These new middleweight “twins” carry on the “Z” moniker, the definition of ultimate – and now, Team Green intends to carry forward the same excitement as when the two-stroke, 500cc Mach III broke cover.
According to Kawasaki’s press release, the Ninja 500 and Z500 carry the same engine as that of the new Eliminator (which is available in American markets); as such, the notice of A2 compliance comes with specs rating the bikes to 450cc, or 44.7hp @ 9,000rpm and 31.4lb-ft of yank @ 6,000rpm. This new heart is housed in a narrow trellis chassis, which is dressed in brand new bodywork – the whole kit harkening back to Kawasaki’s 400 platform.
A wider saddle remains the same 30.9” height for both bikes, and new LED lighting accompanies the neat KIPASS (Kawasaki’s Intelligent Proximity Activation Start System) as well as a High-Grade Full Colour TFT Display for the Ninja 500 and a liquid crystal display (LCD) for the Z500.
Suspension duties are carried forward with a telescopic fork at the front and a Bottom-link Uni-Trak, gas-charged shock with spring preload adjustability at the rear.
Add Assist & Slipper Clutch, Smartphone Connectivity, ERGO-FIT, Economical Riding Indicator, a USB-C outlet, the obligatory ABS, and semi-floating front disc brakes with the same disc size as the Ninja ZX-14R, and you’ve got a neat ride that promises further perks if it’s the Special Edition (SE) variant.