Meet Top Gun's two-wheeled, supercharged hero
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If there is one action star who craves the need for speed then it is undoubtedly Tom Cruise. This blockbuster king of Hollywood has never been one to slow down and he’s about to get plenty of high speed as he returns to the Top Gun franchise, with Top Gun: Maverick.
In a surprise announcement on Friday, Cruise attended the San Diego Comic Con and premiered the all-new trailer for his latest action film, Top Gun: Maverick. Audiences were offered a taste of the pulsating action offered in the new film, and the trailer did not disappoint.
Alongside the impressive jet fighter footage, and shots of beach-filled fun, which draws back to the nostalgia of the original film that was released back in 1986, over 34 years ago, fans were also treated to bikes. Lots of bikes. And in a sequence of pure cinematic cool, Cruise’s Maverick pulled on his bomber jacket, wrapped on a pair of aviator sunglasses and pulled back the cover on his classic Kawasaki GPZ900R.
Produced between 1984 and 2000, the Kawasaki GPZ900R was the earliest member of the Ninja family of sport bikes. It would also be Kawasaki’s, and the world’s, first 16-value liquid-cooled inline four-cylinder motorcycle engine and could reach speeds of up of 240 km/h. Its inclusion in 1986’s Top Gun would turn the bike into a cultural icon, and Cruise would prove adept at handling the bike and he made the most of its speed up on the cinema screen.
Seeing it back here certainly brings back all that nostalgic cool, and it’s one of two bikes that will make an appearance in Top Gun: Maverick. The other bike that will be present is a Kawasaki Ninja H2, which Cruise is seen racing down a runway beside an F/A-18 Super Hornet in a scene that mimics the original Top Gun.
As an upgrade, the Kawasaki Ninja H2 is a great step forward for Top Gun, and this bike represents Maverick’s evolution as a character, while also staying close to his roots. This supercharged supersport bike is packed out with a supercharged (two-speed centrifugal) 998 cc incline-4 DOHC engine and can reach speeds of up to 295 km/h. This ability for speed, along with its sleek aerodynamic design, which incorporates plastic body panels makes it a perfect addition to the upcoming film.
The 2019 edition of the Ninja H2 also features 15 percent more power from updates to the intake, plugs, ECU and air filter and this is the model that Cruise will be racing in Top Gun: Maverick.
During his vast career, Cruise has made a habit of choosing projects that allow himself to express his fascination and passion for speed and motorsports. With films ranging from Top Gun to Days of Thunder and the Mission: Impossible franchise, Cruise has taken every chance he can to put the throttle down.
The result of this has also lead to some pretty impressive brand partnerships with Cruise forming a considerable attachment to BMW. This association with BMW was featured heavily in both 2015’s Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation with the appearance of a BMW S1000RR sport bike and again in 2018’s Mission: Impossible – Fallout with a BMW R nineT Scrambler. Cruise has also shown a real liking for Triumph, including the Triumph Bonneville Scrambler and the Triumph Speed Triple, and has a real affinity for Ducati, particularly the Ducati 99R.
Fans will be in store for a very fun ride and will feel the need for speed, when Top Gun: Maverick arrives in New Zealand theatres next year on June 25, 2020.