The ADV market is robust these days, and Honda scored big when it reintroduced the Africa Twin to the market last year. Big Red wants to keep the momentum into 2017, only this time at the other end of the displacement spectrum with its new CRF250L Rally.
The CRF250L Rally takes its cues from two places, the factory CRF450 Rally that faces some of the harshest terrain and competition at the Dakar Rally and the stock CRF250L. Honda is positioning the CRF250L Rally as an able all-rounder though, capable of tackling the commute and exploring the backroads.
Here’s what Lee Edmunds, Manager of Motorcycle Marketing Communications at American Honda had to say about the CRF250L Rally in a company press release:
“Adventure touring continues to grow in popularity, and our customers have shown that small-displacement motorcycles can be extremely effective in this application, whether that means making epic journeys or the daily urban commute. We really wanted to build on the capabilities of the CRF250L and open up new opportunities for riders both young and old, and the CRF250 Rally brings the spirit of rally-raid racing to every ride.”
That spirit comes in large part from the styling of the machine, which is akin to that of the 450 Rally. The rally-inspired windscreen, radiator shrouds and LED headlights all similar to what you’d find navigating the course of the Dakar.
At its heart is a 249.6cc liquid-cooled Single. Honda improved the PGM-FI and 38mm throttle body, fit a new airbox and updated the exhaust to achieve more torque in the bottom end. The front brake disc is now 296mm, up 40mm from last year’s CRF250L, for better braking performance and ABS is optional on both the Rally and standard version of the dual sport machine.
The package is suspended on a 43mm inverted Showa fork while out back a Pro-Link single shock provides 10.3 inches of travel. The bike rolls on a 21-inch front wheel and 18-inch rear.
There’s a new digital instrument display with elements such as a speedometer, clock, trip meter, fuel gauge and more. It’s tucked in behind the windscreen, mimicking the set-up on the 450 Rally machine.
Curb weight is listed at 346.1 pounds, fuel capacity is 2.7 gallons and seat height is 35.2 inches.
The CRF250L Rally comes in a red, white and black colorway and prices at $5899. The base CRF250L prices at $5099.