Kawasaki Ninja ZX-4R vs Ninja 400: Compared in 10 pics

Modified On Feb 3, 2023 09:01 AM By Sudipto Chaudhury for Kawasaki Ninja 400

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Same engine capacity, but completely different in all other ways

Kawasaki recently added to its middleweight portfolio with the Ninja ZX-4R, and you can know more about it from our story here. Today, however, we’ll be giving you a visual reckoner on the differences between Kawasaki’s 399cc brethren, the Ninja ZX-4R, and the Ninja 400.


Now you’d be forgiven for likening the two green bikes, but a close look reveals quite a few changes. Not to take away from the Ninja 400’s muscular looks, but the Ninja ZX-4R looks that much more athletic, a direct result of its track-focused intent.


This is another place where the ZX-4R has the upper hand. Now, the Ninja 400 does a perfectly adequate job with its telescopic fork and preload-adjustable monoshock. However, it seems underequipped in comparison with the ZX-4R, which sports a USD (a Showa Separate Function Fork, no less) and preload-adjustable monoshock. But that’s just the standard model; the higher variants get preload adjustability up front as well.

Moving now to the brakes, and the Ninja 400 feels like a washout, despite the 286mm front and 193mm rear disc brakes and dual-channel ABS. That’s because the ZX-4R gets dual 290mm discs with radial calipers up front, and a 220mm disc at the rear. But there’s a logical reason for the over-engineering; read on…


And finally we get to the biggest difference between both the bikes, and that’s the heart. We start with the Ninja 400; it sports a 399cc liquid-cooled parallel-twin making 45PS and 37Nm, so it’s no slouch. However, the Ninja ZX-4R blows it out of the water with its 399cc inline-four (yes!) making a whopping 77PS  (80PS with ram-air added) at an astronomical 15,000rpm!  

That said, both get a six-speed gearbox with a slip-and-assist clutch. However, the ZX-4R gets an optional quickshifter too.


Now considering the firepower on offer, it’s obvious the ZX-4R would have an upper hand here as well. So while the Ninja 400 gets a semi-analogue cluster, the ZX-4R gets a TFT console with smartphone connectivity via Kawasaki’s Rideology app, four power modes and traction control!


As mentioned, the Ninja 400 is already on sale in India, though at a wallet-busting Rs 5.14 lakh (ex-showroom India). Meanwhile, the Ninja ZX-4R is currently on sale only in the USA, where the top-spec RR variant retails at $9,699 (or about Rs 7.94 lakh, before taxes). This is much costlier than even the Ninja 650, which is priced at Rs 7.12 lakh (ex-showroom, India)!

Nevertheless, chances of the Ninja ZX-4 coming to India are miniscule; and in any case, if you’re in the market for a track missile, you’ll be much happier with the KTM RC 390, or the TVS Apache RR 310.

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