Look again at Kawasaki’s GPZ

Bag an air-cooled Kwacker now while they’re go­ing cheap

Motorcycle News (UK) - - Buying & Selling -

Some­times you scratch your head and won­der why a par­tic­u­lar bike is shoot­ing up in price. For me, right now, it’s the old air-cooled Kawasaki GPZ750. Re­ally good ones seem to be fetch­ing bet­ter money than the sem­i­nal 900R.

If you missed the GPZ750 the first time around, it was the best all­round buy in the early/mid-1980s sports­bike mar­ket. Yamaha had the odd wide-barred 750 Seca, Suzuki had their new 16-valve GSX750EF, Honda were in chaos be­cause their early VF750F was eat­ing its top ends, and Kawasaki… well, Kawasaki tweaked their 750, it­self lit­tle more than a hogged-out Z650 lump, with more power, and dropped the en­gine in a Uni-trak chas­sis, af­ter a false start with a twin-shock ver­sion. They ab­so­lutely cleaned up.

Why? Be­cause it looked like the GPZ1100, it did about 130mph, re­turned 50mpg with­out much ef­fort, han­dled well for the era and was tough and re­li­able. Oh, and it was an air-cooled Kawasaki four, and they have a more loyal fol­low­ing than One Di­rec­tion.

I bought one half a dozen years ago for £1275 – low miles, all orig­i­nal and very, very clean. It’s one of those bikes I’m now kick­ing my­self for sell­ing. You just can’t buy them for that sort of money now – in fact, you’d need to dou­ble the out­lay to get a de­cent one.

It’s time for a sec­ond look at the air-cooled GPZ range. The 1100 is al­ready ex­pen­sive in re­ally good con­di­tion, es­pe­cially if it’s an early twin-shocker: a to­tally orig­i­nal one made £4000, yes, four grand, on ebay re­cently. The 750 is head­ing that way, no­body wants the 305 twin, and that leaves the 550, which was in pro­duc­tion for a long time and is as cheap as chips right now. My ad­vice? Buy now.

NEXT WEEK Sin­gle life is much more en­joy­able than you’d think

● Work out what you can af­ford as a de­posit and in monthly re­pay­ments for the du­ra­tion of the con­tract. ● You can get PCP on any amount from £1500 up­wards. ● Choose your new mo­tor­cy­cle (or a used one – bikes up to three years old can also qual­ify). ● Set a re­pay­ment term of be­tween two and four years. ● Set your an­nual mileage at up to 24,000 miles a year. Your mileage will af­fect your monthly pay­ments. ● De­cide which end-of-agree­ment op­tion is best for you when the time comes – most roll on to an­other bike.

Be aware that… ● You do not own the bike, and won’t un­less you pay the fi­nal bal­loon fig­ure. ● A sig­nif­i­cant pro­por­tion of the credit is de­ferred un­til the end of the con­tract, and it’s not the cheap­est route to own­er­ship. ● You must have fully com­pre­hen­sive in­sur­ance. ● Ex­cess mileage charges ap­ply. ● Abuse or ne­glect will dam­age your bike’s guar­an­teed fu­ture value. ● The bike is at risk of re­pos­ses­sion if you do not main­tain re­pay­ments.

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