My New 2001 Kawasaki W650 Bike

2001 Kawasaki W650 motorcycle parked in my driveway.
The Kawasaki W650 moments after bringing it dwelling.

One other Machine within the Storage

Anybody following my weblog or YouTube channel is aware of I’ve been fascinated about getting some form of motorbike for cruising the backroads of Central Pennsylvania. The Triumph Bonneville has lengthy been in view. However after using a Bonneville and a Road Twin I dominated them out. Don’t get me unsuitable, they’re positive bikes. However they simply didn’t set off the sentiments whereas using that I used to be after.

I had just about targeted on the Royal Enfield Basic 350. It had the basic commonplace motorbike look I used to be after, had a subdued engine, and appeared excellent for the meandering I appreciated to do. Velocity and energy have been simply not a priority.

So, how did I find yourself with a 2001 Kawasaki W650 motorbike?

2001 Kawasaki W650 parked at a motorcycle dealership.
My first assembly with the Kawasaki W650.


The Kawasaki W650 was not on my radar. I solely had a obscure recognition of its existence primarily based on a suggestion in a remark that I ought to think about it. How I got here to purchase one is a narrative of likelihood, serendipity, and a coincidence of excellent fortune.

I had taken my Royal Enfield Himalayan to the Kawasaki seller a number of miles down the street from my home to have them do the annual Pennsylvania Security Inspection. After the mechanic took it for a take a look at experience she instructed me it was an fascinating motorbike. She had by no means seen one earlier than. Whereas speaking I instructed her I used to be presumably shopping for a Triumph Bonneville to cruise the backroads however wasn’t solely snug with the load and energy.

After which she says she has a 2001 Kawasaki W650 that she’s planning to promote if I’m . She confirmed me a number of photos on her cellphone and I instructed her I might give it some thought. At this level I used to be nonetheless leaning in the direction of a Triumph and I didn’t actually know something a couple of W650.

2001 Kawasaki W650 parked near Coyler Lake.
My take a look at experience.

Falling for a Bike

A couple of month later, a number of days earlier than my 69th birthday, I texted the mechanic asking if I might take it for a take a look at experience. Preparations have been made for her to experience it to work and I might cease by and take it for a spin.

After I arrived she was busy changing the wheel bearings on a giant Indian motorbike so she tossed me the keys and stated have enjoyable. Just a few miles later I used to be winding down the backroads towards Coyler Lake with a giant grin on my face. The Kawasaki W650 was precisely what I used to be in search of.

This motorbike ticked the containers for the issues I used to be focused on — simplicity, styling, efficiency, and that elusive feeling I’ll name the “Zen expertise.” From the analog gauges to the twin carbs the W650 exuded simplicity. I cherished how a lot the motorbike regarded like a 1968 Triumph Bonneville. And on the street it was calm, subdued, however had loads of energy for any scenario I might think about. And most significantly was the “Zen expertise.” I felt instantly at dwelling using it.

This was the motorbike.

2001 Kawasaki W650 on a rural road.
On the street with my Kawasaki W650.

Comfortable Birthday to Me

I instructed the mechanic, Julia, that I might have to consider it. I’ve discovered to not instantly soar on choices that I knew have been proper. Primarily as a result of expertise has proven that they aren’t all the time what I believe they’ll be.

My spouse knew I needed one other motorbike. Not being a rider, and customarily not focused on scooters and bikes, she didn’t actually perceive why I want one other. However she knew it was vital and stated if I needed it then purchase it.

Just a few hours later, on my birthday, we have been at AAA transferring the title and earlier than I knew it I had added a 2001 Kawasaki W650 to my small fleet of scooters and motorbike.

Together with the motorbike got here a pair rear racks, the unique headlight, and some different odds and ends together with the Kawasaki service guide for the bike. And I bought a LongRide Small Traveler bag to hold meals, water, instruments, and cameras.

I’m prepared for journey!

The video beneath will provide you with an concept of the way it sounds and what it’s wish to experience.

The expertise of using my 2001 Kawasaki W650 motorbike.