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Honda Hornet 600 ABS test comparison, Kawasaki Z 750 ABS and Triumph Street Triple

Weekend Warriors

Life is almost sterile. Engines no go along smell of oil and gasoline, punk is dead. For the greatest adventure there is insurance and the dealer even has a one-year guarantee on the last used cucumber. But there is light on the horizon: three manufacturers want their models to sell genuine rebelliousness…

Friday noon: get out of your clothes? it can’t go fast enough. No time to sort them out. Put on the dress that smells like thrill. After sweat, gasoline and tilting. And after that, at least a few hours a week, belong only to yourself.
2 p.m., seven hours until sunset. The two best buddies are already waiting in the yard. Pull the motorbikes out of the garage and line them up. Now they stand together for the first time: Honda Hornet 600 ABS, Kawasaki Z 750 ABS and the brand new Triumph Street Triple ?? Machines for people for whom coffee cannot have enough caffeine, who do not have to upgrade themselves with plenty of cubic.
Because none of them are displacement giants. The four-cylinder Honda marks the lower limit with its 599 cm. Triumph’s Street Triple is located exactly in the golden center of displacement at 675 cm, and Kawasaki’s Z forms the upper limit with 748 cubic meters. And which one has the best concept or the ideal displacement? Helmets on, start. The idle speed of the Hornet jumps up to 2500 rpm when cold. It can bang when first gear jumps into its teeth. The Kawa scoffs for the first few meters, may not really accept the gas, after half a kilometer the hiccups are gone. And the triple? Not only hisses in an eerily beautiful way from the push of a button, but also depends directly on the gas from the first second. Here we go. From the backyard out into the weekend pounding in the big city with a tasty treat.
Oops what’s that Was a mountain bike the inspiration behind the development of the Street Triple? With a full tank of 190 kilograms, the Triumph realizes changes of direction with the slightest thigh pressure or gentle handlebar plucking. And constantly pretends to the driver that the congested street is a tin can pylon course that has to be circumnavigated until the pole at the traffic lights is reached. The drawback: the steering angle is very small compared to the competition. Something that is particularly noticeable when switching from the Honda? the 207 kilogram Hornet can be turned emotionally on a manhole cover. And scurrying almost as easily through the sheet metal race. Big difference to the triple: it further harnesses its driver? their tank is longer and the handlebars are not as sporty in the hands as the Triumph. The bottom of the league when jumping between gaps is the Z 750, which weighs 232 kilograms. It places its driver on the machine rather than in the machine, and does not integrate it in the same way as the Street Triple. Overall, the largest displacement in the comparison always reacts a bit more slowly than the two competitors in the inner-city slalom.
Obligatory stop at the last coffee drink before the house route. The dead pants are blowing from the radio, a picture of James Dean is emblazoned on the wall. Feelings like three weeks of vacation. Swallow coffee, enter aisle, shower up! At the end of the kiosk straight there is a right bend. Let’s see who is the first to push in his front wheel. In no time at all, the speedometer shows 100 km / h. The Street Triple and the Z 750 after 3.7 seconds. The Honda is two tenths faster and is the first to turn. But what are two tenths? At this acceleration they correspond to just two meters on the route. If you see life as a race, you can easily bring the brakes back in.
Far more important than a fraction of a second is the fun that the engines bring across. On paper the three are close together: the Triumph has 104 HP, the Kawa 103 and the Honda 100 HP. If the old rule, according to which displacement cannot be replaced by anything, applies here, the sequence is actually clear. But theory is only good if it cannot be refuted by practice.
But it does in this case. Despite almost identical performance, one machine drives the other up and away: There is no match for the three-cylinder of the Street Triple. Regardless of whether it is about accelerating at the apex of the curve or if you just want to quickly zoom from one bend to the next, regardless of whether it is in the lower rev range or at the top of the rev range? the triple follows gas commands practically one to one. In this context, Japanese technicians like to speak of "throttle response." A term they usually pronounce in such a way that German listeners often sink into themselves with a cryptic smile. What is meant is the responsiveness, the reaction of the engine to turns on the throttle. This is so aggressive with the three-cylinder, so direct that you can’t help thinking of the good old carburetors with accelerator pumps. Spontaneously the triple tears at the chain, immediately turns freely and greedily until the limiter puts an end to the lively hustle and bustle at 12500 rpm. Great. Inspiring. Adorable. However, the magic is only partially transmitted to the passenger. Especially when you poke through curves with your gross motor skills, repeatedly opening and closing the gas tap, the load change reactions are annoying and at most pass through as a classic abdominal and arm muscle training for the passenger.
