Kawasaki USA is recalling 574 units of the Kawasaki W800, from the 2020 and 2021 model years.
The recall results from the fact that the exhaust pipe nuts may not be tightened properly, which could possibly result in the exhaust pipe nuts and collar falling off the motorcycle.
Kawasaki’s recall documents outline an interesting process in trying to determine why the exhaust pipe collar was falling off the motorcycle.
After confirming numerous torque specs and assembly procedures, the Japanese brand discovered that the tightened torque value of the exhaust pipe nuts decreased drastically when the exhaust pipe nuts were tightened without the temporary tightening of the muffler body bolts.
As a result of this process, it was determined that the temporary tightening of the muffler body bolts was necessary before the tightening of the exhaust pipe nuts with specified torque.
The chronology of Kawasaki’s recall determination process is as follows:
- April 2020: Kawasaki Heavy Industries, Ltd (KHI) received a report from Japanese distributor (KMJ) that “The exhaust pipe nut was not tightened properly”, and “The exhaust pipe nut and the exhaust pipe collar had fallen off and the exhaust pipe holder had come out”. KHI Quality Assurance Division distributed the information to KHI Manufacturing Division and started the investigation of the cause.
- May 2020: There was no abnormality found in the manufacturing process.
- September 2020: After checking the tightening torque data of the exhaust pipe nut when the vehicle was assembled, it was confirmed that all the defective vehicles were tightened with the proper tightening torque value.
- October 2020: Simulation tests were conducted on an engine test bench with the nut tightened below the lower tightening torque limit, but looseness of the exhaust pipe nut did not occur and the cause could not be identified.
- November 2020: The dimensions of the failed parts were measured, but all results were within specifications.
- February 2021: The influence of the tightening torque was tested with variation of the height of the exhaust pipe collar, and the collar fitted position in the exhaust pipe holder, but no abnormality was found with the tightened torque value.
- June 2021: Other simulation tests were done with abnormal tightening conditions, such as changing the tightening procedure of the exhaust pipe, and tightening the exhaust pipe nuts with uneven tightening torque, but no abnormality was found with the tightened torque.
- September 2021: It was found that the tightened torque value of the exhaust pipe nuts were decreased drastically, when the exhaust pipe nuts were tightened without the temporary tightening of the muffler body bolts. (The temporary tightening of the muffler body bolts was necessary before the tightening of the exhaust pipe nuts with specified torque.)
- October 11, 2021:KHI decided to initiate a recall campaign.
To remedy the issue, Kawasaki dealers will replace the gaskets and the collars, and reinstall the muffler, free of charge. Owner notification letters are expected to be mailed November 3, 2021.
Concerned Kawasaki W800 owners may contact KMC customer service at 1-866-802-9381. KMC’s number for this recall is MC21-07. As always, the NHTSA is also available at 1-888-327-4236 and safercar.gov