Model I.D. – 1976 KZ750 B1

Model Identification

Year:  1976
Make:  Kawasaki
Model:  B1
VIN:  KZ750B-000001  <->  KZ750B-014947
Engine: KZ750BE000001 <-> KZ750BE015032
Colors:  Diamond Red

Characteristics that distinguish this model year from the ’77:  Early non-indented right sidecover (changed to indented in mid-’76 model year), no starter lockout switch, color, and the ’76 tank pinstripe is rounded at rear, where the ’77 comes to a point

Characteristics that distinguish the ’76 / ’77 model years from the ’78 / ’79:   Round front master cylinder, front brake caliper mounted in front of the fork leg (mounted behind the leg in ’78), 3-phase dynamo (changed to single-phase in ’78), separate regulator/rectifier units (changed to combo in ’78), and bushings (changed to needle bearings in ’78) in the swing arm.  In ’78 there were also slight design tweaks in the output shaft assembly,  recommended fork oil level, and there is some uncertainty about the recommended spark plug (B6ES/B8ES) between model years.

Other model characteristics can be found in the Kawasaki Service Manual.

This picture below (now owned by “Chris”, see comments below) features the earliest version of the B1, with the original un-scalloped sidecover.  The bike appears to be fairly true to stock except for paint/stripes, missing grab rail, and an exhaust from a later model (perhaps a G1):

Early B1 with first version of sidecover

Early B1 with first version of sidecover

This B1 below (owner unknown) has the later ’76 sidecover, with the carved-out spot for the kick start lever at rest.  It appears fairly stock except for a MAC exhaust (with stock headers and cross-over),  and a re-upholstered (and over-stuffed) seat:

Later B1 with scalloped sidecover

Later B1 with scalloped sidecover and stock paint

This B1 below is a U.K. model (owned by “Peter” from many forums, R.I.P.), featured here for the subtle U.K.-specific differences such as a mid-seat seat strap, the “z750” badge for the everywhere-but-U.S. model name, and rearward-mounted rear turn signals.  Oh, and note the early non-indented sidecover again.  Of course, it is re-painted, has custom-made exhaust (stainless steel, if I remember correctly), case guards, chrome gauge/clocks covers, and stainless brake lines:

U.K. Model B1

U.K. Model B1

NOTE: If you know (or are) the owners of the bikes above, please let me know so I can credit you correctly.


  1. Joe Abernathy

    Hi again;

    Can you tell me where to look to find information on a 1982 kz750m1 CSR model.
    It seems to be very rare, and so is most information about it.

    Thanks again;
    Joe abernathy

  2. Biquetoast


    Make sure to see my manuals page, and note that the third-listed digital-format manual is for the ’79 B, **with the supplement for the ’82 M1**….

    Someday I’m going to continue and finish my model identification section, and I’ll post more about it there too. And don’t forget to stop over at the KTOF, where there are a handful or two of M1 owners….


  3. Chris

    I would like to know more about that early B-1 (76) I dont know about the paint being original but the pipes almost certainly are. I have had my KZ750 for about 5 years and im pretty sure thats my bike, same paint, same pipes, it even has the same tires. It looks exactly the same. The picture you have is either my bike or a clone. My VIN is 000126 so if you want some pictures just email me

  4. Biquetoast

    @ Chris

    Hi! If that is your bike, I’d love to have more pics of it, and to credit you properly. You can send them to me at: biquetoast @ biquetoast . com. However, none of the bikes on this page (at this time) have the original stock exhaust, though the top one has a stock exhaust from another later year.

    – ‘Toast

    UPDATE: Chris has sent me the proof, and it is indeed his bike now; so I have noted that above. Thanks Chris!

  5. terry jenks

    I have a 76 KZ750B1 and the frame number is KZ750B-011980, however I have the blue paint from 77, and smooth sidecover..??? huh? and I have the short exhaust mufflers, not the reverse cones. I haven’t got it running yet, I bought it for 200, but engine turns, and trans goes thru the range. Im happy tinkering with it, it was found in a barn out in western Nebraska, and its 100% complete, beautiful! but Blue?

  6. Biquetoast

    @terry –
    Of course, it’s completely possible that someone changed out all the tins and plastic…?

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