This 1987 KXT250 Tecate 3-wheeler Has Zero Miles

It’s 35 years new, 100 percent stock, and has never touched dirt.

Sitting on the courtyard floor at Kawasaki HQ in California, this 1987 Kawasaki Tecate three-wheeler is fresh out of the crate.Jeff Henson

The sticker remains on the headlight, letting the would-be dealer know that this 1987 Kawasaki KXT250 Tecate three-wheeler was shipped without oil in the engine. However in this case, the crate never left Kawasaki.

Everytime I stop by Kawasaki to pick up a four-wheeler for evaluation, I find it hard to take my eyes away from this beautiful and unmolested Tecate-3. It sits in the courtyard area of the main floor at Kawasaki USA headquarters in Southern California. “We took it out of the crate, assembled it, and it’s been at Kawasaki ever since,” said Jon Rall, public relations four-wheel supervisor for Kawasaki. Rall also commented that former factory Kawasaki three-wheel racer Jimmy White has offered to buy it several times. We can’t think of a better person to take ownership, but unfortunately for him, it’s not for sale.

The thought of purchasing it does beg the question: What is a new 1987 Tecate 250 three-wheeler worth in 2022? Rall, myself, and a few other Kawasaki associates tossed around a few numbers; I even went as high as $50K. That might seem crazy but three-wheeler collectors are a dedicated and slightly nutty bunch. You can bet whatever the starting price would be, a bidding war would ensue.

Regardless, this 35-year-old piece of history deserves to be shared. Enjoy the eye candy.

Flashback to a day when three-wheelers engulfed dealership sales floors.Jeff Henson
Chain adjustment is similar to that of a dirt bike, and check out that “bulletproof” skid plate (sarcasm mode on).Jeff Henson
There is still a sticker on the headlight letting the dealership know that this Tecate was shipped without oil.Jeff Henson
That is the same engine as the dirt bike KX250 liquid-cooled two-stroke engine. The Kawasaki Tecate is considered (arguably) the fastest three-wheeler ever mass-produced.Jeff Henson
A descriptive tag from the Kawasaki Heritage Hall.Jeff Henson
Factory-installed heel guards weren't an option in 1987.Jeff Henson
Hydraulic disc brakes are standard front and rear in 1987.Jeff Henson
The air-filter box is mounted on the side so it wouldn’t get in the way of the race-inspired Uni-Trak rear suspension system.Jeff Henson
The 1987 Tecate three-wheeler includes a Kawasaki Integrated Powervalve System (KIPS), which opens and closes on the exhaust port to broaden the range of usable power.Jeff Henson
This tool compartment is hard to find for today’s collectors, especially in new condition. We recently spotted a used one on eBay for $230.Jeff Henson
Those are the original stock tires.Jeff Henson
The safety decals remain in place.Jeff Henson
Let’s ride!Jeff Henson

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