An aggressive-looking bike with plenty of comfort for touring and handling reminiscent of your favorite supersport models—for less than $20,000 USD? That’s not an impossible dream; it’s the 2022 Kawasaki Concours 14 ABS.
The Concours 14 has been around for years, and Kawasaki hasn’t done much to change it during that time. No, it might not feature quite as many rider aides as rival bikes from BMW or Yamaha, but its combination of price, performance, and comfort for long-distance touring make this an attractive bike in its segment.
For power, you’ve got a 1,352cc in-line four-cylinder engine pumping out 158 HP @ 8,800 rpm and 100 lb-ft @ 6,200 rpm, the same as the engine in the previous year’s model. The only update for 2022 is the new color scheme: Metallic Spark Black, which helps the bike’s already-edgy appearance evoke some extra badassery.
Rider aides here are simple, but not absent: you get Kawasaki Traction Control, fuel economy assistance mode, and an economical riding indicator to help make sure you don’t run out of gas between towns along the highway. There are some nice chassis management features, too—like a tire pressure monitoring system, K-ACT (Kawasaki Advanced Coactive-Braking Technology) ABS, and a monocoque frame.
Kawasaki isn’t always the flashiest of the big Japanese motorcycle makers (although sometimes they like to flaunt their ridiculous engineering prowess with models like the Ninja H2R)—but this bike offers an incredible amount of value for sport-touring riders, especially those who plan on carrying passengers over long distances.
43mm inverted, telescopic fork with adjustable rebound damping and spring preload/4.4 in
Tetra-Lever with stepless rebound damping adjustment and remote spring preload adjuster/5.4 in
Dual floating 310mm petal-style discs with four-piston calipers, ABS
Single 270mm petal-style disc, single-piston caliper, ABS
Fuel Tank Capacity
Metallic Spark Black
31.1/39.4 wo/w saddlebags
52.9 in/57.7 in (windshield down/up)
690.2 lb (672.5 w/o saddlebags)*
Kawasaki Protection Plus
12, 24, or 36 months
2022 Kawasaki Concours 14 ABS Features
Dual Throttle Valves
Late-model sport bikes often use large-bore throttle bodies to generate high levels of power. However, with large diameter throttles, when a rider suddenly opens the throttle, the unrestricted torque response can be strong. Dual throttle valve technology was designed to tame engine response while contributing to performance.
On models with dual throttle valves, there are two throttle valves per cylinder: in addition to the main valves, which are physically linked to the throttle grip and controlled by the rider, a second set of valves, opened and closed by the ECU, precisely regulates intake airflow to ensure a natural, linear response. With the air passing through the throttle bodies becoming smoother, combustion efficiency is improved and power is increased.
Economical Riding Indicator
Using high-precision electronic control for engine management, Kawasaki models can achieve a high level of fuel efficiency. However, fuel consumption is greatly affected by throttle use, gear selection, and other elements under the rider’s control. The Economical Riding Indicator is a function that indicates when current riding conditions are consuming a low amount of fuel. The system continuously monitors fuel consumption, regardless of vehicle speed, engine speed, throttle position and other riding conditions. When fuel consumption is low for a given speed (i.e. fuel efficiency is high), an “ECO” mark appears on the instrument panel’s LCD screen. By riding so that the “ECO” mark remains on, fuel consumption can be reduced.
While effective vehicle speed and engine speed may vary by model, paying attention to conditions that cause the “ECO” mark to appear can help riders improve their fuel efficiency – a handy way to increase cruising range. Further, keeping fuel consumption low also helps minimize negative impact on the environment.
Fuel Economy Assistance Mode
Activating the Fuel Economy Assistance Mode switches the ECU to a leaner fuel map in which ignition timing and fuel injection prioritize fuel economy. Rather than engine response or power, this mode favors reduced fuel consumption, aiming to increase fuel economy when riding at a constant speed. When riding in areas where gas stations are scarce, or when cruising across the continent, being able to make the same amount of fuel last longer is a considerable benefit.
