Full disclosure: we work really hard to bring you HFL, so when pretenders rip us off, yet also try and talk shit (that was copied too), it gets under our skin. I made a point of taking this holiday weekend off work to spend time with a new girl I’m seeing and grabbed the 1198 Streetfighter story off the cuff, in a rush. It might be fake. Oh well. But what’s really fake are these super crazy extra photoshopped images of the “2012 Kawasaki ZX-14” here’s why. Honestly, anyone with half a brain should be able to see this.
Update: Just to clarify, this MCN article was well reported, original and the kind of thing we like reading. It's just a shame that others felt the need to rip it off.
Sean’s girlfriend (a graphic designer when she's not babysitting HFL staff) put down her sore vagina long enough to help us with this. She and Sean took a look and annotated the above image with these notes:
1. The mirrors are mirrored. Cue the snoop dog jokes. Aside from being identical from side to side, something that is impossible in real light, have a look at the shadows. See that? Yep. Identical. If that was the only thing funny about this image, it would be enough to declare it a fake.
2. Why go through all the trouble of designing a new, angular ZX-14 to match the rest of the Kawasaki line-up and then slap an old windscreen on it? Why add a gray border around the round windscreen to fill in the gaps between it and the angular bodywork? The answer, of course, is that no one would do that. It's fake.
3. Why are there blurry green triangles hanging off either side of the fairing? While this shape is technically possible, it would be so hideously ugly from any other angle that there is simply no way Kawasaki would build a fairing with flying blurry triangles.
4. Why is it that the upper fairing is both a different color than the rest of the bike and seemingly just mushed into place? Look closely at the black plastic trim piece (liberated from the ZX-10R for this photoshop experiment) where it meets the uper fairing. Notice how it doesn't lineup? How the shadows don't make any sense?
5. See how hyper-focused the headlights are? Look at the glossy black front corners and the ridiculous rows of LEDs further back. Now, look at the blurry triangles that would be only 3-5" further back. Look at the barely in focus turn signals on the fairings and look at the sharply focused mufflers out back. Cameras don't work this way. They create an image that has a focal point and the closer a part of the image is to that point, the more it's in focus. Move further away from that point and things become blurry.
This image has the mufflers and headlights in focus, but blurry triangles between them.
6. Bullshit headlights. From the starbursts, to the 4300k HID color temperature, to the rows of LEDs, these scream fake. Those LEDs are the real giveaway though. The way they hang outside the headlight housing, yet extend toward the fake HIDs is impossible unless they're hot-glued to the outside of the lens.
This screencap, taken from a video posted by Ricky Gadson and apparently a part of Kawasaki's viral marketing campaign for the new bike, appears to show clocks which are slightly updated versions of the current model's.
The current ZX-14 clocks.
This cap of the new clocks' startup sequence, again taken from the Gadson video, appears to show a new face that's more a refinement of the current model than an all-new look.
A hilarious friend at Kawasaki also (unofficially) said:
“Either it's a ZX-10R upper on a ZX-14 lower photo-chop, or it's the new ZX-10XL prototype, which was created when Kawasaki chefs prepared a delicious three-bean burrito lunch and force fed it to a standard ZX-10R, they then denied all dyno exercise sessions, so the new top-secret unit could grow into a sufficiently aerodynamic rotundness.”
The image also appears to be based on a stock photo from a tire junket all the rags went on last fall. I made Sean, at the behest of Ashlee, throw out all his old bike mags a couple weeks back so we can’t find the original, maybe one of you can.
But yeah, to quote Kawasaki, “total bullshit.”
Understanding the difference between the real deal and total bullshit is important. That applies to motorcycle media too. You aren't looking at the new ZX-14, but when you are, the first time will probably be here on HFL.