KAWASAKI NINJA 300 REVIEW

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Kawasaki has already made its presence felt in India through the amazing line-up of motorcycles ranging from 250cc to 1400cc. This means there is something for everyone in the Kawasaki stable.

We ride one of the entry level Kawasaki also known as the baby Ninja and find out that there is nothing childish about it.

LOOKS & BUILD

Ninja 300 takes its design cues from the ZX-10R which we all know is one of the hottest looking Superbike. It is a fully faired sport bike that is sold in White or Green color options in India. Twin headlamps in front and that sculpted tank sure add to the glam quotient of Ninja.

Twin headlamps in front not just add to the style of bike, they also provide more than adequate illumination. You would not feel the need for more even on darkest stretches. There is a multi-color instrument cluster that provides basic information only.

There is a 2 X 1 mated side exhaust that uses an aluminium tip and heat shield cover. Foot pegs too are plain metal with no rubber grips on them, which can be slippery in certain conditions. The switches on the bike are of good quality which shows when you use them. Turn indicators on the bike are embedded in the fairing itself in the front. However, you get usual bulb indicators at the rear.

Overall, Ninja looks very impressive and has that desirability factor. It sure looks and feels bigger in real than any images.

ENGINE & PERFORMANCE

Powering the Ninja 300 is a 4 stroke, 296cc, Parallel twin cylinder engine that has a bore x stroke ratio of 62 x 49 mm. Being liquid cooled with a compression ratio of 10.6:1 which is a very impressive figure. Induction is attributed to Electronic Fuel Injection and it works perfectly.

Evidently, it is a short stroke motor and thus can be revved harder. Engine on Ninja 300 is particularly smooth, you would not feel that you are riding a 300cc parallel twin motor. Power delivery is pretty linear, so much that it almost is predictable. You get peak power of 39 bhp at 11000 RPM along with peak torque of 27 Nm at 10000 RPM. Ninja is definitely one of the most refined motorcycles in this segment.

Gearbox is smooth with clear and precise shifts. There are no slips n shifting gears like you find in most other bikes. The most impressive thing about Ninja is the gearing. Some say, this bike has only 1st and 6th gear, well it does have 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th gear but the 6th in particular is so tall that you can ride it all the way from 40 kmph to 180 kmph.

We rode the bike during day in Delhi traffic and most of the times we were in 6th gear only. This totally surprised us and was very comfortable simultaneously. This reduces the stress to a greater extent as you hardly have to down shift.

Cooling system works absolutely as despite heavy riding and hard revving the bike did not heat up abnormally. This means that even in bumper to bumper traffic, the rider would not feel heat on his crotch. That sure comes as a big relief to those who would ride a lot during the day and in traffic. This bike would not be a problem for such people.

HANDLING & BRAKING

Ninja 300 has a rather comfortable stance considering it’s a sport motorcycle. Despite long riding, we did not feel tired at all and there was no stress felt on wrists or shoulders. Rider seat is comfortable, wide and long enough to provide ample room when you crouch and move backwards.

Bike is very nimble in traffic but at times, feels little wide to flick between traffic rows. Handling is good but it takes a little extra effort to lean into a corner and is not as confidence inspiring as some of the other bikes in this segment.

This motorcycle is equipped with ABS that takes its feed from 290mm Single disc in the front and is very effective. In case of emergency braking, ABS shows its wonders and does not let the wheel lock and thus totally avoids skidding of the bike. You get 140/70 tyre at the rear and 110/70 in the front, both 17 inch wheels which are pretty sticky and tested on wet roads offering you very good grip.

Baby Ninja comes with 37mm Telescopic fork in the front and a Bottom-Link Uni-Trak with gas-charged shock and 5-way adjustable preload at the rear. In case of a rough patch, these would make you feel you are riding a boat instead of motorcycle. The suspension on the bike is so good.

VERDICT

Ninja is undoubtedly the most refined bike in this segment but that can also work against it as this makes the bike predictable in terms of power delivery. Some may like it but some not.

With a price tag of INR 3,75,935 it does feel a little expensive especially when for just a little extra you can get a 6500cc motorcycle. It’s a brilliant motorcycle and if you can afford it then do not think twice as it justifies the price. Just one ride on it and you would agree with that.

Here’s how this bike fetched on our ratings

Design – 8/10

Engine – 8/10

Handling – 9/10

Braking – 8/10

Suspension – 7/10

Overall – 8/10

Tech Specs

Make Model Kawasaki Ninja 300
Year 2015
Engine Four stroke . parallel twin, DOHC, 8 valves.
Capacity 296
Bore x Stroke 62 x 49 mm
Cooling System Liquid cooled,
Compression Ratio 10.6:1
Lubrication Forced lubrication, wet sump
Induction Fuel injection: ø32 mm x 2 (Keihin), with dual throttle valves
Ignition TCBI with Digital Advance
Starting Electric
Max Power 29.0 kW / 39 hp @ 11000 rpm
Max Torque 27.0 Nm / 2.8 kg-fm @ 10000 rpm
Clutch Wet multi-disc, manual
Transmission 6 Speed
Final Drive Chain
Primary Reduction Ratio 3.087 (71/23)
Gear Ratio 1st 2.714 (38/14) 2nd 1.789 (34/19) 3rd 1.409 (31/22) 4th 1.160 (29/25) 5th 1.000 (27/27) 6th 0.893 (25/28)
Final Reduction Ratio 3.000 (42/14)
Rake 27°
Trail 93 mm / 3.6 in
Frame Tube diamond, steel
Front Suspension 37 mm Telescopic fork,
Front Wheel Travel 120 mm / 4.7 in
Rear Suspension Bottom-Link Uni-Trak with gas-charged shock and 5-way adjustable preload,
Rear Wheel Travel 132 mm / 5.1 in
Front Brakes Single 290 mm petal disc Single balanced actuation dual-piston
Rear Brakes Single 220 mm petal disc Caliper: Dual-piston
Front Tyre 110/70-17 M/C 54S
Rear Tyre 140/70-17 M/C 66S
Dimensions Length 2015 mm / 79.3 in
Width 715 mm / 29.1 in
Height 1110 mm / 43.7 in
Wheelbase 1405 mm / 55.3 in
Seat Height 785 mm / 30.8 in
Ground Clearance 140 mm / 5.5 in
Wet Weight 172 kg / 379.1 lbs – ABS 174 kg / 383.6 lbs
Fuel Capacity 17 Litres / 3.8 gal

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