Kawasaki W800 Street vs Triumph Bonneville T100: Specifications comparison

31st Jul 2019 4:08 pm

At Rs 7.99 lakh (ex-showroom) the Kawasaki W800 has one direct rival in India: the Triumph Bonneville T100. We compare the two bikes on paper

Kawasaki India recently launched the new W800 Street in India at Rs 7.99 lakh (ex-showroom). The W-series is Kawasaki’s modern classic range of motorcycles that was heavily updated last year and has finally made it to India. The Kawasaki W800 Street goes up against the Triumph Bonneville range of modern classic motorcycles, particularly the Bonneville T100. 

Triumph’s Modern Classics flavour of motorcycles are built for those looking for a big-capacity motorcycle with a torquey engine and offering a relaxed riding experience. While the Bonneville range is quite well established in India, the Kawasaki W800 Street surely has its work cut out to make a dent in this segment. Our specifications comparison tells you how these two modern classics stack up against each other.

Prices (ex-showroom, Mumbai)
Kawasaki W800 StreetTriumph Bonneville T100
PriceRs 7.99 lakhRs 8.87 lakh

Design

The Kawasaki W800 and the Triumph Bonneville T100 stick to the modern classic design handbook to the T. The round headlamps, twin-pod instruments, fork gaiters, large fuel tanks, twin pea-shooter exhausts, wire-spoke wheels, and dollops of chrome are reminiscent of classic motorcycles.  

The W800 takes inspiration from the 1966 Kawasaki W1 whereas the Bonneville T100 is inspired by the 1959 Triumph Bonneville. Each motorcycle exudes a certain charm and look that is unique in its own way. 

The Kawasaki’s seat height, at 770mm, is a whole 20mm lower than the Bonnie’s and that should make it friendlier for short riders.

Dimensions
Kawasaki W800 StreetTriumph Bonneville T100
Wheelbase1465mm1450mm
Seat height770mm790mm
Fuel capacity15 litres14.5 litres
Weight221kg (kerb weight)213 kg (dry weight)

Engine and gearbox

The Kawasaki W800 is powered by a 773cc, air-cooled, SOHC, vertical-twin engine that develops 52hp at 6,500rpm and 62.9Nm of torque at 4,800rpm. A vertical-twin engine is essentially a parallel-twin with a different firing order and a 360-degree crankshaft. It results in a unique sound that’s much different to the Triumph Bonneville T100’s parallel-twin engine that has a 270-degree firing order. 

The Triumph’s 900cc engine is relatively modern as it features liquid cooling and produces more power (55hp at 5,750rpm) and torque (76.7Nm at 3,050rpm). Following the engine updates to the 2019 Triumph Street Screambler 900, we expect the Bonnieville T100's engine to also get a revamped engine in the next iteration. This should result in a bump in power and torque.  

Note that the Bonneville’s motor produces peak power and torque at much lower rpms, which should translate to a calmer motorcycle at both, city and highway speeds as you won’t have to rev the engine to the upper end of the rpm range to be on pace. Liquid-cooling would also result in better heat management in Indian riding conditions, as opposed to a big, air-cooled engine. But we shall reserve our judgement till after we ride the Kawasaki W800 in the real world.

Both motorcycles are paired to a 5-speed gearbox. While the Triumph features a torque-assist clutch, the Kawasaki has a clutch system with a slip function that will prevent rear wheel hop in case of hard downshifts. 

Engine and gearbox
Kawasaki W800 StreetTriumph Bonneville T100
Engine typeAir-cooled, vertical-twinLiquid-cooled, parallel-twin
Displacement773cc900cc
Power52hp at 6500rpm55hp at 5750rpm
Torque62.9Nm at 4800rpm76.73Nm at 3050rpm
Gearbox5-speed5-speed

Hardware and electronics 

Both motorcycles employ a double-cradle chassis and are suspended by 41mm telescopic forks at the front and twin shocks at the rear that can be adjustable for preload. 

The Kawasaki has 18-inch wire-spoke wheels at both ends while the Triumph has an 18-inch front and a 17-inch rear wire-spoke wheel. Both motorcycles have a single-disc setup at the front and rear, however, the Kawasaki has the bigger brake disc at either end. ABS is standard on both motorcycles. 

When it comes to electronics, the T100 is clearly ahead of the W800; while the latter is devoid of any electronic aids, the T100 features ride-by-wire and traction control. 

Chassis
Kawasaki W800 StreetTriumph Bonneville T100
Front brake320mm single disc310mm single disc
Rear brake270mm single disc255mm single disc
Front suspension41mm telescopic fork41mm telescopic fork
Rear suspensionTwin shocks, preload adjustableTwin shocks, preload adjustable
Front tyre100/90-18100/90-18
Rear tyre130/80-18150/70 R17

Verdict

The Triumph Bonneville T100, at Rs 8.87 lakh (ex-showroom), is priced much higher than the Kawasaki W800 (Rs 7.99 lakh, ex-showroom), but for the extra rupees you do get a lot more equipment, such as traction control and a liquid-cooled motor. The W800, says Kawasaki, stays true to the term classic and hence does not have the aforementioned, modern day technologies. On paper, the Triumph Bonneville T100 appears as the better motorcycle. Also, the T100 is expected to be heavily updated and we expect Triumph to showcase the bike at EICMA 2019.     

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