There’s nothing like an off road motorcycle that does many things well, especially one that fits a wide variety of riders and skill-sets. And with its mid-sized stature, flexible engine and easy-to-ride nature, Kawasaki’s 2011 KLX™140 is one such multi-talented machine. Smaller riders will love the KLX’s physical size – a touch larger than a typical minibike – and push-button starting, while those a bit taller will appreciate the larger-wheeled KLX140L, which features a 19” front and 16” rear wheel in place of the standard KLX’s 17” front and 14” rear wheels. Both 140s are friendly to beginners and novices, yet both offer a roomy cockpit and enough performance and handling prowess to keep more advanced riders smiling.
Start-ups are simple: just press the power switch and thumb the KLX’s start button and you’re off and running. Because dead batteries are a drag, the power switch contains an internal LED that illuminates, alerting riders whenever the ignition is on. Power from the KLX’s air-cooled SOHC 144cc engine is plentiful yet easy to manage via the manual clutch and five-speed, close-ratio transmission. The clutch design promotes an easy learning curve via its spring damper system; the design provides progressive, two-stage engagement and easy half-clutch use during slower speed riding, the perfect thing for those just leaning the machinations of manual shifting. Additional benefits of this system are a more direct lever feel and increased clutch durability.
The KLX’s high-revving, smooth and surprisingly quiet engine is wrapped in a high-tensile steel perimeter frame covered by KX™-like shrouds, a two-tone seat cover and sharp, aggressive body work. The 140’s roomy cockpit, overall control layout and narrow footpeg/frame relationship – including wide and comfortable footpegs – make it easy for riders to move around while aboard with a minimum of effort.
A 33mm telescopic fork featuring custom-tuned spring rate and damping settings handles suspension duties up front. In back, a UNI-TRAK® linkage equipped rear shock featuring 5-way preload adjustability provides a smooth and controlled ride. To provide even greater options for growing riders, the KLX140L’s more advanced, reservoir-equipped shock easily fits the standard KLX140.
RK EXCEL aluminum rims and advanced braking components are another sign this is a serious off-road motorcycle. A large 220mm front disc and 27mm twin-piston caliper at the front and 186mm rear disc provide serious stopping power. Both utilize petal shaped rotors, which help clean the brakes and reduce unsprung weight for better wheel control.
Bottom line? The KLX140 delivers an ideal blend of size and performance, all of which equals Big Fun for kids and adults alike.
Authentic Kawasaki Accessories are available through Kawasaki dealers.
MSRP: $2,899 USD
Four-stroke, SOHC, two-valve single
Bore x Stroke: 58.0 x 54.4mm
Cooling System: Air
Carburetion: Keihin PB20
Compression ratio: 9.5: 1
Transmission: Five-speed with wet multi-disc manual clutch
Final drive: Chain
Frame Type: High-Tensile steel, box-section perimeter
Rake/Trail: 27 degrees / 3.3 in.
Front suspension / wheel travel: 33mm telescopic fork / 7.1 in.
Rear suspension / wheel travel: UNI-TRAK® linkage system and single shock with 5-way preload adjustability / 7.1 in.
Front Tire Size: 70/100-17
Rear Tire Size: 90/100-14
Front brakes / rear brakes: Single 220mm petal disc with a dual-piston caliper / Single 186mm petal disc with single-piston caliper
Overall length: 71.7 in.
Overall width: 31.1 in.
Overall height: 41.3 in.
Wheelbase: 49.6 in.
Ground clearance: 9.3 in.
Seat height: 30.7 in.
Curb weight: 205.0 lbs.
Fuel capacity: 1.5 gal.
Color Choices: Lime Green
Warranty: 6 months base warranty