Maximizing the effectiveness of the Fuel Economy Assistance Mode requires a gentle use of the throttle. Nevertheless, especially when used in conjunction with the Economical Riding Indicator, this mode can contribute to significant savings in fuel costs over long distances.
KTRC (Kawasaki Traction Control)
KTRC, Kawasaki’s advanced traction control system provides both enhanced sport riding performance and the peace of mind to negotiate slippery surfaces with confidence. Multiple rider-selectable modes (the number of modes varies by model) offer progressively greater levels of intrusion to suit the riding situation and rider preference.
Less intrusive modes maintain optimum traction during cornering. Designed with sport riding in mind, they facilitate acceleration out of corners by maximizing forward drive from the rear wheel. And because Kawasaki’s sophisticated software bases its dynamic analysis on the chassis’ orientation relative to the track surface (rather than relative to a horizontal plane), it is able to take into account corner camber, gradient, etc., and adapt accordingly.
In the more intrusive modes (and for some models, in any mode), when excessive wheel spin is detected, engine output is reduced to allow grip to be regained, effectively enabling riders to negotiate both short, slippery patches (train tracks or manhole covers) and extended stretches of bad roads (wet pavement, cobblestone, gravel) with confidence.
At its heart, K-ACT ABS is an advanced anti-lock braking system, designed to keep tires from locking up during braking. But K-ACT ABS was designed to be used on touring models weighing in excess of 300 kg (661 lb) – and that is before adding a passenger and luggage.
Complementing its standard ABS function, K-ACT ABS links the front and rear brakes. It monitors the brake force the rider is exerting at both the front and rear, and takes into consideration vehicle speed to ensure highly effective braking while maintaining chassis stability.
For example, let’s say the rider pulls on the front brake lever. To keep the bike from pitching forward, the ABS ECU actuates the rear brake (via fluid pumps) to ensure that front-rear balance is maintained. Should the rider push the rear brake pedal, the system actuates the front brake as well to distribute the load more evenly so that the rear wheel does not lock up. Based on the vehicle speed, K-ACT decides the optimum hydraulic pressure to send to each caliper, ensuring that even with a heavy motorcycle, stable braking performance is possible.
With the compact key fob (portable immobilizer) in a pocket, KIPASS allows riders to remotely release the bike’s steering lock and main switch simply by approaching the bike.
When the key fob is close to the bike, the signal it sends out is picked up and recognized by the KIPASS unit in the bike. Like immobilizer keys, each key fob has a unique signal, making this system also useful as a theft deterrent. The key fob can be recognized when in a jacket pocket, so there is no need for the rider to remove the key to operate the bike’s main switch.
*This system uses the encryption algorithm “MISTY” developed by MITSUBISHI ELECTRIC CORPORATION.
Kawasaki’s monocoque frame is a hollow composite of aluminum parts. Originally conceived by Kawasaki engineers, it uses the engine as a fixed member so that chassis rigidity is formed not only by the frame, but the combination of the frame and engine together. Joining the engine and front and rear suspension units, the hollow box-style frame envelops the engine from above. In addition to being made from lightweight materials, its main section also acts as the air cleaner box and battery box, enabling parts to be reduced for even greater weight savings. Further, because the frame does not run beneath or alongside the engine, the chassis can be made very compact. Especially on large-displacement models, the slim chassis design of the aluminum monocoque frame contributes to ease of riding.
The aluminum monocoque frame was originally developed by Kawasaki in the 1980s for their World Grand Prix works racer. In an era where steel pipe frames were the norm, the aluminum monocoque frame that debuted on the KR500 took the world by surprise. First featured on a mass-production model on the 2000 Ninja® ZX™-12R, this original Kawasaki technology has evolved and can be found on some of our large-displacement flagship models.
2022 Kawasaki Concours 14 ABS Photos
2022 Kawasaki Concours 14 ABS Videos
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