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摩界二輪公社:業餘時間為國內進口車主提供保養維修與調教,順便做做中國摩迷的搬運工

 
 
 

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【測試報道】2013 HONDA CRF250L Comparison  

2013-03-19 13:43:28|  分类: 國際車壇動態 |  标签: |举报 |字号 订阅

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2013 Yamaha WR250R - 250 Dual-Sport Shootout Video
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Yamaha’s WR250R is a proven champ in the 250 dual sport segment. Can it hold onto its crown for another year? Tune into the 2013 Yamaha WR250R Comparison Video to find out.
To some motorcycling is about versatile, go anywhere, do anything transportation. And that’s where dual-sports fit in. They are the two-wheeled version of an SUV capable of taking you past the concrete boundaries of civilization and into the wild like few machines can. Within this category the 250cc four-stroke class is not only the most accessible in terms of affordability, but also the most adept at treading on trails due to their reasonable dimensions and curb weight paired with high fuel efficiency. In this test we contrast the differences between three of Japan’s top brands in the 2013 Dual Sport Motorcycle Shootout.

In our last dual-sport shootout (see 2010 Dual Sport Motorcycle Shootout) the WR250R reigned supreme, offering the ideal ingredients both on and off-road making it a capable dual-sport. The blue machine has remained unchanged,
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2013 Kawasaki KLX250S - 250 Dual-Sport Shootout Video
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Does the KLX250S still have what it takes to compete in the 250 dual-sport class? Watch the 2013 Kawasaki KLX250S Comparison Video and see for yourself.
aside from updated graphics and the yearly MSRP increase. With a price tag of $6390 it is once again the most expensive bike, and by a wide margin. For most it will be a tough pill to swallow and an element that could once again limit its popularity.

Like Yamaha, the KLX250S platform has remained the same for the last few years. Although it still relies on a carburetor to deliver fuel to the engine, for some that older technology will be a boon as it equals added mechanical simplicity and a more organic motorcycle feel. In spite of its price having crept up by a few hundred dollars at $5099, it’s still one heck of a value.

Despite offering a 250cc dual-sport in other parts of the world, up until this year Big Red didn’t produce this style of motorcycle for American consumption. That all changed with the release of the CRF250L. The 250 replaces the smaller
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2013 Honda CRF250L - 250 Dual-Sport Shootout Video
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Will the newly released CRF250L be able to dethrone the reigning champ in the 250 dual-sport class? Find out in the 2013 Honda CRF250L Comparison Video.
sized CRF230L and is designed to appeal to a wider range of motorcyclists with its full-sized chassis and larger water- cooled 250cc engine. Somehow Honda was able to keep price down and is offering the bike at $4809 making it a hard deal to pass up.

In the spirit of exploration and exploiting the authentic capabilities of these machines we set off to one of America’s most rugged landscapes: Death Valley. We camped off the grid, away from the lights and cell phone towers of the city and inhaled the same rustic air that 49ers and other pioneers did so many years ago. Along the way we rode across a variety of terrain, mostly un-paved, to get a true sense of where these bikes excel and where they don’t. Each bike was then rated via our tried and true scoring system giving us a winner. 


2013 250 Dual Sport Shootout - Torque chart.
2013 250 Dual Sport Shootout - Horsepower chart.








Videos Our Sponsor
2013 Honda CRF250L - 250 Dual-Sport Shootout Video
Click to view video
Will the newly released CRF250L be able to dethrone the reigning champ in the 250 dual-sport class? Find out in the 2013 Honda CRF250L Comparison Video.
Honda wants to attract new riders and it’s doing it with its revamped dual-sport, the CRF250L. This bike borrows the smooth-running 250cc thumper from the CBR250R sportbike and puts it inside a more adult sized frame with a smaller rider-friendly seat. Carrying a price of $4809 (with destination charge), the Honda is the most affordable bike in this category.