The two four-cylinder engines can do better. In contrast to Triumph, who only feed their Streetfighter with a throttle valve operated by a cable, the Japanese use a double throttle valve system in which the first is adjusted by a cable, the second electronically via a servomotor. Result: very smooth throttle response. That’s great. And fits perfectly with touring bikes. But stop! Cut. What about the aseptic life? I agree! Sleep is out, action is required. Let’s imagine the weekend as a breathtaking kung fu fight. Zack, clap, that was all right. The Street Triple hits as fast as Bruce Lee. Hornet and Z 750 move like in time lapse, which is why you can guess every beat. That’s not how you win a street fight. Okay, okay, let’s get back to real life.
In the fun rating, the Honda four-cylinder is in second place despite the lack of displacement. Because compared to the Kawa, it too depends on the gas and turns wonderfully easily up to 10300 rpm. However, fine vibrations are annoying between 5000 and 8500 tours, especially when traveling at constant speed. The largest engine in the comparison is disappointing. The Z 750 runs smoothly, but the use of power is far less spontaneous. And she can’t really drive away from the new master among the street fitters either. Due to its long gear ratio, the Z 750 presses the same amount of horsepower to the rear wheel as Street Triple at the same speed. And it’s an incredible 42 kilograms lighter!
Why always talk Much can be explained by silence among friends. While cigarettes are glowing, engines are ticking and free upper arms are propped up on the grass, the sun sinks towards the horizon. Time to turn back. Destination point for bikers’ meeting. The return journey takes place through a jungle of curves through which the bikes have to hit their ideal line path.
Triumph clearly dominates here as well. The driver practically meshes with her narrow waist, sits so close to the steering head ?? the bike becomes a part of the body. Hardly any motorcycle can be steered as precisely, directly and casually as the Triple. The interplay of powerful drive, handy chassis and casual, precise steering can be addictive under certain circumstances. Give in, flow through, straighten up ?? gas? a graceful, soft sequence of movements like excessively carried out tango. And the brakes? Stable, easy to dose, good pressure point ?? Except for a non-deliverable ABS, nothing is missing in this regard. The landing gear? The fork set-up is a very good compromise. Comfortable, but still tight enough to enable sporty driving. Only the softly tuned shock absorber is overwhelmed in two-person operation.
As with the engine, the Honda takes second place in the curve dance. It also fires precisely by sweeping, but cannot be steered as casually and directly as the Triumph. That already becomes apparent during the first seat test? you sit more inactive. Although the fork and shock absorber do not work as sensitively as on previous test machines, the suspension of the Hornet leaves a good, balanced impression and can also cope with sporty driving or a trip for two. ABS creates special trust. It controls very sensitively, the brake is very easy to dose and suitable for beginners, despite the not clearly defined pressure point.
What do you think about the Kawa now? It lags behind the strong competition. Still a dynamic bike in and of itself. However, the feedback from the front wheel is nowhere near as good ace with the other two. On the chassis side, the Z got a shade too tight, the shock absorber hops over successive bumps. In addition, your brakes cannot be adjusted as wonderfully as the Honda’s with the more coarsely regulating ABS.
And the Kawa always slightly misses the ideal line, which may be due to the fact that the mounted Dunlop Qualifiers do not harmonize as well with their chassis design as, for example, on the Triumph. Nevertheless, the green will certainly not disappear from the rear-view mirrors of the Honda or Triumph on the home track. The differences are not serious enough for that. The only difference is that the Z-Pilot experiences the same route as in fog, while the Street Triple driver has a crystal clear day. Or, to put it another way: While the whistle is being whistled in front of you, you have to toil behind you.
Motorbike meeting, glowing red sky, 9.45 p.m. Three friends turn into the crowded parking lot. What intense hours full of dynamism, dominated by the dance with the sloping position and the force of accelerating and braking. Time can melt away so beautifully. Suddenly a flip-up helmet stands there and nags: nice look, the three of them. But the windbreak is a joke, not a real bench to spend hours on, no heated grips, not even a luggage rack. Three friends turn around and think in unison: These features wouldn’t have made today’s fun any more. But that’s the way the world is. For many, it should be germ-free, safe and practical. How good that these three pulse accelerators convey a sense of life in the now and conjure up days in which the air still smelled of adventure, you never knew what would happen tomorrow. This is especially true for the new Street Triple.

