Suzuki’s presentation at AIMExpo was devoid of new-product announcements, preferring to tout its recent offerings to younger and entry-level markets like the GSX250R and GW250s.

2018 Suzuki GSX250R Review

Suzuki insisted these bikes that are manufactured in China are “real Suzukis,” designed by Suzuki and built by Suzuki.

“For $4,499 you can have a high-quality Suzuki,” said the company’s PR rep Avery Innes. “These bikes have the same fit and finish and care put into them as a GSX-R1000.”

Near the end of its presentation, Suzuki uncovered a V-Strom 250, a bike previously announced for other world markets but not yet officially added to the brand’s American lineup.

“We are looking very seriously at bringing the V-Strom 250 to the U.S. soon,” said Innes, “so we brought one along to the show to solicit feedback.”

So we and Suzuki are wondering if America would be interested in an adventure-styled 250cc motorcycle. Please respond in the comments section.

Check out our video from AIMExpo of the potential 2018 Suzuki V-Strom 250.

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Suzuki Communities

  • HazardtoMyself

    I guess that depends on what they want to compete with and the price point. If it is only $500 cheaper than the Versys and GS is it worth the heavier weight, smaller engine and less ground clearance?

    If going against the CRF Rally or new KLX, it seems to have even bigger weight and ground clearance disadvantages.

    What does the strom offer the others don’t? Based on limited info, if they bring it here I think they need to sell it at a very aggressive price point to make up for its disadvatages to the other manufacturers. It can’t be just $500 like the GSX250.

    • DickRuble

      Bingo! Suzuki don’t seem to be thinking very clearly these days.

  • Campisi

    Knowing this happened answers every question I’ve ever had about Suzuki.

  • Martin Buck

    The VStrom version provides the same benefits to the rider as any of the other ADV designs: better wind protection and a more upright, comfortable riding position; better luggage provision; slightly longer suspension movement and hence rough road comfort and ability; more capable tires for gravel roads. It is not an off road machine, and the power should be (just) sufficient for pootling around the neighborhood, and the city environment. It is not a long distance tourer.

  • John A. Smith

    20 years ago Suzuki had the greatest 600 and 750 on the planet. And now they’re pushing Chinese garbage 250s. Unreal.

    • James D. Becker

      How do you know they’re “garbage”? This is 2017, not 2010.

      • DickRuble

        What arguments do you have that any motorcycle made in China is not garbage? Oh, wait, your iPhone is made in China. That must mean everything coming from China is top notch…

        • HazardtoMyself

          My iPhone is not….ummm….it really is top……uh…… couldnt be hap….damn.

          Who am I kidding? My iPhone is garbage too.

    • spiff

      I think you maybe a bit harsh, but I don’t think you’re far off the mark. Besides the crafty variable timing on the big Gixxer what has Suzuki brought to the table that was wow worthy? The V Stroms are solid bikes as is the SV, but where is the spirit of the 86 GSXRs, the 96 GSXR 750, the 01 GSXR 1000, the Busa, etc. It seems as thought they have been reactive instead of proactive for quite some time.

  • MikeD

    Too little, too late, too much weight. At least give it 300cc.
    Personally I love the looks of it.
    The 1000 from day one always looked like dog barf.
    If Suzuki could style the 1000 after this one it would be great(specially the 17″ front wheel and Headlight), make it compete with the Versys 1000.

  • sgray44444

    the big 4 need to get it through their thick heads that many of us want a modern, light (300lb.) 350-400cc dual sport with spoked wheels, efi, 6 speed with a substantial overdrive, long travel suspension, and an only slighly heavier adventure version of the same. the first one to offer this for a reasonable price is going to dominate.

  • motorboy

    I would love to see a small adventure tour from Suzuki- but from what I have read from reviews over sea’s the bike is very unpowered and I’m sure will be Suzuki expensive-so if they can’t beat a Kawasaki 300X Versys-why bring it-the DL650 Suzuki is one very good bike but the price has gone through the roof

  • Jon Jones

    Suzuki.

    They amaze.

    And they puzzle…

  • James D. Becker

    Small adv bikes are becoming more popular. Just look at the CSC Zhongshan 250. Suzuki would be wise to pay attention.

    • DickRuble

      Ok.. do you work for CSC? .. Yes, CSC with their POS 250 has put the world on notice… BMW and Honda are worried…

      • Sayyed Bashir

        So which of the three is better: India, China or Thailand? In the video Evans said the V-Strom may come in at $5000. The CSC RX-3 sells for $3,895 and includes panniers and top case.

