We’ve known for a while that Kawasaki was leading the charge in terms of hybrid motorcycle tech, and now finally we have our first look at what the future really looks like.
The newly unveiled Ninja 7 Hyrbid is set to be the world’s first production hybrid motorcycle and blends an electric motor with Kawasaki’s 451cc parallel twin.
Outwardly, the Ninja 7 Hybrid looks like a conventional motorcycle, but beneath the surface of its clear Ninja family styling is all the tech needed for the “Strong Hybrid System” as Kawasaki puts it.
The hybrid system places the traction motor (AKA electric motor) behind the engine with a 13kg 27.2AH battery providing power.
This means that that bike has enough juice to run off the battery alone, but with both the ICE engine and electric motor running simultaneously complement each other to produce a rider-friendly character with strong low-mid torque.
There’s also a function called E-Boost with which riders can access increased power for approximately 15 seconds. When activated, acceleration is stronger and top speed is increased.
The electric motor also allows the bike to utilise a reverse function on top of the 6-speed transmission for the internal combustion engine. With the bike weighing in at 227kg, this should prove very useful for those riders with a knack for squeezing into impossible parking spaces.
We’ll have to wait for Team Green to confirm power figures, but initial indications are quite promising.
The bike can run solely in EV mode for an as yet undisclosed short distance, which sees the bike put out no emissions when being operated as such. Kawasaki says this low-speed short-distance mode may also be helpful for certain situations where quiet riding is appropriate, such as in residential areas or in parking garages.
As part of the bike’s fuel conservation focus, in ECO-HYBRID mode when the bike comes to a complete stop, the engine turns off to conserve fuel.
The rest of the Ninja 7 Hybrid is pretty conventional for the class. Instrumentation comes int he form of a 4.3” TFT with integrated Bluetooth functionality and rider modes. When it comes to the suspension and brakes a 41mm fork and monoshock handling damping duties while a pair of 300mm discs and twin-piston calipers pulls on the 17-inch front wheel while a 250mm disc and single-piston handle the rear.
Currently, we have yet to receive word on whether Kawasaki will introduce the Ninja 7 Hybrid to the New Zealand market.