Some fifty years since its launch, Kawasaki has announced the end of the iconic W series of four-stroke vertical twin motorcycles; the W800 ‘Final Edition’ marks the end of an era. With a limited number available for the 2017 season, fans and enthusiasts have a last chance to experience the contemporary descendant of the famous W series that first emerged from the Kawasaki factory in Akashi, Japan, in the mid 1960’s. Now, sadly, the line must end as the current machine will not meet future European motorcycle regulations.
The family tree of the W800 and the W series itself can be traced back to 1966 when Kawasaki introduced its ‘great grandfather’; the W1. Equipped with a robust and reliable 650cc engine and 50hp, the W1 was the very first large capacity high performance four-stroke under the Kawasaki banner and turned out to be a true manufacturing milestone – especially in the American market where it helped set the foundations for the brand in a huge motorcycle hungry market.
The all new W800 with its authentic retro look and feel is considered by many to be a modern day classic. Suitably christened the W800 ‘Final Edition’, the last model in the line is resplendent in its remarkable Candy Brown and Candy Sunset Orange paint scheme.
The air-cooled 4-stroke vertical twin air-cooled motor displaces 773 cm3 complete with a bevel gear driven camshaft. Attention to detail abounds and gives the W800 an exquisite quality and nostalgic beauty complete with its distinctive tank badge resembling that of the original W series.
Celebrating over 50 years of the W-family, Kawasaki hopes this last-in-line ‘Final Edition’ will highlight the heritage of the W800 once more and prove a fitting end to the W series, according to the Corporate Planning Director for Kawasaki Motors Europe, Mr. Morihiro Ikoma: “It’s never easy to say good bye to an old friend, especially one as iconic as the W800. Paying homage to the W series with this Final Edition is therefore a truly fitting end to a long and successful line of machines.”