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Production-ready Bimota Tesi H2 revealed: 242 hp in a 207 kg bike!

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from https://www.financialexpress.com

The Bimota Tesi H2 is built around the Kawasaki Ninja H2 power plant and features the iconic Bimota hub-center steering design chassis covered with a carbon fiber bodywork.

Kawasaki H2 had to be the craziest thing there was in the motorcycle world but if you hand one to Bimota, the result is something on the lines of Looney Toons’ Taz. The Bimota Tesi H2 has been revealed in its production self and will be heading for a limited production run this month. It is the first production-ready motorcycle from the Italian manufacturer since Kawasaki purchased a 49.9% share of the company last year. The Tesi H2 uses Kawasaki’s 228 bhp supercharged 998cc four-cylinder engine from the Ninja H2.

The bonkers Tesi H2 was planned earlier but had to be moved to September 2020 due to the pandemic. Things now seem on track in Rimini as Bimota have also announced that the Tesi H2 can be pre-ordered. Not just that, Bimota have also released specifications of the Tesi H2 and here’s why most are calling it bonkers.

It gets Kawasaki’s liquid-cooled 998cc supercharged inline-four mounted to an aluminum chassis with the same bore and stroke as the H2 at 76 x 55 mm but a compression ratio of 8.3:1 more like the H2 R than the SX. Power has been bumped up to a healthy 231 hp at 11,500 rpm and 141 Nm of torque at 11,000 rpm, and it is a freaky 242 hp with ram-air boost. All this in a motorcycle that weighs in at 207 kg (dry).

The front and rear swingarms are made of aluminum with four inches of travel at the front and 5.11 inches at the back. The 17-inch wheels are armed with two 330mm discs at the front and a single 220mm disc at the back. For those of you who will commit to a new Tesi, deliveries of the first batch of 250 bikes will start shipping in October.

Kawasaki Eyes the Podium During First Leg of Historic RedBud Doubleheader

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Foothill Ranch, Calif. (September 5, 2020) – Monster Energy® Kawasaki rider Adam Cianciarulo finished just off the overall podium during the first of two races at the RedBud I National in Buchanan, Michigan. With two races in four days at the iconic motocross layout in Southwestern Michigan, racing on the RedBud track did not disappoint. Cianciarulo battled all day pushing hard for fifth overall (5-3) while his teammate and defending champion Eli Tomac claiming sixth overall (4-5). In the 250 class, Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki rider Cameron McAdoo earned seventh overall (5-7) with Darian Sanayei returning from injury to finish 14th overall (10-20) and Mitchell Harrison finishing 18th overall (14-37).

Mother nature looked kindly on the Pro Motocross paddock as the riders lined up for practice/qualifying with a high temperature only reaching the mid-70s. The mild temperatures were welcomed as the series will race again at the same location on Monday. During qualifying practice, it was Cianciarulo who rode at a blistering pace, missing fastest qualifier by only six one-thousandths of a second while his teammate Tomac was right on his heels qualifying third.

Cianciarulo took advantage of his second gate pick to launch his KX™450 into battle for the lead on the first lap. While running second, the defending 250 class champion tipped over while pressuring the leader and dropped 10 positions in the running order. Once he remounted, Cianciarulo charged up through the field to earn a top-5 finish and an opportunity for an overall podium finish. Tomac wasn’t far behind his teammate off the start sitting in seventh place. Tomac worked hard throughout the moto applying pressure and making passes on the riders in front of him as he made his way up to fourth by the checkered flag.

Cianciarulo once again shot out of the gate in Moto 2, nearly grabbing the holeshot before beginning a race-long battle for second place with rival Justin Barcia. The two battled throughout the moto with Cianciarulo bringing his Monster Energy Kawasaki KX450 home in third place. Tomac started mid-pack and clawed his way up to fifth in the moto.

With their finishes today, Tomac and Cianciarulo hold onto fourth and fifth, respectively, in the championship point standings.

