Kawasaki Updates Lineup With New 500 Models, New Hybrid, New KLX230S

The new Eliminator cruiser was confirmed months ago, at an $8,199 MSRP for Canada this year. See the just-announced Kawi lineup below. PHOTO CREDIT: Kawasaki

Kawasaki is bringing a lot of new machinery to Canada for 2024, including the new 500-series machines, its new hybrids and also its updated KLX230S.

Ninja 500/Z500

Remember Kawasaki’s old 500 sportbike? This is the modern-day version, the great-grandchild of the Ninja 250 series, believe it or not. PHOTO CREDIT: Kawasaki

We’ve come full circle; the Ninja 250 became the Ninja 300 became the Ninja 400 and now we have the Ninja 500. It appears this new parallel twin platform is going to basically be the replacement for the old EX500 and in the same category as the Honda 500 lineup—meaning there’s now room in Kawi’s lineup for a new 250-ish beginner bike, and this cycle can start all over.

The Ninja 500 is $7,099 in Canada this year, with an up-spec’d SE version selling for $200 more. There’s also a naked bike version, basically the same thing without a fairing, for $6,999. See our initial coverage of these models here; more deets at Kawasaki.ca.

Ninja 7 Hybrid/Z7 Hybrid

Kawi’s new Hybrid series combines gasoline and battery power, but that drives up the price. PHOTO CREDIT: Kawasaki

These solve the limited-range problem for electric motorcycles by using the same solution that Toyota does with its cars. They combine an electric motor with a gasoline motor (a modified version of the same engine that’s used in the Ninja 500).

This is good news for riders who are in areas where low-emissions zones are enforcing EV usage—no such zones exist in Canada yet, far as we’ve heard, but they’re common in Euro cities and it’s only a matter of time until they’re here. The Hybrid models do come at much higher price tags than the standard models. Both the fully-faired Ninja 7 Hybrid and the somewhat stripped-down Z7 Hybrid have a $15,699 MSRP in Canada this year. See our first write-up on the Hybrid models here.

Kawasaki KLX230S/KLX230

2024 Kawasaki KLX230S. PHOTO CREDIT: Kawasaki

Kawasaki’s smallest dual sport gets some tweaks to the engine that fatten up the low-to-mid range power delivery, but no more added jam at the top end. The ABS is now switchable on-and-off, for better off-road control. The suspension gets a bit more travel, and there’s a new seat, so saddle height is raised a bit. However, the shorter “S” sub-model is still a lower bike than the standard model. MSRP for the standard model is $6,199; add a hundred bucks for the S model.

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