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AJS REGAL-RAPTOR DD250E Custom Motorbike Review

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AJS Regal Raptor motorcycle review - Riding
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MCN overall verdict rating is 3

The AJS Regal Raptor range comes in three sizes; 50cc, 100cc and 250cc, all single cylinder four strokes, with the 250 the most commuter-friendly of the bunch. The smaller machines are mini cruiser styled motorcycles, with the DD100E arguably the most oddball `chopper' that anyone can buy, compete with Captain America Stars `n' Stripes paint. Made in China, AJS Regal Raptors are cheap, cheerful and have the advantage of a UK importer for spares/warranty back up.

Engine

MCN rating rating is 2
Owners' rating rating is 4

The AJS Regal Raptor motor is old hat, no two ways about it. The 250cc Regal is OK in modern traffic but soon runs out of steam near 60mph and the smaller motorcycles are simply too slow for anything but short trips around town. The gearboxes are fairly crude as well. On the upside, they’re all based on proven Honda motors from back in the day.

Ride and Handling

MCN rating rating is 4
Owners' rating rating is 4

Now here's a surprise, the AJS Regal Raptor 250 actually handles quite respectably, with soft-ish suspension but no different from what you might expect on a mainstream 250cc cruiser motorcycle. The frame appears strong, the motorcycle steers nicely, especially at low speeds and the dinky 15-inch rear wheel doesn't cause any wobbly moments on the open road. The smaller 125 and 50cc variants are also novice-friendly.

Equipment

MCN rating rating is 3
Owners' rating rating is 3

Basic switchgear and clocks, wooden brakes, plus what appear to be 70s ‘Comstar' type wheels, don't help the AJS Regal Raptor win converts to budget biking. On the other hand, the seating is good and new models like the Harley clone 250 9B model suggest the factory is trying to make their motorcycles look like really good value for money. Compare and buy parts for the AJS Regal Raptor in the MCN Shop. 

AJS Regal Raptor (2003-current)

Detail Value
New price £1,195
Engine size 249 cc
Power 17 bhp
Top speed 70 mph
Insurance group 8 of 17
  MCN ratings Owners' ratings
Overall rating is 3 rating is 4
Engine rating is 2 rating is 4
Ride & Handling rating is 4 rating is 4
Equipment rating is 3 rating is 3
Quality & Reliability rating is 3 rating is 4
Value rating is 4 rating is 5

Quality and Reliability

MCN rating rating is 3
Owners' rating rating is 4

Believe it or not, Japanese motorcycles were once like Chinese bikes; good in parts, cheap to buy, but frequently lost all their chrome in three heavy rain showers. The AJS Regal Raptor models are at the upper end of the scale in Chinese budget motorcycles, and look decently made, but you still have to wonder if these will stand the test of time, or the grind of daily commuting.

Value

MCN rating rating is 4
Owners' rating rating is 5

For two grand, the AJS Regal Raptor 250 makes a decent workhorse and looks the best made Regal badged bike of the range. The AJS Regal Raptor DD125E is reasonable value, but at 1500 quid you could do better in terms of 125cc practical transport if all you want is a commuter motorcycle. The AJS Regal Raptor DD50E version is top value at just under a grand, although, frankly, I doubt many 16 year old boys will want to be seen on one... Find an AJS Regal Raptor for sale.

Insurance

Insurance group: 8 of 17

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Model History

2003: AJS Regal Raptor DD50 launched in UK.
2004: AJS Regal Raptor DD100E launched.
2005: AJS Regal Raptor 250 launched.
2007: AJS Raptor DD125E replaces DD1100E.
2007: New DD250E-9B Harley lookalike launched.

Other Versions

AJS Regal Raptor DD50: 50cc 4-stroke version.
AJS Regal Raptor DD100E: 100cc 4-stroke version.
AJS Regal Raptor DD125E. 125cc 4-stroke version.

Specifications

Top speed 70 mph
1/4-mile acceleration 15 secs
Max power 17 bhp
Max torque 11 ft-lb
Weight 151 kg
Seat height 698 mm
Fuel capacity 14 litres
Average fuel consumption 50 mpg
Tank range 140 miles
Annual road tax
Insurance group 8 of 17
Engine size 249 cc
Engine specification 4v, parallel twin, 5 gears
Frame Steel tubular cradle
Front suspension adjustment None
Rear suspension adjustment Preload
Front brakes 252mm disc
Rear brake Drum
Front tyre size 90/90 x 18 in
Rear tyre size 130/90 x 15 in

Owners' Overall Rating rating is 4(1 review)

  • do not be put off

    Henryk Kokocinski

    Average rating rating is 4

    Show Details

    Overall
    Ride and Handling
    Equipment
    Quality and Reliabilty
    Value
    Engine

    I bought a 2006 Regal Raptor 250DDE 18 months ago and I have to say do not be put off by its Chinese origin. On the open road it will do 70mph if you wring its neck briefly. I ride mine between 50 and 60 and at the legal limits around town. Fuel consumption has been monitored over all the bikes time with me at 65mpg. I find the seat a little on the low side but the riding position is comfortable, it feels secure all the way over to foot peg scrape. The brakes are adequate for the performance of the bike. I clean and polish my bike regularly, all the paint and chrome is original and in good condition, the bike looks really good. Build quality is good, everything feels solid. The bike has never let me down beyond a headlight bulb. I service and maintain the bike myself . The bike has one fault which could be unique to my machine or a model problem, When the bike has stood overnight the clutch sticks so badly it will stall the engine with the first gear engagement of the day, avoid this by not starting the bike until you engage second, pull in the clutch and push the bike until you feel the clutch break free. The problem will not re occur until next day, I can live with that. The bike was very cheap to buy because of its Chinese origins, its open market resale value will therefore be low but you may find yourself keeping it for years! My star ratings may seem on the high side, but are given on the basis of value for money.

    18 January 2014

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