Kawasaki’s Z family of naked sportbikes has something for everyone, from the Z125 Pro play bike to the modern Z900 and retro Z900RS/Cafe big bikes. In the middle are the Z650 middleweight and the new-for-2019 Z400 ABS, a naked version of Team Green’s entry-level, fully faired Ninja 400 sportbike.
Read our 2018 Kawasaki Ninja 400 ABS first ride review
Powering the Z400 ABS is a liquid-cooled, 399cc parallel twin with an oversquare 70 x 51.8mm bore/stroke, an 11.5:1 compression ratio, a DOHC head with 4 valves per cylinder and fuel injection with two 32mm throttle bodies. Kawasaki claims 28 lb-ft of torque at 8,000 rpm. Its 6-speed transmission has Kawasaki’s exclusive Positive Neutral Finder and an assist-and-slipper clutch, and final drive is via chain.
Like the Ninja H2, the Z400 ABS has a tubular-steel trellis frame. A short, 53.9-inch wheelbase and a long, square-tube cast aluminum swingarm are said to give the bike nimble handling. Suspension is handled by a 41mm, non-adjustable fork and a Bottom Link Uni-Trak rear shock with adjustable preload.
Braking is handled by one 2-piston caliper on each wheel, with the front squeezing a 310mm petal disc and the rear squeezing a 220mm petal disc. As the model name implies, ABS is standard. Cast, 5-spoke, star-pattern 17-inch wheels are shod with Dunlop radials.
Like its Z650 and Z900 big brothers, the Z400 ABS has aggressive styling using Kawasaki’s Sugomi design language, with a “crouching stance, low-positioned head and upswept tail.” The headlight and taillight are LED, and the instrument panel is a multi-function LCD screen.
Kawasaki says the Z400 ABS has an upright yet sporty riding position, with a wide handlebar, a narrow seat with a modest 30.9-inch seat height and a light 368-pound curb weight (claimed).
The 2019 Kawasaki Z400 ABS is available in two colors: Candy Lime Green/Metallic Spark Black and Candy Cardinal Red/Metallic Flat Spark Black. MSRP is $4,799.
Check out Rider’s Guide to New/Updated Street Motorcycles for 2019