Sticky Street Rubber Meets Lightweight Dual-Sport; Big Fun Can’t Be Far Behind
Type “big fun in a small package” into your internet search and it might take you straight to the Kawasaki KLX™250SF supermoto. Based on Kawasaki’s critically acclaimed Kawasaki KLX250S dual sport on/off-road bike, the SF dials up maximum on-road fun with sticky street radials mounted on 17-inch wheels, a shorter seat height, a bit less suspension travel and a big front brake. It’s “just” a 250, but its light weight of just 302 pounds means the KLX250SF
Compared to the KLX250S dual sport, the KLX250SF has reduced wheel travel at both ends, placing the center of gravity lower for improved on-road handling and enhanced straight-line stability. This also results in a more planted feel in corners and a lower seat height. The change in setup offers a firmer ride than the 250S, thanks to a change in front fork oil level and revised damping settings for both the fork and shock.
These changes provide a reduction in pitching motions during braking and acceleration, and help the rider hold a consistent line during aggressive on-road cornering. At the same time, the suspension is still supple enough to soak up most road surface irregularities and offer a smooth ride. The KLX250SF’s fully-adjustable suspension features 16-way adjustable compression and rebound damping on both the 43mm inverted cartridge-style front fork and the UNI-TRAK® rear suspension. Wheel travel is 9.1 inches front and 8.1 inches rear, which strikes a happy medium between long-travel off-road designs and short-travel sportbikes.
The KLX250SF’s short wheelbase aids its already outstanding ability to hold tight lines, and its rigid box-section perimeter frame provides excellent transitional response, thanks to its rigid steering head. Complementing the chassis is a lightweight aluminum swingarm with a highly-rigid D-shaped cross section and KX™ racing-type chain adjusters for precise chain adjustment.
The Motor KLX250SF employs convenient electric starting for its compact, liquid-cooled, four-stroke, single-cylinder engine. The 249cc engine is mounted in a lightweight, high-tensile steel perimeter frame to deliver a low center of gravity and superb maneuvering on tight roads. A gear-driven engine balancer keeps engine vibrations at bay for greater comfort and less fatigue on long rides.
A 34mm semi-flat slide Keihin CVK carburetor contributes to quick throttle response and precise power delivery. It also helps provide outstanding fuel economy. An evaporative emissions system allows the KLX250SF to meet strict CARB regulations, making it eligible for sale in all 50 states.
A six-speed transmission provides optimum gearing for most occasions and helps the rider keep the 249cc engine at its optimum rpm. A 39-tooth rear sprocket extends its high-speed capabilities beyond those of the KLX250S dual sport.
Negotiating urban traffic or blasting around a tight race track highlights another strength of the KLX250SF — it keeps its cool. Incorporating dual lightweight high-capacity Denso radiators and a shallow-footprint cooling fan provides an ample antidote to potential heat issues.
Seventeen-inch aluminum wheels offer great handling, improved stability and the aggressive on-road performance sought by urban commandos and canyon carvers, as well as the ability to mount a wide range of sportbike tires. Aggressive riding on pavement demands powerful, fade-resistant stopping capabilities, and the KLX250SF delivers with a massive, 300mm semi-floating petal disc up front clamped by a twin-piston caliper. The rotor is 4mm thick for increased rigidity, efficient heat dissipation, and optimum fade resistance. A single-piston caliper squeezing a 240mm rear petal disc complements the big front brake.
Aggressively styled bodywork finishes the package, with a comfortable seat and a KLX-specific handlebar that offers good leverage so riders can flick the light KLX250SF side to side, or hold a tight line with a minimum of effort.
Riders seeking supermoto handling and modern engine performance in a lightweight motorcycle designed for exciting street rides will find it at their local Kawasaki dealership. The KLX250SF offers serious capabilities in a fun, easy-to-ride package, regardless of where the adventure takes it.
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