The RM-Z250 for 2008: it’s taking the four-stroke world by storm! Featuring a compact, lightweight and powerful 250cc 4-stroke engine design, a strong and lightweight aluminum chassis, Showa suspension components and many high-performance features, RM-Z250 is aiming to become the ultimate 250cc 4-stroke racing machine.
For 2008 Suzuki offers an unbeatable package based on its engine which was build around an over-square bore x stroke design, with liquid-cooling, titanium valves and double overhead billet cams. The engine is housed by a lightweight, twin-spar aluminum-alloy frame combining aluminum forgings, extrusions and stampings welded into a single unit. The hole package is supported by a Showa inverted, twin chamber, cartridge fork and Showa remote reservoir rear shock. Also by featuring a unique aluminum rear swingarm built using hydro-formed, thick wall tapered arms welded to a cast linkage bracket and forged axle holders, the RM-Z250 has made quite and entry.
Suzuki was planning a four-stroke revolution when it introduced the RM-Z250 back in 2004 and the world of the motocross did shake up a little bit. The bike was destined to dominate the competition and rewrite history and with the powerful heritage coming from Suzuki’s championship winning motocross program and the legendary GSX-R four-stroke road-racing program it promised a lot.
The most important thing that needs to be mentioned is that Suzuki developed the RM-Z250 in collaboration with Kawasaki which launched the KX250F in the same period. With the dominance of the Yamaha YZ250F for the years that preceded the launch of the two models, as well as the all-new Honda CRF250R, Suzuki and Kawasaki cut no corners. Other than the Kayaba suspension, these bikes share nothing with their siblings. Suzuki handled motor development while Kawasaki headed up all the chassis and suspension development in order to create what a few years later would became one of the best machines out on the tracks.
By reading the brief history you probably noticed that the crown could head in any of the four directions. Even if Suzuki created the RM-Z250 in collaboration with Kawasaki which ended up with KX250F, both manufacturers were up against Honda CR250F and Yamaha YZ250F. The last two were already showing their potential so the decision concerning the union of the other two big manufacturers was almost inevitable.
The RMZ was designed as a reliable dirt bike but reliability doesn’t concern only the engine, suspension and frame, which you will further read that meet any request, but exterior features two. In order to meet the functional requests and purposes, Suzuki mounted race-inspired wave-rotors which provide better cooling performance and increased mud deflections in muddy conditions but which also give a very aggressive look and say a lot about the bike’s capabilities.
The newly designed pegs include increased clearance between the mounting bracket and footrest to prevent mud form caking up.
Another functional element which adds a plus on the bike’s exterior design is the gripper seat which has been improved this year by adding projected cross-shaped patterns on the top surface to provide additional grip.
As you probably expected, 2008 brings new side decals which complete the overall look of this threatening motocrosser.
My first ride with the new RMZ was an awesome experience which I would never lived if it wasn’t for the new power plant and the bike’s impressive performance up the power-robbing hills and high-speed sections of the track. The thing that surprised me the most about the bike isn’t the fact that the RMZ motor rips with plenty of low-end (I expected that from a Suzuki engine), but the fact that top end is endless. The bike puts out a lot of power which allows you not to shift after a mid-range push. The amount of power delivered ends up boosting the bike long and strong until the rev-limiter is reached. You would see it as an easy goal but I guarantee you that reaching the rev-limiter will become your biggest challenge in your first days on the RMZ250. The engine is that amazing!
The improved version of the chassis created by Kawasaki can be found on the new Suzuki RM-Z250. Nice was the fact that the aluminum frame seems to retail traditional Suzuki cornering characteristics if set properly. The bike turns awesome but with the alloy frame, it becomes much more sensitive in getting ample grip on the front Dunlop tire.
The suspensions are tuned for maximum performance and it shows on the bumps as the bike tends maintain the rhythm imposed by the rider in comfort and stability which is a very important aspect when after a big, long jump a tight corner expects you.
But preparing for tight corners involves powerful braking which means that the bike is suppose to feature strong brakes but which can be maneuvered carefully in order to further lean the bike as the corner starts giving you a great rush of adrenaline, found only on such machines. Do the hydraulic front and rear discs their job? Of course they do!
The 2008 Suzuki RM-Z250 is a very well engineered motorcycle, with a great powerful motor, especially designed aluminum frame which makes it handle like a dream, and with powerful disc brakes for great stopping power. All these qualities could be found in a single package offered by a competent manufacturer. You know who.