“The way the moto scores fell was a little frustrating. Zach (Osborne) got the starts today and that seems to be where I fell behind. Everyone was really close in pace, so I wasn’t able to come up through the pack like I normally am able to. I was doing everything I could, and I would run up on the end of the train at the end of the moto, but that wasn’t good enough. I feel good for the next race, we’ll recover and be fresh for Monday.” – Eli Tomac

“Today was a day where things seemed to even out, I went 5-3 for second place earlier this season, and today 5-3 was only good enough for fifth. I felt really good out there today and Justin (Barcia) was riding great. I felt I had a little more pace than he did, but I also wanted to be smart when I was trying to pass him. I feel really good right now and I still have a lot of energy in the tank for Monday’s race.”- Adam Cianciarulo

In the 250 class, Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki rider Harrison was comfortable from the start racing in his home state. The Brighton, Michigan native qualified seventh with his teammates McAdoo qualifying 12th and Sanayei in 18th. With ideal track conditions and perfect dirt, lap times were tight throughout the field.

As the gate dropped on Moto 1, it was the No. 74 of Harrison who shot out near the front in third and even ran in second for a moment before dropping a few positions to finish just outside the top-10 in 11th place. McAdoo had his work cut out for him as he was forced to charge from mid-pack to finish ninth place.

Sanayei once again battled for the holeshot in Moto 2 and took the lead early on the first lap to put his Kawasaki out front briefly. It was Harrison and McAdoo though who stayed with the leaders, with both battling for a moto podium. Just past halfway Harrison crashed forcing him out of the race. McAdoo continued his consistent riding throughout the moto, earning seventh place in the moto and seventh overall. Sanayei held on to finish just inside the top-20 at the checkered.

“Today was a little better than last weekend. In both motos I got good starts that kept me close to the lead and I just worked to stay there. There are some things I can clean up and we are going to make some changes before Monday’s race.” – Cameron McAdoo

“I felt like I was riding good today on my Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki KX250. In the first moto, something was just a little off so I just did what I could to get the best finish I could. In the second moto, things were going a lot better. The track got rough and caught me off guard which happens sometimes. I’m going to rest up these next two days and come back out stronger on Monday.”- Mitchell Harrison

“Today was a day where I was focused on doing what I could do well. I got two good starts in the motos, but I was riding with a lot of pain in my shoulder, so it was hard to stay up front. In the second moto, I hit the braking bumps on the downhill and it jarred me pretty good, I felt like I was only able to hold on with one arm for a little bit. We’ve got a couple of days off and I’m going to keep getting better and come out on Monday looking for better results.” – Darian Sanayei

Monster Energy Kawasaki: Ironman MX National Preview

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Ironman – ET3
Three-time and current defending AMA Pro Motocross Champion Eli Tomac has captured two of his three 450 class titles at Ironman Raceway over the past three years aboard his Monster Energy Kawasaki KX™450. In 2019, Tomac clinched the title one weekend early at Round 11 of the Pro Motocross series at Budds Creek Motocross Park.

One Year Ago.
Almost exactly one year ago (August 24th, 2019), the former Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki rider Adam Cianciarulo captured his first 250 AMA Pro Motocross Championship at Ironman Raceway in Crawfordsville, Indiana. The 2019 title was the 15th 250 class motocross championship for Kawasaki, the most 250 class motocross championships of any manufacturer.

Career Best(s).
Last weekend at Round 2 of the AMA Pro Motocross Championship series, Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki rider Cameron McAdoo achieved his career-best moto finish with a fourth in Moto 1. McAdoo went on to finish fifth in Moto 2, which earned him fourth overall and his highest-scoring Pro Motocross overall result to date.

Podium Rate = 60%
Over the past five years of AMA Pro Motocross racing at Ironman Raceway, a Kawasaki rider has successfully reached the overall podium 60% of the time in either the 250 or 450 class.

“Ironman Raceway is going to always hold a special place in my heart because, after years of working my tail off, I achieved a dream of mine that I had since I was a little kid, which was to win a pro motocross championship. It’s not something I will ever take for granted as so few get to actually experience it. I am looking forward to going back there again this weekend as it was just a little over a year ago when I won my title. The track has some massive hills and jumps so I am excited to race my Monster Energy Kawasaki KX™450 there.” – Adam Cianciarulo

“The first two rounds for me have been less than ideal, however, coming into this season there was so much unknown with regards to if we were even going to be able to race. I’m thankful that we get to line up each weekend and do what we love. I am going to approach each weekend as its own race and give it my all to be back on top where we belong. The team and I did some testing this week and we’re looking forward to the weekend.” – Eli Tomac

In only his second AMA Pro Motocross start in the 450 class, Kawasaki rider Justin Rodbell earned a top-10 overall finish at Round 2 of the 2020 Pro Motocross Championship series. The teenage rider from Prince Frederick, Maryland comes in a bit under the radar as he has spent the past couple of years competing down in Australia. 2020 will mark his first full year of competing in the Monster Energy Supercross and AMA Pro Motocross Championship series. Rodbell’s 12-12 scores in the muddy track conditions earned him 10th overall in the competitive premier class. The young 19-year-old rider will lineup aboard his SGB Racing/Maxxis Tires/Babbitt’s Online/Kawasaki KX™450 this weekend in Crawfordsville, Indiana for Round 3.

