The Kawasaki Ninja is one of the most popular sportbikes in markets all over the world.
It is known for its plucky engine builds, great levels of horsepower and torque, reliable mechanics, and accessibility to riders of all different levels.
With varying engine sizes available, people often like to “climb the ladder” with these affordable bikes, starting at the lower cc models and then working up to the hyper sport Ninjas.
This article answers the question: “How Many Miles Do Kawasaki Ninjas Last?”…
How Many Miles Do Kawasaki Ninjas Last?
A Kawasaki Ninja is a very well-constructed motorcycle that when properly looked after and well-maintained, will carry riders for many thousands of miles.
When the Kawasaki Ninja is used for more regular road use and isn’t over-taxed or pushed into riskier situations, it can easily stay a healthy on-road bike for 100,000 miles or more. When the bikes are used on tracks for racing purposes, they are typically known to last for 20,000-50,000 miles.
Ultimately, how many miles the Kawasaki Ninjas can last depends on how they are used and how well they are maintained.
How Long Does A Kawasaki Ninja 250 Last?
The Kawasaki Ninja 250 comes in two forms, namely the older model called the 250R first launched in 1986 and still in production in select markets, and the 250SL which was released in select markets in 2014.
The 250R has a 2-cylinder engine and the 250 SL a 4-cylinder engine.
They are both still in production within their respective markets.
The latter was the first to have a 4-stroke single-cylinder engine.
Its top speed among all its variants was about 97mph.
While having those differences in the cylinder, displacement in all models of both Ninja 250 bikes has been 249cc.
Both also have their powertrains paired with a 6-speed manual constant mesh transmission.
The typical life expectancy of a Ninja 250 is still very long, despite its reputation as a smaller “beginner’s bike.”
You can expect a 250 and its motor to go on for at least 50,000 miles and quite possibly 60,000 miles. One high recorded mileage on a Kawasaki Ninja 250 is held by one Bill Hoddinott who recorded 88,000 miles on his 250. General maintenance requirements are fairly low since it’s a basic bike.
With proper care of the chain, engine, tires, brakes, and suspension as you would normally with any bike, there’s no reason the Ninja 250 shouldn’t stretch its lifespan beyond that upper estimate.
How Long Does A Kawasaki Ninja 300 Last?
The Kawasaki Ninja 300 was also a very popular choice as a beginner’s bike, similar to the Ninja 250.
It has a similar sport frame though a little bulkier to match the larger 296cc engine.
The top speed of the Ninja 300 was between 106 and 119mph depending on which variant you chose. The bike was first released in 2012 as an upgrade for the much older 250 in select markets.
Its 296cc engine was a liquid-cooled 4-stroke 8-valve DOHC parallel-twin design with a torque output of up to 20lb-ft. It was also among the first lower-end Ninja bikes to receive Kawasaki’s much-celebrated slipper clutch.
First released in 2012, the Ninja 300 was also among the first of the Ninja bikes to offer ABS as an optional feature, and as a standard feature on its Special Edition models each year.
The more capable and refined engine of the Ninja 300 helps it also to last longer than the 250 when it’s properly cared for.
The estimated mileage lifespan on a typical Ninja 300 is about 100,000 miles when properly maintained. One Canadian user in Australia, Lyann Duxbury, bought a Kawasaki Ninja 300 in February 2013 for commuting purposes.
Little did she know she would clock up more than 62,000 miles (100,000km) on the bike in just 38 months. Some of that riding was in the Australian Outback, too, so very demanding.
By all accounts, Duxbury’s bike is doing very well indeed and is still going strong with minimal maintenance and only one single modification to the exhaust.
How Long Does A Kawasaki Ninja 400 Last?
Though the Ninja 400 is one of the newest members of the eclectic Ninja family, having just arrived in 2018, it is already incredibly popular.
It has proven particularly successful in getting past certain environmental standards in the EU market that the 300 was struggling with.
The Ninja 400 is built with a 399cc engine with a liquid-cooled 4-stroke 8-valve DOHC parallel-twin design.
It outputs about 49hp altogether and about 28lb-ft of torque.
It has a top speed of about 105mph.
The powertrain is paired with a 6-speed chain-drive transmission.
There were two main models, the 400 and the JDM-only 400R.
As with many other engines in the Kawasaki Ninja series, the engine when properly maintained and its individual components looked after down to the last sprocket, you should expect a lifespan north of 100,000.
The trouble with predicting the lifespan of the Ninja 400 is that the bike is still relatively new, with the oldest models only 3 years old.
Some accounts exist with bikes already exceeding the 5,000 miles mark and still doing great.
The 400 has the benefit of many years of engineering and alteration that were carried out on earlier models since the 1980s on bikes like the Ninja 250.
Though the displacements are different, the core technology is the same.
This means that the 400, as a late-release bike from 2018 at the earliest, benefits from years of development to create a very refined engine that riders praise to no end.
How Long Does a Kawasaki Ninja 650 Last?
The Kawasaki Ninja 650 features a 649cc engine and has been around since 2006.
Its first iteration was the 650R, which became the 650 in 2012.
It was discontinued in some markets but still continues strong here in the US.
The Ninja 650 is among the more surprising of the Ninja series because while many may view its 649cc as too much for a beginner, the bike is often lauded as one of the best starter bikes because of its capacity to allow new riders to learn, grow and develop skills all in one bike.
Where other smaller-cc bikes tend to have a ceiling on rider growth, the 650 was praised as a bike to go from beginner to pro without having to get a replacement bike each year.
The engine is a 649cc parallel-twin design and the bike also features a lot of great modern additions in its newest version.
Besides the signature Kawasaki slipper clutch, you also get ABS, twin LED headlights, dual throttle valves, and much more.
The 4-stroke DOHC 8-valve engine is paired with a 6-speed manual transmission and sealed chain drive system.
The main maintenance to keep up with on the 650 will be its tires, plugs and wires, and of course the chain and relative engine components. If you do so you should expect it to easily give you 120,000 miles or so.
Many accounts of people using even the older 650R models from 2006-2012 say that they used it for 25,000 miles before selling and encountered no major problems at all.
Many predict that it would get to 100,000 miles with ease, making 120,000 miles for a well-maintained bike perfectly feasible.
Verdict: Which Kawasaki Ninja Is Best?
The main thing we haven’t factored into any of the models so far is cost.
Going up to the Ninja 650 if you buy a new one will raise the cost significantly but it is the best bike to grow into and develop your skills.
The best all-around bike is the Ninja 400.
It gives riders enough room to grow, a very affordable price tag of just $4,999 brand-new, and thus very affordable when buying new, as well as the same great engine features that make it reliable for 100,000+ miles.
Furthermore, the 400 is the best choice because of its novelty.
The first generation was only released in 2018, which means there is far less risk in purchasing used, but those who want to buy new can do so without breaking the bank and still getting great features.
Therefore, if you want a solid all-around bike that will last and suit day-to-day biking as well as some occasional weekend thrills and enjoyment on an adventure ride, then go for the Ninja 400.
If you want a more “premium” bike, the capabilities of which stretch much further and will give more scope for different uses, then go for the Ninja 650.
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