Kawasaki Motorcycle Specialist in London

Kawasaki Specialist

Have you ever wondered about the history of one of Japan’s most recognised motorcycle brands? Looking after your Kawasaki motorcycle is a cinch when you have access to Kawasaki specialist London services. The story starts in 1837 with the birth of the founder of the original company, Shozo Kawasaki. He was the son of a kimono merchant and with a similar entrepreneurial spirit, became a tradesman at the age of 17 in Nagasaki.

By the age of 27 he had set up his own shipping business, but this was destined for failure as his only cargo ship sank during a storm. Undeterred, he worked for several other shipping companies and successfully set up new sea routes, he founded the Kawasaki Tsukiji Shipyard in Tokyo.

The shipyard expanded into other areas of commerce that required steel fabrication, including trains, bridge girders and freight cars. In 1907 the shipyard began producing steam turbines for use in the marine sector.

By 1918, Kawasaki had a production plant at Hyogo which began to manufacture aircraft. Up until this time, most planes were still made from wood, but Kawasaki’s plant manufactured the first all-aluminium body for aircraft.

It wasn’t until 1961 that motorcycles arrived on the scene. By this time, the different areas of the business had merged together under the name of Kawasaki Heavy Industries Ltd, as it still known today. It’s come along way from the Tokyo shipyard of the late nineteenth century, with the company now manufacturing in China, Thailand, the Philippines, Brazil, the USA and Indonesia. Kawasaki were the first Japanese motorcycles to be produced inside the United States in 1974.

The name is synonymous with sports bikes, aiming their designs predominantly at the sports rider market. Their experience of Grand Prix racing and world Superbike events is reflected in the street bikes available today.

Kawasaki motorcycles are extremely popular with collectors, with the triple cylinder range being especially attractive. What makes these bikes ideal for restoration is that parts are relatively easy to come by. The first triple cylinder 2-stroke was introduced in 1969 and called the H1 Mach 111. It totally blew away the competition. For sheer performance, the H1 Mach 111 was unrivalled, reaching speeds of over 100 mph and crossing a quarter of a mile in just under 13 seconds.

Features of the early H1 machines that were unique at the time included capacitor discharge ignition and three individual exhaust systems. A whole range of triple cylinder bikes were released in the early seventies which included the S1 Mach 1 in a 250cc, the S2 Mach 11 in a 350cc and 750cc version and the H2 Mach 1V.

The Ninja was the next model range that arrived during the 1980s, remaining on the scene for two decades. The Ninjas featured DOHC cam engines that had 4 valves per cylinder and a water cooling system that gave the supreme performance Kawasaki was renowned for. This performance was clearly demonstrated at the 1984 TT when the 900s came first and second in the 751 – 1000cc class.