With Phil Aynsley
I visited the (then) newly opened US Kawasaki HQ in Orange County, California back in 2016 to photograph the KR500 that Eddie Lawson rode in 1982 (Kawasaki KR500 Grand Prix Motorcycles – A Short History – LINK). While I was there I also had the opportunity to shoot another rare green machine – the KZ1000 S1.
In 1982 Kawasaki built 30 (or possibly 29) race-only S1s for the KMC Racing Team plus US dealers who wanted to go Superbike racing. It was basically a copy of the bikes Eddie Lawson and Dave Aldana campaigned in ’81-’82.
Due to most of the company’s race resources being directed towards the European GPs it was decided that while KHI (Kawasaki Heavy Industries, the parent company) would develop the motor, long time Kawasaki mechanic Randy Hall (based in the US) would develop the chassis. The S1 featured an alloy swingarm of his design.
Kawasaki also released a slightly modified KZ1000 – the ‘Eddie Lawson replica’ for street use. The bike seen here is incorrectly fitted with the side cover badges from the street bike.
The dealer cost for the S1 was US$10,999 with no retail price supplied. An original S1 (with spares kit) sold for USD $107,000 in 2013.