Classic Return - The New "King of Rally" Kawasaki KLR650

Classic Return - The New

After being discontinued for two years, Kawasaki's "King of Rally" KLR650 is finally back! This legendary, fantastic motorbike has been in production since 1987 and was discontinued in 2018. At the beginning of 2021, Kawasaki officially released the newly upgraded 2022 KLR650.

The KLR650 was the carbureted version until 2018. The biggest change in this update is the addition of the DFI fuel injection system to the 652cc single-cylinder DOHC liquid-cooled engine, which still retains the 5-speed gearbox, while some adjustments have been made to the engine to increase the mid-range torque output, thus a peak torque reaching 53Nm/4500rpm.

In terms of suspension, the front 41mm telescopic fork has a stroke of 200mm; the rear single shock has an adjustable rebound damping and adjustable spring preload with a stroke of 185mm. The brakes feature a front 300mm single disc with a dual-piston caliper and a rear single-piston caliper with a 240mm single disc.

The subframe is integrated with the main frame. Additionally, the swingarm is extended by 30mm, with 10mm wider handlebar and 10mm lower pedals, thus improving the KLR650’s stability and comfort on long rides. The vehicle mass is 208.6kg. The seat height is 870mm. The ground clearance is 210mm. The fuel tank capacity is 23L.

The tire size is 21-inch 90/90 in the front and 17-inch 130/80 in the rear ; it is equipped with dual-purpose ABS newly developed by Bosch. Kawasaki says the ABS feels natural off-road and doesn't interfere with braking; when on-road, it feels the ABS intervenes a little later. ABS cannot be turned off, but there is an option to purchase a version without ABS.

At the same time, LED headlight and LCD meter are also updated, which can display speed (vehicle), fuel level, mileage, and time, but there is no speed (engine) display. There is also a 2-speed adjustable windshield.

The 2022 KLR650 is available in four versions, the standard version with and without ABS, as well as the KLR650 Traveler and the KLR650 Adventure. The Touring version comes with two power sockets and a 42-liter plastic Shad tail box that's big enough for an off-road helmet. The Adventure Edition comes standard with a set of Shad saddlebags, LED spotlights, engine guards, fuel tank stickers, two power sockets, and a USB interface.

This motorcycle has incredible reliability. This is also the reason why nothing has changed in decades, because nothing needs to change. In addition, the KLR650 is also equipped with a military diesel version for the army, which is enough to explain the reliability of this vehicle.

In today's increasingly complex world, motorcycle manufacturers are chasing after each other when it comes to electronic control equipment. Riding modes, IMU, etc. have become essential configurations for enthusiasts to pursue the perfect model. For rally motorcycles, however, stability is king. KLR650 is like a contrarian, almost completely retaining the simplicity and purity from 1987. Best of all, the simplicity and purity allows it to stand on its own in an already overly modern world.


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