Categories
Auto

Kawasaki Z900 RS, happy birthday


Kawasaki

TEST – Two special editions of the current Z900RS celebrate the mythical Z1 launched fifty years ago, under the name of Kawa 900.

At Kawasaki, RS stands for Retro Sport. A trend launched in the early 1990s with the Zephyr. A “naked bike”, or naked motorcycle, which contrasted with the streamlined models in vogue at the time. Today, it is the Z900 RS which illustrates the trend by marrying the look of a seventies machine with the most advanced technology of the moment. For an additional €600, the “50th Anniversary” version pushes the mimicry to the point of taking up the Fireball brown and dark orange color of the original “four legs”, embellished, as at the time, with a bar of chrome support for the passenger and some specific acronyms.

Kawasaki

Only the four pots are missing. The SE (Special Edition) is more important, since in addition to its Yellowball yellow color, also original, it is distinguished by its Brembo braking, its Öhlins shock absorber adjustable while driving and its golden fork. It is displayed 1,800 € more expensive than the standard version which, at 12,649 € remains a better price-performance ratio.

Retro but not too much

Kawasaki

If the saddle a little high can be a problem for small jigs, it provides in return a straight position of the most comfortable. With considerate suspensions, perfectly smooth controls and a very smooth engine at low revs, this makes changes in town or at the pace of the ride particularly pleasant. But, RS is a bit like Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde. As soon as you turn the handle, it transforms into an impressive sensation factory. Its 4-cylinder, now water-cooled, may be slightly deflated compared to the nasty Z900 (125 hp), in the absence of a windscreen, with its 111 hp of fire, it quickly turns your head . Worthy of a real sports car, the very sharp cycle part keeps pace and therefore fully justifies the name of the model.

Technical sheet

Engine: 4 cyl. liquid-cooled inline, 946 cc, 111 hp, 98.5 Nm

Transmission: by chain, 6-speed gearbox

Saddle height: 835 mm

Tank: 17 liters

Weight: 215 kg

Speed: 220 km/h

Price: from €12,649

.

Categories
Auto

New motorized two-wheelers: tastes and colors


NEWS – Daily trips or leisure, manufacturers compete in ingenuity to attract an ever more demanding clientele.

Since the health crisis and the reduction of traffic lanes in large cities, a source of traffic congestion, motorized two-wheelers have never been so popular. After successive confinement periods, the market is recovering and if the shortage of components and parts resulting in particular from the shutdown of many factories in 2020 and logistical difficulties did not hamper supplies, it could be even more dynamic. The phenomenon is cyclical and that does not prevent manufacturers from polishing their weapons.

Whether they are surfing on ecology, nostalgia or performance, the novelties are legion. All the labels are committed to reducing their carbon footprint in the years to come. In terms of urban and peri-urban mobility, the future is electric. However, the offer is slow to expand because of prohibitive development costs and components. This is why Piaggio, Honda, KTM and Yamaha have joined forces by creating the SBMC consortium whose mission is to develop a common and standardized solution of interchangeable batteries. The objective is obviously to provide the greatest number of users with a relevant response in terms of cost, performance, autonomy and recharging.

Attractive rates

No one yet knows the deadline set by this consortium to market zero-emission machines at attractive prices, but meanwhile, BMW continues its breakthrough. At the start of 2022, the German firm will launch a new electric scooter. Taking advantage of the experience acquired with the C Evolution which was a hit with us but designed from a blank sheet of paper, the CE 04 presents a very futuristic line and major evolutions. The weight drops by 30 kg while the battery is 8.9 kWh (8 kWh before). The autonomy is 100 km for the 15 hp version eligible with the A1 license; 130 km with the 31 hp version. Its main asset: a reduced rate, from € 12,150.

Honda Monkey 125. Honda

As for the nostalgic, the return of the Honda Monkey is undoubtedly a nice surprise. This minibike, which had its heyday in the 1970s, returns with a 125 cm single cylinder with electronic injection of 6.9 kW and a five-speed gearbox. It is billed at € 4,149. For its part, Kawasaki continues to develop its vintage range. After the W800, the Japanese brand is attacking the medium-displacement segment with the Z 650 RS. This bike combines the look and feel of the legendary Z 650 B1 from 1977 with modern technology based on the Z 650.

Yamaha R1 World GP 60th Anniversary. Yamaha

Fans of beautiful objects should also adhere to the Triumph Speed ​​Triple 1200 RR, a Speed ​​roadster revised in Café Racer with lowered strap handlebars and inverted fork. The career of this 180 hp 3-cylinder in-line machine begins at the end of the year from € 20,490. When it comes to performance and feeling, Yamaha goes even further. To celebrate its sixty years of presence in grand prix, the firm in diapason markets a replica of the racing R1 called “World GP 60th Anniversary” and incorporating the historic decoration, white with red stripes. The 4-cylinder delivers 200 hp for a weight of 201 kg. It promises!

.

Categories
Auto

Kawasaki W 800, all the charm of retro


TEST – Combining the look and feel of a 1960s motorcycle with today’s technology is the unique proposition of this extraordinary Japanese woman.

Neoretro, vintage, classic: whatever the qualifier, motorcycle fashion cultivating nostalgia for years gone by is on the rise. BMW nineT, Ducati Scrambler, Royal Enfield Interceptor and Triumph Bonneville are proof of this. One of the most discreet, but not the least successful, is undoubtedly the Kawasaki W800. Although Japanese, it has a real legitimacy in the matter since its original version, the 650 W1, very inspired by the mythical BSA A7, was presented in 1966. Up to 800 cm3 in 2011, discontinued in 2016, it returned to the catalog with a serious technical upgrade.

An inimitable sound

Kawasaki

When it comes to looks, the W800 is certainly the one that plays the retro score the best. Between disc brakes and LED headlight, there are a few concessions to modernity, but it looks like an Englishwoman from the sixties. Certainly, much better finished. From the chrome mudguards to the sausage exhausts, through the fork gaiters, the knee pads and the round counters, nothing denotes. And then there is this vertical twin, beautiful as a sculpture, with its large fins, its polished casings and its distribution by conical torque. An air-cooled twin which, thanks to its 360-degree setting, and not 270, as it has become, is also one of the few to have retained the deep and velvety sound of period mechanics. Its operation is not to be outdone, with nice vibrations and, above all, an astonishing and restful availability at low speed.

Kawasaki

Ideal for the ride or to slip casually through the traffic of large cities, helped by the narrowness of the machine. The W800 is not the champion of the price / performance ratio, but it is accessible to beginners with an A2 license.

Technical sheet

Engine: Vertical twin-cylinder, air-cooled, 773 cc3, 48 hp, 63 Nm

Transmission: By chain, 5-speed gearbox

Seat height: 790 mm

Tank: 15 liters

Weight: 221 kg

Speed: 180 km / h

Price: 10 249 €

.