With correct old-school retro styling, no low cost plastic bodywork and wonderful chrome exhausts the W800 Café appears the enterprise. In fact leaping on this bike I wasn’t expecting some loopy all or nothing café racer, if something it felt to me like a modern Norton Commando, a minimum of based mostly on my reminiscences of my Dad and Grandfather rolling the one they restored out of the storage for traditional bike occasions.
My first impression of the front headlight cowl is that it’s mismatched to the bike, although it does match the silver aspect panel further again to be trustworthy I feel that’s going to be a standard response.
Hearth the W800 Café up and you’re rewarded by a wonderful burble at idle, once it settles again right down to about 1000rpm. The EFI has the bike warming up at the 2000rpm mark which is just too high, and even with the bike warm it’ll begin up in heat up mode properly above 1300rpm till it figures out what’s happening. Whether this quick idle was a problem with our press bike alone or not I’m unsure…
Jumping on board the W800 Café might be greatest described in a single phrase… cozy. Regardless of the café racer styled seat, broad and bulbous tank and clubman ‘bars, everything just felt right to me at 180cm, with just the rear brake lever uncomfortably on the high side. You’re undoubtedly on the bike, not in it, nevertheless that aligns with my expectations.
Setting off the bike additionally feels lengthy, however secure and nicely balanced, with a comparatively upright seating place all issues thought-about, with no weight on my wrists, and once more this in my thoughts harkens again to the previous basic pictures of Nortons and the like, with the rider goggled up, with the outfit accomplished by a white scarf. Footpegs are also just about straight down from the seat, with out the extra rearset traditional café racer placement.
The W800 Café isn’t a lightweight , it’s greatest described as strong and heavy, nevertheless, on the move it carries that weight properly, whether or not you’re slicing a swathe via visitors, barrelling alongside a freeway or hooking into the sweepers.
The air-cooled vertical-twin powerplant provides delicate efficiency, with a clean throttle response and torque peaking slightly below 5000rpm, which contrasts with the 2018 model the place it peaked at 2500rpm. This makes for a relatively delicate initial delivery of torque, which develops right into a forward urge that’s best for cruising via the native twisties and does a commendable job on the freeway, regardless of being limited to 5 gears.
Brakes at the moment are disc gadgets both front and rear, with distinctive power and chew for a rear brake on that large rear rotor – beforehand a drum item – with ABS also discovered on the 2019 model Café because of this update. There’s sufficient power on the entrance, with a single rotor on the 18in spoke front wheel. Clearly this isn’t sportsbike sort performance, but for this fashion of machine it’s enough, with it being all concerning the degree of power and modulation, as an alternative of outright chew.
Suspension is plush but properly sufficient controlled, there was the occasional stiff kick from the rear over the really sharp massive bumps, but primarily every little thing else it swallowed up with ease, in a means that basically belied the essential system fitted. Any driving above mildly spirited overpowers the delicate set-up at both ends, notably onerous braking when the forks will backside without progressive stopping.
I did the local run via the Previous Street and to be trustworthy, cruising along on the posted 80km/h was fulfilling, even with the hero knbbs scratching via a number of the bends, and whereas there was plenty of performance to push the hurries up a bit larger, I truthfully didn’t really feel the necessity to.
There was plenty of thrills to be had merely connecting up all of the corners, with just a dab on the brakes heading in, and maybe a downshift if I really felt the need to wash off some velocity, with the W800 Café giving an enticing and rewarding experience. I wasn’t wringing the throttle, there was no attempt at pinpoint accuracy on turn-in points, or getting a knee down. There was just easy, good previous, enjoyable, with out breaking the velocity limit both.
General I had a good time on the 2019 W800 Café, it has superb character and while efficiency isn’t the draw card, street manners have been to me distinctive and it was a type of machines I might have fun on, in any situation, while not having to do one million miles an hour, or danger my license. It’s not a matter of hoping others seeing me on the bike would conjure some superb rep both, it was the totally internalised fun of enjoying an excellent motorbike, and not likely giving a sh#t what anyone else thinks.
The clutch was on the heavy aspect, the seat a bit arduous in the direction of the entrance – however roomy, the gearbox was a bit agricultural in the shifting mechanism and I wanted to maneuver the foot control levers a bit, however the type was great with a tremendous end quality. The one other point I did notice, is the bike will monitor alongside street snakes and corrugations very easily, and developed a shimmy at 110km/h on the freeway in a poorly surfaced section, with the surfaced corrugated within the course of journey. On normal (respectable) surfaces there was no such concern, however this may increasingly also come right down to the tyre.
