2020 Kawasaki Z900 Supernaked (bike review)

THE 2020 Kawasaki Z900 Supernaked lets the good times roll, puts a smile on your face from the first twist of the throttle, and will have you grinning from ear to ear. It’s a seriously fun bike and a vast improvement over its predecessor.

The Japanese word Sugomi describes the intense aura or energy given off by a person or object of greatness. It’s also Kawasaki’s design philosophy. We have to agree with them too, this bike is enticing and makes you want to climb on board and just ride.

The Z900 looks staunch, and feels like it crouches when you crack the throttle wide open, almost like it is squatting down, trying to get all 92kW (125HP) of power and 98.6Nm of torque to the ground.

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Smoothly delivered power provided by the inline four cylinder digital fuel injection and liquid cooled fast revving engine delivers a strong mid-range power band that reaches redline at 14,000rpm.

Even in Sydney traffic, the Kawasaki is poised and feels genuinely familiar, encouraging confidence to enjoy the ride. It feels stable and predictable, and the comfortable ergonomic seating position ensures you can easily reach the ground when stopped.

But it’s out on the open road that the 2020 Kawasaki Z900 Supernaked comes into its own, offering a great highway ride. It laps up the twisty stuff too. We can only imagine how good it would be on a race track.

It’s definitely a street bike though and anyone wanting a genuine track bike should consider the trustworthy Ninja ZX-6R (696). The Z900 does come with two power modes though (high and low), with low limiting output to 55 per cent of full power.

The Kawasaki Supernaked also features three separate rider modes, including Rain, Road and Sport, and each can be modified to suit rider comfort, no matter the conditions. There’s also traction control, that can be switched on and off.

There’s plenty of stopping power too, in the form of the dual 300mm front disc brakes and the 250mm rear discs. Grippy new Dunlop Sportmax Roadsport 2 tyres also complement the Z900’s sporty performance capabilities.

Weighing in at 212kg, the Z900 feels very light and agile, and delivers sporty performance when you need it. That feeling is thanks in part to the lightweight aluminium extrusion swingarm, weighing in at only 3.9kg aiding in providing the low unsprung weight.

It’s also sporting an improved exhaust sound. The stock pipes are so good, we would, hand on heart, consider leaving it that way, despite the temptation to switch it out for a shorty exhaust system. It honestly sounds that good.

The Z900 Supernaked also benefits from sound research from the cool kids in the R&D team at Kawasaki, with an air box designed using the results of acoustic tests. The inlet also faces upwards, ensuring the rider benefits from the aural experience.

A new 4.3-inch colour instrument panel is among our favourite features of the 2020 edition. It’s crystal clear, even with sunlight reflections, and looks modern and sleek. It supports Bluetooth connectivity and connects to Kawasaki’s ‘rideology’ app.

The mobile phone app offers a range of interesting statistics and ride tracking options. Some minor connectivity issues were noted during testing, and Kawasaki Australia acknowledged these are being addressed.

The 2020 Kawasaki Z900 Supernaked is available in Metallic Spark Black with Metallic Flat Spark Black, or Metallic Graphite Grey with Metallic Spark Black. It’s priced from $14,244 ride away, and comes with a 2-year warranty.

Our test bike was provided by Kawasaki Australia. To find out more about the 2020 Kawasaki Z900 Supernaked, contact your local Kawasaki dealer.


Riding experience
Style and comfort
Braking and handling
Technology and connectivity
Overall bike performance


Pros - ride experience is pure joy; plenty of style; ergonomics, exhaust note.
Cons - connectivity issues with the app.
Scott Gravolin
Scott Gravolin
Scott Gravolin is an aspiring photographer and automotive reviewer, with a passion for performance cars and sports motorcycles. Scott loves riding his Kawasaki Ninja 1000, Scott has an absolute appreciation for Porsche with two of his all time favorites being the Porsche 911 GT3 RS and Porsche 918 Spyder. However he just can not leave out the old rally focussed Ford Escort RS Cosworth.



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<strong>Pros -</strong> ride experience is pure joy; plenty of style; ergonomics, exhaust note.<br> <strong>Cons -</strong> connectivity issues with the app.2020 Kawasaki Z900 Supernaked (bike review)