  • kenneth_moore

    The 250’s stying, IMO, nails the ADV look. The question is, will the bike’s price be low enough to convince a buyer that a new 250 is a better choice than a used 650 VStrom. There’s a lot of 650s out there to choose from.

    The other dilemma the world will have to face if the 250 is sold here is it’s nickname. The VStrom 1000 is called the “Vee,” and the 650 has been called the “WeeStrom” for years. Would a 250 become known as the “Wee WeeStrom?”

    • TC

      It will be the “Mini MeStrom”

      • Old MOron

        How about the:
        Golly Gee Strom
        Bumble Bee Strom
        What about me? Strom

  • JMDGT

    Cost. To address a market segment cost is paramount to profit. Competition leads to comparative analysis. If your offering compared to others falls short it will have limited success. Platforms over time, at least the ones that are of any consequence develop over time. Costs again are a factor. If there are five manufacturers with offerings in a given segment most will compare them and make their decision based on that analysis. Unless one is blinded by brand loyalty they will buy the best bike. As long as they are priced roughly the same. I would not buy a bike that is heavier has less power and is built with cheaper components than its competition. Not many people would.

  • SRMark

    A small VStrom would have a difficult time pulling my mass. M is optional.

    • Sayyed Bashir

      As John Burns so eloquently said in his 2018 Gold Wing article, “American exceptionalism”.

  • michael32853hutson@yahoo.com

    yes you should but lose the beak!

    • David Kraft

      I could see this as a commuter bike but it should have an optional removable beak.

      • Sayyed Bashir

        The beak will come off the first time you go down.

  • EcoMouse

    Nope… an “Adventure” styled bike needs 400cc’s minimum. The 250cc is just OK for the lighter Dual Sport bikes.

    Personally, if I were at the helm of one of these Motorcycle conglomerates, I’d be pushing for the sub 700cc Adventure market. 400 – 700 is realistically the sweet spot for these bikes. Twin cylinders, fuel injected, 6 speed with decent highway cruise speed. Plenty of storage room and rear luggage potential. 5.5 gallon tank minimum. Long travel suspension, aluminum frame, wire spoked wheels. Good stand up ergonomics and comfy 1000 mile seat.

    I’d price lock the bike at $6995 for the first million units. I’m pretty sure with that kind of capital potential, I could get the bikes made for that and still make a hefty profit for the company.

    • Sayyed Bashir

      The KLR 650 sells for $6699 and has all the things you are asking for.

      • EcoMouse

        No, the KLR is an inspiration as to what an Adventure bike could have been circa 1996. But not today. I should know, I own two of them. (Old School and New School versions)

        The KLR is a single cylinder. And it sucks for long trips on the freeway because it also only has 5 gears, not 6. It’s carbureted, not fuel injected and can never be made so because of being grandfathered in on import emission exemptions. The bike is taller than it needs to be, excluding a larger buying audience that’s intimidated by a bike on stilts.

        The brakes are weak, and the forks are spindly and old school suspension tech. The bikes greatest asset is that it’s simple and it has a huge fuel tank and it’s really hard to destroy. (Unless you’ve had doohickeys blow up your engine) The fact that there is such a huge aftermarket should speak to Kawasaki’s top management… these are improvements that are needed and wanted, yet go ignored. Sure you can farkle until the bike is up to snuff… but why not get a bike that’s pretty darn good from the factory in the first place.

        Using my criteria above, there is a bike that is really darn close. The Honda CB500X with Rally Raid conversion. Some might argue that the NX-700 with a similar beefed up off road components would be the unicorn everyone would ride, but I don’t think I’ve heard anyone throwing their hat in the ring yet to offer such suspension mods as an aftermarket kit.

        • David Kraft

          Five speed or not the KLR makes a fine freeway bike as I put on 650 miles twice in one day on a ride from Illinois to Texas and back with total trip miles at 2,600. I had a sheep skin seat cover which helped marginally, but one should really consider a Corbin or Sargent seat for long distant cruising. The new style KLR (2008 +) is what I had and had a very good rear suspension with the only weakness being the front which I upgraded with Progressive which eliminated the dive and stutter bumps. The front brake is decent, but the back is weak. I had mine setup with a low UFO Superbike front fender, tires, Givi hard bags, and Kawi tank bag. I also went to a torsion spring timing chain adjuster. Great street bike but not so much dirt.

