Go-anywhere learner: Sinnis SM-XE 125 is a return to L-plate-friendly mud pluggers

The Sinnis SM-XE 125 is here
The Sinnis SM-XE 125 is here
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Following the demise of previously popular Japanese 125cc trail bikes such as Yamaha’s XT and WR, Suzuki’s DRZ and Kawasaki’s KLX, there’s not been much choice for 17-year-olds looking for a modern, off-road-style learner machine.  

Aside from Aprilia’s near-£4000 RX 125, the only options were some fairly old-tech, air-cooled retro scramblers or hard-to-find Spanish-sourced Riejus and Derbis. Until now. 

Meet the all-new Sinnis SM-XE: a liquid-cooled, four-stroke 125 trailie from the leading Chinese/UK brand that combines modern mechanicals, styling and performance, with upright, novice-friendly trail bike ergonomics and a price tag of just under £3400. 

The first bike to use Sinnis’s all-new liquid-cooled, DOHC, four-valve, Euro5-compliant, 124cc four-stroke single, it produces the A1-class regulation 14.8bhp at 9000rpm, making it the marque’s most powerful CBT-friendly model yet.  

Along with 8.48ftlb of torque at 8500rpm (both figures which match or beat the Aprilia RX) and a six-speed gearbox, Sinnis claims its newcomer can also deliver a 60mph+ top speed. But it doesn’t end there.  

The SM-XE also boasts beefy 54mm upside-down forks, and a rising-rate mono-shock at the rear. You also get a traditional tubular steel single loop cradle frame bolted in the middle, and off-road style wavy disc brakes front and rear with regulation ABS.  

Wheels and tyres, meanwhile, are black anodised alloy-rimmed wires in pukka off-road 21in front and 18in rear sizes, both fitted with trail-style knobblies. 

All of that adds up to the maximum permissible performance for a 17-year-old on an A1 class licence. At just a claimed 140kg, the Sinnis should be easily manageable for novices, with contemporary trail bike styling to make you the envy of all your mates. 

Best of all, the SM-XE is currently priced at just £3399 plus on-the-road charges. The equivalent Aprilia is over £450 more, but you can only have it in one colour scheme – white with green detailing.  

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Phil West

By Phil West

MCN Contributor and bike tester.