After two years of absence, Kawasaki has finally brought back its much-loved KLR650 adventure bike with a revamped design and significant upgrades. For starters, its 652cc DOHC, single-cylinder engine is now fuel-injected and capable of 52Nm of torque. It is also fitted with a honeycomb catalyzer to comply with global emission standards.
This off-road-capable stallion comes with a new swingarm, which is 1.2in longer than the previous design, and an enhanced rear frame for improved stability. Its suspension settings have also been updated, although it still has the 41mm telescopic with 7.9in of travel and no provisions for adjustments. The rear shock absorber, which is adjustable for spring load and rebound damping, has 7.3in of travel.
The new KLR650 rolls on a pair of Dunlop K750 90/90 tires—21in up front and 18in at the rear. It retains the old five-speed gearbox but with a few mechanical improvements for better and more precise shifting, using thrust-needle bearings instead of the ball kind for the clutch release. Stopping power is provided by a 300mm front disc and a thicker 240mm disc at the rear for better heat dissipation. ABS is offered as an option for the base variant.
Average-sized Pinoy riders might find the new Kawasaki KLR650 a bit tall with its 34.3in seat height, although this is compensated by its lightweight characteristics—it has a curb weight of 206.8kg. The 23-liter tank was reshaped to fit comfortably between the rider’s knees. The dash features a new LCD instrument panel that shows the fuel level, time, and two trip meters, but without a tachometer.
The Adventure variant is equipped with a set of Shad top and side cases, engine guards, LED auxiliary lights, and two power outlets. The Traveler, meanwhile, comes with two power sockets and a 42-liter Shad top box.
The 2021 KLR650 starts at $6,999 (around P220,000) for the non-ABS base variant in the US.