Attracting attention on this metallic blue version of the GSX250R is something you’ll have to get used to. Most of the people who talked to me about the little fun machine thought it was a 500 or larger. When I mentioned that it is a 250, some turned up their noses, others were still grinning and were even more interested in what this bike has to offer.
What it does offer is a 248cc parallel twin based on the Inazuma engine, but much less ‘vibey’ than the Inazuma was. In fact the GSX250R engine is one of the smoothest parallel twins I’ve ridden. Suzuki claims it is to do with the cam profile which also helps suppress engine noise.
The engine is designed for low-to-midrange torque and while it gets away from a standstill okay and is easy to ride, it does get a little exhausted for a bike of this capacity from the mid-range on. I don’t understand why Suzuki didn’t make this bike a 300 or even a 400 to compete with the mega popular Ninja 300 (soon to be Ninja 400) and Yamaha R3.
The handling of little, light bikes like this is normally quite fast on turn in. When I first jumped on the GSX and ripped into some well-known corners I was surprised that I needed to use a little more muscle than normally required for little bikes. It was not a problem, just that I had to get used to the tiny bit slower steering.
In fact I came to enjoy the more neutral turn in, which also includes great stability over on the edge of the tyre. For those bigger riders a little more rear preload would be advisable, and that’s easily adjusted.
The single disc front brake would be the only downfall on this fun machine. It lacks power and feel and to improve it would hopefully only require a set of better brake pads, but a different ratio master cylinder could also be called for. There is ABS to help if things get right out of control, but I couldn’t even activate it on the front due to the lack of power.
Ergonomics are well suited to most sized riders. A low 790mm seat height with the front of the seat being slim means that even those with really short legs can place a foot down at a standstill. Comfort isn’t a selling point, but the seat to peg height is good, as is the just weighted wrists of the clip-on handlebars position.
Suzuki understands that motorcycle styling is important for their models, especially for entry level riders who want their machine to stand out from the crowd. Suzuki’s styling designers have created a sporty and aggressive look with a futuristic flair which should help get many bums on seats. This is carried through with the classy LEDs for the position lamps up front and the tail light.
Adding to the sporty styling are the multi-function full LCD instruments. Integrated into the fairing which makes some more expensive bikes’ instruments look cheap they come with all the usual features including a programmable engine-RPM indicator light (shift light), bright segmented-bar tachometer across the top, digital speedometer, gear position indicator, digital clock, dual trip meters, average fuel consumption meters, fuel gauge and an oil change timing indicator.
Unfortunately there are no genuine Suzuki accessories available for the GSX250R, apart from a generic Suzuki cover. If you want to change anything, you’ll need to look at the aftermarket.
The new Suzuki GSX250R is a good choice for a wide range of riders. This includes those who are looking to buy their first sports street bike, or who are returning to the world of two-wheeled riding pleasure later in life and want something simple and easy to manage.
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