This is the maintenance schedule and service intervals for the Kawasaki Z900RS and Z900RS Café, Kawasaki’s “retro classic” motorcycle released in 2017 for 2018+.
The Kawasaki Z900RS is a more sedate and higher-spec version of the Kawasaki Z900 streetfighter. It uses the same 948cc DOHC fuel-injected inline-four engine, but it’s tuned for more modest power output of 82 kW (110 hp) @ 8500 rpm and peak torque of 98 Nm (72 ft-lb) @ 6500 rpm — similar peak torque, but coming over 1000 rpm lower.
The Z900RS is also available as the Kawasaki Z900RS Café, which is the same bike but with a different front cowl and handlebar position. Both have the same maintenance schedule.
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Maintenance Schedule for the Kawasaki Z900RS and Z900RS Café
Below is the full maintenance schedule from the manual for the Z900RS and Z900RS Café, reformatted slightly to fit this screen.
- I = Inspect (and adjust, lubricate, or replace if necessary)
- R = Replace
- L = Lubricate
- (*C) = Service more frequently if you ride in severe conditions: dust, the wet, mud, at high speed, or frequently starting/stopping
- (*D) = California model only
In the right-most column there’s an entry for every # years or # distance in km/miles you should do each item. At the first of either distance or time interval perform the service.
|km x 1000||1||6||12||18||24|
|mi x 1000||0.6||3.8||7.6||11.4||15.2||Every|
|Conduct standard service checklist (See below)||✓||✓||✓||Year|
|Engine oil — Replace (Kawasaki 10W-40 Engine oil)||✓||✓||✓||Year|
|Oil filter — Replace (HF303RC)||✓||✓||✓|
|Spark plug — Replace (NGK CR9EIA-9)||✓||✓|
|Air cleaner element — Replace||✓||More often when riding in dusty / wet conditions|
|Fuel filter — Replace||✓|
|Fuel hoses — Replace||5 years|
|Coolant, water hoses, and O-rings — Replace||3 years / 22500 mi / 36000 km|
|Valve clearance — Inspect / adjust||✓|
|Brake fluid (front and rear) — Replace (Castrol DOT 4)||✓||2 years|
|Brake hoses — Replace||4 years|
|Rubber parts of brake master cylinder and caliper — Replace||4 years / 48000 km / 30000 mi|
|Brake pad wear — Inspect. Replace as necessary||✓||✓||✓||✓|
|Brake light switch operation — Check||✓||✓||✓||✓||✓|
|Steering stem bearings — Lubricate||✓||2 years|
|Evaporative emission control system (if fitted) — Inspect||✓||✓||✓||✓||✓|
Z900RS Standard Service
Below is the standard service checklist for the Kawasaki Z900RS.
If items are marked “Annual”, do them even if the distance interval hasn’t been met. Otherwise, it’s less critical.
|Z900RS Standard Service item||Annual|
|Throttle control system (play, smooth return, no drag) — Inspect||Yes|
|Fuel system — Inspect (leaks, general condition)||Yes|
|Idle speed — Inspect / Adjust|
|Drive chain wear — Inspect|
|Drive chain guide wear — Inspect|
|Clutch operation (play, engagement, disengagement)|
|Brake operation — Inspect (effectiveness, no drag)||Yes|
|Brake fluid level — Inspect|
Check more often — recommended every half year
|Cooling system — Inspect (general functioning, including fan)||Yes|
|Coolant level — Inspect|
|Engine vacuum sync — Inspect|
|Air suction system — Inspect|
|Tire air pressure — Inspect / Adjust (see table below)||Yes|
|Wheels and tires — Inspect (condition, tread)||Yes|
|Wheel bearing condition — Inspect (no notches, damage)||Yes|
|Suspension system, front and rear — Inspect (smooth functioning, no leaks)|
|Steering play — Inspect (smooth, no notchiness)|
|Electrical system — Inspect (all lights/switches)|
|Chassis parts — Lubricate|
|Bolts, nuts, and fasteners — Inspect condition / tighten|
Maintaining Your Chain on the Kawasaki Z900RS
It’s important to maintain your chain on the Z900RS, as on any chain-driven motorcycle. Use a good-quality chain lubricant like Motul chain paste, or a Motul chain care kit which comes with a couple of handy tools to maintain the chain.
Kawasaki recommends you follow the following chain maintenance schedule:
|Chain maintenance item||Every|
|Check drive chain lubrication condition, lubricating if necessary (Motul chain paste)||400 mi / 600 km|
|Check drive chain slack, adjusting if necessary||600 mi / 1000 km|
|Check chain wear and chain guide wear. Replace as necessary.||Service|
- Do these items (checking/adjusting slack, and checking/applying lubrication) more often if you ride your Z900RS in dusty or rainy conditions.
