Kawasaki hybrid makes Isle of Man TT history

History was made at the Isle of Man TT when 11-time winner Phillip McCallen took to the iconic circuit on the new Kawasaki hybrid motorbike.

McCallen was once more the centre of attention on the famous 37.73-mile pure roads course as he piloted Kawasaki’s Z 7 Hybrid motorbike on a closed-road, high-speed demonstration lap witnessed by thousands of fans from across the globe.

The world’s first ‘strong hybrid’ mass-produced motorcycle, the Z 7 Hybrid – and its Ninja stablemate – are now being shipped to Kawasaki dealers throughout the UK and Europe.

So what better place to highlight the innovative new motorbike than during the iconic week of all things two-wheeled at TT 2024.

Special permission, thanks to the co-operation of the TT organisers and the Manx government, was given for multiple TT winner and Kawasaki dealer McCallen to showcase the hybrid.

It can be ridden exclusively as an electric bike as well as relying on its four-stroke, 451cc parallel twin-cylinder engine, with the added benefit of a boost function that combines both power sources.

New and alternative fuels are not unknown to the TT faithful.

As early as 2010, the week-long celebration of road-racing and motorcycling had its own TT Zero for electric-powered zero-emission machines.

While McCallen did not break any of his former lap records he did set a new one for hybrid motorbikes.

He said: “It felt different, yet very interesting, to ride through the TT paddock silently using 100% electric motive power then line up for a standing-start lap of what is the most famous road racing course in the world.

“I engaged e-boost and got ready to be released but was not aware of quite how hard the acceleration would be using all the potential torque of the electric motor combined with the petrol engine – it was really impressive.

“I think there were a lot of people around the course who were seeing a hybrid motorcycle for the first time, and I hope it was as much fun for them as it was for me riding such an amazing bike in an equally amazing location.”

Witnessed by Mr Masa Tsuruno, managing director of Kawasaki Motors Europe, the hybrid lap was just one highpoint in his first visit to the TT races.

“I had heard about the TT many times and have wanted to come here but the chance never arose, until now.

“It’s an amazing two-wheel festival that celebrates every aspect of motorcycling.

“What better place, and what better audience than TT fans is there to demonstrate just one aspect of Kawasaki’s broad approach to a cleaner and greener future for motorcycling?”