ZX-6R and Ninja H2 among Kawasaki's 2021 Euro5 casualties

The current Kawasaki Ninja H2 doesn't meet Euro5
The current Kawasaki Ninja H2 doesn't meet Euro5

Kawasaki have confirmed that a number of models from across their line-up will not be updated for 2021 and Euro5 emissions rules

Having released a statement late last year suggesting there were delays on certain bikes, due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, the Japanese brand have now stated that the J125, J300, Ninja 400, Z400, ZX-6R, Ninja H2 and Ninja H2 SX family will not be updated for 2021.

We’ve seen spyshots of a high tech Kawasaki Ninja H2 SX SE+ in testing, though, so not all of these models have disappeared forever.

2021 Kawasaki model updates so far:

The announcement leaves a number holes in the current range, with only the retro W800 serving A2 licence holders without a restrictor kit, and the Z H2 family remaining as the only road-legal supercharged headliner in their fleet. 

 The Kawasaki Ninja H2 SX range is not Euro5 compliant for 2021

The axing of the ZX-6R also marks the end of a 25-year production run in the supersport class, bowing out at the same time as the rev-tastic Yamaha R6, which remains on sale in the UK as a track-only R6 Race.

Whilst a huge shame, there should still be time to get your hands on remaining 2020 stock in dealers, with great deals likely to become available. It’s also probable that some machines will make a return, with the firm unlikely to ignore A2 licensees and supercharged enthusiasts going forward.

Euro5 regulations came in to force on January 1, 2021 – replacing Euro4 as the standard that every new motorcycle had to meet. A limited number of older bikes could still be registered for the following two years, in a process known as ‘derogation’. 

Should they have applied for it, exactly how many of each model can be sold under this ruling is unclear, thanks to a needlessly complicated set of criteria.

Kawasaki’s Z900RS and sporty 125 range treated to fresh lick of paint for 2021

First published on November 2, 2020 by Dan Sutherland

A 2021 Kawasaki Z900RS

Kawasaki have announced subtle updates to their Z900RS, Ninja 125 and Z125 for 2021, with all three models receiving fresh colours for the new season.

Starting with the Z900RS, the four-cylinder 109bhp retro naked retains its ‘Candytone Green’ design from 2020 – complete with yellow striping – and has now been joined by a black and grey ‘Ebony’ design, as well as a more minimalist ‘Metallic Spark Black’, which features smaller green and grey stripes on the tank.

More 2021 Kawasaki updates:

Inspired by the Kawasaki Z1 series produced between 1972 and 1976, the upright roadster has been around since 2017 and blends retro looks with modern tech; also featuring a LED lighting, traction control, ABS and more.

According to Kawasaki, bikes in the new colours will begin to arrive in dealers in December, however a quick glance at their website suggests the Ebony option won’t be available until April 2021. Prices are yet to be confirmed.

Alongside the RS, the Japanese brand have also treated their sporting 125s to a glow-up; investing in new colours for the Ninja 125 and Z125 range.

A side view of the 2021 Kawasaki Z125

Launched for 2019, the two bikes share the same chassis and engine based around the old Ninja 250SL and are designed to cater for riders holding either a Compulsory Basic Training (CBT) certificate or A1 licence, powered by a 125cc liquid-cooled, four-stroke single producing around 15bhp.

Starting with the naked Zed, the 2021 machine (pictured above) will arrive in January and will be available in three colour flavours; black, white and green, with a green trellis frame, or black and green, with a green frame, and finally lime green and black with a grey trellis. Again, exact pricing is yet to be announced.

The 2021 Kawasaki Ninja 125 will be available in one colour option

Available from May 2021 will be the updated Ninja 125, which will come in just one design – doing away with the three options currently on sale. The new design will mimic larger sports bikes in Kawasaki’s range, with splashes of green, red, black and white all included. 

If that’s not your bag and you fancy a bit more choice, you’ve got from now until next May to make a purchase. Check back soon for more information as we get it and watch our full video review on both 125s below.

