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When the Honda Africa Twin was revealed many people were understandably excited, but there were those who also began to question why manufacturers chased horsepower and technology rather than creating a smaller, simpler machine. Well, with rumours suggesting that a new Kawasaki Versys 250 and Suzuki V-Strom 250 might be on the way, could we be seeing a shift in ideology among manufacturers?
It is believed that Kawasaki's rumoured mini adventure-tourer will be much like the Versys 650, only with a smaller engine and there has been a render circulating Asian websites showing what the machine may look like. As you would imagine, it borrows significantly from its older brothers and comes with twin headlights, a more substantial, lower fairing and an underbelly exhaust.



Reports suggest that the engine will be very similar to that which is found in Kawasaki's Z250 and Ninja 250. If that is the case then we would expect a 249cc, liquid-cooled, fuel-injected, twin cylinder engine.
Less is known with regards to the Suzuki, but it is thought that it will borrow liberally from the insides of the Inazuma 250 and reports in Japan suggest it may even adopt 'G-Strom' as a name instead of 'V-Strom', perhaps because of the move away from the V-twin engine.
While neither bike has been confirmed by the respective manufacturer, if it were to happen it would certainly prove to be a progressive move in the market. Especially for those who are new to adventure motorcycling and are not wanting to go straight to a high-powered adventure bike. Will it prove to be the answer to those who grow disgruntled with the excessive technology and power that often accompanies new machines? Probably not. But it's never a bad thing to see more adventurous souls on the roads.

http://www.adventurebikerider.com/news/1172-rumours-of-a-kawasaki-versys-250-and-suzuki-v-strom-250-pick-up-pace.html
 

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It's doubtful it would come to the US; most likely an Asian market bike. To me that picture looks more like a Ninja than a Versys.
 

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The little thing is so cute!! Personally I would never go back down to a 250/300 (wish I'd gotten the 1000). But this would be a great entry bike for people not wanting a small cruiser or sports bike. I'm with Robbie, I doubt this would come across the pond.
 

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I see no logical reason for it. At that point might as well go with the lil ninja or the Klx 250 The versys is already tame enough for beginners
 

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I see no logical reason for it. At that point might as well go with the lil ninja or the Klx 250 The versys is already tame enough for beginners
If the pricing is similar to how the Ninja 650 / ER-6F / Versys 650 are priced, then this baby Versys would be priced lower than the Ninja 250; almost half of the price of the 650. That would be a very compelling reason for some people. Not to mention that the baby Versys would be A2 legal, giving Kawasaki a player for the ADV styled segment that is hot in Europe. In fact, I can't understand why they hadn't already done it.
 

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...The versys is already tame enough for beginners
To an old guy like me, THAT statement is incredible!

When I started riding in '63, the Triumph Bonneville (40 HP) was considered an 'expert-ONLY' bike, while NOW we consider the Versys 650 (w/ about 64 REAR-WHEEL horsepower!!!) a BEGINNERS bike.

Things DO change...!

:cool:
 

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Not to mention that the baby Versys would be A2 legal, giving Kawasaki a player for the ADV styled segment that is hot in Europe. In fact, I can't understand why they hadn't already done it.
They sell A2-ready V650s here. You can basically detune almost any bike that's up to 95 HP stock down to the 47 HP the A2 license permits and the dealers sell such versions.

IMO it's a better choice for someone with an A2 license, after two years (that you need in order to advance to full A) you can unlock the bike and ride the full-power version.

To an old guy like me, THAT statement is incredible!

When I started riding in '63, the Triumph Bonneville (40 HP) was considered an 'expert-ONLY' bike, while NOW we consider the Versys 650 (w/ about 64 REAR-WHEEL horsepower!!!) a BEGINNERS bike.

Things DO change...!

:cool:
Ha, true, but on then again the bikes of today are smoother, have better brakes, suspension, ABS etc., they're generally easier to ride despite being more powerful. My cage is a 150 HP Ford Focus and I think it's easier to drive than the sixty-something HP Fiats that we had in driving school. It's just point-and-go, the steering is light, the brakes are there, the electronic aids save your ass if you're being dumb. Peak engine power is not really a great indicator of how difficult a vehicle is to drive.