At a standstill it’s hard to argue against the Honda’s appearance. It has a clean shape and shares the sharp lines of the CRF450Rs that Supercross racers Trey Canard and Justin Barcia fly around on inside stadiums across America. We especially like the look of the exposed engine and how the engine’s plumbing and wiring is hidden from sight.
“The Honda is one good looking bike,” says Digital Media Producer Ray Gauger. “It definitely looks more expensive than what its price leads you to believe. They didn’t skimp on the quality either. It’s a solid bike.”

Swing a leg over the red bike and each one of us had both feet firmly planted on the ground. The CRF offers the lowest seat height of the group (34.4 in.), a full inch lower than the Kawi and more than two less than the WR. This will be a big, big plus for the vertically challenged. Though on the flip side it’s not as well suited to riders taller than six-foot, especially when the rider has to stand on the footpegs off-road (more on that later). The position and bend of the handlebar is relaxed and not too high or low and a good base to work from. A trip to the scale reveals that the CRF is indeed the heaviest, weighing in at 320 pounds. However, you’d be hard pressed to feel the extra weight at a standstill, or in motion.



Press the starter button and the Honda’s engine fires right away, whether your iPhone’s weather app says its 45 degrees or 95 degrees outside. The fuel-injected engine runs crisply even when cold and can be ridden away immediately. The clutch’s light action and smooth, hiccup-free motor performance make getting off and moving a no nonsense affair. Instrumentation is easy to read and we love that it offers the convenience of a fuel gauge to keep better tabs on the two-gallon fuel tank—a feature that is missing on both the Kawasaki and Yamaha.

On the road the CRF gets the job done without fuss. The seat is the coziest of the lot and although it offers sufficient get-up-and-go it still takes the most time to arrive at 60 mph (8.6 seconds). The overall character of the engine is mellow and more sanitized-feeling than the other 250s. Noise conscience riders will appreciate the muted neighbor-friendly exhaust note (72 dB at idle and 86 dB at half throttle) but for those who are looking for more playfulness the Honda comes up a bit short.

Results from dyno testing show the Honda’s engine produces just a hair more peak torque than the green machine (13.59 lb-ft), but it’s still down slightly against the WR. Numbers are a great reference but looking at the dyno graph paints a clear picture. Maximum force arrives at a relatively low rpm and stays online longer. This makes the Honda’s engine peppier right where you need it on the street. In terms of horsepower the Honda is right there with the KLX but still over 25% behind the Yamaha (measured peak to peak).
While plenty powerful the Hondas front brake lacks a degree of feel which makes it trickery to modulate on slippery surfaces.Engine power is exceptionally smooth and there is a good amount of mid-range power which is perfect for street duty.Although it offers the lowest seat height the close proximity of the footpegs and seat make it more difficult for taller riders to stand on the footpegs.
(Left) While plenty powerful the Honda’s front brake lacks a degree of feel which makes it trickery to modulate on slippery surfaces. (Center) Engine power is exceptionally smooth and there is a good amount of mid-range power which is perfect for street duty. (Right) Although it offers the lowest seat height the close proximity of the footpegs and seat make it more difficult for taller riders to stand on the footpegs.

Since it belts out the fewest number of ponies and carries the heaviest load, its slowest quarter mile (16.94 seconds @ 75.13 mph) isn’t a surprise. But its more moderate engine performance does pay dividends at the pump with it yielding the highest fuel mpg figure (64). That nets a 128-mile range based on the capacity of the gas tank.

“The Honda has one of the smoothest engines of any bike I’ve ridden,” reveals Joseph Agustin, MotoUSA’s latest addition to the digital media team, who has some street experience but very little when the pavement ends. “It made it easier to control especially when I was out of my comfort zone on some of the trails.”

While the Honda’s mild manners paid off in Agustin’s hands, for a more experienced dirt rider like Gauger, the muted powerband made it more challenging to ride at a quick clip.

