Yamaha YZF-R3 vs Kawasaki Ninja 300: Detailed Comparison and Verdict

If you are planning to buy a bike under INR 4 lakh, you won’t be offered anything better than the Yamaha R3 and Kawasaki Ninja 300 in India. Here’s a compilation of the differences and similarities between the two which will help you to figure out the best for you.

  • Design and Features

The Yamaha YZF-R3 has been developed by the Japanese manufacturer with an inspiration from the YZF-M1. On the other hand, the Kawasaki Ninja 300 has its design and styling based on its bigger siblings - Ninja ZX-6R and ZX-10R.

The Ninja 300 features a sharp and aggressive fairing whereas R3 is more subtle yet young in its looks. You will find a dual-headlamp arrangement in both bikes. Ninja has got integrated indicator lamps (to the side fairing) which adds to its charisma. Both the bikes have LED tail lamps. However, the Ninja gives a feel of plastic at some areas of the fairing.

The Yamaha YZF-R3’s R6-inspired headlight, stubby exhaust, large and curvy tank makes it different from Ninja 300 and adds to its overall appeal. Ninja 300 has somehow managed to take a front place than Yamaha YZF-R3 with its mature and aggressive looks. The Kawasaki Ninja 300 offers a slipper clutch which is another substantial offering by the bike manufacturer. The Yamaha features an informative instrument cluster featuring fuel efficiency display, speedometer, tachometer along with two trip meters.

  • Engine and Performance

Yamaha YZF- R3:

  • 321cc, two-cylinder, liquid-cooled, 4-stroke
  • Maximum Power: 41.4 Bhp @ 10750 rpm
  • Maximum Torque: 29.6 Nm @ 9000 rpm

Kawasaki Ninja 300:

  • 296cc, liquid-cooled, 4 stroke, Parallel Twin
  • Maximum Power: 38.5 bhp @11000 rpm
  • Maximum Torque: 27 Nm @ 10000 rpm

As mentioned above, the Yamaha YZF-R3 has a 321cc parallel twin cylinder liquid-cooled engine that is capable to churn 42 PS against a torque of 29.6 Nm. Looking at the figures, it is clear that the Kawasaki Ninja 300 lacks behind due to its 39 PS of power against 27 Nm of torque. Moreover, Yamaha FZ- R3 is not just ahead by 3 PS of power and the 3 Nm of torque, it does achieve these peak values earlier as well.

The R3 weighs 169 kg (kerb weight) which is 3 kgs less than Ninja 300. This is because Yamaha R3 has steel diamond type frame and not the perimeter one. Even the swing arm is also made of steel and not from an alloy.

Talking of The Kawasaki Ninja 300, it has a 296cc parallel twin unit which is capable to churn 38.5 bhp against a torque of 27 Nm. The bike gets it peak power at 11,000 rpm but still one doesn’t have to push it right up to the red line to get the best. This is all due to the torque of 27 Nm that the ride is fully comfortable irrespective of the speed. Despite the low torque and power that too at high rpm, the downside of Ninja 300 is its heavy weight of 172 kg weight which again puts Yamaha YZF-R3 a step ahead of Ninja 300.

  • Brakes, Ride and Handling

The Kawasaki Ninja 300 offers a better wheelbase of 1405 mm than Yamaha R3’s 1380 mm. Ninja also offers a larger fuel tank of 17L against a 14L fuel tank by R3. Both the bikes have telescopic forks up front with Ninja having 37mm forks and the R3 featuring a bit longer forks of 41mm.

Both the bikes features single disc brakes both at front and rear. The rear discs are same 220mm for both when fortunately, Yamaha again succeeds here to get larger 298mm discs up front. It is expected that both of these bikes would be equipped with ABS in next few months. But Kawasaki cannot afford the price hike due to the addition for now. So, lets see who successfully wins the race to get ABS equipped.

Yamaha R3 has a better ride quality than Ninja 300 due to its softer setup. The tall handlebars and forward-set foot pegs are another factor to add to a superior riding quality offered by Yamaha R3. The approx. top speed of Yamaha R3 and Kawasaki Ninja 300 is 188 kmph and 182 kmph respectively. The approximate mileage of both sport bikes is 15-25 kmpl.

The Yamaha R3 is ahead of Ninja 300 even when it comes to comfort, handling and ride quality.

  • Verdict

When it comes to price, the Kawasaki Ninja 300 is more expensive than Yamaha YZF-R3. The Ninja is priced at Rs 3.65 lakh and the Yamaha YZF-R3 at Rs 3.26 lakh which again puts Yamaha a step ahead (all prices ex-showroom, Delhi).

Staying true to the facts, it is clear that Yamaha YZF-R3 has got higher displacement, power, torque, ground clearance and top speed that too at less price and weight.

At the end of the day, it completely is an individual choice to figure out the one that fits best for you. If you are only fascinated by the looks, then Ninja 300 is an unbeatable answer for you. But if you are driven by technical detailing, performance and efficiency then you would go for Yamaha YZF-R3.

Which one would you choose?

  • Yamaha YZF-R3
  • Kawasaki Ninja 300

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