, the ZX-10R is a charismatic bike with sharp lines and creases running all over.
There are two colour options available for the CBR1000RR (grand prix red, metallic ballistic black) and YZF R1 (Yamaha blue and tech black) but the Ninja ZX-10R comes only in lime green/ebony shade.
The 2019 CBR1000RR Fireblade is powered by the same 999cc, inline four-cylinder, 16-valve, DOHC engine that puts out 186.3bhp at 13,000rpm and 114Nm of torque at 11,000rpm. Powering the Yamaha is a slightly more powerful 998cc, inline-four motor that churns out 194.3bhp at 13,500rpm and 112Nm at 11,500rpm. However, leading the power figure race is the ZX-10R which churns out 197.3bhp at 13,000rpm and 113.5Nm at 11,500rpm from its 998cc, inline-four powerplant. All the bikes get a six-speed transmission system and come equipped with quick shifters for rapid, clutch-less gear shifting.
Weighing at 196kg, the Fireblade is the lightest of the lot which is thanks to the use of magnesium and other lightweight materials. It is suspended on 43mm, fully-adjustable, upside-down front forks and adjustable monoshock at the rear. Braking is handled by a pair of 320mm disc on the front and a 220mm disc at the rear.
Magnesium has been used for weight saving on the R1 as well. It also straps an aluminum fuel tank, all of which makes it weigh 199kg. It gets fully adjustable 43mm upside down front forks and a rear monoshock from KYB. Braking hardware remains similar to the Honda. However, the Ninja ZX-10R gets slightly bigger front discs which are 330mm and a 220mm rear disc. The suspension on this bike are more premium as it gets WSBK bike-like Showa units on both the ends. The ZX-10R is the heaviest here weighing 204kg.
The 2019 CBR1000RR Fireblade is technologically more advance now as it gets improved HSTC (Honda selectable torque control) and the new multi-level selectable wheelie control. Other features include ride-by-wire throttle, rear lift control, engine braking, riding modes (street, race and custom) and gyroscopic ABS system.
Moreover, the ZX-10R also comes loaded with trademark Kawasaki electronics package including Kawasaki intelligent ABS system, launch control, quick shifter, engine brake control and traction control. It gets the Bosch inertial measurement unit (IMU) which monitors several parameters of the bike. The Yamaha is nowhere less in this department featuring slide control, anti-wheelie control, unified braking system, launch control and banking sensitivity traction control. All the bikes come equipped with uniquely designed full-digital instrument cluster.
The Yamaha YZF R1 carries the highest price tag of Rs 20.73 lakhs while the 2019 Honda CBR1000RR Fireblade is cheaper at Rs 16.87 lakhs. Both the bikes come as CBU (completely built unit) models. The most affordable of the lot is the Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R. At Rs 12.80 lakhs, it comes across as the most value-for-money proposition. This can be majorly attributed to the fact that it comes as a SKD (semi-knocked down) unit.
All prices are ex-showroom, Mumbai.