Kawasaki introduce all-new Z650L for 2017
Kawasaki introduce parallel-twin powered, trellis-framed middle-weight to Z series
The Z650, the newest addition to Kawasaki’s Z Series features a 650cc parallel-twin engine with strong low-mid range torque and an all-new lightweight chassis in a slim, compact middleweight package.
The Z650’s handling, feedback and acceleration are complemented by easy-to-manage power delivery and rider-friendly manoeuvrability, offering an ideal blend of sporty performance and everyday versatility. The eye-catching Z styling also reflects the sporty nature of this exciting new machine.
Like the 1976 Z650, whose torquey engine and compact chassis offered a lighter, nimbler alternative to the larger, more powerful Z1, the all-new 2017 Z650 is ideal for riders who prefer agile, sporty riding.
The Z650’s low weight and low seat height both contribute to manoeuvrability, whether riding, walking beside the bike, or foot peddling in a parking lot. The easy-to-manage engine response and strong low-end torque further facilitate low-speed manoeuvring.
The combination of 790mm seat height and a slim chassis also make it easy to reach the ground enables a wide range of riders to enjoy the Z650 with confidence.
Wide, flat handlebar and a relaxed, sporty riding position allows riders to fully capitalise on the Z650’s sporty street riding potential which is designed to inspire confidence and put the rider in the ideal position for control. A stacked instrument cluster features a large analogue-style tachometer with a gear position indicator at its centre, sitting atop a multi-function LCD screen.
The Z650’s aggressive Z Supernaked styling blends sugomi design elements with a slim, light-looking package, resulting in a head-turning design that conveys both excitement and approachability.
2017 Kawasaki Z650 engine
A liquid-cooled, DOHC, 8-valve 649cc Parallel Twin with fuel injection delivers smooth, responsive performance, especially in the low and medium rpm ranges. The strong low-end focus lends itself to sporty riding, but also translates to rider-friendly power characteristics that facilitate control and inspire confidence in new riders.
Performance and feel were optimised for the mid-range (3,000-6,000 min-1). However, in the low-rpm range (below 3,000 min-1) power delivery is very smooth, and even above 6,000 min-1 power and torque curves continue on without dropping off suddenly. Engine settings also contribute to excellent fuel efficiency. WMTC mode mileage is 4.2L/100 km.
- 36mm throttle bodies and sub-throttles.
- Fine-atomising injectors delivering 75 μm droplets.
- Intake and exhaust cams with short operating angles and overlap.
- Open-deck aluminium die-cast cylinder contributes to light weight. Plated, linerless cylinder bores.
- Under-engine muffler improves mass centralisation and lowers the bike’s centre of gravity.
- Triangular layout of the crankshaft and transmission shafts makes the engine very short front-to-back.
- 180° crankshaft drives a balancer shaft for silky smooth engine operation.
- Auto-fast idle system simplifies starting and ensures the catalyser reaches optimum temperature quickly.
- Simplified cooling system routes coolant through the engine cases to the cylinder and head.
- Assist & Slipper Clutch.
Designed to emphasize the appearance of the engine, engine covers (generator, clutch, chain) have a functional beauty. Complemented by the cylinder head design, they give the engine a compact look, contributing the bike’s light appearance.
2017 Kawasaki Z650 chassis
One of the key components realising the Z650’s light weight (noticeable as soon as the bike is lifted off its side-stand), is the fact the all-new frame weighs only 15kg and contributes significantly to the bike’s light, nimble handling.
Components of the high-tensile steel trellis frame follow the ideal pipe line. The lines of the frame were made as straight as possible, and when bends were necessary their angles were made as small as possible, resulting in a design that disperses stress extremely well
Kawasaki’s new in-house analysis technology was used to precisely determine the necessary pipe diameter, length and wall thickness to deliver the ideal lateral and torsional rigidity. This allowed unnecessary material to be trimmed, resulting in an extremely lightweight frame.
- Rigid-mount engine is a stressed member, contributing to the frame’s idealised rigidity balance.
- Steep caster angle (24 degree) contributes the sharp handling.
- Kawasaki’s new in-house analysis technology was also used in the swingarm (4.8kg).
- A short wheelbase and tight turning radius.
- Twin-tube type rear frame.
- 41mm telescopic front forks.
- Horizontal Back-link rear suspension.
- Dual 300mm front petal disc brakes and 220mm rear.
- Dual-piston front calipers.
- Compact Bosch 9.1M ABS unit.
- Star-pattern 5-spoke wheels.
Thanks to the low seat height and the bike’s slim overall design, it’s easy to keep both feet firmly on the ground when stopped, an important consideration for many riders.
The 790mm seat height accommodates riders spanning a wide range of heights, enabling them to ride with confidence. The sporty front seat is also slim at the front, facilitating the rider’s reach to the ground.
The wide, flat handlebar contributes to the Supenaked Z styling while offering a wide grip to facilitate control and the footpeg position offers a relaxed knee bend, contributing to rider comfort.
Both clutch and brake levers are 5-way adjustable, able to accommodate a variety of hand sizes for increased comfort.
2017 Kawasaki Z650 Styling
From its front cowl adorned with meter cover to its compact tail cowl, the Z650’s head-turning design exudes functional beauty.
Complementing sugomi design elements (crouching stance, low-positioned head and upswept tail) give it an instantly recognisable silhouette, its condensed appearance is emphasised by slim, close-fitting bodywork designed to give the bike a light, nimble image that reflects its sporty performance.
Compact front cowl houses a single-bulb headlamp with twin position lamps. The headlamp and cowl are positioned as low and close to the body as possible, contributing to the bike’s condensed appearance.
Close-fitting bodywork with minimum overhang contributes to a slim appearance and a high quality image and sharp front and rear turn signals complement the aggressive Z styling.
A sharp front fender design features holes cut into the sides, contributing to the aggressive image.
Stylish upper triple clamp features strength-reinforcing ribs on its upper surface, while the resin fuel tank cap has no visible bolts. The stylish design also contributes to weight reduction.
A compact, upswept tail cowl contributes to the dynamic, sporty image, and the slim rear seat complements the compact tail cowl. Under-seat storage has space for a U-lock and other small items.
LED taillight lights up in an “Z” pattern, contributing to the sporty image and the strong Z identity.
Stacked instrument cluster features an easy-to-read layout. Analogue-style tachometer features a gear position indicator at its centre and sits atop a multi-function LCD screen.
A number of Kawasaki genuine accessories allow riders to further enhance the Z650’s sharp, sporty looks or offer added comfort or convenience for increased touring potential.
The 2017 Kawasaki Z650 will be available in two colour options: Pearl Flat Stardust White / Metallic Spark Black and Metallic Flat Spark Black / Metallic Spark Black