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Pirelli SA Bike of the Year 2017 bike by bike:

Finalist – Kawasaki Z900


There were 15 finalists in the 2017 SA Pirelli Bike of the Year and only one winner. You might agree with the judges and you might not, so The Bike Show decided to take a look at each one and see why what was where. Click Next or Previous on the icons at the bottom of the page to see more, or click here to go to the beginning. In didn’t make the top six, but it made the finals – the Kawasaki Z900.

Story: Harry Fisher

BOTY Kawasaki Z900Naked bikes aren’t all that popular here in South Africa and it’s not hard to see why; distances are vast and without any wind protection, naked bikes can be very tiring to ride over any significant distance.

And this is a shame as there are some brilliant naked bikes out there and the new Z900 from Kawasaki is one of them. Designed as a replacement for the slightly staid Z800, it not only has more power (123bhp, up from just under 100 for the Z800) but weighs 21kg less! This gives it a whole new lease of life on the road, helped by a lovely chassis, sporty but still comfortable riding position and decent suspension and braking components.

So, naked bikes aren’t great for distance riding but that doesn’t mean to say they are not great bikes. The Z900 is a lot of fun to ride in many different situations; commuting with flair, weekend blast with the mates, track day fun; just a really good all-round bike that only misses out on touring ability and, to be honest, how often do you go touring anyway?


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