2018 Kawasaki Z900RS Café Unveiled For U.S. Market

Rennie Scaysbrook | May 14, 2018

2018 Kawasaki Z900RS Café Unveiled For U.S. Market—The 2018 Kawasaki Z900RS Café has been unveiled to the U.S. public at Malibu in California today.

Using the same platform as the base model Z900RS that was released at the end of 2018, the 900RS Café takes things a step further by paying homage to legendary Kawasaki racebikes like the Z1-R Eddie Lawson replica KZ1000.

2018 Kawasaki Z900RS Café Unveiled For U.S. Market

This is more a styling exercise than anything radically different to what you can find on a Z900RS (the test of which you can read here). Under the retro Z900RS Café’s Kawasaki Racing green paint job, you’ll get a 948cc, Z900-derived inline four-cylinder motor that’s been retuned for strong bottom-end and mid-range performance via changing cam timing, upping the compression, using a heavier flywheel, final drive ratio and exhaust design, as well as the two-stage K-TRC traction control system, ABS, 41mm fully adjustable Showa forks and shock and polished spoked wheels designed to look like the old-school rims found on an original Z1-R.

The exhaust muffler is a brushed stainless steel unit compared to the polished finish of the Z900.

Where the Café differs to a traditional 900RS is in the body, with a retro bikini-style fairing housing a cool 170mm LED headlamp that stays fully lit up, regardless of whether it’s on high beam or low beam, like a traditional bulb headlight. As for the brake light, unlike standard LED taillights that appear as a collection of dots, the surface-emitting LED taillight lights up as a solid surface.

The gas tank is a teardrop design that matches to a reworked seat with a much more pronounced hump in it, while the bar has a lower rise compared to the base Z900RS to give it a café stance.

Beautiful twin analog gauges for revs and speed complete the picture.

This is a limited edition model, although we can’t get a confirmation on exactly how many Kawasaki is planning to bring into the U.S. Kawasaki has put an MSRP on the new Z900RS Café at $11,499 and it’ll be available at the end of May.

We will have a test for you soon in Cycle News on the bike that sent tongues wagging at EICMA last year, and is now finally in America.

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Rennie Scaysbrook | Road Test Editor Our newest member of staff is our Road Test Editor Rennie Scaysbrook. A lifetime rider, the Aussie made the trek across the Pacific to live the dream in the U.S. of A.