The Honda CBR250R is a good commuter bike that offers typical Honda quality. It’s single-cylinder engine delivers enough power for the commute but lacks the ability to excite. Still, if you’re looking for a safe (ABS is available for an extra $500) and economical bike that looks like a 600cc supersport machine, the CBR250R is a fine choice. It’s not a standout in any segment but it does what it is needed to do.
We sometimes forget that many bikers don’t look for excitement, out-of-this-world acceleration or high-tech acronyms. Many bikers are looking for an affordable option for transport and for these riders, the CBR250R is a real and logical option.
The CBR250R is unmistakably supersports-inspired in its design, the aggressively sculpted fairing sweeps up from the front of the bike to a light tail. The small CBR looks a lot like the larger Fireblade but at the heart is a much smaller engine.
The CBR250R, as the name suggests, has a 250cc single-cylinder engine that employs Honda’s advanced PGM-FI fuel injection system for smooth, responsive power delivery. To ease maintenance the CBR250R uses an external fuel filter for the PGM-FI system, further reducing maintenance costs. The 249,6cc engine has a maximum output of 26hp at 8,500rpm and 23,8Nm of torque at 7,000 rpm. The bike features a six-speed gearbox and a very light and responsive clutch.
The bike has no problems keeping up with traffic but the gearbox stays busy as the engine is happier above 4k than below. The engine revs out to 10,500rpm if needed but revving it above 8,000-8,500 doesn’t make sense because the single just gets buzzy and breathless. Fuel consumption is about 60-65 mpg depending on the conditions and your driving style. Highway isn’t the natural habitat of the CBR250R because the efforts of the engine takes its toll on the fuel consumption.
The engine is mounted in a steel diamond twin-spar frame. This frame configuration is lightweight, contributing to the bike’s low kerb weight. The rider and passenger seats are supported on a strong secondary frame capable of carrying a substantial load.
The bike’s suspension works very well for its price and the suspension has Honda-quality parts. Riding position is a bit too sporty which is good for the corners but the constant pressure on your wrists can be quite tiring on longer tours. ABS is optional and it adds 4kg to the weight but I’d say it’s worth it because it gives new riders confidence. Even without ABS, stopping power and brake feel is great.
So it’s not a very exciting motorcycle but it’s good for the commute. The CBR250R has a very easy handling and it’s without doubt reliable. But it lacks the power for longer journeys and if you have a sporty driving style, fuel consumption is not very good for this displacement and it also vibrates at high rpm.
But here’s the thing. The CBR250R retails for $4,199 while the ABS version costs $4,699. So the bike is well priced, smartly styled and for this price tag, more than capable. Is it a typical Honda? Yes it is, just not the typical Honda supersport!