Kawasaki Supercharged Z Model

Kawasaki released a second video teasing a supercharged Z model, showing a few glimpses of the naked bike and confirming it will be revealed Oct. 23 during the Tokyo Motor Show.

The few clues offered in the video suggest the new model will indeed be a naked version of the Ninja H2, likely using the same supercharged 998cc Inline-Four engine. When Kawasaki dropped the first teaser, we speculated on the possibility of a different displacement, perhaps in the middleweight range. The second teaser shows a glimpse of the exterior of the supercharger and part of the engine, which looks nearly identical to the H2.

Here’s the Ninja H2 for comparison:

Kawasaki H2 supercharger

While the engine looks similar, the green trellis frame has a completely different structure from the H2 and even the H2 SX. We suspect the subframe was designed to support passenger seating, which the Ninja H2 does not.

Another clue is the presence of Kawasaki’s rivermark above the headlights. Kawasaki only reserves the symbol for its most significant models like the H2, which supports the theory of another liter-sized bike instead of a middleweight displacement.

Other details confirmed in the video include a new TFT display and turn signal stalks (the H2 has the signals on the mirrors) with the air intakes positioned over them, a change that also makes room for a broader headlight design.

As for the bike’s name, we suspect the new model will be called the “Kawasaki Z2.” The original 746cc Z2 (also known as the Z750) was introduced in Japan in 1973 as a smaller version of the 903cc Z1. Of course, the legendary “Z1” name may also be another potential moniker, but Z2 would better align it beside the Ninja H2.

We’ll find out more in the next couple of weeks, leading up to the Oct. 23 reveal at the Tokyo Motor Show.

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