The 2017 Kawasaki Ninja 650 has been unveiled and gets a host of changes which makes it an even better middle-weight bike for daily use. The motorcycle is lighter and more efficient.

2017 Kawasaki Ninja 650 Red
The 2017 Kawasaki Ninja 650 sees vast improvements all around

The Kawasaki Ninja 650 has been on sale in India since quite a few years and was until last year, the best priced middle-weight bike till the ER-6n came along and Benelli launched the TNT 600i. Also known as the ER-6f in certain markets, Kawasaki has dropped that name completely and the motorcycle will be called Ninja 650 globally. Claimed to be all-new by the company, the 2017 Kawasaki Ninja 650 gets updates which justify the claim.

The design of the Kawasaki Ninja 650 has been heavily updated and it looks more in line with the ZX-10R (the front cowl specially so) and some might confuse it with the ZX-6R but this isn’t a supersport model. The bike gets a X shaped LED tail light (similar to the Honda CB Hornet 160R). The new windscreen visor is adjustable and has three set positions which give it a total range of 60 mm between lowest and highest settings. The motorcycle looks striking and the old Ninja 650 had aged gracefully and needed an update with competition heating up in the segment.

While the engine is the same 649cc, parallel-twin unit, it has been revised and gets dual throttle valves, generating 69 PS of power (a loss of 3 horses) to make it comply with Euro 4 emission norms (there is also a 47 HP restrictor kit to comply with A2 licence requirements). But don’t you worry as Kawasaki has reduced weight by 19 kgs (weighs 193 kgs) thanks to the new trellis-type steel frame and new asymmetrical aluminium swingarm. The other big news is the improvement in fuel efficiency by 8%.

The analogue-digital console on the 2017 Kawasaki Ninja 650 is all new and takes inspiration from the Ninja H2 (the shift light turns from white to pink to red as you approach the redline). The motorbike gets a gearshift indicator and a programmable shift light. The suspension continues to be 41 mm telescopic forks up front and a rear monoshock which isn’t offset anymore and is placed more conventionally. Braking sees an improvement with the new Nissin callipers and the Ninja 650 uses Bosch’s 9.1M ABS. It also gets a slipper clutch.

The 2017 Kawasaki Ninja 650 has a seat height of 790 mm which will make it accessible even to short riders. The bike continues to use an underbelly exhaust system. Kawasaki is offering the new Ninja 650 in four colours – black, white, orange and Lime Green KRT edition. Positioned as a versatile daily machine, Kawasaki is offering a range of touring accessories for this middle-weight offering. The Japanese company is expected to launch the new Ninja 650 in India next year, priced at around Rs. 6.5 lakhs.

2017 Kawasaki Ninja 650

– To be called Ninja 650 globally, the ER-6f name has been dropped
– Loses 19 kgs weight thanks to new chassis and swingarm
– Euro 4 compliant but 3 BHP loss in power although 8% more efficient now
– Gets slipper clutch, ABS and an H2 inspired instrument cluster

2017 Kawasaki Ninja 650
The middle-weight motorcycle is offered in this lime green KRT edition
2017 Kawasaki Ninja 650 Front
The design has been inspired from the ZX-6R and ZX-10R
2017 Kawasaki Ninja 650 Side
A weight reduction of 19 kgs negates the 3 PS loss of power
2017 Kawasaki Ninja 650 India
All new instrument cluster is Ninja H2 inspired and gets a shift light
2017 Kawasaki Ninja 650 Rear
Kawasaki has improved the braking performance on the new Ninja 650
2017 Kawasaki Ninja 650 Black
An India launch is expected early next year, priced at Rs. 6.5 lakhs

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