Fresh colours for 2021 Kawasaki 650 twins

First published on October 1, 2020 by Dan Sutherland

A 2021 Kawasaki Z650 finished in white

Following the announcement last week of subtle changes to their 2021 Vulcan S cruiser, Kawasaki have this morning revealed fresh colours for the rest of their 2021 650 parallel-twin range.

Consisting of the fully faired Ninja 650Z650 naked and Versys 650 adventurer, all three machines use the same basic Euro5-friendly liquid-cooled 649cc parallel-twin engine and get only minimal changes ahead of next year.

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The 2021 Kawasaki Versys is available in three colours

Starting with the long-legged Versys, the bike will now be available in three fresh designs; one lime green and black, another in white and black complete with flashes of blue, plus a third grey and black design with hints of red.

According to Kawasaki’s website, the new machine will be available from November 2020, with pricing still to be confirmed.

Away from adventure bikes, sports fans will be interested to know the Ninja 650 is also available in new liveries for 2021. With the bike getting a complete overhaul ahead of the 2020 season, it’s unsurprising that there are only subtle changes ahead of next year. 

The 2021 Kawasaki Ninja 650

Available as of December, with pricing to be confirmed, two designs offer a mix of white, black and green, with a third, more subtle black and grey paint job carried over from the existing line-up.

Much like the Ninja, the Z650 was revised ahead of 2020, meaning only colour changes for next year. The first of these mimics a livery available for the 2021 four-cylinder Z900; finished in white with a striking lime green trellis chassis and wheels. Also available is a black and lime green option, plus a stealthy black alternative.

Expect these bikes to arrive in December, too, with prices to be confirmed closer to the time. As always, MCN will update this story as more information becomes available.

Colour updates announced for 2021 Kawasaki Z900, Vulcan S and Ninja 1000SX

First published on 21 September, 2020 by Dan Sutherland

2021 Kawasaki Z900 cornering on track

Kawasaki have pulled the covers off their 2021 Z900, Vulcan S and Ninja 1000SX ranges, with fresh colours, plus the continuation of optional ‘Edition’ models to cater for both sports and touring rider demands.

Starting with the fully-faired Ninja, the bike will be available in three liveries; with black taking a central theme alongside lashings of either red, grey or green. There is no longer a paint job featuring white, as currently found on the 2020 version.

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As is already the way, Kawasaki will also sell you the gently set Ninja in a range of ‘Editions’ that cater for both sporty and distance travel.

Parked up on the 2021 Kawasaki Ninja 1000SX

Starting with the Performance Edition, the bike will feature frame sliders, smoked windscreen, a gel tank pad, a colour matched seat cover and an Akrapovič exhaust. This differs from the Tourer Edition, which gets dual lockable 28-litre colour-matched panniers, a bigger screen and sat nav bracket.

Combining the best of both worlds is the Performance Tourer Edition, which gets all the best bits of both of the aforementioned models, including the panniers and exhaust, plus heated grips. Prices of each of these bikes are yet to be announced. 

Away from faired tourers, Kawasaki’s road-focussed roadster Z900 also gets a mild alteration for 2021. Much like the Ninja 1000SX, the existing 900 was a new model for 2020, so it’s unsurprising that it only receives small changes.

Starting with the colours, riders have a choice of green or red trellis frames with a variety of black finishes on the exterior bodywork. Also available is a ‘Pearl Blizzard White / Metallic Spark Black’ finish, which stands out as a vibrant alternative, complete with glossy lime green wheels. 

2021 Kawasaki Vulcan S static

Once more for 2021, a Performance Edition will also be available with a minimalist smoked screen, a gel tank pad, colour coded seat cover and Akrapovič exhaust, complete with carbon heat shield. Expect bikes to be in dealers from December, with prices to be announced soon.

Elsewhere, Kawasaki’s Vulcan S has also been treated to a fresh lick of paint. Gone are the black and gold, plus black and green options, to be replaced by a black and blue ‘ebony’ design, alongside a grey, red and black option. An all-black livery remains as before. Expect new bikes to arrive in December 2020.