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Kawasaki Motorcycle Road Tests
& Reviews

Kawasaki Motorcycle Guide

The Kawasaki Motorcycle & Engine Division has been manufacturing motorcycles since 1954. The trademarked names of some of Kawasaki's powersports machines–from Kawasaki Ninja sportbikes to Kawasaki Vulcan cruisers to Kawasaki Jet Ski personal watercraft–have become household names.

2015 Kawasaki Concours 14 ABS – Road Test Review

2015 Kawasaki Concours 14 ABS

Greg Drevenstedt
December 12, 2014

Kawasaki has given the Concours 14 ABS a minor update for 2015, and its available in Candy Lime Green for the first time. Photography by Kevin Wing Borrowed from the French, concours (pronounced kawn-koor; the “s” is silent) refers to an assemblage of things or a contest, such as a concours d’elegance,... Read more »

2015 Kawasaki Ninja H2 – First Look Review

Downforce is generated by the chin spoiler in the upper fairing and the airfoil cross-sections in the mirror mounts.

Rider Magazine Staff
November 5, 2014

The supercharged, street-legal 2015 Kawasaki Ninja H2, resplendent in Mirror Coated Black. One of the most exciting announcements during the 2014 Intermot show, held last month in Cologne, Germany, was the introduction of the Kawasaki Ninja H2R, a 300-horsepower, supercharged, racetrack-and-experts-only... Read more »

2015 Kawasaki Concours 14 ABS – First Look Review

2015 Kawasaki Concours 14 ABS

Rider Magazine Staff
November 5, 2014

Several important refinements should help make the Kawasaki Concours 14 ABS more popular than ever. For its eighth model year Kawasaki has nicely revised and updated the 2015 Concours 14 ABS sport-tourer, which offers a high-powered but flexible 1,352cc engine derived from an earlier version of the Ninja... Read more »

2015 Kawasaki Vulcan S / ABS – First Look Review

2015 Kawasaki Vulcan S ABS

Mark Tuttle
October 15, 2014

A low seat height, adjustable footpegs and Ergo-Fit optional seats and handlebars will allow the Vulcan S / ABS to fit a wide range of riders. Kawasaki is betting that a large number of cruiser enthusiasts are willing to do without the traditional looks of a V-twin-based machine in exchange for low cost,... Read more »

2015 Kawasaki Versys 650 ABS/LT and Versys 1000 LT – First Look Review

2015 Kawasaki Versys 1000 LT

Greg Drevenstedt
October 15, 2014

After a long wait, the Kawasaki Versys 1000 is finally coming to America, with extensive updates and standard hard saddlebags. When the Kawasaki Versys 650 debuted for 2008, it had styling as unusual as its name (a mash-up of “versatility” and “system”). Powered by the 649cc parallel twin from... Read more »

Intermot First Look: 2015 Motorcycles from BMW, Ducati, Kawasaki, KTM, Suzuki and Zero

2015 Kawasaki Ninja H2R

Greg Drevenstedt
October 1, 2014

Held in Cologne, Germany, the International Motorcycle, Scooter and E-Bike Fair, known as Intermot, is the first big international motorcycle show of the fall season, giving many manufacturers a chance to unveil new models for the upcoming model year. The 2015 crop of new bikes was a big one, with all-new... Read more »

Comparison Test: Honda CBR300R ABS vs. Kawasaki Ninja 300 ABS SE

2015 Honda CBR300R ABS, 2014 Kawasaki Ninja 300 ABS SE

Arden Kysely
October 1, 2014

Although both resemble larger models in their respective lineups, the Honda and Kawasaki are different approaches to the just-under-300cc sportbike. (Photos by Kevin Wing) It was only a matter of time. In the face of Honda’s 2011 CBR250R challenge to its long-lived Ninja 250, Kawasaki embarked on a... Read more »

Retrospective: Kawasaki KZ1000 Z1-R TC (Turbocharged): 1978-1979

Year/Model: 1978 Kawasaki KZ1000 Z1-R TC; Owner: Daniel Schoenewald, Camarillo, California.

Clement Salvadori
September 4, 2014

Year/Model: 1978 Kawasaki KZ1000 Z1-R TC; Owner: Daniel Schoenewald, Camarillo, California. As the old adage goes, when enough is good, more is better. In late 1977, Kawasaki’s new Z1-R, a somewhat sexier version of the KZ1000, was good for a quarter-mile in a hair under 12 seconds at 110 mph. For... Read more »

Kawasaki Teases the Upcoming 2015 Ninja H2

Rider Magazine Staff
September 2, 2014

Kawasaki has announced that it will unveil an all-new addition to its Ninja sportbike line at the Intermot Motorcycle Show in Cologne, Germany, which starts on September 30, 2014. The new motorcycle will be named Ninja H2 in honor of Kawasaki’s original 1972 H2, and is being promoted with the tagline... Read more »

2015 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-14R ABS 30th Anniversary Limited Edition

2015 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-14R LE

Rider Magazine
July 11, 2014

The 2015 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-14R LE features special paint reminiscent of the 1984 Ninja 900. Kawasaki is celebrating the 30th anniversary of the Ninja with a very limited edition of numbered 2015 ZX-14R ABS motorcycles. Only 300 ZX-14R Limited Editions will be available, all individually numbered and... Read more »

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Kawasaki Motorcycles, Who Uses Them?

Kawasaki motorcycle test drives are only the beginning. The company offers a full range of motorcycles, from cruisers, sport tourers, sportbikes, dirt bikes and the iconic Kawasaki KLR650 dual-sport to ATVs, side-by-sides and personal watercraft.


Kawasaki Motorcycle Standouts

The 1984 Kawasaki GPZ900R helped usher in the modern sportbike era with its liquid-cooled, 16-valve, in-line four engine that was capable of more than 150 mph. It was the first motorcycle marketed under the Ninja name and the subject of many Kawasaki motorcycle reviews. The 1986 Kawasaki ZG1000 Concours was powered by a 997cc in-line four with shaft drive, and it had a full fairing, tall windscreen, lockable saddlebags and large fuel capacity, making it one of the first sport tourers (it was replaced by the Concours 14 in 2008). In 1987 Kawasaki motorcycle test drives began to include the KLR650, a 651cc single-cylinder dual-sport motorcycle that stayed in Kawasaki's lineup all but unchanged for 21 years (it was updated for 2008), developed a reputation as an inexpensive, durable adventure bike, helping to launch numerous around-the-world trips and a large aftermarket for accessories.

Kawasaki motorcycle reviews made the Concours 14 Rider's 2008 Motorcycle of the Year because it reinvented the venerable Concours, building a comfortable, well-appointed sport tourer around the Ninja ZX-14 engine, with the addition of Variable Valve Timing for a broader powerband.

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