Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R 599 (2007-2012) Maintenance Schedule and Service Intervals

This is the maintenance schedule with associated service intervals for the Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R 599cc, made between 2007 and 2012. It was just known as the Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R in this period, but because that name has been given to a few different generations of motorcycle, we’ll call it the ZX-6R 599.

The Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R was introduced in 1995 and has been constantly updated throughout the years. At times, the ZX-6R meant a 599cc motorcycle, and at times it meant a 636 cc one.

The 2007-2012 Kawasaki ZX-6R 599 is powered by a 599 cc liquid-cooled DOHC fuel-injected inline four-cylinder engine. It runs a high compression ratio of 13.3:1 and revs very high due to its low-friction design. It makes peak power of 92 kW (125 hp) at 14000 rpm, and peak torque of 66 Nm (49 ft-lb) at 11700 rpm.

The main generations of Kawasaki ZX-6R we have are:

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Things you need to maintain the Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R 599

If you own a ZX-6R 599 and you plan to do your own maintenance, here are some things you’ll need.

ItemKawasaki ZX-6R 599 Spec
OilYou need 3.6L (3.8 US qt) of SAE 10W-40 engine oil “with API SG, SH, SJ, SL or SM with JASO MA, MA1 or MA2 rating”, preferably Kawasaki 10W-40 Engine Oil. You can also use another high-quality oil like Motul 7100 10W-40.
Kawasaki oil grade recommendation
Don’t over-torque the drain bolt (spec is 30 Nm/22 lb-ft per the manual) — use a torque wrench if you don’t have experience with how much torque is enough.
Oil filterOil filter is part 16097-0008, or you can Hiflofiltro performance oil filter HF303RC. Torque for oil filter is 17 Nm (13 ft-lb) (use a torque wrench, and it’s easier on the aftermarket one)
Front brake pads2 pairs EBC brake pads (double hardened): part number FA417/4HH.
Rear brake pads1 pair EBC brake pads (double hardened) for the rear: part number FA192HH.
Spark plugsNGK CR9E, with a spark plug gap of 0.7-0.8mm (use a spark plug gapping tool), torqued to 13 Nm or 9 ft-lb (use a torque wrench)
Air filterUse K&N air filter KA-6007 for a drop-in replacement.
Cable lubricantRemember to lubricate your clutch cable (and brake cables if you have them) with a cable lubricant. Protect All Cable Life is a good general-purpose lubricant.
Chain lubricantThe chain needs to be lubricated every 600 km/400 miles (or more, if it gets wet/dirty). Motul chain paste is cheap and well-loved.
Brake fluidSpec is to use DOT-4 brake fluid, e.g. Castrol DOT 4.
CoolantUse 2.5L (about 2.6 US qt) of nitrate-free, phosphate-free, ethylene glycol-based coolant with anti-corrosion inhibitors. A popular choice is Valvoline Zerex G05.
GreaseUse a lithium soap based grease for all the important greasing points.
Consumables for servicing the Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R motorcycle

Maintenance Schedule for Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R 599

Below is the maintenance schedule for the Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R 599.

The maintenance for the 2007-2012 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R is broken into three sections:

  1. Change/Replacement Items
  2. Engine-related Items
  3. Chassis-related Items


  • For higher odometer readings, repeat at the frequency interval established here.
  • # (Air cleaner, chain): Service more frequently when operating in severe conditions: dusty, wet, muddy, high speed, or frequent starting/stopping.
  • The break-in schedule is omitted as these motorcycles are not current.
  • The original manual recommends many items be done by a dealer (including oil changes). These are omitted here.

Change/replacement items

mi x 10007.51522.530
km x 100012243648Every
Air cleaner element # – replace — K&N KA-600711250 mi (18000 km)
Engine oil # – change (Kawasaki 10W-40 Engine Oil or Motul 7100 10W-40 synthetic)year
Oil filter – replace (HF303RC)year
Fuel hoses – replace5 years
Coolant – change (Zerex G05)3 years
Radiator hoses and O-rings – replace3 years
Brake hoses – replace4 years
Brake fluid (front and rear) – change (Castrol DOT 4)2 years
Rubber parts of master cylinder and caliper4 years
Spark plug (e) (NGK CR9E)
Replaceables — 2007-2012 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R