The CRF250L offers superior instrumentation and its the only 250 to offer the convenience of a fuel gauge.
The Hondas seat proved to be the most comfortable and street oriented.
The CRF250L uses the same single-cylinder water-cooled 249cc engine from the CBR250R sportbike.
We applaud Honda for producing an affordable dual-sport that can take riders off the grid and explore Mother Nature.
(Top) The CRF250L offers superior instrumentation and it’s the only 250 to offer the convenience of a fuel gauge. (Center) The Honda’s seat proved to be the most comfortable and street oriented. (Bottom) We applaud Honda for producing an affordable dual-sport that can take riders off the grid and explore Mother Nature.
“Smooth power is what the Honda’s all about no question and it’ll be a big hit with new riders. On the road it performs just fine for pretty much anyone. Problem is it just doesn’t have any ‘snap’ which makes it trickier to ride in some areas say if you’re trying to hop the front wheel over rocks. The big space between second and third gear doesn’t help things either, so you have to decide whether to keep the engine screaming in second gear or lugging in third when climbing steeper hills or riding on softer dirt.”

Another strike against the CRF’s dirt resume is the way the bike’s suspension effects handling. Since the shock has so much sag (it’s clearly visible how rearward biased the attitude of the bike is when the rider is seated) the chassis has a harder time holding a line in a corner and the front tire doesn’t have enough weight on it to get grip. Scooting your body toward the fuel tank and keeping your torso over the front end certainly helps but isn’t a cure all. Of course, we’re nit-picking, but it’s definitely an issue if you do any degree of spirited riding off-road. Adding preload to the shock could have alleviated the condition but the supplied toolkit doesn’t offer any provisions for making the adjustment on the trail. The CRF’s ergos, specifically how low the seat is in relation to the footpegs, also hindered performance for us taller folks as it makes it harder to stand up—something that is necessary when negotiating rough terrain or trying to raise the front wheel over obstacles.

We also weren’t as satisfied with the performance of the front brake. It provides reduced lever feel, which made it trickery to modulate on rocks or slippery surfaces. Still it proved effective in terms of outright stopping power on pavement with the red bike halting from 60 mph in a distance of 121 feet—just a foot behind the Kawasaki and three behind the WR. The rear brake, however, performed flawlessly and was as good as anything in its class.

After burning through a couple tanks of gas it’s clear the Honda is oriented to beginners. While its engine delivers a smooth, hit-free spread of power, the motor is missing that hearty, grin inducing character that’s at the core of riding a motorcycle. Despite its mundane acceleration, on the road the CRF does what it’s supposed to: It scoots around town with minimal effort and delivers a simple, worry-free ride. Off-road, however, the overly soft rear suspension paired with the engine’s wide gear ratios make it more challenging to ride.
 
While we applaud Honda’s effort at capturing fresh faces, the CRF250L lacks the muscle to challenge the class leaders. Its road-oriented seating position and handling make it a great choice for smaller folks, but not the ideal platform for those that seek visceral thrill and performance. It’s these reasons why the Honda finishes in third-place in spite of being the best value.







Videos Our Sponsor
2013 Kawasaki KLX250S - 250 Dual-Sport Shootout Video
Click to view video
Does the KLX250S still have what it takes to compete in the 250 dual-sport class? Watch the 2013 Kawasaki KLX250S Comparison Video and see for yourself.
Riders seeking a motorcycle that is as adept on pavement as it is when the road ends should consider Kawasaki’s KLX250S ($5099). Although it isn’t the newest thing on the street, Team Green’s entry-level dual-sport gets the job done with its relaxed riding positioned and easy handling.

Despite being a few years old, the KLX remains easy on the eyes even in front of the fresh-faced Honda. With its narrow perimeter steel frame arms and flat radiator shrouds it looks every bit like a real dirt bike. But it does have some unsightly wiring and hoses protruding from the engine area giving it a less refined appearance.