Rider Eli Tomac Starts Strong at Opening Round of 2020 AMA Pro Motocross Championship

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Foothill Ranch, Calif. (August 16, 2020) – The opening round of the 2020 AMA Pro Motocross Championship kicked off Saturday at the inaugural Loretta Lynn’s National in Hurricane Mills, Tennessee as Monster Energy® Kawasaki rider and three-time defending 450 class champion, Eli Tomac, captured third overall on the day after earning 7-2 moto scores while teammate Adam Cianciarulo earned 12th overall in his premier class debut. In the 250 class, Cameron McAdoo claimed seventh overall (9-6) in his Pro Motocross debut with the Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki team with his teammates Mitchell Harrison and Darian Sanayei scoring 15th and 18th overall respectively.

Due to the heavy downpour of rain the day before, the Kawasaki riders found themselves struggling with the rest of the field to make their way through the sloppy conditions as Tomac spent a vast majority of the second 450 class qualifying session trying to free his bike from the mud after getting stuck during the opening laps. He eventually managed to qualify seventh, three spots behind his teammate and 450 class rookie Cianciarulo who qualified fourth in his debut 450 class ride.

By the time the gate dropped on Moto 1 in the 450 class, the mud began to dry up, leaving behind some deep ruts presenting additional challenges as Tomac battled to seventh in the first lap with Cianciarulo in 10th. Halfway through the moto, Tomac and Cianciarulo raced their KX™450 motorcycles through similar lines at a good pace as they made their way up to fourth and fifth respectively. The teammates began to struggle with the changing track conditions in the latter portion of the moto, losing a few positions as Cianciarulo finished sixth and Tomac in seventh.

Moto 2 saw the reigning 250 class champion, Cianciarulo seize the lead early as he grabbed the holeshot, while Tomac found himself mid-pack off the gate before swiftly making his way up to eighth in the first lap. Tomac capitalized on the bike adjustments made in between motos as he charged forward to cross the finish line in second place and land on the podium for third overall (7-2) on the day. Just as it looked like smooth sailing for Cianciarulo, he caught a rut on the face of a jump and crashed hard, forcing him to roll off to the mechanic’s area to eventually withdraw from the moto resulting in a 12th place overall finish (6-38).

“Third overall on the day and the best way to put it is it was hot and cold. I was up front with the leading group in Moto 1, but I just went backward because I was struggling a bit and with the track. I just wasn’t comfortable, so the team and I made some changes to the bike between motos and I was able to improve and push to the front to be in the fight for the win in Moto 2. We’ll take this result on the day, but we’re looking forward to getting better when we get back out here again next weekend.” – Eli Tomac

“The Loretta’s track was nothing like I remember. I had zero sense of nostalgia out there. The track was ripped way deeper and you need to ride so much harder than I ever did as an amateur here. Obviously I’m tired of crashing, but I felt really good in Moto 2 and even grabbed the holeshot. We’ll keep working hard over the week and suit up for better results for Round 2 at the Ranch.” – Adam Cianciarulo

In their Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki Pro Motocross debut rides, McAdoo and new teammates Harrison and Sanayei were greeted with hot and humid weather in typical outdoor national fashion. In addition to the weather challenges, the trio fought through their first-race jitters as Harrison qualified 13th, McAdoo 14th and Sanayei 22nd in the 250 class.

As the gate dropped on Moto 1, the teammates battled the 40-rider field to grab positions near the front as Harrison pushed forward in eighth on the opening lap and continued to gain positions, even breaking into the top-5 at one point before making a critical error towards the end of the moto and dropping back to finish 23rd. Both McAdoo and Sanayei found themselves further back in the pack but maneuvered their way onward as they went on to finish ninth and 14th, respectively.