Honda Hornet 600 ABS test comparison, Kawasaki Z 750 ABS and Triumph Street Triple

Weekend Warriors


Triumph Street Triple
Water-cooled three-cylinder four-stroke in-line engine, one balancer shaft, two overhead, chain-driven camshafts, four valves per cylinder, bucket tappets, wet sump lubrication, injection, Ø 44 mm, regulated catalytic converter with secondary air system, alternator 402 W, battery 12 V / 7 Ah, mechanically operated Multi-disc oil bath clutch, six-speed gearbox, O-ring chain.
Bore x stroke 74.0 x 52.3 mm
Cubic capacity 675 cm³
Compression ratio 12.65: 1
Rated output 78.0 kW (106 hp) at 11700 rpm
Max. Torque 68 Nm at 9200 rpm

landing gear
Bridge frame made of aluminum, upside-down fork, Ø 41 mm, two-arm swing arm made of aluminum, central spring strut with lever system, adjustable spring base, double disc brake at the front, Ø 308 mm, double-piston floating calipers, disc brake at the rear, Ø 220 mm, single-piston floating caliper.
Cast aluminum wheels 3.50 x 17; 5.50 x 17
Tires 120/70 ZR 17; 180/55 ZR 17
Tires in the Dunlop Qualifier test

mass and weight
Wheelbase 1395 mm, steering head angle 65.7 degrees, caster 95 mm, spring travel f / r 120/126 mm, seat height * 825 mm, weight with a full tank * 190 kg, payload * 191 kg, tank capacity 17.4 liters.

Two year guarantee
Service intervals every 10000 km
Colors green, white, black
Output variants 25 kW (34 PS) 72 kW (98 PS)
Price 7,360 euros
Price test motorcycle *** 7549 euros
Additional costs 250 euros

Honda Hornet 600 engine
Water-cooled four-cylinder four-stroke in-line engine, two overhead, chain-driven camshafts, four valves per cylinder, bucket tappets, wet sump lubrication, injection, Ø 36 mm, regulated catalytic converter, 333 W alternator, 12 V / 9 Ah battery, mechanically operated multi-plate oil bath clutch, six-speed gearbox, O-ring chain.
Bore x stroke 67.0 x 42.5 mm
Displacement 599 cm³
Compression ratio 12.0: 1
Rated output 75.0 kW (102 hp) at 12,000 rpm
Max. Torque 64 Nm at 10500 rpm

landing gear
Central tube frame made of aluminum, upside-down fork, Ø 41 mm, two-arm swing arm made of aluminum, central spring strut, directly hinged, adjustable spring base, double disc brake at the front, Ø 296 mm, three-piston floating calipers, disc brake at the rear, Ø 240 mm, single-piston floating caliper, ABS.
Cast aluminum wheels 3.50 x 17; 5.50 x 17
Tires 120/70 ZR 17; 180/55 ZR 17
Tires in the test Bridgestone BT 012 »J«

mass and weight
Wheelbase 1435 mm, steering head angle 65.0 degrees, caster 99 mm, spring travel f / h 120/128 mm, seat height * 800 mm, weight with a full tank * 207 kg, load * 188 kg, tank capacity 19.0 liters.

Two year guarantee
Service intervals every 6000 km
Colors black, yellow, blue, red
Price 7.490 euros
Price test motorcycle ** 8,190 euros
Additional costs 170 euros

Kawasaki Z 750
Water-cooled four-cylinder oven-stroke in-line engine, two overhead, chain-driven camshafts, four valves per cylinder, bucket tappets, wet sump lubrication, injection, Ø 32 mm, regulated catalytic converter, 336 W alternator, 12 V / 8 Ah battery, mechanically operated multi-disc oil bath clutch, six-speed gearbox, O-ring chain.
Bore x stroke 68.4 x 50.9 mm
Displacement 748 cm³
Compression ratio 11.3: 1
Rated output 77.7 kW (106 hp) at 10500 rpm
Max. Torque 78 Nm at 8300 rpm

