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Honda CBR250R Sports Motorbike Review

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MCN overall verdict rating is 4

Motorcycling needs new blood to ensure survival. Honda’s take on this is to attract people into motorcycling with a cheap, honest and stylish workhorse – and the CBR250R is it. This all-new machine is not just suited to restricted cat’ A licence holders, but also anyone who wants a simple, easy to ride, modern-dressed machine capable of returning high mpg figures.


MCN rating rating is 3
Owners' rating rating is 4.5

The CBR isn’t fast-fast. With 26bhp at the crank it was never going to be furious. Instead it’s all about pleasure riding, looking good and, more importantly, gaining experience before moving further up the capacity ladder. But it would have been good if Honda eked out another 7bhp to meet the 33bhp limit. It’s happy to sit at 75mph for mile after mile and there’s not much in the way of vibration considering it’s a single-cylinder. Clutch, gearbox and fuelling are of the usual Honda quality, proving cheap doesn’t always mean cheap and nasty. Honda has made big claims about the 250’s fuel consumption, quoting 75mpg from rolling road tests. Doubtful this figure can be replicated on the open road, but if it does 60mpg we won’t complain.

Ride and Handling

MCN rating rating is 3
Owners' rating rating is 4

Where Honda’s CBR excels is it big-bike looks and pleasing ride quality. Providing you haven’t got giraffe-like legs it has a roomy seating position. Legs can be picked up and moved about the pegs and there’s enough seat room to move backwards to accommodate long arms. Comfort is guaranteed and, all-in, gives the comforting sensations of sitting astride a high-barred 600 rather than a pumped up 125. Suspension is plush rather than budget soft and soggy – how the chassis will handle a pillion is difficult to say because this test wasn’t possible at the CBR’s world launch.


MCN rating rating is 2
Owners' rating rating is 4

For £3688 Honda has delivered a bike that is extremely basic but extremely functional. Everything that’s needed to make a modern motorcycle is attached ie catalyser, steering lock, digital dash etc. There is an ABS version but as yet no date has been set for UK shipping if indeed it happens.

Honda CBR250R (2011-current)

Detail Value
New price £4,199
Dealer used prices
£2,770 (2011) - £3,600 (2013)
Private used prices
£2,410 (2011) - £3,240 (2013)
  View full used price info
Engine size 249 cc
Power 26 bhp
Top speed mph
Insurance group 13 of 17
  MCN ratings Owners' ratings
Overall rating is 4 rating is 4
Engine rating is 3 rating is 4.5
Ride & Handling rating is 3 rating is 4
Equipment rating is 2 rating is 4
Quality & Reliability rating is 3 rating is 4
Value rating is 4 rating is 4.5

Quality and Reliability

MCN rating rating is 3
Owners' rating rating is 4

Honda has earned a reputation for making solid, reliable products. There’s no reason to think the CBR250R will be any different to the other models in its range even though it is built in Thailand – Honda quality is the same all over the world.


MCN rating rating is 4
Owners' rating rating is 4.5

To design a complete new bike, from frame to engine to the info dash, costs money. So how Honda is making money out of the keenly priced CBR is a mystery to us – Kawasaki’s Ninja 250R costs £861 more at £4549 and even Hyosung’s capable GT250R is £3799. Ok, so production costs are lower in Thailand, but a sports-styled Honda for only £3688? Blimey.


Insurance group: 13 of 17

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Model History

2011 – Intro of new CBR250R

Other Versions


Top speed mph
1/4-mile acceleration secs
Max power 26 bhp
Max torque 17.6 ft-lb
Weight 161 kg
Seat height 780 mm
Fuel capacity litres
Average fuel consumption mpg
Tank range miles
Annual road tax
Insurance group 13 of 17
Engine size 249 cc
Engine specification Liquid-cooled, DOHC, 4v four-stroke single-cylinder. Six gears
Frame Steel dual beam frame
Front suspension adjustment n/a
Rear suspension adjustment Adjustable for preload
Front brakes 1 x 296mm disc with 2-piston caliper
Rear brake 220mm disc with single-piston caliper
Front tyre size 110/70 x 17
Rear tyre size 140/70 x 17

See all Honda CBR250R motorcycles for sale


3246 miles



1213 miles



2700 miles



26 miles



4119 miles


Owners' Overall Rating rating is 4(11 reviews)

  • Great bike


    Average rating rating is 4.5

    Show Details

    Ride and Handling
    Quality and Reliabilty

    Being in Thailand some of us have had this bike since the end of December 2010 In recent years I've had a CB1 400/4 a Transalp and a 1970's Vespa but this does the business. Review Bought 20 Dec 2010 Cost: £2,000 (Assembled here. No tax. Sorry. This time we benefit) Value: Exceelent! Miles: 5,000 (300+pw) Usage: Daily commute + long trips MPG: 83 on a run / 70 round town or thrashing it Quality: No issues at all. Pillion: With a 102kg/16st mate plus my 75kg/12ston the back fine as fine can be including negotiating speed bumps. Plus points: Bangkok lane splitting is a breeze. Good for distance riding. Looks great and handles well. Good shielding from fairings and screen. Nice and quick up to 70mph Cruises all day at 70-80 Negatives No hooking points! Longest day: 300+ miles on soso thai highways roads and no aches.

    01 April 2011


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you can find many cheap and fashion stuff
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17 August 2011 19:16




Insurance group 13 has to be a joke... the CBR600F is only group 14...

01 April 2011 01:20




My Suzuki x7 in 1976 was 120kg and had 30Bhp after 35 years of progress this is what we have got, i feel sorry for the kids of today

30 March 2011 17:33


User's Badge


Won't complain about 60mpg!

I would be disgusted with 60mpg out of a 250 particularly a single unless it was all short journeys. Admittedly on a reasonably long commute (55 miles each way) but my kawasaki 250R Ninja used to get close to 74mpg every day (I only filled it up every other day), my ER6 used to give around 63 and the Deau gives 56 (As measured by Fuelly over the last 11000 miles). Also back in the 1980s Bike Magazine tested the Kawasaki Z200 (single) and averaged 80mpg. Not bad when you realise that included speed testing - they reckoned its top speed was 80mph and it had 20BHP.

I don't think thats the biggest problem with this bike though. The biggest problem is the new 50BHP limit thats coming in a few years courtesy of the eec. No one will want a 26BHP bike then...

26 March 2011 23:02


User's Badge


Group 13

Why group 13?

Seems far too high to me for a 250 single, perhaps the insurance companies have it down as a trail bike and expect it to be nicked every 5 minutes by spotty youths. I would put it in the 6 or 7 group.

As for the lack of power, I guess the restrictive ugly exhaust system does not help, lets hope the mpg is outstanding to make up for the claimed 26bhp.

26 March 2011 09:19

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