Onboard The 2017 Kawasaki Z650

Ride from home to office on Kawasaki’s $7,000 middleweight naked

It's no secret we're always trying to get our staff to work a little harder. Especially the ones who always seem to have too much to say. "Write it down!" we always shout at each other. Zack Courts is a classic case, always arriving to the office after his commute with a bunch of opinions about the bike he's riding. Anyway, it's always too much this, not enough that, and occasionally has some decent insights that we thought might help consumers or entertain enthusiasts.

So we strapped a camera and microphone to his helmet and told him to turn it on when he leaves his house. A lot of his talking in his helmet is complaining about drivers, yelling at red lights, and wondering why billboards aren’t more expensive. But sometimes he actually talks about the bike, and those are the parts we keep. Got a bike you would like to see discussed? Let us know and we’ll send him home on that one next.

2017 Kawasaki Z650 dyno chart
That’s how a power curve should look; nice and linear. The Kawasaki Z650 suffers mostly from not as much peak power as its competition from Yamaha and Suzuki. Notice, though, that torque is nearly at peak numbers by 3,500 rpm. Keen readers will notice that this bike we tested shows less power and torque than the bike used for the test below.Motorcyclist Staff

Click here to read a comparison between the Z650, SV650, and FZ-07:

A little extra info on this bike:

QUICK SPECS

PRICE AS TESTED $7,399
DISPLACEMENT 649cc
CLAIMED WEIGHT 412 lb. (187 kg)
FUEL CAPACITY 4.0 gal. (15.1L)
SEAT HEIGHT 32.7 in. (830mm)
MEASURED HORSEPOWER 57.6 @ 7900 rpm
MEASURED TORQUE 42.4 @ 6590 rpm