In 1979 Kawasaki introduced their "Future Image" Z1000-A3 which was better known as the Z1000 MkII.
The A3 was available in Luminous Dark Red or Luminous Dark Blue, both with Gold pinstriping on the fuel tank,
side panels and tailpiece.
Unlike earlier Z1000s, apart from the first 'K', the letters of the Kawasaki badges on the fuel tank were in lower
The engines were finished in black similar to the Z1 but without the polished edges on the cooling fins. There
were some other changes in the appearance of the engine in that the cam covers and gearbox casing had a 'squared
off' look to them.
The outer edge of the clutch cover was finished in black with the centre in polished aluminium.
The alternator cover and ignition cover both featured a black circle with polished aluminium fins and the
word Kawasaki where previous models had stated DOHC.
As with the Z1-R, 28mm carburettors were used. The power was up to 93 bhp.
The silencers of the four into two exhaust system were styled differently from those of the A1 and
The A3 featured many improvements including drilled disc brakes with sintered metal pads which were much better in
wet conditions than previous models.
I recall seeing a picture in a magazine that led me to believe early US models only had one disc brake up front.
However, this may have been a prototype.
The MkII had a nineteen inch front wheel and an eighteen inch rear wheel.
The wheels were a seven spoke cast alloy design with a black finish. The edges of the spokes and the rims
were polished aluminium.
Another improvement was the use of electronic ignition.
In 1980, the Z1000-A4 was introduced. This was mostly the same as the A3 with improvements such as a quartz halogen
The A4 was available in Luminous Ruby Red or Luminous Navy Blue, again with Gold pinstriping.
The instruments on the Z1000-A3 and A4 were similar to those on the Z1000-A1 and A2, however the tachometer was
calibrated to a maximum of 11000rpm with the redline starting at 8500rpm.
In 1979 Kawasaki introduced their first shaft driven version of the Z1000.
This was the Z1000-E1 badged as the Z1000ST.
It was available in Luminous Dark Red or Luminous Green.
The Kawasaki badges on the fuel tank were the same as those fitted to the Z1000 MkII.
The Z1000ST also featured many of the improvements fitted to the Z1000 MkII.
The finish of the ST engine was the same as that on the MkII.
Although the seven spoke cast wheels on the ST were similar in style to those on the MKII, the rear
wheel featured a different hub to accept the shaft drive bevel unit.
The ST had a nineteen inch front wheel and a seventeen inch rear wheel.
As with the MkII, the ST produced 93bhp.
In addition, the airbox was redesigned to further improve mid range torque and power delivery.
Similar to the Z1-R, there was an emergency kickstarter lever kept under the seat.
The four into two exhaust system was different from the MkII in that the silencers were positioned lower to
allow for panniers to be fitted.
The Z1000-E2, introduced in 1980 was basically the same as the E1 with minor improvements.
A small Kawasaki badge was now fitted below the headlamp.
The E-2 was available in Luminous Ruby Red or Black Pearl.
The instruments on the Z1000-E1 and E2 were a different style from those fitted to the MkII.
The speedometer was still calibrated to 160mph in 10mph increments and the tachometer was calibrated to
11000rpm with the redline starting at 8500rpm.
A fuel gauge was built in to the lower section of the tachometer.
The centre console was a different shape. It featured turn signal lamps at the top, with warning lamps from top to
bottom for OIL, HIGH BEAM and NEUTRAL.
The handlebar clamps were formed as a casting consisting of the ignition barrel cover and an integral Kawasaki
Z1000 Fuel Injection
Kawasaki introduced the Z1000-H1 in 1980.
The Z1000-H1 was badged as Z1000 Fuel Injection.
It was basically a Z1000-A4 but with a fuel injection system fitted.
The fuel injection system was based on a Bosch design.
The Z1000-H1 was available in one colour scheme only.
The front mudguard, fuel tank, side panels and tailpiece were Black with Gold and White stripes.
The seven spoke cast wheels were painted in Gold.
Although the fuel injection system enabled the engine to produce 96 bhp, unfortunately, it proved to be
The Z1000 MkII, Z1000ST, Z1-R (D3) and the Z1000 Fuel Injection were the last in the line of the 1015cc models.
More information and photographs to follow soon.
“Paul Mercer (kawasakiz1.com) is a
participant in the eBay Partner Network (ePN) and the Amazon Associates program, affiliate advertising programs
designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to eBay and/or