Barber's Best

A virtual tour of the classic motorcycle collection on display at the Barber Vintage Motorsports Museum in Leeds, Ala.

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1969 Kawasaki 500 H1 Mach III

3/28/2012 9:37:05 AM

Tags: Barber's Best, Kawasaki

1969 Kawasaki 500 H1 Mach III

1969 Kawasaki 500 H1 Mach III

Country: Japan
Engine: Air-cooled, 3-cylinder two-stroke
Ignition: Capacitor discharge ignition (CDI)
Power Rating: 60bhp @7,500rpm
Bore x Stroke: 60 x 59mm
Displacement: 499cc
Valves: None
Fuel System: Three 28mm Mikuni carburetors
Transmission: 5-speed
Suspension: Front telescopic forks, rear twin shocks
Brakes: Front and rear drum
Weight: 383lbs.
Top Speed: 120mph

1969 Kawasaki 500 H1 Mach III

When Kawasaki introduced the 500 H1 triple in 1969, it surprised everyone with its performance and price. For burn-outs, wheelies and quarter-mile times equal to or better than many 750cc machines, the H1 was "a lot of bang for the buck." At $995 buyers overlooked the high gas consumption, smokey exhaust and dubious handling. The two-stroke triple had arrived!

1969 Kawasaki 500 H1 Mach III

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1/31/2014 10:58:06 AM
seen a GSXR400 chassis with one of the Kawi triples stuffed into it. Was said to go like stink, handle well, and was quite light.

1/24/2014 8:34:41 PM
My dad owns a 1969 mach 3 500 with 2000,00 original miles on it looks like new and even has a new gas tank still in the box. He was a Kawasaki dealer for 35 years.

Michael Thomas
4/6/2012 1:31:49 AM
A true time capsule, I collect these great machines. The Kawasaki Mach III 1969 is one of the rarest bikes to find today. Bringing a whopping $15,000.00 dollars restored.

4/5/2012 3:29:05 PM
Yea, dubious handling is right. I first rode one of these in '73. Slingshot acceleration, but spaghetti forks. Some time later a friend who worked at the local Kawi shop brought home the 750cc version. I almost needed a seatbelt to stay on the thing it pulled so strong, but at just under 90mph it went into a "high speed" wobble and scared the you know what out of this 19 year old kid. I wonder how many riders lost some skin,or worse, on these things. By the way, my Kawi friend got rid of it in short order and was soon on a KZ...

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