Kawasaki Ninja 400

Kawasaki Ninja 400

The Kawasaki Ninja 400 is yet another model released for the Learner or LAMS and commuting motorcycles class in 2018. This class is full of models and manufacturers tempting first time owners wanting a motorcycle they can use for more than just the first 12-24 months.

You may wonder why there is now a 400cc version to the original 250cc then 300cc the answer is pollution or emissions controls.  In a sense it’s a de-tuned traditional 400cc from the 1980’s. As a result it’s not really a motorcycle you can keep for that much longer since it is down on power but you have to start somewhere and the Ninja 400 is clearly a good place to start.

In term of looks the Ninja 400 on the outside is a good looking motorcycle with the latest Kawasaki design themes.  Under the fairing it boasts an all new Trellis frame design though it is not exactly obvious when you look at it. The main factor that differentiates it from the capacity versions is the slightly larger rear tyre.

In terms a specifications There is nothing to really write about apart from the new frame design. The Ninja 400 doesn’t even have USD forks but then for the price you wouldn’t expect it. If my past rides of this engine are anything to go by it’s not a exciting engine but for a newbie it’s more than enough for a little while. Finally, Kawasaki has not over priced or under specificed the Ninja 400 so worth a look.

Is the Kawasaki Ninja 400 any good? Well that depends what you want in a first motorcycle or a commuter, stereotypical styling albeit contemporary adequate power and since is derived from the original 250 reliability is a great start but I prefer something special! even if my choices are a little more expensive.

Kawasaki Ninja 400 Key Specifications
Engine: 2 cylinder 8V DOHC (EFI)
Capacity: 399cc
Power/Torque: 33.4 Kw @ 10000 RPM 38 Nm @ 8000 RPM
Gearbox: 6 Speed
Kerb Weight: 168 Kg Approx
Performance: 0-100kph NA seconds Approx
Max Speed 100 Kph Approx
Fuel Economy: 14 litre fuel tank
Approx 4 Lts per 100km
Seat height: 785 mm
Dimensions: L1990 x W710 x H1125
Recommended Retail Price: $6,490 (2018)

 

2018 Kawasaki Z125 Pro KRT Replica

Kawasaki Z125 PRO KRT Replica

The 2018 Kawasaki Z125 PRO KRT Replica is as it’s name says, but it’s not a mechanical clone just graphics and cosmetics. (KRT Kawasaki Racing Team) The regular Z125 was released in 2016.

The Kawasaki Z125 is a direct competitor to the Honda Grom which the the current market leader by having a cult following. These are mini motorcycles that can be ridden on public roads and are aimed at joy seekers or perhaps really short people. Alternatively this is a more niche choice for learners riders as it is catergorised as a LAMS model.

In terms of looks, construction and design the Kawasaki claims the Z prefix from Kawasaki’s much larger Z motorcycles. However the Z125 doesn’t really look like any of them. The designer’s self is looking on the cheap side especially next to the arch rival GROM and also does’t indicate how fun these bikes are supposed to be. That  said the materials and build quality are good and in line with the cheaper motorcycle range.

In terms of engine tech it’s all very modern to extract so much power from 125cc which is less than half a cup of water! It’s fuel injected with air cooling for simplicity and less weight. The USD forks are a nice touch along with the disc brakes which are clearly over kill for such a slow motorcycle.

In terms of competition there are a ton of competitors from the known  motorcycle brands of KTM, Suzuki, Honda and there are plenty of other lesser  known manufacturers. Which one you choose will probably be dependent on price and how much they can be modified. Lets face it bikes are not daily rides for most riders.  That said the bigger bikes like the Duke 125 and the new GSX-R125 are bigger and have a fraction more power but it much of a muchness in terms of performance.

If you like the look and want to join the mini-motorcycle class then is a great choice. While I prefer to Honda From due to it’s looks and enhancement repetiore that’s no reason why Kawasaki and aftermarket suppliers will jump on to this new competitor in the class. In terms of price, it’s on the road for around $5000 is cheap by new motorcycle standards but is on the expensive side for a 125cc.

Kawasaki Z125  Key Specifications
Engine: 1 cylinder 2V SOHC (EFI)
Capacity: 125cc
Power/Torque: 7.1Kw @ 8,000 RPM 9.6 Nm @ 7500 RPM
Gearbox: 4 speed 
Kerb Weight: 101 Kg Approx
Performance: 0-100kph NA seconds Approx
Max Speed 100 Kph Approx
Fuel Economy: 7.4 litre fuel tank
Seat height: 805 mm
Dimensions: L1700 x W750 x H1005
Recommended Retail Price: $4,249 (2018)