Home Forums Shifter Karts Stock Moto vs ICC (KZ) .. Which to choose and why? Reply To: Stock Moto vs ICC (KZ) .. Which to choose and why?

Thomas Barth


I will try to answer the questions you pose with some degree of authenticity. I have serviced the KZ (ICC) shifter engine for approximately 13 years. Yes, I am biased toward the KZ.

1. Performance (Is ICC KZ a better performing engine or does Stock Moto outshine it?)

YES!, the KZ is a bona fide kart shifter engine. It will out perform the spec moto.  That’s why moto has it’s own class.

2. Maintenance (What are typical maintenance costs with Stock Moto vs ICC and how long can you typically run each engine without having to replace something?)

I am not familiar with the stock moto but I believe it should be a fairly low maintenance. Maintenance schedule will depend on hours/gallons of fuel put through engine. Example – a KZ lower end  bearing (rod) will need replacing after approximately 55 gallons of fuel. A piston in a kZ will go for 10 to 15 gallons, (pistons are amazingly sturdy components), change ring / bearing and keep on ‘truckin’.

3. Cost (Which cost more and is the added expense worth it?)

If the stock moto is assembled as specified by SKUSA rules then the cost will be in the neighborhood of 3K. Remember a spec moto is a conglomeration of Honda engine parts with out sourced accessories (pipe, mount etc.)

The KZ comes as a complete package including pipe, silencer, carb etc. The cost for a new KZ10B – 5K. Yes, there is a cost difference favoring the moto but than again we comparing apples to oranges. If you have driven a moto but not the KZ, the difference  in performance will help you make up your mind.

4. If cost wasn’t an issue which would you prefer just based on sheer performance?

See above.

5. If you chose ICC/KZ which manufacturer would you suggest?

All KZ makes available in U.S. are very good. TM is probably most prevalent today.

6. Is the ICC/KZ class still popular in your area of the country?

My area of the country is the Great Lakes region. For us the venue is pretty much Road Racing.  I can attend  5 different road racing course in my region. My guess is that a typical event, the moto/KZ  attendance is roughly 50/50.

You will need to be aware of the tracks in your area and what classes they offer. If there is a shifter class, chances are it includes KZ’s. One thing to remember is the U.S. is a very large in geographical area compared to Europe (KZ’s). Unless you have a major track near you it might be slim pickin’s trying to find a suitable venue near enough to participate regularly..

As I said, I am definitely pro KZ. My devotion to KZ comes partly from my engineering background, from ease of maintenance and the awesome performance of the KZ shifter kart. I cannot truthfully say that the KZ is cheaper than the moto from a service standpoint. I have never done a cost comparison. Considering that the moto ( CR125) is no longer in production Even though the Honda supporters rave about the endless supply of parts left over from the manufacture of motocross bikes and I still have a problem with no factory support such as design changes that improve reliability, performance and service. Remember, what you see is what you get, forever.

Just callin’ it the way I see it. I’m sure there will be retaliation.