There have been fewer more poorly kept secrets than Honda’s new CBR250RR. And now Honda has finally revealed the first official pictures and some details about the new Honda CBR250RR.
Featuring a ride-by-wire throttle, the new Honda CBR250RR will be the first small-capacity motorcycle in the entry-level segment to boast switchable engine maps. The modes – likely to be along the lines of normal, rain and sport – will allow riders to alter the power to the suit conditions.
Initially to be sold in Indonesia, with Japanese sales the first to follow, the CBR250RR is eventually expected to spawn a worldwide model with a larger, 350cc engine to take on rivals like the Yamaha YZF-R3, Kawasaki Ninja 300 and the BMW G310R. The ability to reduce the output in wet or slippery conditions will likely be an attractive feature for inexperienced riders. Apart from its internal engine dimensions, the worldwide version will be virtually identical to the CBR250RR. If you think the shape looks familiar, that’s because Honda previewed the design with its Light Weight Super Sport concept, revealed at the Tokyo Motor Show last year. The styling, engine and chassis are basically identical, proving that the ‘concept’ from last year was really little more than a early version of the production model.
Of course, the concept motorcycle’s carbon-fiber eye candy is gone, replaced by textured plastic, and the production motorcycle features lights – which were notably missing from the concept. It also gets a more user-friendly pillion seat and an emissions-certified exhaust instead of the race-only Akrapovic exhaust system.
The tubular-steel frame is identical to the concept’s, as is the Gull Arm swingarm and the upside down forks, although the latter gains a gold coating that gives a high-end appearance. Don’t be fooled though, this is budget suspension as befits a motorcycle set to be an entry-level model in Honda’s sportsbike range. Adjustability is limited to preload, and only at the back.
The engine is entirely new. Although Honda has confirmed it’s a DOHC, four-valve-per-cylinder parallel twin, not further specifications are available. Honda says unsurprisingly, that it’s designed to offer class-leading performance, which suggests a Yamaha YZF-R25 beating power output of 27kW or more.
When launched globally, we’re expecting a capacity of around 350cc. That will aim to beat the 30.9kW output of the 321cc Yamaha YZF-R3. It may also gain improved suspension, though Honda will still have a keen eye on the price point, so don’t expect miracles.