“It looks the part,” thinks Agustin. “It has a tough stance but it doesn’t look quite as modern as the others. I think if Kawasaki gave it new plastics it would do wonders for it aesthetically. The quality of the bike’s hardware, like the fasteners and the brackets don’t look as nice either.”

Jump aboard the green bike and it’s a cross between the raciness off the Yamaha and the more road oriented Honda. The height of the saddle (35.4 in.) is taller than the red bike but an inch less than the WR. All of us six-footers could land both feet on the ground. The steel handlebar has a more street-oriented sweep (rearward) at the ends however you get used to it. And for those who don’t, the fix is as simple as swapping out the bars with a Renthal or ProTaper set-up. Dimensionally the KLX stands between the Honda and Yamaha and will accommodate the widest range of rider’s—both short and tall. On the scale it was the most svelte weighing 298 pounds—one less than the WR and 21 fewer than the Honda.



These days most motorcycles feature fuel-injected engines. But the Kawi still employs a good ol’ fashioned carburetor. If you ride at or near sea level it works sufficiently, accept for one thing: cold starting. Regardless of the air temperature, activating the carb’s choke lever is mandatory before the engine will fire to life. Once running it takes at least a minute of high-speed idling before it can be disengaged or else the engine will stall. For most of us it’s not a big deal but it does add an extra step before riding. Clutch lever pull is light and responsive and once the motor is warn it launches forward with ease. Instrumentation is easy to read and the only thing missing is a fuel gauge as used on the Honda.

Twist the right grip and the KLX’s engine feels similar to the Honda. Power comes on smooth but it lacks the acceleration punch of the Yamaha. It does have a more organic feel making it more playful to flog around at full throttle. Looking at the numbers verifies our assessment behind the ‘bars with it arriving to 60 mph in 8.4 seconds—just a hair behind the Honda (8.6 seconds) but more than a full second behind the class-leading WR. The Kawasaki’s engine sounds muted but sound testing shows that it actually emits more noise with it registering 73 dB at idle and an 86 dB reading at half throttle.
The engine in the KLX250S feels similar to the Honda in terms of how smooth and mellow feeling the power comes on.There really isnt a whole lot to not like about Kawasakis KLX250S. It is an capable performer on and off-road.The suspension on the KLX250S is a good balance between on and off-road use.
(Left) The engine in the KLX250S feels similar to the Honda in terms of how smooth and mellow feeling the power comes on. (Center) There really isn’t a whole lot to not like about Kawasaki’s KLX250S. It is an capable performer on and off-road. Right) The suspension on the KLX250S is a good balance between on and off-road use.

Results from dyno testing prove the KLX’s mill produces the least amount of peak torque (13 lb-ft), though sports the flattest and most consistent torque curve - demonstrating how smooth the engine’s powerband is. Initially, horsepower output is lower than the Honda in the lower rpm range before it surpasses the red bike, albeit by the slimmest of margins, cranking out a fraction more power. Yet it’s still more than five horses down on the class-leading Yamaha. The green machine out-accelerated the Honda in the quarter mile (16.67 seconds @ 76.21 mph) by a smidge but once again more than a second behind the Yamaha, which again proves its outright power deficiency.
The Kawasakis instrumentation is clean and legible but it lacks a fuel gauge as employed on the Honda.
The KLX was comfortable to ride on the street. Its overall ride characteristics are a good balance between the street and dirt.
The build quality and attention to detail like hose and wiring routing and placement isnt at the same level of the Honda and Yamaha.
The Kawasaki handles well off-road but even its easy handling couldnt prevent Waheed from taking spill moments before this photo was taken.
(Top) The Kawasaki’s instrumentation is clean and legible but it lacks a fuel gauge as employed on the Honda. (Centers) The Kawasaki’s ergonomics were well received for their versatility. This will be the bike of choice for the biggest group of riders. The build quality and attention to detail like hose and wiring routing and placement isn’t at the same level of the Honda and Yamaha. (Bottom) The Kawasaki handles well off-road but even its easy handling couldn’t prevent Waheed from taking spill moments before this photo was taken.