Moto 2 saw all three Kawasaki teammates running in the top-10 before misfortune struck for Sanayei as he injured his shoulder during a mid-moto crash, ultimately retiring early to finish 18th overall (14-34). Harrison made sure to improve on his first moto performance as he crossed the finish line in ninth for 15th overall (23-9). It was the No. 29 of McAdoo with two solid and consistent motos for the day after racing to a sixth-place finish for seventh overall (9-6).

Round 2 of the 2020 AMA Pro Motocross Championship, originally scheduled to be in Washougal, Washington, will now continue next weekend on Saturday, August 22nd at the same beloved location of Loretta Lynn’s Ranch in Hurricane Mills, Tennessee.

“All things considered, I am happy with today’s result. I tipped over early in the first moto which ended up costing me, but I was proud we were able to fight back up to ninth. In Moto 2, I got a much better jump out of the gate and was able to put in a solid ride from start to finish. I know what I need to work on and clean up for next week and we’ll come back out swinging again. I can’t thank my entire Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki team enough for giving me such an amazing bike, my KX™250 was an absolute beast!” – Cameron McAdoo

“Well, I can’t be too mad about today. We showed some great speed and consistency throughout the entire day. In Moto 1, I was running top-5 and then I made a boneheaded mistake in the back sand sweeper as I was trying to protect my line and went down. It took me a bit to get going again which ended up hurting my overall. We bounced back in Moto 2 with a ninth place to finish the day out 15th overall. I can’t thank Mitch (Payton) and the entire Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/ Kawasaki team enough for this incredible opportunity to race this amazing bike each week. We are going to continue to improve and push each week and put this bike where it belongs, on the podium.” – Mitchell Harrison

“Loretta’s was a tough one for me and I was just off all day. In the first moto, I fell around 10 minutes into it and had to work my way up from 20th to 14th. The second moto I started off good, but I made a few mistakes and I just wasn’t riding at a good pace. Later in the moto, I crashed and popped my shoulder out, so I wasn’t able to finish out the race. I’ll go get it checked out and hope to be back on the bike and ready for Round 2.” – Darian Sanayei

Review: 2020 Kawasaki W800

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by Sabrina Giacomini from https://www.rideapart.com

A legend brought back to life.

The 2019 show season was a good one for Kawasaki. Not only did Team Green unveil the Z H2 as well as the updated Ninja 1000 SE SX+ and 650, but it also teamed up with Bimota to create the polarizing Tesi H2 prototype. As though that wasn’t enough, the manufacturer also introduced the W800, a stripped down, entry-level version of the W800 Cafe.

I remember vividly the collective gasp we had when the model was first unveiled. The clean and simple lines were a hit among the RideApart team. I even remember being just a little upset about the U.S. and Canada getting the bike in red rather than in the gorgeous shade of green we saw in Tokyo. My disappointment didn’t last long, however, and by the time I picked one up from the Kawasaki HQ, it was completely crushed by how charming the bike actually looked. More on that later, let’s start from the beginning, shall we?

The year was 1965. While Americans and Russians were continuously outshining one another on the aerospace innovation front, Japanese and European motorcycle manufacturers had an ongoing Space Race of their own. Instead of reaching for the stars, however, the Big Four were competing for the title as the maker of the most powerful motorcycle on the market.

The early- to mid-60s were also formative years for newly-formed Kawasaki Motorcycle Co—a new competitor on the motorcycle scene born from the fusion of Kawasaki Aircraft Industry and Meguro Manufacturing Company in 1964. Thanks to the solid foundations provided by Meguro’s 30-year experience with motorcycles, it wasn’t long before Kawasaki introduced its first big displacement bike, the W1, in 1965. The 624cc parallel-twin is credited for putting Kawasaki on the map as a big bike maker and a serious competitor to Honda and Yamaha. The W1 was followed by the W2, then the W3 before the badge was ultimately dropped in 1975.

Fast-forward 24 years and Kawasaki revived the nametag just in time for the new millennium. In 1999, the W650 became Team Green’s attempt to take its share of the retro-revival cake, going up against an old-school heavyweight, the Triumph Bonneville. The model sold in North America for a meager two years before lame sales caused Kawasaki to pull the bike from the States and focus on the European and Japanese markets instead.