      • David Kraft

        I had a 2008 that I sold with 53,000 miles, and with my Michelin Anakee 2’s, I averaged about 60 mpg with a best at 63. A great street bike but not very good off road in technical stuff especially because of it 432 lbs. wet weight. I have a CBR500R now and couldn’t be happier!

        Love that new GSX-R1000R, but would like get in a lot of trouble or worse.

        • Sayyed Bashir

          Good for you. That is a lot of miles! My KTM 1190 R is 532 lbs. I just did 50 miles on a gnarly fire road at 6500 ft in the Sierra Nevada. I agree about the GSX-R1000. I would lose my license in three weeks. I have a Suzuki Bandit 1250S which is fast enough for me.

  • Ric Hill

    The more I read about Suzuki motorcycles, the more I get the idea Suzuki is about to take its U.S. Motorcycle business the way of their auto business. They seem to have little connection with their market or how to market to the U.S. Let us not be surprised of Suzuki’s involvement with the U.S. motorcycle market ends before the payment book for your next new Suzuki.

    • Sayyed Bashir

      The GSX-R1000 is doing very well as are the V-Strom 1000 and 650. The SV650 is a hot seller. A new turbo Hayabusa is coming. They have 49 bikes on their motorcycle page, 4 scooters and 21 ATVs. They are not going anywhere.
      http://www.suzukicycles.com/Product%20Lines/Cycles.aspx

      • Ric Hill

        Sayyed,

        Thank you. Suzuki now has to reconnect to its roots much the way HD is struggling to do with its Street series. The 650-1000 cc range as always been strong but an older conservative range for Japanese bikes. How accurate am I?

        • Sayyed Bashir

          Harley has no bikes below 500cc and the Street series is not that successful. Manufacturers like the bigger bikes because they are a lot more profitable. People in the U.S. like the bigger bikes because they are more practical for highways. Just because Suzuki doesn’t want to make a 300cc bike for the U.S. doesn’t mean they are going away. Most 250-400cc bikes are made in India, China, Thailand and Indonesia and mainly sold there.

          • Ric Hill

            Sayyed,
            .
            I stand in awe of your information. Yes, I do understand the U.S. is NOT the only market for motorcycles or other vehicles. Yes I do know Harley, the manufacturer and its sales network, would rather have not brought out the “Street” series 500-750cc bikes as you can probably find a NEW 2 year old (2016) bike not far from you. However, the smaller displacement and even, forbid, electric powered, bikes is an entry level such as Focus is to the higher profit Taurus.

            That said, the vehicle markets might be finding a huge brave new marketing world here in the U.S. as there appears to be weakness in the “entry” level for up market brands. Buick has had to ship the entire Verano line to China for their production for their internal consumption. Customers just stopped buying. Meanwhile, the upper end, larger vehicles are in demand.

  • Eric

    Suzuki you have a wonderful 400cc motor, figure out how to use it instead of your wheezer 250 which just doesn’t cut it in the US of A. And as others have noted, the beak is so 2010…

    Instead of another plastic-wrapped V-Strom, how about a retro-scrambler version of the DR400S? Think Yamaha SR400 with a high pipe.

  • Tanner

    british bike reviews have said this thing is way underpowered.

  • John A. Stockman

    Talked to a few friends in Britain about the power and the consensus is, not even enough for a 250. The folks mentioning approx. 400cc, twin, 6-speed, decent tank capacity, are all completely correct. There is room for small displacement bikes like this, but with technology and tuning (even with emissions laws) I find it difficult to think a bit more horsepowers cannot be found. Solution? More cc. Riding the new Honda CB500 in its various versions, still light weight, enough for the freeway slog and mpg that is quite good. I love the idea of the X model with some Rally Raid offerings, terrific idea EcoMouse! Not sure how much “adventure” there is with this Suzuki. Local stuff, light trail riding, commuting. But I was able to find a lifetime’s worth of adventures on the KZ250 I owned for two years and 38,000 miles, so what do I know? I rode on fire roads to visit friends in remote areas, all over Canada and the western US. Yes, I wished for a bigger bike, but I can’t discount how special it was that I was even riding a motorcycle at all after what I endured. I learned so much about myself, what I could do, and what is possible on a 250. More than I would originally thought, so maybe not a bad idea for this V-strom 250. The lower power people are mentioning is concerning, but I’ll wait to see how close to reality it is.