Kawasaki's naked 300 revealed

Ninja 300 loses its frock

AN Indonesian blog has turned up an allegedly leaked drawing of Kawasaki's forthcoming naked bike based on the latest Ninja 300.

In fact, the picture from TMCblog.com purports to show the 250cc version – expected to be offered in countries where there are still licence breaks at 250cc – but just as the 2013 Ninja 300 and Ninja 250 are visually identical, if it's real it's likely to be a perfect representation of the naked 300 that we're expected to get.

The name ER250C is used on the drawing, suggesting it could be lined up alongside the parallel twin ER6 and perhaps be called “ER3” in this country. However, the styling is more in line with the Z800 and Z1000 models, so calling it Z300 might make more sense – aligning the bike with the firm's sporty nakeds, just as the Ninja 300 is aligned with the Ninja ZX-6R and Ninja ZX-10R. Or, throwing another possibility into the mix, it could be called “J300” - Kawasaki has recently applied for a trademark on that name, specifically intending to use it on an as-yet-unreleased motorcycle.

From the drawing it's clear that the engine, suspension, wheels and frame are the same as the Ninja 250/300's, but the styling is more different than might be expected. Far from just replacing the front fairing, there's a new tank, new seat unit and new exhaust.

Of course, there is the chance that this isn't an official drawing at all, but TMCblog has also turned up other documents referring to the ER250C, and since Kawasaki has manufacturing facilities in Indonesia, as well as its near neighbours Thailand and the Philippines, it's quite possible that the bikes will be built in that part of the world.