She was the first of her bloodline, the original Ninja. Debuted in 1984, the GPZ900r would mark the first salvo in the great Sportbike Wars. Though still a prized commodity in her ancestral home, most GPZs in the Americas had been long since discarded. Like Loomstate denim or pelagic porn, the original Ninja required a discerning taste not found in most Western riders. Luckily, the ICON 1000 garage team had a palate for such Asian delicacies.
The 80s were unkind to any sportbike that failed to make vast improvements with each successive model year. By 1986 the GPZ was overly long in her pronounced fangs. Replaced by the bubble-glassed hammers of the first-gen Gixxers and the glittering boy-racer Hurricanes, the GPZ900r would quickly fade from prominence. Though forgotten to the masses, the Old Ghost will continue to haunt the dark halls of our Slabtown garage for generations to come.
Modified fairings and dry-break tank gave the Ninja the sophistication of a monocled endurance racer. A Wiseco big bore kit, K&N filters, ducted Earls oil-cooler, and Racefit pipe increased her mechanized punch. The oversized Roaring Toyz swingarm, equipped with Ohlins TTX race shock, kept things properly stanced in the rear. And while the English origin of both the Avon tyres and EBC rotors was well known, the suspicious domestic origin of the bespoke billet wheels could be neither confirmed nor denied.
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