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KZ400/440

KZ400/440


The Kawasaki Z/KZ400 is a street motorcycle produced by Kawasaki between 1974 and 1984. It was developed into a larger brother, the Z/KZ440 where the stroke was lengthened to increase engine capacity. The "original" Kawasaki KZ400 was a 398 cc twin cylinder motorcycle produced from 1974 to 1984, though some later models displaced 440 cc. The KZ400 was built at plants in Akashi, Japan and Lincoln, Nebraska. The Lincoln plant (built in 1974) made Kawasaki the first foreign motorcycle manufacturer to operate a plant in the United States. The KZ400 outsold Honda in the 400 cc twins market through the 1970s. These motorcycles were marketed as fuel efficient transportation; a 1975 magazine advertisement for Kawasaki featured the KZ400 next to a Volkswagen Beetle with the tag line "Think even smaller."

Some models were offered as bare-bones transportation, with no electric start and front drum brakes. Most, however, had a single disc in the front and drum in the rear as well as electric and kick starters. Deluxe models also had a fairing and saddle bags. Combine all these options with the simplistic nature of the 400/440 and you've got a platform to build an awesome backstreet Bobber or Brat!

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