Engine related items

mi x 10003.757.511.251518.7522.5
km x 100061218243036Every
Valve clearance – inspect
Throttle control system
(play, smooth return, no
drag) – inspect (e)
Engine vacuum
synchronization – inspect
Idle speed – inspect
Fuel leak (fuel hose and
pipe) – inspect
Fuel hoses damage –
Fuel hoses installation
condition – inspect
Coolant level – inspect
Coolant leak – inspectyear
Radiator hose damage –
Radiator hoses installation
condition – inspect
Evaporative emission
control system – function check
Air suction system damage
– inspect
Engine related items ZX-6R 599 (2007-2012)

Chassis-related items

mi x 10003.757.511.251518.7522.5
km x 100061218243036Every
Clutch and drive train:
Clutch operation (play, engagement, disengagement) – inspect
Drive chain lubrication condition – inspect # (Motul chain paste)400 mi (600 km)
Drive chain slack – inspect #600 mi (1000 km)
Drive chain wear – inspect #
Drive chain guide wear – inspect
Wheels and tires:
Tire air pressure – inspectyear
Wheels/tires damage – inspect
Tire tread wear, abnormal wear – inspect
Wheel bearings damage – inspectyear
Brake system:
Brake fluid leak – inspectyear
Brake hoses damage – inspectyear
Brake pad wear – inspect #
Brake hose installation condition – inspectyear
Brake fluid level – inspect6 months
Brake operation (effectiveness, play, drag) – inspectyear
Brake light switch operation – inspect
Front forks/rear shock absorber operation (damping and smooth stroke) – inspect
Front forks/rear shock absorber oil leak – inspectyear
Uni-trak rocker arm operation – inspect
Uni-trak tie rods operation – inspect
Steering System:
Steering play – inspectyear
Steering stem bearings – lubricate2 years
Steering damper oil leak – inspect
Electrical System:
Lights and switches operation – inspectyear
Headlight aiming – inspectyear
Side stand switch operation – inspectyear
Engine stop switch operation – inspectyear
Chassis parts – lubricateyear
Bolts and nuts tightness – inspect
Maintenance — Chassis related items

Tyre size and tyre pressure for the Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R (599)

The Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R 599 (2007-2012) has the following tyre sizes standard in the manual, as well as the following recommended tyre pressures:

TyreSizeTyre pressure
Front120/70 ZR17 M/C (58W)250 kPa/36psi
Rear180/55 ZR17 M/C (73W)290 kPa/42psi
Tyres and tyre pressures — Ninja ZX6R (2007-2012)

The ZX-6R shipped with Bridgestone Battlax tyres, but of course fit the sport/sport touring tyres of your choice.

About the Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R (599, 2007-2012)

In 2007, Kawasaki decided to stop making a cheater 636cc Ninja ZX-6R as they had been in the last four years and just make one motorcycle, the 599.

The result was a bike that was great — many of Kawasaki’s supersports are just that, great — but which didn’t really stand out from the competition on the street.

The 2007-2012 Kawasaki ZX-6R 599 is powered by a 599cc 16-valve DOHC inline four that has great middleweight power, but a little less midrange than the previous generation 636. Like most 600cc bikes (and also like the 636, to be frank), the 599cc 2007-20012 ZX-6R really needs to be ridden hard, with the tachometer at the high end of the range, to feel its grunt.

The engine still makes a formidable amount of power, reaching 92 kW (125 hp) @ 14,000 rpm, and max torque of 66 Nm (49 ft-lb) @ 11,700 rpm. The problem is that down low, figures are less impressive.

It doesn’t help either that Kawasaki dropped the under-seat exhausts after just two short years. It makes sense why. The under-seat exhaust is unnecessarily heavy, and it gets hot. But it looks cool, and some pundits who favoured the aesthetics miss it.

Many other aspects of the ZX-6R 599 are excellent. The engine was redesigned from the crankcase up to be compact, responsive, and to have plenty of overrun.

It’s a very small motorcycle, and doesn’t immediately feel like it’s as powerful as it is. But get the engine over 9000 rpm and it will remind you.

2007-2012 ZX-6R 599 Tachometer dash console
Look at that odometer — has anyone ridden it up to 20000 rpm?

The ZX-6R 599 has some great ride gear considering its vintage — radial-mounted brake calipers, fully adjustable front and rear suspension, and a slipper clutch.

After 2012, Kawasaki went back to making a “cheater” 636 with the 2013 ZX-6R 636.

Manual for the Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R

2012-Ninja-ZX-6R 599 maintenance schedule

The above maintenance schedule comes directly from the user’s manual for the 2012 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R, which is available here.

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