Kawasaki Eliminator 125 – Sportbikes.net

30 May 2015 | Author: | Comments Off on Kawasaki Eliminator 125 – Sportbikes.net
Kawasaki EL 125 Eliminator

Forget all the damn guessing your guys are doing. here is a test on it:

Small Guy Complex: Kawasaki’s 125 Eliminator

Eliminator is a tough name to live up to. Kawasaki’s Eliminator series was its performance-cruiser line. Even the 500 Eliminator is quicker than many larger-displacement bikes. However, being the smallest bike in our entry-level cruiser comparison meant the Eliminator 125 started out with a 50 percent disadvantage when compared to the other contestants.

Still, the little single has strengths that help it to stand up to challenge.

Although the Eliminator name is old, the 125 version is the only new model in this test. Since the 125 was released this year, its styling most closely follows current trends. From the snazzy tank badge to the chrome gas filler panel (complete with warning lights), the Eliminator shares a family resemblance with the newer members of the Vulcan series.

Starting with a backbone frame that cradles the engine, the chassis, like all the others in this comparison, is pretty standard fare. A 33mm fork holds the 17-inch wire-spoke wheel. Attached to the right side of that wheel, a single disc gets squeezed by a two-piston caliper.

Atop the fork, a drag-style bar supports the speedo. The shapely tank looks like one from a much larger motorcycle. The one-piece stepped seat gives the bike a sleek appearance. The rear fender adds a hint of sportiness. The rear suspension is a twin-shock, preload-adjustable affair.

A 15-inch rear wheel and a drum brake round out the rolling gear.

The little engine utilizes a single cylinder to generate power. The 55.0 x 52.4mm bore and stroke brings the displacement to a minuscule 124cc. A single overhead camshaft actuates the two valves.

Cam timing is kept accurate by an automatic cam chain tensioner while a counterbalancer negates vibration. A 28mm Mikuni carburetor handles the mixture. After the electronic ignition has done its magic, a megaphone-styled exhaust empties the cylinder. Both the carburetion and exhaust are tuned for bottom end and midrange power.

The fruits of their labors are sent to the chain final drive via a five-speed transmission.

Riding the Eliminator highlights the engine’s specific tuning. Pulling away from a stop, the engine feels strong initially, but the power falls off abruptly, forcing the rider to shift into second at about 11 miles per hour. Again, the engine feels strong initially, but just for a moment. Of all the bikes included in this comparison, only the Eliminator struggles to stay ahead of in-town traffic.

Out on the open road, without other vehicles to gauge by, the 125 provides a pleasant ride. However, a move to the interstate reveals its dearth of power. The Kawasaki could comfortably maintain 65 mph. but try to go any faster and the engine feels like it’s gonna explode, as one tester put it.

Not being able to travel easily on the highway limits the Eliminator’s utility, which is too bad since it was the most comfortable bike we tested.

The Kawi’s riding position, ironically, felt like the largest of our quartet, striking an ideal balance between roominess and compact size. Part of the big-bike feel to the riding position must be credited to the fact that the Eliminator feels heavier than it is.

However, when the time came to apply the brakes, we were once again disappointed with the Eliminator. The brake control travel quite a ways before engaging with any force, causing concern on the first application of the brake after switching from the other bikes. Once accustomed to the low-power binder, we simply exerted extra pressure on the lever. In addition, the rear brake pedal travel is excessive.

Kawasaki EL 125 Eliminator

From the moment that the drum’s shoes start to drag, the pedal still needs to be pressed several inches to reach full application.

Although the Eliminator has some shortcomings, at a retail price of $2499, it is the least expensive of the bikes in this comparison. Add its roomy riding position and good looks, and the little Kawasaki could make a nice economy ride. However, because of environmental regulations, California residents won’t be able to buy the Eliminator at any price.

Specifications

2001 Kawasaki 125 Eliminator

Suggested base price: $2499 (not available in CA)

Wet weight: 308 lb.

GVWR: 668 lb.

Seat height: 26.8 in.

Overall length: 84.7 in.


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