Giving a barebones, small displacement motorcycle a vintage-inspired look is a surefire way to transform it from a boring, appliance-like commuter, to a soulful neo-retro machine that turns heads as you pass by. Indeed, many manufacturers have made a killing by employing this strategy, and even managed to capture the attention of a good number of first time riders in the process.
In the Asian market, Kawasaki has been selling the W175 for a few years now. Just like its bigger sibling the W800, the W175 is a laid-back UJM that’s perfectly at home cruising city streets in style and comfort. Interestingly, however, Kawasaki is set to launch the W175 in the Indian market for the first time on September 25, 2022. Needless to say, a lot of retro-enthusiasts in India are surely eagerly anticipating this upcoming retro model.
So far, what we do know is that the W175 will retail for around Rs 150,000, which translates to around $1,885 USD. It’ll virtually be unrivaled in the small displacement segment, but its closest rivals will be the likes of Yamaha’s FZ series and Bajaj’s Pulsar range, albeit these models don’t pack the same retro design as the W175. Furthermore, Kawasaki will be manufacturing the W175 in India to keep prices competitive.
From a performance perspective, the Kawasaki W175 packs a docile 177cc single-cylinder engine that features air-cooling and electronic fuel-injection. It’s rated at a very approachable 13 horsepower and 9.2 ft-lbs of torque, meaning first timers can very easily swing a leg over this bike with confidence. Power is likewise sent to the back wheel via a five-speed manual transmission.
Overall, the Kawasaki W175 has a strong potential to be a hit among stylish commuters in India, as it packs all the bare essentials for a reliable, no-frills two-wheeler, with all the head-turning styling of a classic machine. It tips the scales at a reasonable 135 kilograms ready to ride, and its 165-millimeter ground clearance should be enough to tackle the urban environment with ease, as well as the less-than-perfect road conditions of the suburbs.
Sources: India Car News, Rush Lane, K2K Motovlogs