First Ride Review – 2020 Kawasaki Z H2

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Does the world need a ~200 horsepower naked bike? Probably not, but if that’s the kind of thing that tickles your fancy then 2020 is going to be a very good year for you with the KTM Super Duke 1290 R, Ducati Streetfighter V4, and the MV Agusta Brutale 1000. Kawasaki’s throwing their hat into the Euro-dominated ring with a new flagship to their Z line that’s got a party piece – a supercharger! Cycle News sent me to Las Vegas to see what this supercharged supernaked was like.

While the obvious highlight is the supercharger, I think your main takeaway should be that the Z H2 is cheaper, bigger, and more street-oriented than its Euro competition. It’s very comfortable, it has a 5 gallon tank, and it weighs 527 pounds – yes, Kawasaki gave us some time on a track so we could go fast without worrying about cops, but this is more of a street bruiser in my mind than something like the Super Duke R, which weighs 65 pounds less. Oh yeah, and it has a supercharger! Can I mention that enough times?

With that in mind, check out my review here!

I ended up setting two personal bests on this bike – highest top speed (164 mph) and fastest extended wheelie (100 mph). It’s absurd.

When I asked if you had any questions in advance, the focus was around styling. But if you have any specific questions after reading the above review, don’t hesitate to let me know in the comments and I’ll do my best to answer them!

Also, did you catch my Picture Intermission of the different design sketches Kawasaki released for this bike?

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