The reality of emissions standards soon caught up to Kawasaki and, by 2007, the manufacturer had to bid the W goodbye once again. Thankfully, the company didn’t wait another quarter of a century to revive the venerable badge. In 2011, it introduced the new and improved W800. The parallel-twin was fully overhauled a met the then current regulations. The fun lasted for another five years before the European Union came knocking once more with new regulations on emissions. This time, the turn-around was much faster and after a short year off the market, the W800 made a triumphant comeback in 2018.

Interestingly, instead of introducing an entry-level model first and following up with more elaborate version, Kawasaki did the opposite got the W ball rolling once again with the W800 Café. The entry-level W800 came the following year as a 2020 model-year. 55 years later, the W continues to roll out of the same plant that first produced the W1—talk about looping the loop.

2020 Kawasaki W800
Engine: 773cc, four-stroke, parallel-twin
Transmission: five-speed
Performance: 52 hp/46 lb-ft
Brakes: 1 x 320 mm disc with two-piston caliper front, 270 mm disc with two-piston caliper back
Suspension: 41mm telescopic fork front, preload adjustable twin-shocks back
Wheels: 100/90-19” front, 130/80-18” rear
Wheelbase: 57.6 inches
Seat Height: 31.1 inches
Weight: 496 pounds
Price: $9,199

If you like the look of the Kawasaki W800 in pictures, wait until you see it in person—I have yet to find a photo that does it justice. The W800 is a handsome bike. The proportions are elegant and Kawasaki found the right balance of chrome and black so that the bike doesn’t look like a disco ball. The manufacturer has been particularly attentive to the small details that give the model its tasteful but not tacky vintage look. Features such as the peashooter exhausts, the round turn signals, the braced fenders, and the exposed bevel-drive camshaft were borrowed from the original W, the one that started it all.

There’s no fluff or luxuries involved here—the W800 has standard ABS and that’s about as fancy as it gets. The two big dials at the center of the headstock are your analog speedometer and rpm gauge. There is a small digital display that shows mileage, trips, time, and such in the left-hand side dial and the usual panel of warning lights in the right-hand side one. There isn’t even a fuel gauge to let you monitor your progress. Just like on an older bike, you either have to do a bit of guessing or wait for the fuel warning to turn on.

As a standard, the W800 is your run of the mill, easy-to-get and to ride-on type of bike. The ergonomics are relaxed; for my 5’8” stature, the knees were at a comfortable, almost-90-degree bend and the straight handlebar is easy to reach without having to stretch the arms completely. This is as standard—and as comfortable—as this type of bike gets.

The Ride

If you’re looking for a bike that stands out with a particularly spicy or spunky personality, then chances are the W800 will feel a little underwhelming. Keep in mind that this isn’t a bike meant to be flashy—it plays the understated card and it plays it well. There’s beauty in simplicity, and while the W doesn’t have the spark of, say, a Z, it does have a few good things going for it.

The engine note is my favorite part. As the Kawasaki representative put it when I picked up the bike and did the walkaround, the bike has a really rich note at low rpm. Then, around the 5,000rpm mark, the grunting engine evens out and becomes as smooth as silk. Sure enough, I started the engine and a nice, musical rumble echoed out of the peashooters. Having to hear that aria in parallel-twin at every take-off definitely made city commuting a delight.

In the city, the W behaves impeccably—not even the addition of an occasional passenger fazes it. It’s nimble and easy to whirl around in an environment where obstacles and traffic lights abound. The stopping power provided by the single discs front and back was efficient without being too mushy or aggressive—a good middle ground for a standard bike that won’t try to buck you off the saddle.

Despite weighing a healthy 496 pounds, the bike is easy to maneuver at low speed, or even to walk out of a tight spot. The steering is breezy and light in the hand, you don’t have to wrestle it into submission or convince it to make a turn.

Once you get on the highway, you get acquainted with the bike’s only real flaw. At a certain speed, I could feel the front wheel buffet, a feeling exacerbated by speed. If you wish to put a few hundred miles on the factory tires (hey: they’re “free” tires!) then adjusting your speed accordingly, below the 70-mph mark will help for a while. If you’re willing to spend the extra money, a good set of radials can make the bike virtually perfect.

The engine itself is irreproachable at any speed. Even cruising at highway speeds felt effortless and I barely even touched the fifth gear—the mill happily purred away in fourth around the 6,000rpm mark. Power is easy to manage, the gears are long (you only get five instead of the now-standard six) and the throttle output is nice and gradual. The clutch is light under the fingers and the gears are smooth as butter—just make sure you give the lever a good kick shifting from first to second, the travel between the two seems a tad long which means I often ended up in Neutral. User error, probably.