Because the Kawi lacks the metered precision of fuel injection, it wasn’t a surprise that it netted fewer mpg (57 vs. 64) compared to the CRF. It did, however, get one more mpg than the FI-equipped Yamaha. Although it didn’t net the lowest average mpg based on the capacity of its two-gallon fuel tank, the Kawasaki has the least range between fill-ups (114 miles).

“The Kawasaki’s engine isn’t bad, but it is more of a pain to get started first thing in the morning,” Gauger shares. “It’s really cold blooded but once you get some heat into it runs just fine. The power felt similar to Honda which made it really easy to ride. But the gearing or the transmission ratios were closer together so the Kawasaki actually got up to speed quicker.”

Whether you’re riding on the road or off the KLX tackles both surfaces with greater ease than all but the blue machine. The seating position is balanced and will fit a wide range of riders. The seat didn’t prove quite as comfy as the Honda’s but it was close—and folks that prefer a more conventional flat dirt bike saddle might prefer the Kawi’s. The suspension and overall handling was pleasing too. Sure the chassis moves around in the rough stuff more than the ultra-stable Yammie, but it is by no means terrible and the additional movement actually can boost a less-experienced rider’s confidence as it did for Agustin. It also fared well on the street soaking up bumps as well as anything else.

“Being a newbie I felt pretty comfortable on the KLX,” says Agustin. “The engine is smooth like the Honda’s and it was easier and more natural feeling to stand on the footpegs occasionally on the sketchier trails.”

On the road the difference between brakes is like splitting hairs. Though the KLX did achieve a marginally shorter stopping distance from 60 mph compared to the red machine. Off-road, the difference was more noticeable because of its added feel from the brake lever making it easier to apply and modulate on loose surfaces.

No doubt about it, the Kawasaki is a mighty fine motorcycle. It’s an all-around performer and it is positioned between the newbie-oriented Honda and the racy Yamaha. Even without fuel-injection the engine runs great once warm, though it’s a finicky morning starter. Both on the street and on the dirt it offers an authentic dirt bike experience, yet it’s not so hard-edged to cause discomfort.

The Kawasaki is a solid runner, and while we enjoyed zipping around on it, the green bike just doesn’t offer as much excitement or uncorked performance, as a certain pesky blue one. Though with a price tag that’s just a few hundred dollars more than the Honda, it’s worth giving a second look.






Videos Our Sponsor
2013 Yamaha WR250R - 250 Dual-Sport Shootout Video
Click to view video
Yamaha’s WR250R is a proven champ in the 250 dual sport segment. Can it hold onto its crown for another year? Tune into the 2013 Yamaha WR250R Comparison Video to find out.
For those that value acceleration and handling, and aren’t afraid of paying for it, Yamaha’s WR250R ($6990) is a worthy choice. The WR borrows technology from the YZ line of dirt bikes, giving it superior performance both off-road and on.
 
Set your eyes on the Yamaha and it’s clear that it is more oriented with the dirt world than street. From the brawny contour of its aluminum frame to the clean and uncluttered look of the engine, the blue bike has a tidy package that just screams performance.

“The Yamaha looks most like a real dirt bike,” says Agustin. “It looks meaner than the other bikes. Even the seat looks taller which kind of intimidated me at first.”

As Agustin mentioned, the Yamaha is the tallest bike in the group. With a seat height of 36.6 inches it’s well over two inches loftier than the CRF and more than an inch higher than the Kawi. While this wasn’t an issue for us six-foot tall guys, it's a challenge for shorter riders to get both feet planted on terra firma.

“I really liked the Yamaha’s ergos as a whole,” tells six-foot-five, Gauger. “If you’re a tall rider than this is the bike for you. But if you’re not that tall or new to riding, the Yamaha might be a little intimidating.”



