The first Kawasaki electric motorcycles are revealed… with a big but

Kawasaki has just revealed the technical sheet for its first electric motorcycles, the Z e-1 and the Ninja e-1. Classified in the 125 category, these new products do not really shine in terms of autonomy.

About two years after revealing the main lines of its offensive on the electric motorcycle market, Kawasaki is getting to the heart of the matter and revealing the characteristics of its first two battery models: the Z e-1 and the Ninja e-1 . These new products share the same technical sheet but differ in terms of style: the Z e-1 takes the form of a roadster, while the Ninja e-1 is more like a sports car.

An e-Boost function to go faster

It is on the 125 cc segment that Kawasaki has decided to focus initially. The Z e-1 and Ninja e-1 are therefore both accessible with an A1 license. Their motor delivers a torque of 40.5 Nm and a maximum power of 9 kW (5 kW nominal). The top speed is identical from one motorcycle to another, despite a slight difference in weight in favor of the Z e-1 (135 vs 140 kilos for the Ninja e-1). The two electric Kawasakis can go up to 99 km/h, but only in Road mode and with the e-Boost function activated, which lasts at best 15 seconds.

The Ninja e-1, on the other hand, is a bit faster without the e-Boost function. It promises 64 km/h in Eco mode and 88 km/h in Road mode, respectively 2 and 3 km/h more than the Z e-1. On both motorcycles, e-Boost can also be activated in Eco mode to gain around ten km/h.

Electric Kawasakis with limited autonomy

The Z e-1 and Ninja e-1 are aimed more at an urban clientele. Their two 11.5 kilo batteries are removable, which allows them to be easily recharged at home. They are located between the driver’s legs and have a total capacity of around 3 kWh. A value which is not very impressive and which results in a disappointing autonomy of only 72 km. And again, this is the figure calculated according to the WMTC protocol. The actual autonomy could be even a little lower in practice.

To make matters worse, recharging is quite slow, as is often the case on two-wheelers with removable batteries. You should expect 3.7 hours per battery for a complete recharge. Hopefully the charger will have a charge splitter allowing you to connect the 2 batteries at once.

Kawasaki’s two electric motorcycles can be connected to an application, the functionalities of which have not yet been detailed. They are also equipped with disc braking with ABS system and a 4.3-inch color TFT screen.

There is still one unanswered question, and not the least: that of the price of the Z e-1 and Ninja e-1. Considering the characteristics announced, Kawasaki will need to charge reasonable prices to have a chance of achieving the expected success.

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