4 Common Kawasaki W800 Problems With Solutions

The common problems faced by the Kawasaki W800 include faulty horns, which can cause safety issues, cracked manifold assemblies, which is a design flaw, incorrect muffler setup, and a stuttering issue on acceleration.

Kawasaki W800 is a powerful cruiser bike powered by a 773cc four-stroke engine which is known for its durability and performance.

It is an excellent bike, but in the long run it runs into issues, and hence you should have a proper idea about all the common issues. 

Kawasaki W800 Problems

4 Common Kawasaki W800 Problems With Solutions

As stated, the Kawasaki W800 is a popular motorcycle model known for its classic design and reliable performance. 

But, just like any vehicle, it can experience issues from time to time that you need to be aware of. Let’s explore each in detail:

1. Faulty Horns –

One of the biggest issues with the Kawasaki W800 is faulty horns. The issue developed when the motorcycle encountered substantial vibrations at a particular RPM, which caused the horn harness to become loose. 

Riders’ ability to make noise when pressing the horn was thereby compromised, endangering their safety amid busy traffic. This design defect raised serious questions about rider safety.

This problem was mostly found on Kawasaki W800 between 2019-2022 and Kawasaki recalled over 1600 units between these times. 

However, if you missed this recall, you can visit their authorized service center to get this issue fixed.

2. Cracked Manifold Assembly –

Another common issue reported by W800 users was a cracked manifold assembly, which also resulted in a recall by Kawasaki. 

The throttle body holder of the intake manifold system presented a major problem for the Kawasaki W800.

The throttle body holder had unusual destruction from extended exposure to engine heat. The issue is made worse by vibrations, which increase the part’s susceptibility to harm. 

As a result, cracks in the manifold allowed unintended air leakage into the engine.

The presence of excess air, caused by the vacuum leak, negatively impacts the engine’s performance and efficiency, compromising its overall operation. 

Luckily, Kawasaki recalled the bikes for repairs, and there were over 5,000 reported units. 

But if you missed the recall and you notice cracks in the manifold, make sure to take your bike to a Kawasaki dealership, and there is a high chance you can get the repair done for free.

3. Incorrect Muffler Setup –

There is another significant issue with the Kawasaki W800, the muffler has some serious issues. 

A notable concern with the Kawasaki W800, particularly the 2020 and 2021 models, involves the nuts and collars becoming loose on the exhaust pipe.

This design flaw poses a significant risk when revving the bike. The loosening of these components originates from a manufacturing defect, leading to a compromised exhaust system.

As it is a manufacturing defect, Kawasaki will fix this issue for free, and they even called for recalls. 

So, if your W800 is also suffering from this issue, you should contact the dealership and get this issue fixed for free. It usually involves replacing the old mufflers with new ones.

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4. Stuttering issue on acceleration –

Many users of the W800 have complained about irregular throttle response, which means there will be stuttering issues on acceleration whenever you try to accelerate the bike. 

Every biker, in general, anticipates that the input on the throttle will have the greatest immediate impact on the acceleration.

But, with the Kawasaki W800, you will notice acceleration issues as soon as you try to throttle the bike, which can be quite annoying. 

Many owners have also reported that their bike seems dead when it first starts up. However, the bike starts and operates normally a little while later.  

There are a few things you can try to fix this issue. First,  check your spark plugs and replace them if necessary. 

Secondly, check the air filter and replace clogged filters, Also check the TPS sensor; you may need to replace it.

Lastly, if there are issues with the manifold cracking, this can also cause acceleration issues. Thus, you will need to fireplace the manifold.

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Maintenance Tips To Prevent Problems On Kawasaki W800

Maintaining any bike is important to prevent it from suffering from common issues and to make sure it runs smoothly. 

So, follow these tips below to ensure your Kawasaki W800 runs smoothly without any issues.

  • Always check the engine oil and coolant levels on your bike and make sure they are at the recommended level.
  • Replace the stock manifold, as it can crack under pressure.
  • Make sure to use the recommended engine oil and coolant brand from Kawasaki.
  • Properly maintain the regular maintenance schedule as suggested by Kawasaki, and you can find more information in the manual.
  • Regularly check the spark plugs and replace them when required.

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Should You Buy a Used Kawasaki W800?

Buying a used Kawasaki W800 will depend on many factors, like your budget and the condition of the used bike. It also heavily depends on your preferences. 

If you ask for our recommendation, it might not be a good choice to buy a used one, and there are a few reasons for that.

Some serious design flaws

There were recalls on several models of the W800 by Kawasaki for many serious design flaws. 

Consequently, if the previous owner has addressed these issues and performed the necessary repairs, you will be acquiring a bike that has undergone repairs. 

However, if the flaws have not been addressed, they will persist, meaning that you won’t be obtaining a motorcycle in perfect condition either way.

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Performance Expectations

The W800 provides a comfortable and pleasurable riding experience, but it is not intended for racing or sharp turns. 

Consider alternative motorcycle models if you value speed or sporty handling.

Less availability of spare parts

If you are going to buy a used W800, the best option would be to get a bit older model, as buying the latest model, like 2019, 2020, won’t be very budget friendly.

The main problem with buying a bike like this is that the W800 is a very niche model. 

So, the supply of particular replacement parts and accessories may be very low in comparison to bikes that are more widely used.


The Kawasaki W800 is a reliable retro style motorcycle, but many models of these motorcycles have been recalled due to some serious design faults. So, to get a better idea of the common issues it can face, read our FAQs below. 

Does The Kawasaki W800 Overheat?

Compared to liquid-cooled motorcycles, air-cooled models like the Kawasaki W800 are more prone to overheating. This is because the air-cooling system relies on sufficient airflow around the engine to dissipate heat, and when air supply is restricted, it can cause engine overheating.

Are There Any Known Electrical Or Mechanical Issues Associated With The W800?

Yes, Kawasaki W800 produced between 2011-2016 have several known electrical issues. In these models, the electrical wire harness has been installed incorrectly, which can lead to damage and has a chance to cause short circuits and engine problems. 

Have There Been Reports Of Excessive Noise From Certain Parts Of The W800 During Operation?

Exhaust backfires on Kawasaki W800 bikes have been reported by many owners. This is a loud popping or pounding sound that is produced when you are riding your motorcycle. Your hearing can be seriously impacted by backfiring.

FInal Words

If you are looking for a retro bike, the Kawasaki W800 can be a good choice. But it’s better not to go for older models, as there have been serious complaints about the design flaws in older models. 

Additionally, if you do decide to get a used Kawasaki W800, make sure the design flaws have already been taken care of by the previous owner.

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