A Small-Displacement Dual Purpose
When you first hear about the fact that Kawasaki is coming out with a 2020 KLX230, you might think that the company is doing away with the KLX250. Actually, Kawasaki will sell the bikes side-by-side. The KLX230 is a budget-friendly dual-sport option and it’s all-new.
The bike gets a completely new 233cc air-cooled, fuel-injected engine. It also gets a new steel frame, long-travel suspension, 21-inch front and 18-inch rear wheels, new headlamp, and an optional ABS system. The bike gets six cogs in the gearbox, meaning you can travel longer distances at higher speeds easily, too.
With a price tag of $4,599 without ABS and $4,899 with ABS, it’s clear that Kawasaki plans to take on any and all sub 250cc dual-sport models out there. The new KLX230 is a well-rounded bike. Its shorter wheelbase of 54.3-inches makes it a good trail bike, and the six-speed transmission and powerful 233cc engine make it good for the road.
While the KLX230 isn’t a revelation in the dual-sport market, it is a refinement of what Kawasaki already does very well. It’s a bike that is bound to catch the eye of some trail-going commuters, and it’s priced right. It undercuts the Suzuki DR200SE by a few hundred dollars, and it manages to beat out the by even more. I haven’t ridden one yet, obviously, but I would suspect the bike is well worth the price. Kawasaki may have a winner on its hands with this one.