Kawasaki has updated their long-running Ninja 250 for 2013.
The Ninja 250 has been around since the ’80s, where it first hit the market as the GPZ250. Since then, Kawasaki has sold the quarter-litre sport bike as fast as they could make them; it’s still one of North America’s best-selling machines, even since Honda introduced the competing CBR250.
Here’s what’s new on the 2013 Ninja. First off, the engine has been tweaked a bit. It’s still a water-cooled vertical twin, but the new motor gets new cylinders, crank cases and pistons. It also gets dual throttle valves for the updated EFI – which brings up an interesting question.
Here in North America, riders who bought the previous incarnation of the Ninja 250 were stuck with carburetors, while the rest of the global market got EFI. It’s hard to imagine Kawasaki won’t make it standard across the board at this point, but we don’t know for sure yet. What we do know, is that if riders over here get shafted again, they won’t be happy about it …
The best-selling buzz bomb also gets some updated bodywork for 2013; it brings the bike’s lines closer to Kawasaki’s flagship ZX-10R, which can be good or bad, depending how you feel about that bike’s esthetics. It’s supposedly designed to be more aerodynamic and channel hot air away from the rider.
The frame is still made of steel tubing, but it’s supposedly designed to reduce vibrations. There are also more rubber bushings in the chassis to reduce vibes.
Suspension has been upgraded on the bike, and so have tires; the machine rolls on wider 140 mm units now.
Just like Honda’s CBR250R, ABS will be optional on the new baby Ninja.
We don’t know when this bike will be available in Canada, or what the price tag will be when it shows up.