The Conclusion

A small part of me thought the W800 would have a little more personality. Just a little something-something to give it more oomph, like with the other Kawasakis. However, I was wrong to expect that of the W because that’s not what the bike is for. It’s the celebration of a legacy rather than something revolutionary. Did I smile while riding it? I did, so in that regards, it fulfilled its mission.

The W800 is designed to be simple, straightforward, and mostly to play nice. In fact, it’s so well-mannered that I could easily recommend it as a starter bike. Think about it: it’s easy to maneuver and easy to control which also makes it easy to learn on without being overwhelmed.

Personality-wise, it might not be the right fit for me. That being said, if I could justify owning more than one bike, I would own a W for its looks alone. If you decide to buy one, be ready to have people come and ask you about it because they will. It seriously is that pretty.

2020 Kawasaki ZX-25R: Everything We Know

By | General Posts

by Sabrina Giacomini from https://www.rideapart.com

Return of the quarter-liter inline four.

Nowadays, putting a 250cc, four-cylinder engine in a motorcycle may look like weird strategy, however, the layout was a rather popular one in the 80s. It allowed manufacturers to meet strict Japanese licensing standards while offering customers high-power, high-revving engines. The trend phased out as small bikes were relegated to the use of single or twin-cylinder engines, leaving the four pots to be used in bigger motorcycles.

That was until Kawasaki decided to revive its four-cylinder Ninja 250, or ZX-25R. Rumors of the model’s return surfaced in June 2019, when Japanese outlet Young Machine reported on the possibility of a ZX-25R in the works at Kawasaki. A few months later, Team Green showed up at the Tokyo Motor Show with a little 250cc monster that stole everyone’s heart with its pocket-sized big-bore attitude. Here’s a look at everything we know about the 2020 Kawasaki ZX-25R.

Though Kawasaki has yet to reveal the new ZX-25R’s full specs, we’ve been drop fed information about the bike thanks to a series of videos that showcase its abilities. In one of those clips published by Kawasaki Indonesia, we get to watch WSBK racer Jonathan Rea whip the baby Kawi around the track in Jerez. That’s when we find out that the little 249cc, inline-four redlines at a staggering 17,000rpm—screaming note included.

As Rea tackles a straight, we also get to watch the ZX reach a speed of at least 162 km/h (100 miles per hour)—we say “at least” because in said video, Rea shifts into 6th gear as he reaches 100 mph at roughly 15,800rpm, suggesting that the bike can be pushed even further. We simply don’t have an official stop speed yet. The possibilities that the video suggests, however, are exciting.

Same goes with power figures—Kawasaki has been tight-lipped about official numbers. Early estimates suggest it should produce between 50 and 60 horsepower. For comparison, that means the 250 would make between 7 and 17 horsepower more than the Ninja 400.

What we do know about the model is that it’s built on a WSBK-derived chassis with a 37mm inverted fork at the front and a horizontal back-link suspension setup at the back. It will feature riding modes (identified as “Full” and “Low” in one of the videos) as well as Kawasaki’s proprietary traction control system and quick shifter.

We doubt the model will make its way to North America, only because of its placement and pricing within the lineup. The model recently launched in New Zealand where pricing was set at NZ$15,990 (US$10,430), making the smallest ZX on the market more expensive than a Ninja ZX-6R (in the U.S.). The model is gradually making its way West but where will Kawasaki draw the geographic line for the 2020 ZX-25R, we can’t say for sure. With a bit of luck, the European market will be deemed viable and we’ll only be a few-hour flight away from be able to try one.

Top Gun-Inspired Federal Moto FED-016 “Danger Zone” Isn’t Your Average Kawasaki

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by Mircea Panait from https://www.autoevolution.com

Back in April, news broke out about Top Gun: Maverick. One of the most anticipated movies of 2020 has been pushed back to December 23rd instead of June 24th, morphing from a summer blockbuster to a Christmas blockbuster.

As opposed to the lovely GPZ900R from the 1986 original, Tom Cruise – or should I say Maverick – switches to a different Kawasaki in the sequel. To the point, he’s riding the Ninja H2 supercharged supersport motorcycle.

