Used Kawasaki Ninja 250R First Ride | Reviews
Kawasaki Ninja 250R redesign plans to continue the best seller and newbie-friendly status of its predecessor. Redesign exercise is completed, Kawasaki Ninja 250R in 2008 and plans to continue the best seller status of newbie-friendly predecessor.
Zipping past an unexpected checkpoint near Tecate Border Patrol, California, we lean into a turn pinned in fourth gear tilt with tach hovering near redline on Kawasaki's best-selling sportbike. But that's not what you think. No border agents or other government officials are scrambling to run us down with a flash light because, lucky for us, Kawasaki's best-selling sportbike is the Ninja 250R.
Yes, it's not a typo. In fact, little Ninja is not only the biggest-selling sportbike for Kawasaki - it is the best-selling bike period of Japanese firms. Experiencing steady double-digit sales growth year after year, the reliable little Ninja has achieved cult status as a beginner sportbike in the U.S. of A. And as we found in the press release of San Diego recently, a redesigned 2008 Kawasaki Ninja 250R isn 't just a "little Ninja that could," was "little Ninja that do things better than the way they should. "
Ninja unexpected success story began 250 years when entering the U.S. market in 1986 - with the design has not changed since the 1988 model year. Now, although not per se a bad year, 1988 saw Phil Collins' Groovy Kind of Love top the music charts. The point that could change the taste in the past two decades. On that note, the weakness of one of the most striking Ninja 250 is the styling that date.
We are happy to report that the 250's ancient old line has been eliminated - much like Phil Collins's career '. All-new bodywork decorate the little Ninja, and like a good fake ID, it looks like removing a larger sibling to the ZX at first sight. The fairing bodywork swept back to the tail of a clean, like a brother SupersPort and Superbike. A hood accessory seats, available for $ 99, can replace the standard passenger seat, further enhancing the 250's sporty appearance. Also tied to the sporty lines are single-side upswept 2-into-1 exhaust, which replaces the dual cans 98-07 models. And if you missed its intention to imitate the bigger Ninjas, "250" is absent from the logo of the new bodywork graphics.
A glance at the little Ninja and easy to mistake for a bigger brother who SupersPort.
A glance at the little Ninja and easy to mistake for a bigger brother who SupersPort. The all-new bodywork and styling on the '08 bike is a significant improvement over its predecessor dates.
Year 2008 far from the only cosmetic changes, however, with some revisions Ninja 248cc sports for a liquid-cooled Parallel Twin. Although still have a 62 x 41.2mm bore and stroke, Kawi reps claim changes to 70% of the machine. Internal modifications include reshaped intake and exhaust ports, a more compact combustion chamber, thinner valve heads in addition to new camshafts and tensioner camchain. Other enhancements are a more efficient cooling system, with a redesigned Denso radiator and reduces fan noise fixed-cold 250 runs.
fuel injection will be included on the European version of the '08 Ninja 250 to meet Euro 3 emissions, but to keep the cost down U.S. models retain a pair of Keihin carbs CVK30. Kawasaki Research Open "price / deal offered" as concerns over an American rider's decision to buy 250 small - only bicycles Kawi's lineup where price is a major concern. Without FI, a choke lever in the leftside switchgear.
In terms of real world performance, the little Ninja engine is a scrapper. Far from calm to 250, Kawi claims internal mods increase low and mid-range pop. From what we remember from the old 250, this is true, but the extra juice in lower revs not destroy the earth and more often than not the rider is wringing the throttle to stop the Ninja, hovering near the 13k redline indicated. In fact, we can not recall a bike we rode so often pinned to full throttle since, well, the old Ninja 250. Although there is no horsepower figures are released, spec sheet claims in torque show the new Kawi dipping 1.9 pounds-ft in peak production at 16.2 lb-ft at 9500 rpm.
Turning the 2008 Kawasaki Ninja 250R is easy.
The new Ninja 250R is powered once again by the high-revving Twin, with riders winding out the throttle to the redline 13,000 from end to end.
In urban settings, high-revving Twin is more than enough and is a good commuter. Winding country backroads are also suitable for Ninja 250's tastes. To run a task on Interstate, however, we did not find one area of concern. Accustomed to the raw passing power of 600 or 1000, cracking the throttle open at 250 does not provide a direct blast to get through the 18-wheeled laggard on these superslab. When we ventured out of San Diego on I-5 toward Highway 94, it is necessary to shift to keep the revs high and get the acceleration of the fastest route changes. The Ninja can still scoot around slower obstacles, but motorists need to use more than usual warnings by planning ahead and bringing momentum to slingshot past.
On the positive side of the equation, throttle diluted keep motorists out of trouble. Stable acceleration more than acceptable for most situations and maybe even ride better for beginners - which, after all, the real target for this bike.
As we said earlier from the Ninja 250 when we won in 2006 Newbie Comparo, this bike riders do not give enough rope to hang themselves. Of course, up 250 does not remove the danger inherent in the motor, but a very forgiving mount. When newb who hit a hole on the 250 and slips the throttle to full blast, they will get a scare, but fine. Compare this to / stupid who hop on a brave ZX-10R, or ZX-14 as their first motorcycle and accidentally blip the throttle only to end up picking them yourself from the asphalt to wonder a) where their bike went and b) where they could change their pants.
At the same speed of 250 Ninja welcome. In the things that tight winding super light and compact bike is a scalpel in which larger machines broadswords.
If you want a rough rule, stick with 1000cc, but if you want fun ride where you actually ride bikes maximally, the Ninja 250R is perfect.
