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Kawasaki have apparently been filming in Milwaukee their latest mid-size segment offering: the new Kawasaki Ninja 400. They had shut down certain streets to pursue filming a commercial for the Ninja.

The KTM Duke 390 sparked off a huge battle with its worldwide launch in 2013. At its price point anywhere in the world, rival manufacturers had two problems. They had a motorcycle with as much features, tech and power as the orange hooligan, but it costed twice as much, sometimes more. Or they had a motorcycle bang in the KTM’s pricing range, but it was woefully under-equipped or almost comically under-powered compared to the 390.

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Four years down its launch, the 390 twins are doing good business, but now other manufacturers have come up with their own answers for the Austrians. Honda and Yamaha already have good contenders in the CBR250RR and R3 respectively. According to this latest scoop, Kawasaki are about to enter the fight with their own Ninja 400.

The current Ninja 300 produces 39hp from a 296cc liquid-cooled parallel twin engine. The extra ceecees on the new Ninja 400 might just see the power output closely match or exceed that of the KTMs’. From the photos, it seems the Ninja is employing the current 300’s suspension and brakes. However, it has a beefier and more substantial design than the outgoing model. What we are sure about is that the frame is not from the 2011 Ninja 400R that was sold only in Canada, Japan and New Zealand.

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Design wise, the Ninja 400 is sure to follow Kawasaki’s current Sugomi (Call Of The Wild) design language. So it could take after its bigger sibling, the Ninja 650. One can’t really rest on their laurels alone, so expect the Mean Green 400 to come equipped with sophisticated technology, good tyres, a comprehensive safety net and flawless build, typical of Kawasaki.

People are realizing and recalling that you don’t need 100 horsepower and above to have fun. Less is more, and the success of these middleweight motorbikes certainly seems to cement the idea. Kawasaki are just jumping on the mid-size bike bandwagon with their unarguably good-looking Ninja 400, from what we can gather from the shots.