We just had quick 160-mile go on Kawasaki’s 2011 Ninja 1000, and anybody who’s been around long enough to remember the first overweight, under-sprung Ninja 1000 from 1986 can officially forget it. This one is completely different. If you’re looking for something more agile than a ZX-14R with more humane ergonomics than a new ZX-10R, this would be it. Underneath all that swoopy plastic it’s essentially the same as Kawasaki’s Z1000. Both 1043cc fours were born and raised together. Same stiff five-piece stressed-member die-cast aluminum skeleton. Same 41mm fork and horizontally mounted shock. As a wise far-western philosopher once said, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Lighter, six-spoke cast wheels are new to the Ninja 1000 parts manifest, along with a list of functional touches that make life on the street a little more interesting and a lot more comfortable.