Comparison: Kawasaki Z650RS vs Triumph Trident 660

Comparison: Kawasaki Z650RS vs Triumph Trident 660

Kawasaki recently introduced the updated version of the Z650RS in India, a motorcycle that blends modern features with a retro aesthetic. This update brings a new traction control system to the bike which has resulted in a Rs 7,000 increase in its ex-showroom price. Despite this, the Z650RS remains a compelling option in the modern-retro motorcycle segment offering good value for money. It competes directly with the Triumph Trident 660, one of its main rivals in the market.

Design Comparison

The Z650RS boasts a classic design drawing inspiration from its larger sibling the Z900RS. Its classic retro appearance is accentuated by its teardrop-shaped fuel tank, round headlight, and slim, upswept tail section. However, Kawasaki has opted not to release the iconic green color for the Ninja 500 in India, offering only the black trim for now.

On the other hand, the Triumph Trident 660 incorporates some retro elements into its design such as the shape of its headlight and the chunky fuel tank. With design features like the low-set headlight, exposed subframe, a slim tail section with an integrated LED tail light, and a small tire hugger it does, nevertheless, present an overall more modern appearance. The fit and finish of both bikes are of good quality.

Feature Comparison

When it comes to features, both the Z650RS and the Trident 660 are well-equipped. For increased safety, they each have dual-channel ABS, traction control, and all-LED illumination. However, the Trident 660 gains an edge with its more modern TFT/LCD that offers Bluetooth connectivity, allowing riders to connect their smartphones for navigation and other functions. The Trident 660 also has two ride modes (Rain and Road) giving riders greater adaptability in a variety of riding environments.

Comparison: Kawasaki Z650RS vs Triumph Trident 660 - photo
Kawasaki Z650RS vs Triumph Trident 660

Engine Comparison

The engines of the Z650RS and the Trident 660 differ significantly. The Z650RS is powered by a 649cc, parallel-twin engine that produces 68bhp at 8,000rpm and 64Nm of torque at 6,700rpm. Its torque balance in the mid-range is good, and its top-end performance is decent. However, the engine's sound may not be as engaging as some riders would like.

The Trident 660, on the other hand, features a 660cc, inline-triple engine that is known for its delightful sound, from the intake howl to the exhaust scream. This engine is more powerful, delivering 80bhp at 10,250rpm, with the same peak torque of 64Nm, but at a lower 6,250rpm and the engine of the Trident stands out in its class because of its distinctive sound and increased power output.

Hardware Comparison

In terms of hardware, the Kawasaki Z650RS uses a steel-trellis frame and rides on 17-inch alloy wheels. Suspension duties are handled by telescopic forks at the front and a preload-adjustable mono-shock at the rear. Braking is provided by twin 272mm discs at the front and a 186mm disc at the rear.

The Triumph Trident 660 features a tubular steel perimeter frame with a 41mm USD fork at the front and a mono-shock at the rear. It also has larger 310mm discs at the front and a 255mm disc at the rear suggesting that it may have superior braking capabilities compared to the Z650RS.

Price Comparison

Despite the recent price increase, the Kawasaki Z650RS remains competitively priced at Rs 6.99 lakh (ex-showroom), making it significantly more affordable than the Triumph Trident 660, which is priced at Rs 8.12 lakh (ex-showroom). When deciding between these two motorcycles, some customers might find that the price difference is important.

Both the Kawasaki Z650RS and the Triumph Trident 660 offer distinct advantages in the modern-retro motorcycle segment. The Z650RS appeals to those who appreciate a classic design with a reliable engine while the Trident 660 caters to riders looking for a more modern and sporty motorcycle with a powerful and melodious engine. Which of these two motorcycles is best will ultimately depend on your priorities and tastes.