The Kawasaki Ninja ZX-14-based 1,352cc in-line-four engine with variable valve timing breathes life into the 1400GTR.
The engine has been precisely tuned to deliver smooth power across a wide rev range and pushes out a maximum torque of 139Nm at 6,200 rpm.
The liquid-cooled, 16-valve, engine features variable valve timing for a high torque output at low and medium rpm.
This time around, I decided to take this bike to Fraser’s Hill (Route: Kuala Lumpur - Raub - Fraser’s Hill - Kuala Kubu Baru – Kuala Lumpur).
I was accompanied by three of my regular riding buddies.
The ride from the foothill of Fraser’s Hill to the peak was definitely challenging especially on the countless slippery twisties and tight corners especially after a heavy rain.
Two of my companions who were riding on their easy riders were complaining that their rear tyres lost grip a few times.
But those slippery surfaces did not pose any problem to me.
This is because the 1400GTR is equipped with traction control system that was engineered to deliver smooth riding on any wet roads.
The system monitors the speed differences between front and rear wheels.
Whenever the rear wheel spins much faster then the front wheel, the engine power is reduced to allow the rear wheel to regain grip.
Meanwhile on the way down from the hill, there was so much of braking involved at tight corners and twisties; plus avoiding landslide debris and fallen branches.
At first few tight corners, I was very worried if the bike will be able to stop gently at my command.
Believe me, the braking experience was impeccable.
Kawasaki’s K-ACT (Kawasaki Advanced Coactive-braking Technology) anti-lock braking system (ABS) allowed me to execute controlled and balanced braking.
K-ACT ABS ensures just enough brake force distribution to maximise braking efficiency.
I was so glad that I was riding the 1400GTR.
The 304kg 1400GTR did very well in tackling the twisties and was able to tackle few hairpins like a bike which is half the weight.
That gave me the confidence to flip the bike with gusto.
From the back, it looked like I was dancing with the bike all the way to the peak of Fraser’s Hill and back the foothill.
What puzzled me is why the 1400GTR which was designed for long distance travelling, did not have cruise control.
Most current sports tourers come with this feature which is very much appreciated by riders.
A must mention is that the sound of the horn on this bike is so weak.
It sounded like a kap chai’s squeak and surely a mismatch for the character of this mighty motorcycle.
While doing above just 110kph on the PLUS highway from Kuala Kubu Baru, the engine was revving around the 3,000rpm zone.
At this point the bike was only warming up.
But once the engine goes past the 4,000rpm, 1400GTR would be tearing up the highway effortlessly.
Meanwhile, this RM107,900 tourer does well in the city too.
Countless stops at traffic lights did not tire me despite the weight and size of the machine.
It’s very easy to manoeuvre the bike in tight spaces. You must experience it to believe it.
After riding more than 100km, I realised that the upright sitting position works well for this bike.
The saddle is a bit stiff, and I am assuming it would be uncomfortable for long journey such as from Kuala Lumpur to Phuket.
However, my cheek bums did not feel sore a bit after I made a day trip to Fraser’s Hill.
Yet, I would have preferred a more comfy saddle.
The automatic windshield is definitely very much welcome especially by a light person like me.
On the few occasions which I had encountered crosswinds, the well-designed chassis kept the bike stable without losing balance.
The bike is also equipped with two panniers.
They are water-resistant and are easy to detach.
I could even store a full-face helmet in one of them.
There are few motorcycles out there that offer a good sporty ride but even fewer could deliver a good blend of sportiness and comforts of a modern tourer.
The 1400GTR gives you that.