2000 Kawasaki KE100
Solid, simple, and slow
Carb needs some adjustment.
Tail light burnt out.
This bike has old school style combined with new bike reliability. The KE100 was the last of its' kind, being that it was the last two stroke street legal dual sport one could buy. The same basic design had been around since the late sixties and the engine is anvil simple, although the carb location is poor. It is by the rear brake lever under a cover. So don't ride in water that is any higher than the lower frame tubes.
The lighting system is lackluster running at a old school 6 volts. Don't expect to use the lights without a battery and expect to see anything. Riding long distances can be done, but aren't real comfortable.
The KE100 will top out at a little over 65 mph on a level surface with no wind. However even a slight breeze will effect how fast one can cruise. The KE100 is most happy putting down back roads at 40 mph, and it is at this speed it will deliver the best fuel economy. I have gotten as high as 90 mpg just putting around. However don't expect to cruise at 55 mph and get great fuel economy. It isn't going to happen. One can expect to get right around 50 mpg at those speeds.
The bike will travel at 55 mph for long distances, but it is buzzy and vibrates a bit making for sore hands. The acceleration is decent up to around 45 mph. In town it will keep up with traffic well enough to be safe.
I have ridden this bike in a snow storm with temps in the range of 15 below. It starts well even in the cold.
Handling is decent enough, although little wobbly on gravel roads due to the skinny tires.
Brakes are good, even though it uses front and rear drums.
Shifting is clunky, and there is a false neutral between third and forth that crops up every once in a while. Seems to be a problem with these bikes, since others I have rode have had the same troubles.
Out on the trails it performs alright but at slow speeds first gear is really too tall.
The bike has been very reliable, and the design of the whole thing is basically bullet proof. Just don't expect to do any motocross style jumps or interstate touring.
All in all, it is a good little bike to learn on, and it needs very little maintenance.
Would you buy another motorcycle from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 18th July, 2008