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Yamaha SR400 (2013-current)

£5,199

399cc, 23bhp, 80mph, Insurance group

The SR400 could really do with the original’s extra 100cc or 8-10bhp more; for anyone over 5ft 10in it’s too cute to be cool and, at £5200 I can’t help feeling it’s a bit rich, too. After all, the SR has no more moving parts than the YBR125 and yet its development costs were surely wiped out an ice age ...

  • MCN rating rating is 4
  • Owners' rating rating is 0
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Suzuki Inazuma 250 (2013-current)

£3,408

248cc, 24bhp, 85mph, Insurance group

Due to these trying economic time, the thought of a worthy 250 commuter, a workhorse, is certainly more appealing to riders than ever before. The Inazuma fills that role brilliantly. It’s effective, idiot-proof and economical and its classy touches, badge, two-year warranty and more lift it above the general morass. The trouble is the price. We aren’t convinced that the ...

  • MCN rating rating is 3
  • Owners' rating rating is 4
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Aprilia SR Max 300 (2011-2012)

£3,899

278cc, 21.7bhp, 91mph, Insurance group

There are a lot of good points about buying a maxi scooter like the SR Max. Fuel economy is one, simplicity is the other. There aren’t many full-licenced motorcyclists who would buy a scooter on these benefits alone because of the image they portray of being ‘a ladies bike’. Maybe this is why Aprilia has wound up the ‘sport-styling’ knob ...

  • MCN rating rating is 3
  • Owners' rating rating is 2.5
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Honda CBR250R (2011-2013)

£4,199

249cc, 26bhp, 95mph, Insurance group 13

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 ...

  • MCN rating rating is 4
  • Owners' rating rating is 4
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Gilera Fuoco 500ie (2007-current)

£5,695

493cc, 39bhp, 90mph, Insurance group 9

There are motorcyclists out there who will cheerfully denounce the Fuoco as a car with a wheel missing. Ok so the Fuoco does have three wheels but in every other way it is a bike; it leans, stoppies has handlebars and so on. More to the point it is fun, practical and safe. No, seriously it is. MCN originally tested ...

  • MCN rating rating is 4
  • Owners' rating rating is 0
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Royal Enfield Bullet Woodsman EFI (2010-current)

£4,749

499cc, 27bhp, 85mph, Insurance group 6

The Royal Enfield Bullet Woodsman EFI is a modern take on a bike produced by the 1950’s USA importer, who turned Bullets in to scramblers and branded them as Indian Woodsman. The 2010 bike shares a name and basic layout, but has welcome modern touches including electric start, fuel injection and a disc front brake.

  • MCN rating rating is 4
  • Owners' rating rating is 0
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Derbi GP-1 250 Racing (2006-current)

£2,999

249cc, 22bhp, 82mph, Insurance group

When you hear the spec of the Derbi GP1 250 Racing scooter it’s easier to think of a proper motorcycle rather than a funky-looking twist-and-go scooter. It’s got radial brakes, earlier versions had a single rear shock and it even has a twin-spar aluminium chassis too. This is about as cool-looking as it gets in the 250cc scooter market.

  • MCN rating rating is 4
  • Owners' rating rating is 0
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Honda BROS NT400 (1988-1992)

N/A

398cc, 31bhp, 94mph, Insurance group 9

Strictly speaking, the BROS 400 is heavy, underpowered and outdated. But the cheap grey imports are surprisingly nice to ride – they’re well balanced, steer well and the engine is flexible, torquey and characterful given its 33bhp output. That also makes it legal for new riders on a restricted licence.

  • MCN rating rating is 4
  • Owners' rating rating is 4
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Piaggio X7 250ie (2008-current)

£2,999

244cc, 22bhp, 80mph, Insurance group 7

The Piaggio X7 250 ie is halfway between a full-on maxi scooter and a lightweight city scooter, so in theory should offer comfort and a bit of class with some traffic busting ability. It manages it too – it feels substantial and quality but slices traffic like a 50cc scooter.

  • MCN rating rating is 4
  • Owners' rating rating is 0
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Gilera Nexus 300 (2008-current)

£3,699

278cc, 22.4bhp, 85mph, Insurance group 7

The Gilera Nexus sits between the Nexus 125 and the Nexus 500 as the mid-capacity sporty scooter in the Gilera range. The design is based around the concept of a sportsbike, but adapted for a CVT step-through scooter. It’s certainly sportier than most big scoots – but essentially it’s a commuter with a sports image.

  • MCN rating rating is 3
  • Owners' rating rating is 0

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