Kawasaki Z H2 - All the pictures, spec and details of new supernaked

The Kawasaki Z H2 has officially been revealed to the world. Here’s everything you need to know about 2020s most extreme hyper-naked

Kawasaki Z H2

THE Kawasaki Z H2 is one of the most eagerly awaited new models in recent memory. Ever since the class defining H2 sportsbike landed back in 2015, riders have dreamed of having the 200bhp+ machine in naked form.

Well dream no more, as the Z H2 is officially unveiled to the world from the Tokyo Motor show and it was certainly worth the wait.

Here’s everything you need to know about the only mass-produced, supercharged naked motorcycle on the planet.

Kawasaki Z H2 engine

  • 998cc, liquid-cooled inline-four DOHC 16V
  • Fuel-injected with supercharger
  • 200PS @ 11,000rpm (197bhp)
  • 137Nm @ 8,500rpm (101ft-lb)

The headline with the new Z is, of course, that supercharged, four-cylinder engine. For the naked machine, the mill retains the same architecture as the H2 sportsbike but with a focus on low and mid-range torque, and an easy to control engine character. To achieve this Kawasaki has revised the supercharger inlet and ram air intake. To help the supercharged-gases escape, it’s matched with a new exhaust collection box that is longer and allows gases to mix before being passed through the single catalyst. Another bonus with this system is the Z H2’s end can is noticeably smaller than that of the H2 – and some other high-performance bikes of recent years.


  • Trellis high tensile steel
  • Rake – 24.9°
  • Trail – 104mm
  • Brakes F – Brembo M4 Monobloc calipers ø 290mm disc
  • Suspension F – Showa SSF BP, 120mm travel
  • Rear shock – Showa shock and Uni Trak suspension 134mm travel

It’s easy to think that the Z H2 was merely an H2 without a fairing, but it’s clear from pouring over the images and tech-specs that the two models couldn’t be further removed from each other. To start with, the frame of the new Z H2 is a completely bespoke item for the new model. The emphasis was to help create a machine that would provide light handling and good mid-speed corner characteristics. To do this Kawasaki has dispensed with some of the frame braces located around the top of the engine, possibly in a bid to introduce more flex into the machine, helping to maintain a more predictable street-focused motorcycle.

Kawasaki has also adjusted the front end geometry for the new bike, opting for a machine that is more flickable while still within the boundaries of providing good all-around stability. With 24.9° of rake and 104mm of trail, the Z H2 has a more aggressive front-end set up when compared to the H2 sportsbike, which runs 27° of rake and 103mm of trail.

The final major part of the chassis that is all-new is the swingarm; Kawasaki has done away with the single-sided item of the H2 and H2 SX. Instead, the engineers have borrowed tech from the Ninja ZX-10RR and its double-sided item, mounting it directly onto the rear of the engine via a newly designed swingarm pivot plate.


At the front, we have a tried and tested set of Showa Separate Function Big Piston Forks, with rebound and compression damping, spring preload adjustability. It’s a fantastic set up, and the same as the 2019 H2 that I’m riding currently. For a bike like this, it should offer most riders all the adjustment they should need and a responsive bike on base settings. The rear shock is a Uni Trak Showa set up that sees the shock sit low down within the swingarm assembly.


As you’d expect from a bang-up to date supernaked, the Z H2 wears a set of slinky radially mounted Brembo M4.32 Monobloc calipers up front, biting down on 290mm discs. Master cylinders are provided by Nissin and there is a twin-piston caliper and 226mm disc at the rear.

The braking system is governed by the KIBS (Kawasaki Intelligent anti-lock Brake System), which runs through a central IMU and helps prevent rear-wheel lift and maintains stability. Kawasaki also claims that the KIBS, mated to the IMU system and those top-spec Brembos, should allow trail braking to the corner apex and beyond. Good news, if a 200hp naked and a few trackdays were on your to-do list.

Kawasaki Z H2 Equipment

  • Riding modes – Sport, Road, Rain, Rider
  • Power modes – Full 197bhp – Middle 147bhp – Low 98bhp
  • IMU - Bosch
  • KIBS (ABS)
  • KLCM – Kawasaki Launch Control
  • KTRC – Kawasaki traction Control
  • KQS – Kawasaki Quick Shifter
  • Cruise control
  • LED lighting
  • TFT dash
  • Smartphone connectivity

As you’d expect from a top-flight supernaked, the new Kawasaki is bristling with tech. Starting with the four riding modes, which each run through the bike’s Bosch IMU system. Each mode works with the KTRC (which itself gets feedback from the IMU) and helps to govern the overall performance of the bike for a given scenario.

The IMU is an interesting set up in that it monitors the acceleration along longitudinal, transverse and vertical axes, plus roll rate and pitch rate internally, while the yaw rate is calculated by the ECU using what Kawasaki call ‘original software’. The system we guess monitors gear selection, rear wheels slip and then engine RPM to calculate what the yaw angle of the bike will be.

The new Z H2 features a quickshifter and blipper as standard which begins working at over 2,500 rpm. The shifter is said to smooth shifts at low and high-speed, thanks to the addition of dog-rings – which is another element borrowed from the Kawasaki Racing Team.

The dash of the new machine is an all-digital affair, with no analogue clocks to be seen. The full-colour TFT LCD screen displays speed, gear, shift light, odometer, dual trip meters, fuel gauge, range to empty, current/average fuel consumption, outside temperature, coolant temperature, clock, Economical Riding Indicator, IMU indicator, KIBS indicator, boost pressure and boost temperature. It’s a veritable smorgasbord of information, quite how you’ll take it all in at speed we will have to wait and see!

A big plus for those looking to use their new Z H2 in the real world is the addition of cruise control. It’s frustrating when a bike that is meant for riding more than a few laps of a track doesn’t have the addition of cruise control. In this age of electronically operated throttles, it’s so easy to factor in.

The must-have feature in motorcycle design now seems to be smartphone connectivity, and Kawasaki wasn’t about to get left behind on that front either. The dash has a Bluetooth module built-in (take note Triumph!) that connects to your smartphone and the Kawasaki Rideology App. Once hooked up you can view riding logs that include GPS information and bike stats that can be recorded to watch back later. While riding, the app continuously tracks vehicle speed, engine speed (rpm), gear position, throttle position, front brake fluid pressure, vehicle acceleration/deceleration, current fuel consumption, and coolant temperature. The app can also display a ride summary, showing data like the route travelled, total distance, total time, MPG, speed, max lean angle and so on. Great ammo when you get back from the trackday and want to embarrass your mates.

Kawasaki Z H2 (2020) specification



Liquid-cooled, 4-stroke In-Line Four, 16-valve DOHC


197bhp (claimed) @ 11,000rpm


137Nm (claimed) @ 8,500rpm



Bore and Stroke

76.0 × 55.0 mm

Compression ratio


Intake system

Kawasaki Supercharger






Forced lubrication, wet sump with oil cooler



6-speed, return, dog-ring

Final drive


Primary reduction ratio

1.480 (74/50)

Gear ratios













Final drive ratio




High-tensile steel trellis

Front travel


Rear travel


Tyre front

120/70ZR17 M/C 58W

Tyre rear

190/55ZR17 M/C 75W





Suspension - F

Showa SPF BP forks

Suspension - R

Showa shock - Uni Trak

Brakes - F

Brembo M4 290mm discs

Brakes - R

Twin piston caliper 226mm disc










Ground clearance


Seat height


Weight (ready to ride)


Fuel capacity