In keeping with the Kawasaki and Top Gun themes, Federal Moto came up with a one-of-a-kind motorcycle that started life as a GPZ1100. Named “Danger Zone” after the Kenny Loggings song, the bike has been treated to 3D printing and water-jet cutting to create an awesome-looking roadster.

The Chicago-based garage told Bike EXIF that “the commission came from an ‘80s kid. He’s based out of Ohio and only swears by Kawasakis and KTMs.”

Regarding the four-cylinder engine of the custom sportbike, Federal Moto didn’t cut any corners. The nut-and-bolt rebuild includes 3D-printed top covers, stainless-steel velocity stacks, and no fewer than four Mikuni carburetors from a KZ1000. Cone Engineering “Big Mouth” stainless-steel mufflers are also featured.

If you think the fuel tank looks familiar, that’s because it was transplanted from a Honda CB1100. The front forks are sourced from a Suzuki GSX1300R Hayabusa while Cognito supplied the steering stem, upper triple tree, and custom front-rim hub.

Finished in glossy black and Kawasaki Green, FED-016 as it’s also called, further flaunts a bite-the-back-of-your-hand beautiful seat. Dyna electronic ignition with Motogadget m.lock remote ignition, the m.unit control box, m.switch push buttons on the clip-on bars, and a Motoscope Pro gauge are also worthy of mention.

Custom fabrication includes the steel seat pan, the rear subframe and supports, along with the tail unit, LED headlights housing, and side covers. “We reckon Maverick would approve,” said Michael Muller of Federal Moto.

 

Kawasaki Z900 review: You don’t have to get your kit off and start a fight to like it

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by Geoff Hill from https://www.mirror.co.uk

It may be an evolution rather than a revolution, but the latest version of this popular naked streetfighter looks good and is tons of fun, with a great engine and a very attractive price tag

Question: A naked streetfighter is

a) A football fan after the bars shut in a nudist colony.

b) Someone who thinks that naked streets should be brightened up with those nice hanging baskets full of petunias.

c) The small green thing on which I’m hurtling around a corner with a smile on my face.

The answer, of course, is c – in other words, a sports bike which has been stripped bare of any fairings, folderols and fripperies to look more lean, mean and aggressive.

Or in this case, the latest incarnation of the Z900, a very nice 32,000 of which Kawasaki has sold since introducing it in 2017 as an evolution of previous 750 and 800cc versions.

To be honest, it didn’t really need to update this one apart from the pressure of Euro 5 emissions demands from Brussels, but the Kawasaki boffins thought they may as well take the opportunity to tweak a few other things while they had their sleeves rolled up.

They started with the aesthetics, reshaping the nose, side panels and fuel tank for a more aggressive look, and sticking in LED headlights while they were at it.

Thankfully, they didn’t muck about with the seating position, which, while slightly compact for anyone of 6ft 7in like me, is perfect for smaller folk, canting you forward slightly to leave your hands resting lightly on the wide bars and needing only the hint of a nudge to leave you carving into bends like a cornering craftsman or woman on their way to a BBQ for a bit of LOL.

It’s one of those bikes on which you only need to think of where you want to go, and you’re already there.

Anyway, where was I? Ah yes, admiring the new TFT screen, which although only 4.3n compared with some of the 7in monsters out there, shows all the information you need at a glance, including which of the four riding modes you’re in – Rain, Road, Sport or Rider if you want to reduce the ABS or the newly added traction control.

Or even switch the latter off completely if you like the smell of burning rubber in the morning, and your dad owns a rear tyre shop and gives you mate’s rates.

It being the sort of bright, sunny day which makes you glad to be half alive, I spurned Rain, since that reduces the power and I usually get bored with that after five seconds, and launched straight into Road. I know, call me a wild, impetuous fool, but my family motto is Carpe Diem. That’s Latin for Seize the Fish, since you ask.

Anyway, where was I before I interrupted myself again? Ah yes, enjoying the splendidly brisk progress, aided and abetted by a light clutch and slick gearbox and accompanied by a civilised snarl, like a well-brought-up lion.

With a bigger catalytic converter and exhaust, it definitely sounds better than the previous version to my ears, well tuned over the years by waiting for the rare sound of incoming cheques hitting the doormat.

The clutch and gearbox are so good that while a quickshifter would be a nice option, it’s not necessary and would remove that very attractive eight at the start of the price tag.

Time to switch to Sport mode with a quick press of the button on the left bar, and…there was no difference at all, since as I later discovered, all it does is reduce the traction control.