landing gear
Bridge frame made of steel, upside-down fork, Ø 41 mm, adjustable spring base and rebound damping, two-arm swing arm made of steel, central spring strut with lever system, adjustable spring base and rebound damping, double disc brake at the front, Ø 300 mm, double-piston floating calipers, disc brake at the rear, Ø 250 mm, Single piston floating caliper, ABS.
Cast aluminum wheels 3.50 x 17; 5.50 x 17
Tires 120/70 ZR 17; 180/55 ZR 17
Tires in the test Dunlop Qualifier »PTL«, »NK«

mass and weight
Wheelbase 1440 mm, steering head angle 65.5 degrees, caster 103 mm, spring travel f / h 120/125 mm, seat height * 810 mm, weight with a full tank * 232 kg, payload * 178 kg, tank capacity 18.5 liters.
Two year guarantee
Service intervals every 6000 km
Colors green, black, silver
Output variants 25 kW (34 PS) 72 kW (98 PS)
Price 7895 euros
Additional costs 180 euros * MOTORCYCLE measurements; ** ABS surcharge (700 euros); *** with cockpit fairing 189 euros

MOTORCYCLE test result

Honda Hornet 600 Better suitability for everyday use and the ABS give the Hornet a wafer-thin lead. In terms of driving dynamics, however, it hardly takes a stab against the Street Triple.

Triumph Street Triple Rebel yeah! A motorcycle that you just can’t get enough of. The little triple is addictive and works equally well with professionals and beginners. Crazy!

Kawasaki Z 750 Not a bad bike. But the engine is too tame, the combat weight too high and the handling not as easy as with the competition. Please a little more of what the optics promise.

How to scoring

A pig in a poke: Triumph’s three-cylinder barely gives the four-cylinder competition a chance. It is optimally translated, brilliantly coordinated, runs very smoothly and does not make a mistake. The downside of the digital response: Anyone who does not drive smoothly with the triple, the annoying harsh load changes. Kawasaki’s four-cylinder shines with its velvety smoothness, but is geared too long and is too hesitant to accelerate. The clutch could also work more precisely? here the pressure point is not as precise as, for example, on the Triumph ??, and the cold-running properties also need to be improved. Honda’s four-cylinder turns wonderfully easily, hides the displacement deficit very well and also switches itself best? small switching travel, exact locking. But he just lacks punch.

Winner engine: triumph

landing gear
The British curve robber can be led almost like a feather. The feedback from the forehead wheel is wonderful, the steering response is superb, and the lean angle is more than sufficient. Only at the rear is the set-up too soft. Nevertheless, the triple is stable in the curves? in solo surgery. With a co-driver, the shock absorber is quickly overwhelmed. The Hornet offers the best mix of comfort and firmness. Your suspension set-up is the most balanced, but the suspension elements should respond a little more sensitively. Despite the many adjustment options, the Kawasaki’s chassis tends to be too hard. The shock absorber in particular only works well in two-person operation.

Chassis winner: triumph

everyday life
Tough thing: Both Kawasaki and Triumph sell their customers a rock-hard sandwich without any comfort. This criterion is included in the points evaluation under ergonomics and leads to the devaluation ?? From a purely ergonomic point of view, the drivers sit best on the Street Triple. Almost everything fits here: handlebar width and offset, distance between seat, handlebar and footrests. Passengers, on the other hand, swear over the narrow, short seat bench and also over the little upholstered passenger living area of the Kawasaki. In terms of wind protection, the small wind deflector of the Triumph did not bring outstanding results, but it does improve the look of the machine. When handling the very light triple point deduction for its small steering angle.

Winner everyday life: Honda

The Honda makes braking child’s play. Your ABS regulates super smoothly, the actuation force on the hand lever is very low and the control is great. The ABS of the Kawasaki works a bit coarser, the actuation force is higher, the pressure point doughier ?? The Japanese could definitely use fine-tuning here. Triumph doesn’t offer ABS at all. On the other hand, the dosability of the stoppers is excellent and the effect is very good. If she also got an ABS now…

Safety winner: Honda

Not too big a difference in consumption: On the country road, everyone is content with around five liters per 100 kilometers. At a constant 130, the Honda approved a liter more (6.7) than the competition.

Winner costs: Honda and Triumph

Price-performance winner: Triumph
A motorcycle that leaves little to be desired in terms of driving dynamics, behaves well in everyday life, conveys real rebelliousness, becomes a secret test winner and is unbeatably cheap: Why did we have to wait so long for it?

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