“I had a hard time getting comfortable on it,” reveals Agustin (6’1”). “On the street I didn’t have any problems but on a few of the trails it got tricky at times; like when we had to flip a U-turn or climb up a steep hill. Sometimes I had to stand on my tippy toes and I had a hard time holding the bike upright.”

Although the Yamaha is a bit top heavy at times a trip to the scales proves that it is still a fairly lightweight motorcycle weighing 299 pounds. That’s one pound more than the Kawasaki, but 21 fewer than the CRF.

Thumb the starter and the blue bike fires to life immediately, every time. Like the Honda, its fuel injection settings are calibrated well allowing it to ridden right away without the prerequisite high-rpm idle of the Kawasaki. Grab a hold of the clutch and it offers a light lever pull, however, it isn’t quite as wispy as the green or red bikes. Instrumentation is more basic too and it’s missing a tachometer and fuel gauge. It does have a low fuel warning light and a handy mile counter that helps you know how many miles you can travel before the tank is completely dry.
A dirt bike with a headlight  tail light and license plate: That is the essence of the WR250R.The Yamaha ate up everything we threw at it. It is an amazing motorcycle that loves to be ridden hard.The WR250Rs ergonomics are well suited to taller folks that routinely ride off-road. They were also well-like by our tallest test rider  65 .
(Left) A dirt bike with a headlight, tail light and license plate: That is the essence of the WR250R.. (Center) The Yamaha ate up everything we threw at it. It is an amazing motorcycle that loves to be ridden hard. Right) The WR250R’s ergonomics are well suited to taller folks that routinely ride off-road. They were also well-like by our tallest test rider (6’5”).

On the road the Yamaha plays the part of a true dirt bike. The engine emits a bit of vibration and also puts out the most noise, too. In the sound test the blue bike had the loudest bark emitting 75 dB at idle and 90 dB at half throttle. Despite being a few points higher than the ultra-quiet Honda it wasn’t obnoxious and added a degree of excitement, especially when the rider grabs a handful of throttle and lets the engine rev out. The handlebar has a conventional yet relaxed-style bend and the seat provided good support. It wasn’t quite as accommodating as the street-friendly Honda but wasn’t so bad that any of us complained.

While the WR performed well on the street where it really shined is on the trail. Here its higher-spec suspension allows it to be ridden faster and with less effort. Whether you’re blasting across sand wash or smashing over big rocks the Yamaha’s suspension tackles all of it with ease and still somehow manages to give a nice, plush ride on the pavement. The ability to fine-tune suspension compression and rebound settings is another nice touch.

The WRs instruments were the most basic. We did like its low fuel mileage counter.
Even on the street the WR performed well but the engine did buzz more than the others.
The Yamahas 250cc water-cooled Single packs the most punch yet its smooth and easy to manage.
Its hard to find fault with the way the Yamaha handles off-road or on. This is truly an excellent motorcycle.
(Top) The WR’s instruments were the most basic. We did like its low fuel mileage counter. (Centers) Even on the street the WR performed well but the engine did buzz more than the others. The Yamaha’s 250cc water-cooled Single packs the most punch yet it’s smooth and easy to manage. (Below) It’s hard to find fault with the way the Yamaha handles off-road or on. This is truly an excellent motorcycle.
In the acceleration tests the Yamaha got up to speed the quickest. Its zero-to-60 mph time of 7.3 seconds was more than a second faster than both the Kawasaki and Honda. It also registered the fastest quarter mile run of 15.57 seconds with top speed of 81.6 mph. Upon review of the dyno graph it’s apparent the WR offers superior engine performance. Initially it pumps out the least amount of torque until around 6000 rpm. After that it keeps generating power while the other engines begin to sign off. Nearly 15 lb-ft of peak torque is available at 8400 revs. Although maximum output arrives at a higher rpm, you get nearly two ft-lb more than the Kawasaki and more than one lb-ft more than the Honda. The power disparity was even greater in terms of horsepower where it trumped the competition by upwards of five ponies with its 24.07 hp at 9100 rpm.

