October 23 has been marked as the date Kawasaki will unveil the third motorcycle in its line-up to be supercharged after the company dropped another teaser video on YouTube this week.
The short, 18-second clip has flashes of a new supercharged engine, headlights, dash, the trademark metallic lime green trellis frame and a “Z” logo lit up in florescent green lights, indicating we’ll likely have a replacement or partner to the Z800 nakedbike or Z1000SX sports touring motorcycle, the latter of which is getting a little long in the tooth.
There’s a tiny hint of what the bike actually is as there’s a faint silhouette of the model behind the fluro “Z” logo.
Oh well, we’ll only have to wait a few more weeks to find out what it is…
Kawasaki Teases a New Supercharged Machine
Kawasaki has just released a teaser video lasting a whole 11 seconds but filled with the kind of high pitched rattle we associate with their supercharged H2 program, which can only mean one thing—we’ve got a new supercharged baby coming.
Currently, Kawasaki’s supercharger can be found in the Ninja H2, track-special Ninja H2 R and sport touring Ninja H2 SX, and the number one hint that this new bike will not be part of that illustrious family can found at the end of the video when we see the “Z”, which is reserved for nakedbikes like the Z900 or the Z1000SX sport tourer.
Both bikes but especially the 1000SX are prime for supercharging, as when Euro 5 comes into play on January 1, 2020, the SX will fall foul of the emissions limits, as will many high revving motors due to the valve overlap and longer duration required for maximum performance.
Fitting a supercharger to this motor could thus allow Kawasaki’s engineers to extract similar (if not more) horsepower while keeping the revs down, essentially having its cake and eating it, too.
On the other hand, could Kawasaki go the other way and release a smaller capacity motor with a supercharger bolted to it and create a whole new class? The prospect of a Z650 twin-cylinder sporting a supercharger is a mouth-watering one, but this is a long shot—at least for next year.
All will be revealed at EICMA in Milan this November.
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