Although Bimota is known for its high-tech hub-steering models, it doesn’t mean the 58-year-old Italian motorcycle manufacturer can’t have some fun. The 2022 Bimota KB4 fits into that mold, replacing eye-popping engineering with provocative styling.
- The KB line dates back to 1978. The K designates that a Kawasaki motor powers the machine. The ball got rolling with the KB1, a high-performance street bike powered by a Kawasaki KZ1000 engine in a trellis frame. Massimo Tamburini—the “ta” in Bimota—designed the bodywork of the striking motorcycle. A clean example sold for $27,500 at Mecum Auctions’ Las Vegas 2020 sale. It has been 38 years since the KB3 rolled off the Rimini assembly line, so a KB4 is long overdue.
- The new KB4 reflects Kawasaki’s 49 percent ownership of Bimota. Following in the KB tradition, this new motorcycle has a Kawasaki Ninja 1000 motor and, you guessed it, a trellis frame. The KB4 also uses Kawasaki electronics, though the dash has a carbon fiber mount.
- Although Bimota is known for its hub-steering designs, the KB4 has conventional Öhlins suspension. The fork happens to be an Öhlins upgrade path for Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R owners, while the linkage-assisted piggyback-reservoir shock is part of Öhlins’ Hypersport flagship shock line. Both units are fully adjustable. For those who must have hub steering, Bimota sells the Tesi H2, which is powered by Kawasaki’s supercharged inline-4.
- The tires are premium Pirelli Diablo Supercorsa SP rubber, and Brembo calipers are employed for stopping.
- Bimota reminds us of its innovative engineering reputation in the cooling system. The diagonally mounted radiator sits between the seat and the rear wheel, with the system highly pressurized.
- The KB4’s appearance is intended to invoke the 1970s, yet the company wanted more than a strictly retro motorcycle. “It went from first-sketch to full-size model in few months using computer-aided design,” Bimota Designer Enrico Borghesan explains, “and without missing any of the passion that has made so many Bimota products fun to ride and show off. KB4…will appeal to enthusiasts of all ages because the design draws you in, and the performance keeps you there. The Bimota’ Vintage Inspired’ has the soul for spirited, functional motorcycles.”
- We don’t have a price for the 2022 Bimota KB4, though Bimota allows you to pre-order the motorcycle on its website. Bimota Spirit in Raleigh, North Carolina, is the American importer. Bob Steinbugler is the owner of Bimota Spirit, and has had a relationship with Bimota for over 40 years. Delivery of the KB4 is sometime in 2022.
2022 Bimota KB4 Specs
- Type: Inline-4
- Displacement: 1043cc
- Bore x stroke: 77 x 56mm
- Maximum power: 142 horsepower @ 10,000 rpm
- Maximum torque: 82 ft-lbs @ 8000 rpm
- Compression ratio: 11.8:1
- Fueling: Four 38mm throttle bodies
- Transmission: 6-speed
- Clutch: Wet multiplate
- Final drive: Chain
- Frame: Steel trellis
- Front suspension; travel: Fully adjustable Öhlins R&T NIX 30 inverted 43mm fork; 5.1 inches
- Rear suspension; travel: Linkage-assisted Fully adjustable Öhlins TTX 36 piggyback-reservoir shock; 4.8 inches
- Wheels: Forged aluminum
- Front wheel: 17 x 3.5
- Rear wheel: 17 x 6.0
- Tires: Pirelli Diablo Supercorsa SP
- Front tire: 120/70 x 17
- Rear tire: 190/50 x 17
- Front brakes: 320mm discs w/ radially mounted Brembo calipers
- Rear brake: 240mm disc w/ Brembo caliper
- ABS: Standard
DIMENSIONS and CAPACITIES
- Wheelbase: 54.7 inches
- Rake: 24.0 degrees
- Trail: 4.0 inches
- Seat height: 31.9 inches
- Fuel capacity: 5.2 gallons
- Curb weight: 428 pounds
2022 Bimota KB4 Price: $TBA MSRP