Slide into action with Kawasaki’s D-Tracker
Get a supermoto look with this Kawasaki
LOOK & DESIGN
The 2017 Kawasaki KLX 150 D-Tracker looks slim from every angle.
The dirt bike has 17-inch road-going wheels.
The plastics on it, in particular those on its short front fender and half-matte "radiator" shrouds, exude the "full-size" supermoto feel.
Your eyes will zero in on the bare metal, such as the large-diameter front brake rotor, upside-down forks, bash plate and top-down exhaust heat shield.
The D-Tracker is more suited for the road than off-road terrain. The narrow header pipe from the single-cylinder 144cc four-stroker hints at its gentle manners.
There is nothing too extreme about the motorbike's riding posture. It may look tall, but most riders will find themselves resting their feet on tarmac.
You will also sense the D-Tracker's narrow girth. It has ample "sliding" space on the seat as the fuel tank sits flush with the firm seat.
POWER & HANDLING
The motorbike has almost 12hp and about 11.5Nm of torque. The only way to get speed or some punch out of its small engine is to keep the throttle pinned.
While throttle response is smooth, riding hard will leave your fingers with that tingling sensation.
What the electric-start D-Tracker lacks in horsepower, it makes up with its comfort and agility.
Thankfully, its suspension does not quit at the first sign of bumpiness. The five-speeder has non-adjustable front forks but a five-way preload adjustable rear shock.
It is versatile when cornering. You can lean with the motorbike like a street bike in bends. Or if you adopt the scrambler style, you could lean the D-Tracker while keeping your riding posture upright.
Its thin 120kg frame makes corner-carving effortless.
While equipped with a 300mm-diameter front brake rotor and Nissin calipers - front and back - the air-cooled Kawasaki lacks initial bite. However, it stops quickly the harder you depress the brakes.
Its oddly-shaped mirrors complement the plastic hand guards, but it lacks coverage. You will need to regularly check your blind spots.
Like most small capacity motorbikes, the D-Tracker, which comes with a 6.9-litre fuel tank, will go the distance. At half tank, it covered about 110km.
There is no electronic wizardry here - just a clean-looking speedometer and fuel gauges.
Still, if you are learning to slide for the first time, this is good news as there is no traction control to disarm.
You will get the supermoto looks with the D-Tracker without having to spend thousands of dollars to convert a dirt bike into a supermoto.
It has a reliable engine and plush suspension. It is also fun to ride, and that's all you need, really.
MAKE & MODEL: 2017 Kawasaki KLX 150 D-Tracker
ENGINE: Air-cooled, four-stroke, single cylinder
PRICE: $6,200. For more information, call Evershine Auto at 6453-1237