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K&N Gives Sport Bike Riders Choice Between Street and Race-Spec Air Filters

American Superbike Champion Toni Elias shows the K&N race filter for the Suzuki GSX-R1000

American Superbike Champion Toni Elias shows off the K&N race filter for the Suzuki GSX-R1000

Modern sport bikes teeter right on the razor's edge between street legal daily riders and full-on race bikes. For many of the hottest sport bikes on the planet, K&N has you covered whether you ride on a closed course or on public roads. Later, we will take a look at the sport bike models for which K&N makes both types of filters. But first, let’s compare K&N’s street-oriented air filters and their race-spec, track-only brothers.

K&N Direct Replacement Sport Bike Filters

K&N has a nearly half-century legacy of producing the world’s finest washable, reusable filters that are direct replacements for restrictive stock air filters. While these filters allow a substantial increase in airflow, they require no engine management modifications for their performance benefit. They are also street legal in most states.

K&N direct replacement filters feature multiple layers of our legendary oiled, pleated, cotton gauze filter media for performance-enhancing airflow. The reduction in restriction that the filters provide is part of the K&N design goal of increased horsepower, torque, and throttle response.

K&N air filter for the Honda CBR1000RR - product view.

K&N offers street and race-specific filters for many sport bikes like this one for Honda's CBR1000RR

For K&N’s street-designed air filters, that power bump does not come at the expense of engine protection. The same filter media that provides more airflow also traps airborne dust and dirt extremely effectively. K&N’s product evaluation lab is utilized to test filtration efficiency on most filters, and that data is available on the product page of most applications.

K&N Race-Spec Sport Bike Filters

Track day, closed course, and racing bikes will benefit from the raw power that K&N’s race-spec air filters will provide. These filters are designed with two plies of filter media and fewer pleats than our standard K&N high flow air filters for the ultimate in airflow.

Unlike K&N’s direct replacement filters, our race-spec units will require remapping of the engine’s fuel management system. They work well with full-race exhaust systems and other high-performance modifications. Race-spec filters are not for street use.

These filters fit directly in the factory airbox and are fully washable and reusable for years of reliable service. Simply put, you will not find a better all-out performance filter for race and track applications – period.

Filter test data sheet for the K&N AL-1010 for the AL-1010

K&N street duty filters give excellent filtration. The Aprilia AL-1010 filter test is shown here


Look below for the numerous sport bike manufacturers and models that are candidates for both the standard K&N high-flow filter and the race-spec, track-only model. For specific model years and applications, use the K&N search by vehicle tool to search K&N's comprehensive online portfolio of filters.


Aprilia is the perfect starting point for our look at bikes that can be fitted with either a K&N direct replacement or a race-spec air filter. In the relatively brief history of the company, Aprilia has taken 54 world championship titles and has won an impressive 294 Grand Prix races.

The Italian company’s sporting flagship, the RSV4, and the exciting Tuono are prime candidates for either of K&N’s purpose-built air filters. The standard K&N AL-1010 will keep the Aprilia models street legal while giving a substantial boost in power-producing airflow. The race-spec AL-1010R will give a race or track day Aprilia the potential for even more horsepower and torque.


The Bavarian beast of a sport bike, the BMW S1000RR, has become a staple on the podium of World Superbike racing as well as a favorite of sport-oriented street riders. As such, street riders and racers both have a great choice of air filter for the bike.

K&N Kawasaki Ninja filter - product and box

K&N fiters for both street and track come pre-oiled and ready to install in your sport bike

If your BMW S1000RR is going to find its home on public streets, the BM-1010 is the logical choice. Race and track oriented S1000RRs will benefit from the added airflow of the K&N BM-1010R.


The sport bike legacy of the venerable Honda marquee is legendary. From local club racing all the way up to MotoGP, Honda is a front-runner.

Honda’s middleweight speedster, the CBR600RR can be fitted with the HA-6007 for street use, or the HA-6007R for the track. Honda’s liter-sized 1000RR will benefit from the K&N HA-1008 for the street and the HA-1008R for the track.


Kawasaki and speed have become virtually synonymous over the decades. K&N makes both street and race-spec air filters for two bikes in the Kawasaki sport bike family. The ZX14R also has an application-specific K&N filter option.

ZX6R 600cc Ninja owners can choose the street model KA-6007 or the closed-course KA-6007R version. The applications for the 1000cc ZX10R Ninja are the KA-1011 for the street, and KA-1011R for the track. The big and bad ZX14R Ninja will use the street-biased KA-1406.


K&N YA-6008 filter for the Yamaha YZF - product view

Every K&N sport bike filter is carefully engineered for a perfect fit in the factory air box

The K&N-sponsored Yoshimura Suzuki American Superbike team has proven that GSX-R is the class of paddock. K&N has developed both street and race options for a number of Suzuki sport bikes.

The Suzuki GSX-R600 and GSX-R750 can be fitted with the K&N SU-7511 for street duty, and the SU-7511R for race and track applications. Owners of the fire-breathing GSX-R1000 can choose the street-specific SU-1009 or the race-spec SU-1009R. Suzuki GSX1300R Hayabusa riders can choose the SU-1308 street filter or the SU-1308R race filter.


The Yamaha YZF line is race tested, but fully at home on public streets. Like the other sport bikes we have discussed, the Yamaha is a candidate for both street and track-only K&N filtration.

The 600cc YZF R6 will use the YA-6008 on the street and the YA-6008R on the track. YZF R1 street pilots will use the K&N YA-1009 or YA-1015 and racers of the 1000cc sport bike can opt for the YA-1009R or YA-1015R depending on the model year.


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