Jaco Van Der Merwe
Head of Motoring
2 minute read
27 May 2022
9:26 am

Top Gun: Maverick features another lightning quick Kawasaki

Jaco Van Der Merwe

Like in the original 'Top Gun', Tom Cruise rides one of the world's fastest street-legal production bikes.

Picture: Screengrab

Fighter jets are not the only thing Tom Cruise is famous for piloting when playing the role of captain Pete “Maverick” Mitchell. Like in Top Gun, he mounts a motorcycle for an adrenaline rush on the ground in its sequel, Top Gun: Maverick.

And befitting for an air force pilot used to shooting through the sky at twice the speed of sound, it’s not just any motorbike.

The Kawasaki Ninja H2 Carbon that Cruise so fearlessly rides helmetless on the airstrip in Top Gun: Maverick is one of the world’s fastest production street-legal bikes.

Top Gun: Maverick Kawasaki Ninja H2
The Kawasaki Ninja H2 certainly looks the part.

Kawasaki’s Ninja H2 Carbon and Ninja H2 derivates are the world’s only supercharged production hypersport street-bikes.

They are powered by a four-cylinder, 998cc engine which produces 178 kW of power and 142 Nm of torque.

In layman’s terms, that translates to stupid fast. Stupid fast to the tune of a mind-numbing reported 351 km/h top speed.

Not to mention a 0 to 100km/h acceleration of just 2.6 seconds.

These numbers dwarf that of the famous red Kawasaki Ninja 900 (GPZ900R) used in the original Top Gun.

The first of many sportbikes in the Kawa stable to bear the Ninja name was as ground-breaking back in 1986 when Top Gun was released as the Ninja H2 is 36 years later.

The Ninja 900 featured the world’s first 16-valve liquid-cooled inline four-cylinder bike engine and was the first stock standard street bike capable of reaching 240 km/h.

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The Japanese motorcycle manufacturer leapt at the opportunity of again proudly showcasing its finest in Top Gun: Maverick.

Kawasaki not only supplied the production team with four Ninja H2 Carbon models but also two restored Ninja 900s.

A fitting nostalgic reference to a bike that is enshrined in cult film history through its appearance in Top Gun.

“When we had the chance to jump on board and see our Kawasaki Ninja motorcycles on the big screen again, we had to be involved,” Chris Brull, Vice-President of Marketing at Kawasaki Motors Corp USA, was quoted as saying.

“We know that Maverick is a dedicated Kawasaki rider, and we made sure he had a full garage of Kawasaki models.”

There is bad news for those who hoped to get their hands on a new Ninja H2 Carbon after watching Top Gun: Maverick.

It was only offered for a limited time which has lapsed. Kawasaki offers the Ninja H2 in South Africa, but be prepared to cough up R800,000 for one.

If you are considering buying one, please make sure to have enough change left for a helmet.

For more information on the Kawasaki Ninja H2, click here.