That exhaust notice was addictive, particularly on the aggressive downshifts onto the slipper clutch, and in chrome absolutely eye catching. The clocks are retro with a touch of recent, with a LCD show for the time, with adjustable levers as normal, lovely paint and an amazing engine.
At $14okay + ORC, this pushes the W800 up into one other worth class and there’s an enormous amount of competitors there lately (Monster 797, V7 Stone, SV650X, Road Twin, XSR900) and it’s 5 grand greater than an Interceptor or Continental GT 650. As we all the time say with all bikes, it’s right down to individual choice and what you click with so be sure to journey them all and with the W800, take it for an extended than regular check experience to get used to the driving place and the dealing with. As soon as all of it gels it’s a great journey and on clean roads it truly is a grin inducing old skool experience. A lot of fun. You possibly can’t put a worth on happiness…
2019 Kawasaki W800 Cafe – Tech Speak
For 2019 Kawasaki have unleashed a heavily updated W800 Cafe version, boasting a revised engine, new styling and ergonomics, lashings of chrome, an 18in front wheel and wider lightweight aluminium rims, revised and strengthened frame, slip and help clutch, LED headlamp, clubman ‘bars, larger diameter forks and stiffer shocks, bigger entrance disc brake and new rear disc brake (changing the drum brake), ABS, and two-tone cafe racer seat.
The guts of the W800 Cafe is the air-cooled vertical-twin displacing 773cc with a bore and stroke of 77 x 83mm, with the 2019 model returned for peak torque at 4800rpm, the place the previous mannequin noticed this determine at 2500rpm.
34mm throttle-bodies are joined by sub-throttles, with the long-stroke 360-degree crankshaft creating the long-lasting engine characteristic, together with a heavy flywheel. A balancer shaft reduces vibes, which is noticeable via the ‘bars, with a five-speed gearbox and slipper and assist clutch fitted.
Kawasaki additionally targeted on the aesthetics of the engine, with the silver bevel-gear cover and blacked out engine providing contrast, whereas EFI elements have been hidden away for a standard look.
The normal design mufflers are also now chrome, and being touted as ‘tuned’ exhausts, providing each a tailor-made observe and optimised efficiency, which assist highlight the engine’s character. The peashooter fashion mufflers embrace revised muffler chambers and help meet (and simply exceed in accordance with Kawasaki) Euro4 laws.
Offering sportier dealing with is the change from a 19in entrance wheel to an 18in, with wider aluminium rims also aimed toward offering a composed highway journey, alongside a strengthened body for higher rigidity, regardless of wanting the identical as the outgoing mannequin. This was executed by varying the pipe thickness however not diameter where needed. I did discover a shimmy on sure freeway surfaces, but these appear more tyre related.
The ‘clubman’ fashion ‘bars also drastically change the ergonomics of the W800 Cafe from the W800 SE, with a more forward leaning and sporty bias, with slight modifications to the seat, alongside it being two-tone.
Additionally aimed toward beefing up chassis performance is the new 41mm bigger diameter forks with stiffer springs and a extra inflexible triple-clamp, whereas the shocks are likewise stiffer.
With a view to meet ABS necessities the W800 Cafe boasts both entrance and rear disc brakes (previously front solely), with the rear not a drum and as an alternative featuring a 270mm rotor, with a twin piston caliper.
Instrumentation is dual traditional clocks, with a multi-function digital display in the left, and the idiot lights on the fitting, with a selected Cafe dial face.
2019 Kawasaki W800 Cafe Specifications
Colors: Metallic Magnesium Gray & Galaxy Silver
Worth: $13,999 + ORC
Warranty: Two-year, limitless kilometre
Claimed Power: 35kW[48hp]@6000rpm
Claimed Torque: 62.9Nm[46.4lb-ft]@4800rpm
Moist Weight: 223kg
Gasoline capability: 15L
Engine: Air-cooled, four-stroke vertical-twin, SOHC, eight-valve, 773cc, 77 x 83mm bore x stroke, 8.4:1 compression ratio, dual 34mm DFI throttle-bodies, 360° crankshaft
Clutch: Moist, multi-disc, slipper & assist
Chassis: Strengthened tubular double-cradle excessive tensile steel body,
Rake: 26°; Trail: 94mm
Suspension: 41mm Telescopic fork, 130mm travel, Twin shocks with spring preload adjustability, 107mm journey
Brakes: ABS, single 320mm front rotor, two-piston Tokico caliper, single 270mm rear rotor, two-piston caliper
Wheels & Tyres: 18in cross-spoke wheels, 100/90-18in M/C 56H, 130/80-18in M/C 66H
Seat peak: 790mm
General width: 825mm
General Length: 2135mm
Instruments: Dual analogue clocks, multi-function integrated LCD show