Bad ECU programming is at fault.

Kawasaki Motors Corp, U.S.A. issued a recall on the Kawasaki Ninja H2 due to a problematic engine control unit (ECU) that could ultimately damage the transmission.  

According to the documents published by the National Highway Safety Traffic Administration (NHTSA), Kawasaki estimates that all of the 799 units affected by this recall could present the flaw.

The models involved are the following: 

  • 2018 Kawasaki Ninja H2 SX 
  • 2018 Kawasaki Ninja H2 SX SE 
  • 2019-2020 Kawasaki Ninja H2 SX SE+ 

The Safety Recall Report describes the problem as linked to a faulty ECU programming that makes the unit unable to control sudden increases in engine revolutions when a gear is improperly engaged (missed shift). “When the gears reengage at high engine rpm, the initial shock of the gears engaging can cause damage to the output gear resulting in the inability to shift gears.” 

Should the transmission lock due to a broken gear, it could cause the engine to lock up and could potentially cause the rider to lose control and to crash. Several instances of the problem were reported since May, 2018, on which occasions riders found themselves unable to shift from 4th to 5th gear. Thankfully, there were no crashes reported in relation to the problem.  

Though transmission components are shared between the Ninja H2 and the Z H2, Kawasaki confirms that the Z H2 isn’t affected by the problem.  

Recall number MC20-10 starts on November 16, 2020, at which point, owners contacted by mail will be invited to visit their dealer to have the ECU reprogramed.  

Should they have any questions or concerns, owners are welcome to contact Kawasaki’s customer service at 1-866-802-9381 to have their VIN verified. They can also contact the NHTSA’s hotline service at 1-888-327-4236 or visit www.safercar.gov for more information.  

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