While power delivery on the Ninja is tolerant, the new 6-speed gearbox which is lighter than Britney Spears chaperoning Vegas bachelorette party. Even when we tried to confuse an idiot-proof system with some intentionally ludicrous downshifts, the transmission gear changes Ninja's handle with extreme care reprimand rather than rear-wheel restrictions. The new, more durable clutch provides smooth engagement - one would have a difficult time transmission pregnant better to submit to a green rider.
The idea is often held that much more fun riding a bike slower faster than a fast bike slow is often mocked. But there is a statement of truth, especially on public roads. Unless you want the license revoked and cut into a million pieces, the ZX-10R can not be mastered to its limits anywhere other than horse racing, and even then, unless your last name Hacking or Hayden, you do not get it all bike. However, almost everyone can ride the Ninja 250R has the potential, which makes it an absolute blast.
Handling on the Ninja is a revelation. Although the new model has added a surprising 29 pounds to the weight of 333 pounds claimed dry, Ninja is still super slender and feels quite light. The ride is our last Kawasakis ZX-14 and Concours, so believe us when we say the Ninja a little easier to navigate in the parking lot. For beginners wiping feet, 250 would be a treat.
At the same speed of 250 Ninja welcome. In this case, tight winding super light and compact bike is a scalpel where larger machines are broadswords. Side-to-side transitions are ridiculously quick and our journo test crew has about 250 out of throwing the ball California Highway 94 just north of the Mexican border. Like a swarm of killer bees, our 250 hoard mobbed the desert valley with a mischievous, buzzing exhaust notes bounce in our ears.
Changes to the ride including the handlebars raised position and ergos high chair but will not be difficult for shorter riders.
Changes to the position including the handlebars raised up and the chairs, but high ergos will not be difficult for shorter riders.
Lightweight, slim and low on the ground, Ninja 250R sports a redesigned chassis with all new suspension components. 37mm Showa fork, which replaces the 36mm unit, has revised settings but is still non-adjustable. A single KYB rear shock is now five-way adjustable for preload, replacing its predecessor non-adjustable. New units do an effective job, but at 210 pounds I feel about 30 - 40 pounds too heavy for the front end. That said, my non-ideal BMI never bottomed out the fork, which we recall occurred on an older machine. So, overall, the suspension changes is a definite improvement.
Steering geometry has been altered, with rake angle decreased from 27 to 26 degrees even. But the most important improvement for the Ninja is moving upward for 17-inch wheels, which replaced the old 16-inch unit. With wider rims the six-spoke wheels just supports a lower profile modern tires and is a major contributor to improving the handling. Yes, it was still a small engine, but the new Ninja feels like a big bike on the road, less any skittishness in the corners.
Ninja 250 riding position has been tweaked, a little sporty than '07 but still provide good upright stance. Stang has been raised high, and reach to the bar fit for us. The footpegs felt cramped for this tester's 6'1 frame ", but the neutral ergos figure to be right on par for entry-level riders - Kawasaki research indicates 62% of Ninja owners are first time buyers, with one third of the owners that come from sex fairer.
The front single 290mm petal-style rotors with two-piston caliper effective enough to carry 333-lb Ninja admitted stopped.
The front single 290mm petal-style rotors with two-piston caliper effective enough to carry 333-lb Ninja admitted stopped.
Although raised by 1.2 inch, slim 30.5-inch seat still allows easy reach to the ground. Even the shortest in our test group can tip-toe around without trouble. Established a 32-inch flat-footed inseam had us straddling perched slightly forward-sloping with a few inches to spare. One small complaint is that after 100-mile ride behind us stiff. On the plus side, however, the protection provided by the new windshield is a pleasant surprise.
Also new for 2008 is a single 290mm front and 220mm petal-style rotors rear with dual-piston calipers. Join together the new brakes are quite effective and Ninja several simulated emergency stop further enhance our confidence in the little Ninja efficient braking performance.
250's new instrument console now features an analog speedo in the middle of a larger position, flanked by an analog tach and fuel gague (previous models had been taking center stage tach). However, major changes to display an indicator of the new fuel, which replaces the old temperature gauge and track the 4.8-gallon tank. We seem to go through the tank fast enough during our trip in the intro to '08 bikes, but the fuel economy figures somewhere in the 50-60 mpg range we observed during our previous Ninja 250 test, which covers more than 200 miles range. Quality mirrors complement the impressive view behind the controls and even a large rider's elbow was blocking half the inside view, they are better than the previous unit.
One of the greatest aspects of the previous 250 is an amazing value. At $ 2,999 it is the best deal out there. The new and improved Ninja has raised the asking price by 500 dollars, but still an incredible offer of 250 when compared with rival companies.
Is playbike city commuter or cheap weekend fun yet trackbike - 2008 Kawasaki Ninja 250R is a great bang for the money.
Is commuter town, weekends or cheap but fun playbike trackbike - 2008 Kawasaki Ninja 250R is a great bang for the money.
With little direct competition and a package, attractive smooth, we see no reason why Ninja 250R will not continue such a huge success. Kawasaki is hoping as much, with the enthusiastic response of dealers in 250's September debut. In fact, Kawasaki admitted having trouble getting enough of the Ninja-Thailand built on the shores of the United States to meet the demand of dealers.
The only surprise about the Ninja 250 would be if it does not continue its reputation as the best-selling book. Too often we want bigger, faster and more powerful over practical, affordable and simple. Press equal guilt, if not involved in prejudice, but the point is that if you are riding Ninja 250R and not having fun, the problem lies with the rider, not a machine.