This supermoto-inspired bike is built for riders who spend more time on pavement surfaces, not that the occasional dirt road is going to slow anybody down much. Directly descended from Yamaha’s YZ and WR off-road machines, the WR250X makes Yamaha’s off-road prowess street accessible.
Yamaha used its powerful heritage and developed, based on other successful motorcycles, a machine that would satisfy the riding needs of one certain category of riders: street riders who also enjoy some dust from time to time. It is introduced as the all-new Yamaha WR250X, a bike which promises to deal with any kind of terrain and any kind of competition.
Yamaha started to put the bases of an off-road motorcycle empire known as the YZ series in 1974 when the first YZ model was produced. The bike featured aluminum alloy fuel tank, 28mm Mikuni round slide carburetor, and a five-speed gearbox. The ignition supplied was CDI (Internal Rotor). That very first model year was very close to the MX125 model offered the same year with the exception of a few items like color, fuel tank, chrome bore cylinder, and ridgeless aluminum rims.
Following the line’s evolution, we will reach this very same day and notice that Yamaha offers the YZ250 motocross bike. This motorcycle inspired the creation of the all-new WR250X but is this all?
Of course it isn’t! Yamaha also offers the WR250F model, a bike dedicated to riders who favor finesse over brute force and prefer to go off-road. The Yamaha WR250F is one of those magic bikes that make you feel like a better rider and I am sure that the WR250X has an appropriate behavior.
I wrote a bit on these two bikes because, if you had any contact with them, the new WR250X will surely attract you, but most important, they formed the starting point of this all-new motorcycle.
I mentioned early on this review that the Yamaha WR250X can handle any kind of competition but what I didn’t mention is the fact that it doesn’t have any competition. As Yamaha doesn’t forget to remind is that this machine is not an enduro, supermoto, or a sportbike. It has the qualities of an enduro bike, it is supermoto-inspired, and it does behave like a sportbike but it doesn’t completely fit in any of the categories
You will probably tend to correct me and mention the Kawasaki KLX250S, Suzuki DR200SE but these are off-road bikes that feature street legality, not street bikes with off-road abilities, like the Yamaha.
2008 Yamaha WR250X
Have you ever imagined a multitude of elements taken right out enduros, supermoto machines or sportbikes blending in perfectly and forming one perfectly good looking motorcycle? I believe you did. And if you choose Yamaha parts, there is a small chance that your dream had come true.
Why am I saying this? Because the description I made earlier fits perfectly to the all-new Yamaha WR250X. The bike also incorporates a slim, steel fuel tank which is shaped with knee gripping in mind, while the general ergonomic layout is designed to accommodate the rider properly and make him feel like part of the bike. That is surely the whole purpose.
All that great looking plastic is covered with Team Yamaha Blue/White paintjob and the overall appearance is strongly improved. Oh, let’s not forget the supermoto spoke 17-inch wheels, aggressive front fork and high-orientated exhaust. This is what gives the bike its unique note and these are probably the features that will attract customers.
The only thing that I don’t like and is related to this motorcycle is that it will enter production in January 2008. What I most love and I bet you do so too, is the MSRP of only $5999 for which this bike will be offered. Truly amazing is the fact that it will be like buying three different machine gathered under a single name: Yamaha WR250X
Yamaha has a reputation for smashing through boundaries and taking it to the extreme. They did it with the legendary YZF-R1 and they’ve done it again with the WR250X. The WR250X is a no-compromise Supermoto based on Yamaha’s winning WR-F and YZ-F racers, born for extreme fun on city streets. It features a 10,000 rpm engine, aluminum main frame and race suspension that rule the city and take your riding skills to new heights.
Directly descendent from Yamaha’s YZ motocrossers and WR off-road machines – even the original Yamaha YA-1 of 1995 – the all-new WR250X is here to make Yamaha’s off-road prowess street accessible.
Not exactly an enduro, a supermoto or a sportbike, the WR250X is for riders who ride mostly paved surfaces. Its sibling, the off-road inspired WR250R, is for riders who spend more time in the dirt.
2008 Yamaha WR250X 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 intake valves have WPC coating, a surface 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. 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.
2008 Yamaha WR250X Frame
17-inch wheels mount radial street rubber in 110 front and 140mm rear widths and help lower the seat approximately 1.4 inch compared to the WR250R.
One-tooth smaller rear sprocket (13/42) works with the smaller-diameter tires to bring out the WR250X’s strong-accelerating character.
Stiffer springs front and rear and street-orientated damping settings reduce pitch compared to the WR250R for excellent pavement performance.
YZ/WR250-inspired semi-double-cradle frame uses a main frame of cast and forged aluminum sections, with high-strength steel downtube for excellent strength and rigidity characteristics.
Asymmetrical swingarm provides excellent strength/rigidity balance and a dynamic look. Cast aluminum crossmembers, extruded arms and a 22mm rear axle are carefully tuned for optimum handling.
Fully adjustable 46mm fork provides 10.6 inches of wheel travel. A forged lower triple clamp and a cast upper one help give outstanding front-end feel. An aluminum steering stem reduces weight.
Linkage-mounted rear shock provides 10.4 inches of travel with adjusters for compression damping, rebound damping and spring preload – and features a 14mm rod and 46mm cylinder for excellent damping and fade resistance.
Wave brake rotors front and rear, including a large, 298mm front disc, reduce unsprung weight and provide excellent performance. Rear pedal is forged aluminum.
2008 Yamaha WR250X Fork
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 35.2 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 maximize visibility and draw less current.
Separate clutch cover means easier serviceability.