Top speed- 110mph
A major overhaul of the old, forgotten about ZZ-R/GPX 250 engine has bought Kawasaki Ninja 250R bang up date by being environmentally friendly and as easy to use as a Raleigh bicycle. The Kawasaki Ninja 250R’s claimed 33bhp is spread thinner than gold plating – there’s no sensation of the power coming into play or fading as the motor spins to 14,000rpm so very quickly. Fuel injection does what it does precise and cleanly, which kinda sums up the motor.The Kawasaki Ninja 250R is a lithesome agile number that makes the most of narrow tyres, high-ish bars and minimalist 154 dry weight figure. It all adds up to make town work and B-road rides a hoot – think slightly more powerful 125cc sports learner motorcycle and you’ll be spot on. The Kawasaki Ninja 250R’s suspension is perfectly suited to all but the worst of UK roads but lacks any damping adjustment, which is a blow on the rear side because the single rear shock needs more preload to keep the bike from getting all floaty and bottoming out.
The new 696 Monster is Ducati’s most important bike, this is the bike that brings in the money and the sales, and thankfully it seems Ducati have got it spot on with the all new Monster. Thankfully they’ve not played around with the styling too much, and just improved the old bike as a package, in terms of engine performance and handlingThe cylinder head of the new Ducati 696 Monster is now very similar to the two valve 1100 Multistrada’s. Bore and stroke remain the same but Ducati have managed to squeeze out and extra 9% of power. Thankfully it’s not lost any of its character, and still sounds and feels like a Monster
Basically, perhaps very basically, the Harley-Davidson XR1200R is a good bike. Dynamically the XR1200R performs and handles better than any Harley before. It’s brisk (if not exactly fast), fun to throw around and looks good, too. The main disappointment is that it’s finish and spec is pretty crude and the XR1200R looks like its engineering came out of a Polish shipyard. That said, for Harley it’s a massive, hugely welcome and very significant accomplishment. Whatever it’s fault, because of the XR1200R, the motorcycling world is suddenly a better place. The Harley-Davidson XR1200R’s engine is a familiar pushrod V-twin based on that of XL1200 Sportster but with high compression 10.0:1 pistons a raised rev ceiling of 7000rpm, an all-new downdraught electronic sequential port fuel injection system and an upswept, high volume 2:1:2 exhausts. The result is 90bhp and 74ftlbs, compared to the Sportster’s 60-odd, and although suffering slightly from a slack throttle at low revs, it is, in the midrange up to the 7000rpm redline, brisk enough for an old school V-twin with a certain hunger to be through.
2008 Kawasaki ZX-10R
The Vintage Motorbikes
The earliest sportbikes-
The earliest sportbikes-
Sportbikes as classics? Yep, when they’re first-year (1983) Honda Interceptors with then-new perimeter frames, liquid-cooled V-Fours, single-shock rear suspension and 16-inch wheels.
Rarest of the rare- Is that a period-correct bungee net? Attractive 1932 Triumph in the Daily Rider class.
An eye candy- Geronimo!!! Collapsible Excelsior Welbike accompanied British paratroopers out of the plane in WWII. Powered by a 98cc Single, it was good for 30 mph—more if the Germans were shooting.
Take that, Teutuls! People’s Choice-winning “Corrupted Triumph” chopper was as nice as anything seen on TV
A little something for the Velocette fans. Silver Thruxton café-racer with blue saddle is a nice change from the usual Velo all-black.