Kawasaki Ninja 500 vs Yamaha R3 - A Competitive Comparison

Kawasaki Ninja 500 vs Yamaha R3 - A Competitive Comparison

The recent debut of the Kawasaki Ninja 500 in India has stirred up the middleweight motorcycle segment, especially with its surprising price tag of Rs. 5.24 lakh, ex-showroom, which is on par with its older sibling, the Ninja 400. Despite being the priciest in its class due to its Completely Built-Up (CBU) nature, the Ninja 500 presents itself as a formidable contender and the Yamaha R3 is a competitive option for individuals seeking alternatives. Here's a detailed comparison between the two motorcycles:


The Ninja 500 embodies the aggressive aesthetics characteristic of the Ninja family, with sharp lines and well-proportioned fairings reminiscent of the ZX-6R. On the other hand, the Yamaha R3 opts for a more curvaceous design, with smoother contours on the front fairing and side panels. The choice between the two will largely depend on personal preference in design style. However, the availability of the Kawasaki Racing Team (KRT) colors in the SE version of the Ninja 500 could have added a more vibrant option to Kawasaki's offering.

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Kawasaki Ninja 500 Side View


Both bikes are equipped with all-LED lighting and LCD instrument displays. The Kawasaki Ninja 500 gains an edge with its Bluetooth-enabled instrument cluster, which offers a more premium and modern appearance compared to the Yamaha R3's simpler LCD display.


The Ninja 500 boasts a larger 451cc, liquid-cooled, twin-cylinder engine, producing 45bhp and 42.6Nm of torque, giving it a theoretical advantage in acceleration and top speed over the R3. The Yamaha R3, with its 321cc engine, delivers 42bhp and 29.5Nm of torque. While the R3's engine is renowned for its performance and efficiency, the Ninja 500's new engine will be put to the test in real-world conditions.

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Yamaha R3 Side View


The Ninja 500 features a steel trellis frame, a 41mm telescopic fork, and a gas-charged mono-shock, with braking handled by a 310mm front disc and a 220mm rear disc. The Yamaha R3, with its diamond frame, USD fork, and mono-shock, is likely to offer better front-end rigidity. Its braking setup includes a 298mm front disc and a 220mm rear disc.


The Yamaha R3, priced at Rs. 4.64 lakh, offers a more affordable entry into the segment compared to the Ninja 500's Rs. 5.24 lakh price tag. The decision between the two will ultimately depend on the rider's preference for the proven performance of the R3 or the allure of the new Ninja 500.