Kawasaki Ninja 1000 Forum banner
1 - 15 of 15 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Good morning all, just shopping for a new bike to do some longer miles on, sometimes with the lady. Looking at the 2022 SX as a front-runner, but I wanted to hear some real experiences from those who have ridden two-up for more than a two or three hour day. What were the good and the bad? Anything I should know before I consider this bike for two-up sport touring? Thank you all for your time!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13 Posts
Generally, I think this bike is a compromise between sport and touring that works out better for the rider than a passenger.

After seeing your question I asked my wife to describe her experience on 3+ hour rides and her reply was ‘painful’. That said, we went on a 4+ hour ride yesterday and she was eager to go, and still happy she had went after we got home. Taking breaks along the way for more than just gas makes a big difference if you’re going to have a passenger on a bike like this. Our ride yesterday was close to 7hours in total elapsed time.

I would also suggest that stature might make a difference too. A passenger who is 5’0 tall and 110 lbs would probably have a better time and be less cramped on the back of a N1k than me at 6’0 and 185 lbs. For reference, my wife is around 5’6/150. Thats probably the ‘bad’ part you asked about. Space is limited and the padding isn’t great. Maybe the good is that it has grab handles…which is pretty modest ‘good’ when your *** hurts.

A passenger is certainly doable, just don’t plan ~600 mile days in my opinion.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
732 Posts
I have a 2020 with 19K miles and the wife has been 2-up for about 2/3 of that. We ride together at least once a week sometimes twice a week. She likes the jockey position of a sport type bike as opposed to a tourer or cruiser, she refers to herself as the backpack! When we are in cruise mode she will sit up a little, but mostly she is close to my back and relaxed. She is 5'2" and 120# with little girl feet, I'm 5'7" and 135# wearing a size 8 boot. I rate the bike as plenty big for small people like ourselves. If we both were larger I doubt it would be big enough. I ride on the pegs with the pegs centered between my toe and ball. She rides with the peg centered on your ball. If she stretches a bit and hooks the peg in front of her boot heel, her toes are against my heel. If you guys are of larger stature you may want to test ride any year N1K, they are all the same frame size.

Also, the bike is made for sport touring meaning it likes roads the bend left, right and up, down. It's not made for long stretches of highway or interstate. It can do it, but I would need more breaks if I was going to put on 600-700 miles a day on mostly highway type roads. When we are in the twisties and sport riding, I move a lot side to side and she moves with me, so our bodies get to move around a bit and not stove up from long periods of sitting static. The more often you guys ride the easier and more comfortable you will be as your body does acclimate somewhat. So, what you are used to previously will impact your N1K experience. Previously my wife had about 50K miles on the back of our ZX14's and she loved it. Initially on N1K she was a little disappointed and had to adjust to a bit more of a situp position. It didn't take that long to adjust, but if she was used to the back of something like a Wing, I doubt she would have transitioned well to the N1K. Also, she hates anything like a Wing back seat with arm rest and seat back. She feels closed in and wants to be closer to the pilot and also wants to feel she has plenty of room to bail off during a low or high side. When we mount I let her on first, she uses the rider pegs and grips to get on, then pushes back on the pillion seat and pegs. Then I get on. We reverse that on the dismount. Makes it a bit easier to get around the hard bags as neither of us have enough height or leg length to throw a leg over without us looking like we are doing a high kick!!


I know it is hard to find a dealer or private seller that will demo an N1K and especially 2-up, but Kawasaki will if they are coming to a town near you on one of there demo tours. Hope this helps and doesn't discourage you. I think the N1K is the second best I have owned out of over 50, but it's not for everyone, so let the truth be known.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
569 Posts
Things to know and none of it is meant to be offensive
1) Is she as seasoned rider / pillion
2) Is she confident on the bike
3) Is she scared of the bike but wants to give it a go
4) How tall is she
5) How ummmm use delicate words "Heavy"?? is she
6) Can you stop along the way or want to mile munch

My missus had never been on a bike ever and told me to get what I want as she is scared and does not think she can do it - I bought 2020 SX and fitted a top box with pad so she had something behind her - After a few rides she complained of a sore bottom (She has a boney one) - Changed to the Gel seat and she is happier but I limit each stretch to about 1 hr before hopping off and moving around. I asked her about feet position I was thinking of lowering the pegs so it rotated her bottom flatter but she doesn't need that after the seat change.

There are better comfort bikes for pillions but I don't think you will find a better "Sporty" bike for pillions.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
732 Posts
After a few rides she complained of a sore bottom (She has a boney one) - Changed to the Gel seat and she is happier but I limit each stretch to about 1 hr before hopping off and moving around.
Good point I should have also added. Initially my wife hated the OEM seat included with the 2020 US model. I got an Extended Reach gel seat set from Kawasaki. The rear seat was extended reach that is for the front seat, but the rear set was a bit of a different shape and gel, which she seems to love even before it was broken in.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Generally, I think this bike is a compromise between sport and touring that works out better for the rider than a passenger.

After seeing your question I asked my wife to describe her experience on 3+ hour rides and her reply was ‘painful’. That said, we went on a 4+ hour ride yesterday and she was eager to go, and still happy she had went after we got home. Taking breaks along the way for more than just gas makes a big difference if you’re going to have a passenger on a bike like this. Our ride yesterday was close to 7hours in total elapsed time.

