Kawasaki is certainly no stranger to the particular joy that a well-executed retro-modern design brings. The Z900 RS, Z900 RS Café, and W 800 all stand as proof. If that isn’t enough, the extremely positive online response to the introduction of the Z900 RS SE in Europe both underlines and highlights that statement.  

While none of those bikes crosses the 1,000cc mark, all of them have so far been comfortably close to the liter line. The motorcycle world loves its rumors, and so the idea of a Z650RS has been swirling around for some time now. It would make a ton of sense, but as of August 24, 2021, we have yet to see anything official from Team Green on that front. 

Unless, of course, that’s what the OEM’s new teaser is alluding to. The company released a 16-second video with the title Retrovolution is coming on its YouTube channel on August 24. If you’re expecting more information in the description, you’ll be disappointed. Only one word is written in that space, and it is simply “Retro” with zero explanation, punctuation, or declaration. (It’s totally not the Z650RS. Nope. Absolutely not. Why would you even think that? Head out of the clouds, guys.) 


What about the video itself? In the maddening tradition of teasers everywhere, it only seems to exist as a placeholder, telling you that A Big Announcement Is Coming. This teaser goes further than most, though, because it only shows you two riders in retro-styled open-faced helmets—and not the actual bikes they’re sitting on, save for some very retro-y round mirrors. They’re smiling, and happy, and seemingly about to pull away from a stop and off on a ride somewhere. The vibe is extremely engaging, but does it tell us anything about the bike? Nope. 

Instead, we’re left with white text on a solid black background at the end that reads, “Retro Evolution is coming,” before the words “Retro” and “Evolution” melt together to form “Retrovolution.” This could be a Z650RS, but it could also be something else we haven’t considered because it’s so vague. In any case, hopefully we’ll know more details soon about Kawasaki’s newest retro offering. If the OEM does as well on the style-to-substance ratio here as it did on the Z900RS SE, it will probably be a winner. 

Oh Kawasaki, speaking of that Z900RS SE, you don’t think the rest of the world could please have one too, do you? Hey, as Michael Jordan once said, you miss 100 percent of the shots you don’t take. 

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