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Original Article:
2011 Honda CBR250R Tech Review

Please discuss the Motorcycle.com article 2011 Honda CBR250R Tech Review in our Motorcycle Forums below. Use the reply button to let others know your comments or feedback on the article. Constructive criticism is always appreciated, along with your thoughts and personal opinions on the bikes and products we have tested.
 

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It's about time Honda stepped up to answer the blows issued from Team Green. I'll be anxiously awaiting the comparo of these two bikes from the competitors. (How long do I have to wait, Duke?)
 

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No doubt Hotcams will come out with a set for this. It would be fun to see what this little engine could do with more aggressive tuning, an exhaust and some FI tweaks. It is probably perfect for the intended market just as it is, but riding/racing these things on the track would be a total hoot. A set of cams for a single are pretty cheap, probably around $300 for both for my DRZ400. This one should be cheaper than that too, thanks to the forked rockers requiring only one lobe per cam., Just looking at the design of this motor, well, it wants to sing baby! :)

Yamaha already sort of has a competitor in it's WR250 motard variant. I smell a tiddler comparo!

One thing that really strikes me with this bike though. Honda did a fantastic job with the styling and the price is very reasonable. They packed a lot of tech in for the same price as a Ninja 250. The newly restyled Ninja does look cool too though. One of those with FI would still be my choice.

Things are heating up in the 250 class, a sign that the US no longer drives the entire world of motorcycling. We are preoccupied with cruisers and I think interest in sport bikes will fall off. Supersports are too expensive to insure. Gimme a large capacity motard/standard revolution. That would be cool. Speaking of cool, gimme a 45hp 450cc version of this bike. That would be the Streets of Willow track day blaster :)
 

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So...is it really true that it's more fun to ride a small bike at the limit versus a big bike at 1/2 speed? I guess Mr. Duke will have to tell us.
 

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I'm still confused why a new fuel injected 250 has less power than a 15(?) year old carberated 250?
That needs to be qualified. The CBR will have less peak horsepower than the Kaw, yes, which is to be expected from an engine with half the cylinders. But it will - rpm per rpm - deliver more hp and torque until 8000-plus revs, and probably more peak torque. Bet on EFI for the 2012 Ninja.
 

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It is probably perfect for the intended market just as it is

One thing that really strikes me with this bike though. Honda did a fantastic job with the styling and the price is very reasonable. They packed a lot of tech in for the same price as a Ninja 250.
Thanks for providing a voice of reason instead of just hatin'!
 

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You know, this engine it it's current state of tune would drop very nicely right into a 250cc dual sport and/or SM. WR250R/X competitors perhaps. Hmmm?

America needs bikes like these to feed the future of motorcycling. I wonder if we are smart enough to buy them?
 

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So...is it really true that it's more fun to ride a small bike at the limit versus a big bike at 1/2 speed? I guess Mr. Duke will have to tell us.
Since Mr. Duke deferred, allow me: The answer is "absolutely." Put one rider on a 2011 ZX-10R on a reasonably tight road or race course, and another rider with equal ability on a 300-lb 250 with full power, and the big bike won't be at half speed. He'll be going as fast as he can, watching the 250 run away and leave him.

The evolution of sport bikes has taken us to 200 mph monsters no one can fully use. They now have to put traction control on them to reduce liability. Don't get me wrong, I still love 'em, and don't plan to sell my old R1. But they were based on the "big" racers. A bike based on the smaller racers like 250GP bikes would corner far better and might still top out near 120-130+. (Nearly what 1000s did 30 years ago).

This is what they did in the 90s. Imagine if there was demand and competition for more like this 19,000 rpm, Four-cylinder, 4-stroke CBR250RR-

YouTube - Cbr250RR -Rolling burnout & stand up wheelie

Such a bike today could cost $10k or more, would give up maybe 30hp and half the torque to a hot 600, but would make up for it in light weight. I'd surely like a 320 lb, 55 hp sportbike set up like a 250 repliracer. Not as great if you live where all the roads are straight, but otherwise ...
 

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Wow, interesting post there Mr. Cobb. By the way, the Tech article is one of the best I've seen, here or elsewhere. Very comprehensive. Those forked rockers are the schnitz; I wonder why nobody thought of that before?

Anyhoo, I'm looking forward to seeing one of these gems at Riva in the months to come. I might park the Empulse idea (when, oh when?) and spend 1/2 as much for a 250!
 

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Wow, interesting post there Mr. Cobb. By the way, the Tech article is one of the best I've seen, here or elsewhere. Very comprehensive. Those forked rockers are the schnitz; I wonder why nobody thought of that before?

Anyhoo, I'm looking forward to seeing one of these gems at Riva in the months to come. I might park the Empulse idea (when, oh when?) and spend 1/2 as much for a 250!
Thanks Morbo. Do you mean Riva in Pompano Beach?

Yes, Soichiro may be gone, but they still employ some bright people.

If we're really fortunate, some hotrod parts will come out soon enough for the new CBR. Although it'll never be what the RR was (or 67 hp, 2-stroke Suzuki RGV250 Gamma(!), the price is appealing ...

I'm sure Brammo will be disappointed if you change your mind. I'll be riding a CBR250R in a couple days and let ya'll know a little bit more about it.
 

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Right, Riva Motorsports in Pompano. I go by pretty often to get odds and ends for the Suzuki and check out the bikes. They have all the Japanese makes and get the new models pretty quickly. Too bad they don't do demo rides...
 

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Forked rockers have been around for ages, often with screws and locknuts on the tips. Two issues with the old ones - 1) The screws and locknuts move up and down with the valve and are heavy and 2) If they are not set identically it puts a twisting load on the rocker. These are a new lighter and better spin on the old design.

I think it is a no brainer hotcams will make a set for this. They make cams for ATVs for crying out loud. Seems to me this engine set up right could make around 30hp with a nice midrange, which would be entertaining in this small bike.
 

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That needs to be qualified. The CBR will have less peak horsepower than the Kaw, yes, which is to be expected from an engine with half the cylinders. But it will - rpm per rpm - deliver more hp and torque until 8000-plus revs, and probably more peak torque. Bet on EFI for the 2012 Ninja.
Can't believe I forgot the Ninja 250 was a twin. I guess I assumed it was half the engine of the EX500, not a smaller parallel twin.

It's putting out the same HP as the Buell Blast single at half the size. Would it be fair to assume the bigger engine in the Blast makes more Torque?
 

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Can't believe I forgot the Ninja 250 was a twin. I guess I assumed it was half the engine of the EX500, not a smaller parallel twin.

It's putting out the same HP as the Buell Blast single at half the size. Would it be fair to assume the bigger engine in the Blast makes more Torque?
Yep, a bigger engine, especially one twice the displacement, will definitely put out more torque.
 
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