Kawasaki Ninja 650

Motorcycle News (UK) - - Sportsbikes -

649cc | 193kg | 68bhp | 790mm Cash price £6489 De­posit £803.88 Mileage 4000pa Rate 5.9% APR Op­tional fi­nal pay­ment £2886

New name, new start – that’s the think­ing with 2017 new Ninja 650. The perky, 649cc par­al­lel twin has been light­ened by 2kg and re­tuned with new cams and in­lets to boost midrange at the slight ex­pense of top end.

The tubu­lar steel frame is also new, pri­mar­ily to shed an im­pres­sive 15kg, and has a few shades of H2R about it as well. The gull swingarm is new, too, and saves a fur­ther 2.7kg; the rear sus­pen­sion’s more so­phis­ti­cated with the ad­di­tion of a ris­ing

rate link­age; there are lighter wheels, too.

The new fair­ing, from cer­tain an­gles, is the spit of the ZX-10R. From the rider’s eye, though, it’s bet­ter still. Kawasaki were keen to main­tain a novice-friendly, up­right rid­ing po­si­tion so al­though peg po­si­tion is un­changed from the Er-6f’s the Ninja has stylish, raised, new clip-on bars which give a nat­u­ral, up­right, slightly canted gait.

But it’s how the new Ninja goes that’s best of all. Up­right, slim, con­spic­u­ously lighter and with a more flex­i­ble en­gine that pulls will­ingly any­where be­tween 4000 and 8000rpm. Novices will love it.

At speed that light­ness and bal­ance add up to a bike that’s phe­nom­e­nally nim­ble yet se­cure. With the screen also ad­justed to its high­est set­ting it’s a de­cent tourer, too.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.