I would also suggest that stature might make a difference too. A passenger who is 5’0 tall and 110 lbs would probably have a better time and be less cramped on the back of a N1k than me at 6’0 and 185 lbs. For reference, my wife is around 5’6/150. Thats probably the ‘bad’ part you asked about. Space is limited and the padding isn’t great. Maybe the good is that it has grab handles…which is pretty modest ‘good’ when your *** hurts.

A passenger is certainly doable, just don’t plan ~600 mile days in my opinion.
Much appreciated, thank you! :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
449 Posts
I have a 2020 SX 7000+ miles in and very happy with it.
I have a 2020 with 19K miles
How do y'all put so many miles on so fast?! I have a 2021 and I only have barely 6k on it, yet I ride every damn chance I get.

I know it is hard to find a dealer or private seller that will demo an N1K and especially 2-up, but Kawasaki will if they are coming to a town near you on one of there demo tours. Hope this helps and doesn't discourage you. I think the N1K is the second best I have owned out of over 50, but it's not for everyone, so let the truth be known.
This is true. I went to the Kawi demo days and they happily let me take my wife on the back of a Versys 1000 when I was shopping around. I see no reason why they wouldn't let you try it out on the N1K either.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Eagle Six

·
Registered
Joined
·
13 Posts
I only have barely 6k on it, yet I ride every damn chance I get.
I think you hit the nail on the head. It’s a lot to do with how many chances you have to ride, or maybe said another way, how many other things you have competing for your time, and maybe the climate/region you live in.

I don’t have kids and I work from home for a pretty flexible employer. So I have plenty of time to ride. The weather in the PNW doesn’t always suit riding, or I would likely have more at this point.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
732 Posts
How do y'all put so many miles on so fast?! I have a 2021 and I only have barely 6k on it, yet I ride every damn chance I get.
I have actually backed off on my riding this past year and a half and taking shorter rides otherwise I would probably have 25-30K on it by now. The weather in my areas allows for at least a ride per week through the winter and summer and most often any day you want, I Love Arizona! But, as @AJ20 writes, other habits sometimes interfere, like the little red MX5 needs exercising as well as the ole El Camino, and then the AR15's and 700 need exercising and that forever pesky ToDo list that often times swells out of control. Then things like the wife waters, it grows, I mow.....she waters, it grows, I mow.....she waters, it grows, I mow, it's a never ending vicious cycle! Sometimes I hate myself for being civilized!!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
569 Posts
How do y'all put so many miles on so fast?! I have a 2021 and I only have barely 6k on it, yet I ride every damn chance I get.
I just had 1 year of ownership of the 2021 SX and have 12000km (7456 miles) on it - 5000 kms (3106 miles) on the MT10 - and around the 3000 kms across 4 other bikes
 
  • Like
Reactions: Oramac

·
Registered
Joined
·
46 Posts
If a partner is going to spend significant time as pillion, i'd seriously consider something like an airhawk (or custom seat)..my pillion was used to my russel on the fz1..and its safe to say the n1k factory seat is..less comfortable :)

an hour on the stocker was enough to start hearing reports of discomfort..imo, just like the rider's seat :)

ahm
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
15,466 Posts
The ninjas advantage is that it's still a sport bike, with a more comfortable riding position. Once you add a passenger, for me, motorcycle riding no longer is sport. In my mind, it becomes protect my passenger.

You guys know the thoughts. That passenger is often times your wife, or kid. If I ever hurt one of them, I couldn't live with myself.

With passenger, my limits drop by about 80%. I don't really need sport as much as I need safe. For a passenger, I would look at a Concours 14, or maybe even the Versys 1000. FJR. Somethi g built with a passenger in mind, as a top priority.

I have no proof of this, no stats, no nothing, but I believe strange handling traits appear once a rider and passengers weight starts to approach the weight of the bike.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
732 Posts
I too cool my jets when the wife is aboard, but my jets don't have an afterburner any more. However, my wife enjoys spirited riding and knows what we need and when we need it. We also are not approaching the weight of the bike. Together we are about 250#. She also gets bored real quick when we are at or below 10-15 over the posted limit. Another reason she dislikes the typical charity ride with the mix of cruisers and weekend warriors that slow to a crawl on moderate curves and cannot hold a steady speed in the straights. We normally roll along about 20 over in the straights and crank it up when approaching the twisties. It's spirited but also a relaxing pace. Someone other than my experienced wife and I would be far more conservative.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
15,466 Posts
I noticed the odd handling/weight thing when I rode (once, lesson learned) with my step daughter. I avoided the opportunity, but one night I had no way , or maybe "weigh" out.

My ninja is light. It's down to around 460-465, depending on what I have attached to it.

Meaning we start with an equation like:

465= 200(me) + x (step daughter)

Subtract 200 from each side.

265=x. And that's being nice. It wasn't a good ride. She had way more influence than I would have liked. I kept the ride short as I was worried about subframe damage.

She had already broken 2 of our toilets, so I was nervous. We just don't be any shear factors on the cast aluminum subframe.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Riv
1 - 15 of 15 Posts
Top