Being a four-stroke with loads of capabilities mounted on an aluminum frame, the bike can be bought for a retail price of $6,099. Included with this year’s new model are all the benefits of Suzuki’s race contingency, trackside support, Tony D School and Good scholar program. All these added benefits are exclusive to Suzuki riders. Once you’ve bought it, a single twist of the throttle will be enough to convince you of a choice well made.
Overall, the bike is excellent! It features all the necessary characteristics for a record-seller and more. Suzuki has really pulled it through (like it always does) and the 2008 model of the RM-Z250 won’t disappoint anyone.
Engine and Transmission
Type: four-stroke, single cylinder, liquid-cooled, DOHC, 4-valve
Bore x Stroke: 77.0 x 53.6mm
Compression Ratio: 13.4:1
Fuel System: KEIHIN FCR 37 MX
Lubrication: Semi-dry sump
Ignition: Digital AC-CDI
Final Drive: #520 chain
Chassis and Dimensions
Suspension Front: Telescopic, cartridge-type, 16 compression & rebound settings, 11.8 inches, 300mm of wheel travel
Suspension Rear: Link-type, spring preload fully-adjustable, 16 compression & rebound settings, 310mm of wheel travel
Brakes Front: Single hydraulic disc
Brakes Rear: Single hydraulic disc
Tires Front: 90/100-21
Tires Rear: 100/90-19
Overall Length: 2165mm (85.2 in.)
Overall Width: 830mm (32.7 in.)
Overall Height: 1260mm (49.6 in.)
Seat Height: 955mm (37.6 in.)
Ground Clearance: 350mm (13.8 in.)
Wheelbase: 1465mm (57.7 in.)
Dry Weight: 92kg (203 lbs)
Fuel Tank Capacity: 7.5 liter (2.0 gal.)
-Race inspired wave-rotors provide better cooling performance and increased mud deflection in muddy conditions.
Newly designed pegs include increased clearance between the mounting bracket and footrest to prevent mud from caking up.
Gripper seat has been improved this year by adding projected cross-shaped patterns on the top surface to provide additional grip.
-KEIHIN FCR 37 MX Carburetor with bat-wing type air guide plates result in better mid-to-high power output while improving low throttle opening response.
Exhaust port is narrowed down on the left side for an increase of mid-to-high power output.
Muffler construction revised improving power output throughout the rev range.
Clutch judder springs added for a more comfortable operation feel.
Modified piston profile for increased engine reliability.
Hot starter relocated to the right hand side of the handlebar just like Ricky Carmichael’s Championship winning RM-Z450.
-Brackets are added to the side frame pipes and tank rails for increased balance rigidity.
Lower bridge pipes reduced in size resulting in improved shock-absorption feel while maintaining ample strength.
Showa cartridge-style front fork with 47mm inner tube, plus 22-way compression damping and 11.8 inches of wheel travel. Sections within the fork were modified to reduce weight and improve shock absorption.
Showa rear shock absorber with a newly designed damper case and modified internal structure for a better controlled feel and increased bottoming resistance.
Gold-colored chain and axle blocks give a full factory look.
-Compact 249cc, 4-stroke, liquid-cooled, DOHC, 4-valve engine – designed for maximum performance.
Advanced 4-valve cylinder head design with narrow include valve angle and titanium valves, plus new pentroof combustion chamber design for improved combustion efficiency.
SCEM composite-plated aluminum alloy cylinder for increased durability, optimum engine cooling, and operating temperature.
Strong, reinforced airbox designed for durability and secure intake seal.
Automatic decompression system for easy kick starting.
Semi-dry-sump lubrication system features separate oil chambers for the transmission and crankshaft using the transmission as the oil sump, allowing low crankshaft placement, reduced engine height and a low center of gravity.
AC-CDI ignition system with two ignition maps automatically increased engine idle speed to reduce engine brake effect - ignition timing and rev limiter set for optimum high rpm and over-rev performance.
-Twin spar aluminum alloy frame based on the championship winning RM-Z450 featuring a forged aluminum headpipe and body frame.
Renthal tapered aluminum handlebars with Renthal-labeled handlebar pad for reduced vibration and improved rider feel.
On-the-fly clutch lever adjuster mounted to the clutch lever perch for rider convenience.