- Always lubricate the chain after washing the motorcycle.
Daily checks for the Z900RS
In addition to regular maintenance, you’re supposed to do the following daily/regular checks of your Kawasaki Z900RS.
|Item||Checks to perform|
|Fuel||* Adequate supply in tank, no leaks|
|Engine oil||* Oil level between level lines|
|Tyres||* Air pressure (when cold), install the air valve cap|
* Tyre wear
|Drive chain||* Slack: Every 1000 km (600 mile)|
* Lubricate: Every 600 km (400 mile), or if dry
|Bolts, nuts, and fasteners||* Check for loose and/or missing bolts, nuts, and fasteners|
|Steering||* Action smooth but not loose from lock to lock|
* No binding of control cables
|Brakes||* Brake pad wear|
* Brake fluid level
* No brake fluid leakage
|Throttle||* Throttle grip free play|
|Clutch||* Clutch lever free play|
* Clutch lever operates smoothly
|Coolant||* No coolant leakage|
* Coolant level between level lines (when engine is cold)
|Electrical equipment||* All lights (head, city, brake/tail, turn signal, license plate, warning/indicator) and horn work|
|Engine stop switch||* Stops engine|
|Side stand||* Return to its fully up position by spring tension|
* Return spring not weak or not damaged
|Rear view mirrors||Rear view sight|
Tyre and tyre pressures for the Kawasaki Z900RS and Z900RS Café
The Kawasaki Z900RS runs tubeless tyres, Dunlop Sportmax GPR in stock trim.
|Wheel||Tyre size||Tyre pressure|
|Front||120/70ZR17 M/C 58W||250 kPa/36 psi|
|Rear||180/55ZR17 M/C 73W||290 kPa/42 psi|
About the Kawasaki Z900RS and Café
The Z900RS is Kawasaki’s “retro standard”.
It loosely competes with other classically styled motorcycles like the Honda CB1000R and Yamaha XSR900.
But like each of those motorcycles, the Kawasaki Z900RS is more likely to have retro appeal to people who grew up with old Kawasakis and are used to seeing Team Green produce machines that were once superbikes.
While modern the Kawasaki superbike is the ZX-10R, the Kawasaki Z900RS looks like the superbikes of old, from the days of Eddie Lawson.
Even though it’s not the fastest bike, it’s no slowpoke. The 948cc inline four-cylinder engine produces an impressive 80 kW (111 hp) @ 8500 rpm, meaning it’s both grunty and that you don’t have to rev it to the moon to make it sing. Even better, there are simple mods out there (exhausts and tunes) that can easily extract another 15% from the engine.
The Z900RS also comes with top-spec suspension — a fully adjustable front inverted fork and a preload and rebound-adjustable rear setup. Braking is sportbike level and the bike isn’t too heavy at 214 kg (472 lb). Basically, those looking for a sporty experience and occasional rush will be satisfied.
What’s important to bear in mind is that as a motorcycle, the Z900RS is 100% capable. This isn’t a case of “form over function”. In base trim, the Kawasaki Z900RS has great, usable power, a flat torque line, excellent handling, decent ride safety equipment, and high reliability.
So what’s the but? There isn’t one really, other than the fact that the retro-ness means that the Z900RS loses out on a little of the latest tech that some “streetfighter”-style bikes have.
For example, the latest streetfighter bikes from BMW have cruise control and cornering ABS. The Yamaha MT-10 even has cruise control (though no IMU). These things are becoming standard, and they’ll become frequently-requested items by owners over the coming years. The Z900RS lacks these — though it does have ABS and traction control.
Another slight blemish on the Z900RS’ spec sheet is that in base trim, it underperforms its sporty sibling the Z900. It’s also a lot more expensive. So you realise that you really are paying for aesthetics — and a better suspension set up.
But the real appeal of the Z900RS is the aesthetics. It looks fantastic in any colour (even green, if that’s your thing). The gauges have the right “dial” feel. The paint is superb. The seat is plush.
So if you want a great looking bike that’s also great to ride and own, then the Z900RS might be for you.
In the same vein, Kawasaki has also released the Kawasaki Z650RS, a retro roadster based on the Z650.
Manual for the Kawasaki Z900RS and Z900RS Café
The above maintenance schedule came directly from the manual for the Kawasaki Z900RS and Z900RS Café. You can download it from Kawasaki’s website here.