On the other hand, I actually wouldn't advise the Versys 650 to a complete beginner. It's tall, weights a bit and the engine pulls from the lowest revs, so the on/off throttle behaviour can be twitchy. The Ninja 300 is just about perfect in that regard. Heck, it even has a slipper clutch, so you can't kill yourself with a botched downshift :D

I started out on a Honda CB 500, a bike that everyone around told me was perfect for a beginner. It had plenty of power (its 58 HP let me achieve about the same top speeds as the Versys [!] even though the torque definitely wasn't comparable), it was light, nimble, relatively smooth. Curiously though, it was more brutal when you accidentally downshift from 2nd to 1st. The engine braking just yanked you forward like a mofo. I rode one recently and confirmed it, that's not just newbie memories. Maybe it's a carb vs EFI thing? It also had no ABS, which ended up with a broken bone.

The next thing I got, and I wanted an easy bike with ABS, was a Honda CBF 600. It's about the easiest thing you can ride. The power comes smoothly, the brakes are predictable, it almost never scares the crap out of you. I think it actually might be a better bike for a beginner than the 500, even though it's technically a 78 HP machine (and yes, it's faster than the Versys in the high end). It doesn't get any easier than this, unless you get a 300 ;)
 

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Might as well buy a scooter if you're gonna get something with that small of an engine. I don't believe bike makers NEED to make bikes to encompass every person. Not everyone should be on a bike (nor in a car). Basically all small displacement bikes are good for is getting your feet wet; because the rider will get used to it so fast, they're trading it in for a larger bike. To me, that's a waste of money. I started on a Vulcan 750 before Kaw discontinued them. Couple months down the road, I was ready for a larger bike. I am having the same thoughts on my 2011 versys 650. It's great on gas compared to my '87 Silverado, but there is nothing special or exciting about the 650.
 

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i truley do like the small displacement bike`s, but,, on the HWY`s in Dallas the speed limit`s range from 55 to 70 mph.
The HWY`s out of Dallas go from 70 to 85 mph, a small bike just can not hold those speeds for an all day ride and you must be able to
ride the speed limit`s just for safty reasons. and my rideing is almost all HWY miles. It would be fun to have one just to putter around town on
 

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Everyone should ride big, fast bikes like I do. People with different tastes shouldn't partake in my elite hobby.
Rephrased that a little. Obviously, if someone doesn't enjoy boiling a 1000cc sport bike in gridlock traffic or hauling ass on a 800lbs cruiser on the slab, he should just ride the bus. The fact that <300cc bikes are among the best selling around the world just shows that people are stupid and don't know what's best for them.

:rolleyes:
 

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Everyone should ride big, fast bikes like I do. People with different tastes shouldn't partake in my elite hobby.
Hurr durr, me caveman.
Rephrased that a little to match your IQ...

If you are going to state "facts", you better have sources to back them up. Otherwise, grow up and go home.

EDIT: I did a few searches on google regarding your "facts", I could not find anything about sub-300cc bikes selling better than larger bikes. Now, if you are referring to scooters (not motorcycles), then I could see that.
 

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I could not find anything about sub-300cc bikes selling better than larger bikes. Now, if you are referring to scooters (not motorcycles), then I could see that.
In Australia the Ninja 300 is the best selling motorcycle in the country. (Not counting the postie bikes, Honda CT110X is sold to Australia Post for mail delivery).

Australian Motorcycle Sales Figures 2015 First Quarter Top Tens across various categories

TOP 10 by Category (excludes ATVs) January – March, 2015 compared with January – March, 2014

Manufacturer

Model Total YTD 2015 YTD 2014 % Chg

Honda CT110X 701 698 0.4%

Kawasaki Ninja 300 681 791 -13.9%

Source Australian Motorcycle Sales Figures | MCNews.com.au
 

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In Australia the Ninja 300 is the best selling motorcycle in the country. (Not counting the postie bikes, Honda CT110X is sold to Australia Post for mail delivery).

Australian Motorcycle Sales Figures 2015 First Quarter Top Tens across various categories

TOP 10 by Category (excludes ATVs) January – March, 2015 compared with January – March, 2014

Manufacturer

Model Total YTD 2015 YTD 2014 % Chg

Honda CT110X 701 698 0.4%

Kawasaki Ninja 300 681 791 -13.9%

Source Australian Motorcycle Sales Figures | MCNews.com.au
Well, that may be true for everybody outside the US. However, I can't seem to find that specific of data on the US side. Best I could find were sales based on engine displacement size. Even though the small engines out sold the larger ones, the smaller engines could include anything from scooters to dirt bikes. This source is the best I could find for now.

Motorcycle Sales Statistics - webBikeWorld
 

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If in lower segment 450 would seem right for tour bikes. Dakar , I believe uses more of 450 than bigger bike like in previous years. just my 2 cent thoughts.
 
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