“It’s quite obvious which bike has the most power,” says Gauger. “The WR just plain rips. Maybe it doesn’t have as much acceleration at lower rpms as the other bikes but get the engine revving and it’s not even a comparison. The extra power really helped on trails and in the sand as it helped the bike skim over bumps.”

“The Yamaha was faster for sure,” agrees Agustin. “But you have to rev the engine so high to get it to go. I’m not saying that it’s bad but it made me pay more attention to riding in the right gear.”

Since the engine in the WR produces the highest amount of power it shouldn’t be a surprise that it delivered the poorest fuel economy. We recorded an average figure of 56 mpg which was one mpg down on the green machine and eight lower than the Honda. But since the fuel tank has a tiny bit more capacity (2.1-gallon) the Yamaha rider still has a range of 117 miles between fill-ups.

Both on the street and on the trail the WR’s brakes got the job done. They were easy to modulate on loose rocks yet still had ample power as evident in the braking test with it able to stop from 60 mph in 118 feet (best in class).

With its taller seat and trusty dirt bike-style ergos the WR might be more demanding for some to ride. Still, those that are willing to make a sacrifice will experience a ride like no other. From the smooth yet strong top-end power of its rev-happy engine to its accurate and sure footed chassis, the Yamaha offers poise that the competition simply can’t match.

While the Yamaha is clearly the superior bike in this test, you’re going to have to pay for it. With its MSRP just below seven grand it’s literally thousands more than either the Kawasaki or Honda. But as you’re Grandpa used to say, ‘you get what you pay for’ so if you’re seeking the finest 250 dual-sport, than the WR is the bike you need in your garage.








Adam Waheed – 33-years-old – 6’0” - 180 pounds: Yamaha WR250R


For me it’s an obvious choice. I would buy the Yamaha. Even though it’s literally thousands more than the Honda or Kawasaki, it’s well worth the extra cost. The WR does everything I need it to. It does wheelies in second gear, you can jump it, and it goes dang near 100 mph yet still delivers over 50 mpg. To me it’s a no brainer. Still I do appreciate what Kawasaki and Honda bring to the table and I wouldn’t hesitate recommending either to other riders. The KLX is a good all-around bike, and if you’re less concerned with outright performance, it is a solid bet. The Honda is definitely more street oriented and smaller rider-friendly. It can handle some off-roading but not to the same level of the others. Still it’s a quality machine and if you don’t have a lot of money to spend on a bike then it’s the bike for you.

Ray Gauger - 28-years-old - 6’5” - 180 pounds: Yamaha WR250R

All three of these bikes would make a great commuting and moderate trail machines. But if I had to choose one, it would be the WR250R. It’s the most expensive, but as a taller rider, it’s the only bike in this test that really seems to fit. I’m not much of a tinkerer, so I like the fact that the WR comes pretty well sorted right out of the box. To me, it handles the most like an enduro bike. Any time the trail got gnarly or the speeds increased, the Yamaha felt the most at home. With some bolt-on mods, the Honda and Kawasaki could no doubt be brought up to the blue machine’s pace, but with all things equal, I’d pick the WR250R.
The KLX was comfortable to ride on the street. Its overall ride characteristics are a good balance between the street and dirt.
Versatility and overall rider friendliness played a big part in why Joseph Agustin chose the KLX250S as the dual sport he would choose to buy.

Joseph Agustin - 28-years-old – 6’1” - 170 pounds: Kawasaki KLX250S

Having had barely any experience on the dirt I gravitated toward the Honda due to its lower seat height. Right off the bat I liked it. The motor was smooth, and I felt really confident on it. Then I rode the Kawasaki. It did everything that the Honda did, only better. I still prefer the way the Honda looks, but being a taller guy I just fit better on the Kawasaki. Since it’s only a few hundred dollars more expensive, it’s still affordable. The Yamaha was a little too aggressive for my liking, and I never felt as comfortable on it compared to the Kawi. It’s also way out of my price range.

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