Either way, there’s so much grunt from the engine that you can quite happily spend all day in the top three gears.

With decent Nissin calipers and big twin discs up front, braking is great, although there’s poor feel and bite from the rear brake. Mind you, most sporty riders I know aren’t even aware that bikes are fitted with rear brakes.

The suspension, meanwhile, is nicely balanced between firm and plush, keeping the bike stable in corners but soaking up rough patches without having a panic attack.

All in all, looks good, loads of fun, great engine and a very attractive price.

Now if you’ll excuse me, the bars have just closed, so I need to get my kit off and go out to start a street fight.

The Facts: Kawasaki Z900

Sharp: Restyled front end gives it a more aggressive look

Engine: 948cc liquid-cooled inline four

Power: 124bhp @ 9,500rpm

Torque: 99 lb ft @ 7,700rpm

Colours: Grey/black; white/black; green/grey, black

Price: £8,899

Kawasaki Introduces 2021 KLX Off-Road Line, Keeps Prices Low

By | General Posts

by Daniel Patrascu from https://www.autoevolution.com

Now that the months-long lockdowns imposed by the global health crisis are beginning to be lifted, people can once again start thinking ahead to a summer of adventure and fun. And what can be more enjoyable than taking a ride on a bike somewhere in the wild?

To help along with those dreams, the 2021 line of Kawasaki KLX off-road motorcycles for the American market was announced this week by the Japanese bike maker, with its share of surprises and most of the technology carried over from the previous version.

Whereas up until now the line of bikes was comprised of three distinct models, starting the new model year one of them has been dropped: as soon as the new family hits the roads, the KLX110 will no longer be available. Kawasaki said the KLX line will now consist of three bike versions, but using just two engine configurations.

The first is the KLX230R off-roader “purpose-built for serious fun in the dirt.” The bike is powered by a 233cc air-cooled engine linked to a six-speed transmission and manual clutch. It rides on full-size off-road wheels, measuring 21 inches front and 18 inches rear. Also equipped with long travel suspension, it will sell for $4,399 for the new model year, and it will become available at dealers in July.

The KLX140R comes in two variants, made different by the size of their wheels. The first is the 144cc-powered machine fitted with 17-inch front wheels and 14-inch rear, while the second, created specifically for taller riders, comes with 19-inch front and 16-inch rear wheels.

Both bikes are powered by the same 144cc four-stroke engine that comes with an electric starter and keyless ignition, and is linked to a manual clutch and five-speed transmission. Pricing for the KLX140R has been set by the Japanese at $3,149, and the two models are already available for purchase in the U.S.

After The Ninja And The Z, Is The Kawasaki Vulcan H2 Next?

By | General Posts

by Sabrina Giacomini from https://www.rideapart.com

The God of Fire is getting a boost.

In 2015, Kawasaki introduced its first modern-day supercharged motorcycle, the Ninja-based H2. Four years later, the Z H2 hypernaked followed. What will happen next? After all, developing a new engine takes time, R&D, and funds, so when a new block is created, it makes sense for manufacturers to take full advantage of its potential. So, will Kawasaki simply stop there or will find other applications for its forced induction mill?

The answer to that could be the latter. Rumors from Japan suggest that Kawasaki could be about to shake things up in the power cruiser segment, supercharger style.

According to Japanese site Young Machine, there is apparently a Vulcan H2 in the works at Kawasaki. The model would, of course, use the same 998cc supercharged inline-four as its Ninja and Z siblings.

The speculations about a Vulcan H2 are connected to the rumor that Kawasaki is planning to overhaul its Vulcan lineup altogether. Considering the manufacturer would likely have to rethink the chassis to accommodate the supercharged engine, timing the new H2’s development with a lineup upgrade all makes sense.

Thai site MotoRival produced a render of what they imagine the Vulcan H2 would look like. Silhouette wise, the design seems inspired by the Vulcan S with the single-rider saddle, tear-drop tank, and elongated handlebar but the headlamp cluster is clearly borrowed from the Z H2 which creates a weird blend of modern and more classic lines.

This is only speculation as Kawasaki has neither confirmed or denied the rumor. According to Indian Autos Blog, if the manufacturer really is working on a (super)powercruiser, chances are we won’t see it for another couple of years. Whether you like powercruisers or not, the notion of a supercharged model is admittedly something we can be curious about.