The Honda CBR250RR gets 3 riding modes
Bringing an end to the months of renderings, scoops and speculations, the highly awaited 2017 Honda CBR250RR has finally made its global premiere in Indonesia. Honda’s new quarter-litre offering is easily one of the most anticipated motorcycles to be launched this year, having started life as the Light Weight Super Sport concept unveiled at the Japan Motor Show in 2015 and will be taking on the bigwigs in the segment including the Kawasaki Ninja 250, Yamaha R25 as well as the single-cylinder KTM RC390. That said, the CBR250RR seems to have found a more compelling proposition from the Japanese manufacturer and has a seriously good equipment list that has us hooked on the machine.
The all-new Honda CBR250RR won’t be a replacement to the single-cylinder CBR250R sold currently in many markets and can be seen as a more powerful and sportier version in the entry-level performance segment. Unlike the 250R which is a sports tourer, the CBR250RR aims to be an out-and-out super sport offering drawing power from a 250cc 8-valve, liquid-cooled, parallel-twin DOHC engine. While the power output is undisclosed at this point, the Japanese bike maker does say that the motor is easy to handle for urban riding, while it is just as comfortable on the circuit, with smooth output characteristics across the entire rev range. A 6-speed transmission will be sending power to the rear wheel on the big red’s latest offering with the power output expected to be in the vicinity of 36-40bhp.
More importantly, Honda has confirmed that the parallel-twin engine comes with Throttle-by-Wire (TbW) as speculated previously, which makes for 3-way engine mode settings, which allow the rider to tap into the linear power output at will. So expect linear power delivery for city riding, sport mode to exploit the top-end of the power band and possibly a track mode that beefs up all settings for optimum performance.
The 2017 Honda CBR250RR uses a newly developed steel truss frame, while the swingarm are aluminium gull type with the right-side swingarm shaped to reduce exhaust pipe extrusion. This allows the bike to have a slimmer profile while retaining the bank angle. True to the concept, the CBR250RR features a USD suspension setup at the front and Pro-link suspension featuring 5-step preload at the rear. Braking performance comes from 310 mm front and 240 mm rear wavy disc brakes with dual-channel ABS available as optional.
Talking about the design, the 2017 Honda CBR250RR remains close to the concept and is a big step up for the bike maker that is otherwise known for its conservative styling. The lines are sharper, aggressive and certainly adds to the sporty quotient on the offering. The front retains its CBR roots with the dual-LED headlights that get new stylish LED eyebrows, while the nose down-tail up design keeps it authentic to the sport bike styling. Lastly, the slim profile is accentuated by the double barrel exhausts on the model, which look very European.
We also see an all-digital instrument console on the CBR250RR that reads up to 14,000rpm and will also get other goodies like a lap timer, trip meters, and possibily a high speed recorder as well. The bike also comes with clip-on handlebars. So, unlike the aggressive yet relaxed riding position on the CBR250R, the 250RR will be a lot more aggressive with rear set foot pegs ensuring a track oriented riding stance. The cowl like rear seat is also something that we have really liked on the new CBR.
Talking about production, the 2017 CBR250RR will be manufactured in Indonesia, making it the largest displacement Honda motorcycle to be manufactured in the South East Asian country. The Japanese bike maker plans to begin sales in Indonesia by the end of 2016, while sales in Japan will commence on a later date. It is likely that Honda will choose to make its facility in Indonesia the global manufacturing hub for the new CBR250RR, much like what Yamaha has done with the R25/R3. Not only will it help the company achieve higher production, but better economies of scale.
This brings us to the 2017 Honda CBR250RR making it to India or not. The Japanese bike maker is yet to confirm if the company plans to bring the model in India at all. In either case, we don’t see it coming anytime before 2017-18. This is because reports are rife that Honda is also developing a 350cc version of the new CBR that will be targeted at European and American markets and makes sense for India as well. Should this model make it to production, the new CBR will be one of the more sought-after offerings in the entry-level performance segment attracting an equally sought after price tag. Keep watching this space as we will unearth more details about the model in the days to come.