The Dream Bike
The biking enthusiasts world over cherish a shared dream, that of owning one of the Kawasaki dirt bikes. These bikes have always topped the world markets with their features and specifications. However, these are not affordable to all; therefore, used Kawasaki dirt bikes can be acquired with a little bit of care and awareness.
The league of dirt bikes and off-roaders gives a top slot to Kawasaki dirt bikes. These can be termed as the best specimens of Japanese technology to have been presented to the world. Year after year, these bikes have strengthened their position in the markets due to the vast innovations that have been introduced in their design and technology. The company has always been at the topmost position in the markets and also in its performance in the World Championships, thus inspiring many to lay their hands on them and experience the power they possess!
History of Kawasaki Dirt Bikes:
To delve into the history of Kawasaki dirt bikes, one has to go back to the war affected Japan. This was the field where many dirt bikes took birth, and on similar lines, Kawasaki bikes rose from the ashes raised in Hiroshima and Nagasaki. However, the first company of Kawasaki bikes had come into being long before the war, in the year 1896. This was when Shozo Kawasaki founded the Kawasaki heavy industries. The company dealt in the areas like shipbuilding, electrical generating plants, and railroad rolling stocks. This continued until the year 1960 when Kawasaki took over Meguro motorcycles, which was a significant player in the field of bike manufacture then. In fact, the company was the only bike manufacturer at that time making high-quality 500cc bikes.
First Year Build
Within one year of this acquisition, the Kawasaki bike company made its first bike, the B8. The B8 was a 125cc, 2-stroke Kawasaki dirt bike which took over the markets with a sweep. The following year saw the company releasing a series of 2-stroke bikes that ranged between 50 and 250cc. A fascinating feature of these bikes was their 250cc disc valve known as ‘Samurai’ which was attractive to the Americans. A few years after, in 1966, the company released the 650W1, which got the fame of being the biggest bike made by Japan. It set an inspiring tale for the future innovations like the BSA A10 which used elements of it to design a new dirt bike. The journey of innovations and technology advancement at Kawasaki didn’t stop here; after the release of the 650W1, they went on to make the twin carburetors and then the high pipes which became the attractions for the ‘scrambler’ version of this Kawasaki dirt bike.
The coming years brought more laurels for Kawasaki dirt bikes as the bike made an entry into world championships and even won there! Dave Simmonds was the first biker to bring this honor to Kawasaki in 1969. In the following years, the company released many other innovations such as the Kawasaki H1. This one was a real tough bike for the rough terrains. With a 500 cc, three cylinders and 2-stroke engine, the bike was something any dirt biker could ever desire! This particular bike established the company permanently in the world markets. However, for those who liked the bike but didn’t find themselves capable of handling its immense power, there were variations released in the same. These were the S1 and S2, which were 250cc and 350cc respectively. Even a bigger model of the same was released to cater to the demands of the power hungry, the H2 (750cc).
At this point, the Kawasaki dirt bikes company was fast moving towards the generation of four-stroke bikes as its competitors were busy working on them. Not to their utter shock, the Honda 750 Four was released soon after forcing Kawasaki to hasten the process of moving towards the four-stroke generation of dirt bikes. The plans for creating the four-stroke Kawasaki monster were realized in the year 1973, with the release of the W1. It had the immense power boost of 900cc that left the competing Honda bike far behind in the race for fame. In the coming years, the company added to its power by making it 1000cc which was an original count of any dirt bike created until that time!
More World Championships
Meanwhile, Kawasaki kept on showing its presence in the world championships. The year 1978 saw the company bag the titles in 250 and 350cc categories. The count went on to increase in the coming years as racers kept on considering the Kawasaki dirt bikes as the first choice for their biking careers. Around this time itself, the company released its heaviest bike till date! The KZ1300! The KZ1300 was a six-cylinder bike that had water cooling and shaft drives in its design. The bike made an impressive entry by displaying its potentials in the Death Valley. The design was made even better in the coming few years when the bike got a digital fuel injection system in its next model, ‘the Voyager.’ Due to its power, the company marketed this bike as ‘a car without doors.’
The Year of the 600 Class and the Ninja
Then came the year 1981 and brought along the Kawasaki GPz550. It was an air cooled two valves per cylinder bike that put the life and fame of the rival 750cc bikes into danger. This was the beginning of the era of 600 class bikes. Soon after came the liquid-cooled, four valve GPz900R ‘Ninja’ that was given a grand release at Laguna Seca. Another family of Kawasaki dirt bikes hit the market in 1989 with the version of the ZXR bikes which were the race replicas of 750cc and 400cc bikes. It was followed by the ZX-11 which had a 1052cc engine, which beat all others in the race for being the best dirt bike ever! The bike gained the title of being the fastest produced bike in the world. The bike showed its prolonged presence at the world championships as well when it won the title for four consecutive years.
Bikes for Kids
Around this time the rage for dirt biking also affected the young minds, therefore, like many of its competitors, the company launched models of Kawasaki dirt bikes for kids. These were meant to introduce the world of dirt biking to the little champs in such a way that they remained safe and at the same time, learned the nuances of biking easily! The new millennium also experienced the vast power of Kawasaki dirt bikes as the company went on to shower its fans with more and more innovative features. There came the Zx12R in 2000, the newly empowered ZX-6R, the ZX10R and then the ZX14 in 2008, which went on to get entitled as the ultimate sporting bike ever made! The company is now also working on revising the design of its classic Ninja 250 and the KLR 650 in an attempt to bring them back into the market in a new avatar