2006 Kawasaki Ninja® 250R
I love this bikeBy (I am an Owner) on Jun 29, 2016
I took a safety class and got my license. I rented a Harley Davidson Sportster and rode around a block a few times, and then I went on the expressway.
Next I bought a new 2006 Kawasaki Ninja 250. I broke it in by the rules of the manual. It stated not to exceed 3,000 RPM when you first ... ride the bike. In it's top gear at 3,000 RPM, I could only go about 30 or 35 miles per hour. I forgot because that was 10 years ago. The other drivers on the rode thought I was going so slow because I was a beginner.
I rode it in the rain and it handled well. The rain was a test of my ability to ride and I passed thanks to the dependable brakes.
After so many miles, the instruction manual stated I could increase my RPMs. I road long distances to put miles on the bike so I could give her more RPMs. When I finally had so many miles on her I felt like I was on cloud nine. I put my feet on the passenger foot rests, leaned horizontally, and felt like flying.
After breaking her in all the way, I could go to the 1600 RPM redline. I would go to this redline and shift gears, and I got a big kick every time I shifted gears. It was a six speed and I enjoyed every 6 shifts with the wind blowing in my face.
I also enjoyed the hum the bike made at 7,000 RPM in my friction zone. It sounded like the Batmobile. I am about 5'5" and weigh 130. It states 115 on the speedometer but I could only get her up to 110 which was decent. And the cheap price enabled me to have to buy her brand new. I love the bike.
Balancing the ratingsBy (I am an Owner) on Jun 22, 2012
This is to balance out a review that doesn't have a rating "Alan Matthews(Owner), Sep. 27, 2008", which was clearly intended to be a positive review (or at least neutral).
Non Freeway OnlyBy (I am an Owner) on Sep 27, 2008
I used to ride a 1982 Suzuki Katana 550 about 1984 at college. I bought the 2006 Ninja 250 bike about 5/2006 when I was age 41 to rekindle my youth. I bought this bike after much research. I thought it would be great since it's light, cheap and looks hot. Well the bike has good qualities. It ... drives well in highways less than 60 mph with smooth road. The bike is stable and is in unison with the rider. It looks great and it's a good quality bike. The problems: The suspension is to soft for rides over 25 minutes, the breaking power is just tolerable, at speeds of 55 mph plus when you turn the throttle you get a blank response. If you try to change lanes in the freeway going 65 mph, it is a scary experience. I usually have to let everyone pass before I can change lanes. Since the bike is light, you and the bike gets blown side to side by the wind. If you just throttle it at really high rpm over 10,000 you can get the power you need with a loud scream. If you are in the wrong gear with low rpm you are in trouble because you may not have the power to get out of emergency situation. The fuel tank was also an issue. When I drove off the dealer the engine went off. I have to always leave the lever on reserve. If I leave it on "ON", the engine keep going off. I complained to the dealer and they told me it's just the way the bike was built. At high speeds over 65 mph in roughly lined freeway the bike shakes like crazy. I felt like the bike was about to fall apart. At low speeds less than 55-60 mph, the bike behaved perfectly. If you want a bike to ride around town it's perfect. If you need to ride on the freeway more than one exit you need to get a Ninja 500 or bigger. I upgraded my bike to 2006 Ninja 650 on about 1/2007 and it drives perfectly. No more shaking in the freeways and plenty of power. No more worring about being in the right gear or rpm. It is slightly heavier but it's worth it.
Wonderful little bike!By (I am an Owner) on Sep 27, 2008
Without a doubt, the Kawasaki Ninja 250 is the staple of beginner bikes. it has a smooth ride and plenty of power for any beginner. Mind, you won't be breaking any speed records, but when your getting 65-70 miles per gallon, does that really matter? The bike is extremely reliable, and comfortable ... to ride. Seriously, you can't go wrong choosing the 250 as a starter or as a commuter bike. Even as a weekend play bike or mod it up for the track, you'll LOVE this motorcycle.
EX250By (I am an Enthusiast) on Sep 17, 2008
As a new rider I took the smart approach and signed up for my local MSF class to learn the ins and outs of driving. At the class i was paired up with an EX250.
After 3 days of riding around in a parking lot with this thing i tossed out my original plans for a 600 and went to Craigs List and ... bought an 06 EX250 the very next weekend.
As a beginner this has everything I could ask for.
*It's very cheap so I don't have to worry about spending half a year's salary because I laid the bike down in some parking lot or at a track day. (this hasn't happened yet so *knock on wood*)
*With today's Gas prices at around 4 dollars a gallon its nice to get 76mpg. I replaced my car as my daily driver to commute to and from work.
*Acceleration, breaking, and handling on this bike are amazingly forgiving. making this a dream to learn on and build skills/confidence.
*the bike is very well made, the fit and finish is just as good as any other of the larger sport bikes out there on the market today.
*the ex250 is great for people of all shapes and sizes. I am 6 foot 230lbs and the bike fits me well. I don't look too big and goofy on top of it as i do on top of a buel blast. Its also narrow and low enough that my wife can get on and ride it with no problems either. she's about 5'5 and 125lbs.
This thing isn't going to give you any land speed records or win a bunch of cool points at bike week. But, if you are interested in learning how to ride, or simply want a reliable and economic replacement for your gas guzzling car, THIS IS THE BIKE FOR YOU!
Hard to Argue with 60 MPGBy (I am an Owner) on Sep 15, 2008
I got this bike 2.5 years ago to save money on parking and gas. Back then, gas was approaching $3/gal. :-O
Since then, I've put more than 11,000 miles on it, replaced the tires, and had the valves adjusted (last time around 7,000 miles).
You're not going to break any ... records for acceleration, speed, or anything else.
I'm 6' 3" and 250#. The bike has no problem doing 80 on the highway, and that's without me tucking. To get it up to a shade over 100, I do have to tuck.
Doing 70+, and not accelerating hard (either from a start or from motion), I can get about 60 MPG. If I ride it harder (acceleration-wise), MPG drops to perhaps 50.
Being only 300# of bike, it seems awfully nimble and sure-footed, I have been slowly pushing my limits, and am leaning it more, taking corners with more ease than in a car. In Dallas, the roads are concrete which provides good traction, but perhaps induces more wear on the tires. Oh, and YAY to HOV.
Even if motorcycle maintenance eats into your gas savings, being able to ride in the HOV lanes saves you serious time commuting.
Bottom line is: If you're secure in your masculinity, don't have to be the quickest or fastest or biggest, and still want to have fun while saving on gas, then get one if you can find one.