This supermoto-inspired bike is built for riders who spend more time off-road than on the street. Directly descended from Yamaha’s YZ and WR off-road machines, the WR250R makes Yamaha’s off-road prowess street accessible.
You haven’t experienced the true meaning of fun performance until you’ve tried the WR250R. This stunning new creation combines Yamaha’s race-dominating off-road know-how with the no-compromise attitude of its R-series sportbikes. It’s got the trick components, the strength and the power to survive tough enduro events and then give you just the same buzz when you ride to work on Monday morning. Can it get greater than that?
The Yamaha WR25R, like the “X” machine”, is based on the heritage obtained through years of developing and producing the YZ series. History began being written in 1974 with the first YZ model ever produced. It was named Yamaha YZ125A and it was introduced as an off-road bike featuring aluminum alloy fuel tank, 28mm Mikuni round slide carburetor, and a five-speed gearbox. Ignition supplied was CDI (Internal Rotor). So great about this motorcycle addressing to the masses was the fact that it was very close to the MX125 model presented in the same year. Yamaha proved to have a great marketing strategy and the line began gathering more models.
One of those models was the YZ250 motocross bike which contributed at creating the machine which’s history I am now trying to unveil.
Another great starting point for Yamaha was again one of its own machines. The WR250F is a motorcycle addressed to riders who favor finesse over brute force and prefer to go off-road. Yamaha introduced the WR250F as one of those magic bikes that make their rider feel like a better one and the success was guaranteed.
So here we have it! The great starting point for the subject of this review actually appeared through the junction of two Yamaha motorcycles offering similar and yet different qualities.
2008 Yamaha WR250R and Honda CRF250X
With its awesome balance of power, handling, weight and size, the CRF250X is a great off-roader for trail riders and pro racers alike. It is also the strongest competitor for the Yamaha WR250R. Start with its impeccable CRF250R pedigree, add electric start, wide-ratio gearing, new-for-2008 ignition timing, new brake rotors and a slimmed-down fuel tank, and you will obtain not necessarily a winner, but a true competitor for everything in its class.
There’s a good reason middleweight off-road bikes are so popular. They offer abundant power combined with lightweight handling. You can now draw your own conclusions and anticipate what recipe Suzuki used when it created the DR-Z250. Grab a handful of throttle and you’ll be rewarded with hard-charging performance across the powerband. And when the trails get nasty, you can count on the DR-Z250’s long-travel suspension for a plush ride.
The fun doesn’t have to stop at pavement boundaries when riding Kawasaki’s street legal KLX250S. This lightweight dual-purpose motorcycle is equally at home on the pavement, off-road or up against the bikes in its class.
2008 Yamaha WR250R and Kawasaki KLX250S
2008 Yamaha WR250R
Yamaha designers took a look at their YZ motocross machines and decided they knew exactly where to inspire the looks of their brand new WR250R. It didn’t take long until idea became reality at Yamaha and their new product was introduced as an off-roader featuring racing plastics covered with Team Yamaha Blue/White paintjob.
The Yamaha WR250R presents us its fuel tank shaped with knee grip in mind, and an entire ergonomic layout destined to make the rider feel like an integrated part of the bike. Its narrow seat continues the two-tone color given by the fuel tank and side panels so everything blends in perfectly together.
21 inch front and 18 inch rear wheels provide the bike with its needed dose of aggression, a character which is completed by the nicely-shaped exhaust.
Until this point I may have described you an YZ machine but what sets this bike apart from the ones that inspired its creation is the headlight and mirrors, the only signs of street-legality encountered on the WR250R.
Some will say that everything comes with a price but I would say that the Yamaha makes an exception and offers this race-inspired, off-road bike for the retail price of only $5,899. It is awesome to know that once you’ve added this motorcycle to your collection you will have the ability of going virtually anywhere on any kind of terrain and still using the city streets when needed. Both ways, it will prove to be the ideal choice.
Riders who feel like waiting until January 2008 for buying this motorcycle will surely have no regrets. It is impossible because the bike promises to take care of all their off/on-road needs so they can relax and enjoy the view and road ahead. If this product would have been guaranteed or customers receive their money back, I bet nobody would of show up for that last part.
Directly descended from Yamaha’s motocrossers and WR off-road machines – even the original Yamaha YA-1 of 1995 – the all-new WR250R is here to make Yamaha’s off-road prowess street accessible.
Not exactly an enduro model and not a streetbike either, the WR250R is for riders who ride off-road more than on. Its sibling, the supermoto-inspired WR250X, is for riders who spend more time on the pavement.
2008 Yamaha WR250R Engine
Fresh-sheet design 250cc liquid-cooled, DOHC engine with two titanium intake valves and two steel exhausts, forged piston and plated cylinder for outstanding durability.
Pentroof combustion chamber with downdraft-type straight intake helps make excellent power across the rev band, with maximum power at 10,000 rpm.
First use of fuel injection on a 250 Yamaha on/off-road bike. The system relies on input from a crank sensor, intake air pressure sensor and throttle position sensor feeding a compact ECU to provide optimum combustion.
An ECU-controlled EXUP exhaust valve, along with an electronic intake control valve, broadens the powerband.
Large titanium intakes valves with WPC processed high lift cams, a treatment in which the surface is sprayed with fine powder at over 100 meters per second to increase surface hardness.
Three-axis engine layout keeps the engine compact. Wet sump tucks between frame rails to keep the engine height down.
Rare earth-type ACM alternator keeps the weight down while providing all the current needed to run the FI and lighting systems.
Direct ignition coil sits atop the spark plug – another first on a Yamaha on-off-road model.
Six-speed gearbox provides a wide spread of ratios, with shower-type lubrication for reliability. A special light-action clutch makes shifting a snap.
Tucked-in, three-chamber muffler keeps the mass concentration up and the bike quiet.
Electric start only: Leaving off the kickstarter keeps it light and simple.
A slim, steel fuel tank is shaped with knee grip in mind, and the entire ergonomic layout is designed to make the rider feel like part of the bike.
Narrow, YZ-inspired seat features gripper-type cover for great seat-of-the-pants feel. Seat height is 36.6 inches.
WR enduro-style instrument panel provides excellent visibility in spite of the compact size. Basic mode provides speed, clock, tripmeter and self-diagnostic function. Measurement mode includes stopwatch, distance-compensating tripmeter, etc.
Minimalist front and rear fenders are designed for function, simplicity and lightness.
Bodywork with separate radiator heat outlet helps keep engine and rider cool.
Lightweight headlight and LED taillight maximizes visibility and draw less current.