Pros: Didn't burst in to flames, nice appearance
Cons: Poor quality, many problems, under powered, miserable on the highway
Most of the reviews I've seen on this bike are positive; I had a completely opposite experience. I've owned two other motorcycles, and this bike paled in comparison - even to a twenty year old Suzuki GS450L! Maybe I just had a lemon, I don't know, but there was so much disapointment I'm having a hard time considering another Kawasaki.
First, the ride quality was poor. At 35-40 mph on back streets it was ok, especially if the road was basically straight, but at highway speeds it was unbearable. After a half hour of highway riding, I felt like someone beat the crap out of me. It was unstable, it vibrated too much (so much for the counterbalanced engine), and got knocked around brutally by the wind, all at a modest 55-60 mph.
Second, the build and component quality seemed poor. After a couple of weeks of riding, the chromed parts were already chipping off and the coolant developed a leak. It was difficult to get started on cool mornings that my old Suzuki would handle fine. Finally, after one month of a careful break in period, it started leaking engine oil.
Oh, and when cold, the transmission wouldn't shift into first unless you rocked the bike forward and backward.
Yes, I brought the bike in for warranty repair. Outside of the leaks, nothing ever got any better, and the coolant sprang a new leak in another place after another month.
I'm a pretty forgiving guy, but I expected less problems from a bike I bought new (I actually expected no problems). I ended up selling it with about thousand miles on it for a fraction of what I paid to someone who seemed willing to live with its shortcomings.
My advice - choose something else. Not powerful enough and stable enough to really have fun with. I think the 250s that are out there - particularly the Ninja, from everything I've heard - are a much better deal if you want a beginner bike and don't mind a sportier appearance.