Kawasaki's latest retro-sport offering, the Z650RS, has been confirmed to be heading to the New Zealand market with the first examples expected to arrive before the year is out.
Kawasaki New Zealand is yet to finalise the pricing of the Z650RS, but in its announcement to the Kiwi motorcycle media announced that they are confident of the bike landing here with a sub-$15,000 price tag.
At this stage, Kawasaki NZ will only be offering two colour options for the Z650RS, the standard Metallic Spark Black and the Special Edition Candy Emerald Green which will be offered at a slight price premium. Both of which will only be available Learner Approved models. While the Z650RS is available overseas in a full power model, whether KNZ brings this to New Zealand will be dependant on local interest and demand.
Stylistically the Z650RS closely follows the Z900RS released in 2017, with classic Z DNA clearly on display from the flat rear end, through the elongated 12-litre fuel tank, to the dual gauges sitting atop a classic circular LED headlight.
Even the wheels have been designed with a classic look in mind. Despite looking like spoked units, the wheels are actually cast alloy (in sporty 17-inch sizing, of course) and are shod in Dunlop Sportmax Roadsport 2 tyres.
Like the engine, seat height is also learner friendly with the riding sitting 800mm from the ground on the one-piece seat, while the bike weighs in at a manageable 186kg.
The Z650RS is expected to land in New Zealand dealers in November with pricing to be confirmed by Kawasaki NZ closer to the release.
On a related note, Kawasaki NZ has also confirmed that the new 2022 Z900 SE launched overseas recently will not be making its way here, however, they did not go into detail as to why at this stage.