It's confirmed! Bajaj-Kawasaki will be bringing their Ninja 300 to India by the end of this month. Our sources at the dealership level confirm that the motorcycles will be on display at the showrooms shortly. Price? We don't know yet but going by the fact that it's got much more technology and more power, we don't expect it to be cheap. If the 250 was anything to go by, this one should be a crackin' motorcycle.
The current Kawasaki Ninja 250R is already the best 250 around in the country. It's impressive on every count, be it the high-revving parallel-twin motor, the slick gearbox, the rather sharp brakes and let's not even get to the styling. All that was missing was something revolutionary and new - and those meters belonged to the 1980's...
Someone up there was listening carefully, and as a result, Kawasaki has come up with this, the all-new Ninja 300! The 296cc, parallel twin-cylinder engine is fuel-injected and now produces 38.8 bhp at a typically high 11,000 rpm and 2.75 kgm of torque at 10,000 rpm. What's absolutely exciting about the new power plant is that it employs a slipper clutch and also ABS (supplementing a 290mm disc up front and a 220mm disc at the rear), all of which should result in far more confident, and superior, handling than on the current bike.
The frame is now a diamond-type unit, as seen on the bigger Ninja 650R we reviewed in the September 2012 issue of BSM, and it should definitely work wonders for what wasn't the sharpest handling bike around. It also sports 110/70 R17 (f) and 140/17 R17 (r) tyres, though it's not certain whether India will get soft compound tyres
The instrument console is a completely new unit and is a good mix of analog (tachometer) and digital (everything else) technology. An LCD screen on the console also provides a fuel gauge, two trip meters, a clock and an economy mode indicator. Cosmetically, the bike is now identical to its bigger siblings and looks ultra sharp - we've got no complains on this front whatsoever!
Tourers amongst you will be happy to learn that the Ninja has a 17-litre tank which should give the bike a good range despite those 39 horses. Overall, the specification sheet is utterly impressive and we'll be bringing you the first ride shortly. Stay tuned!