250cc Naked Motorcycles India

250cc Naked Motorcycles

The 250cc segment of motorcycles was once a quiet affair in India, with the only offerings being the Honda CBR250R and the Kawasaki Ninja 250. However, in the past few years, the segment has caught pace and now sees many naked offerings from manufacturers like KTM, Suzuki, Yamaha, Bajaj and the latest addition- Husqvarna. Are you a fan of the quarter-litre segment and looking to buy a single-cylinder 250cc naked motorcycle? We’re here to help as we take you through the leading motorcycles in the segment.

2020 KTM Duke 250
The KTM Duke 250 looks the most like a streetfighter in the lot

KTM Duke 250 – The KTM Duke 250 is definitely one of the finest motorcycles in the segment. It boasts of the highest power and torque figures in the lot. The key features of the BS6 Duke 250 are the addition of the full-LED headlamp from the Duke 390, Supermoto ABS mode, slipper clutch, USD forks, one-touch start and WP Apex suspension at the rear. The Duke is also one of the most versatile bikes in the class, and it can easily do almost everything you throw at it. While being the costliest in the lot, the Duke 250 is still a good package if the budget is not really an issue.

What’s Cool

  • Best performance figures in the class
  • Sharp riding dynamics and versatile ergonomics
  • The addition of Supermoto ABS has made the bike even more fun

What’s Not So Cool

  • The engine isn’t super refined
  • Vibrations creep in near the redline, which can be annoying
  • It is the most expensive 250cc bike
Husqvarna Vitpilen & Svartpilen 250 Review (20)
If you like showing off, the Husqvarnas should be your choice!

Husqvarna Svartpilen & Vitpilen 250 – The Husqvarna twins are the latest entrants in the 250cc segment in the Indian market with an aim to make a separate neo-classic category of bikes. The Svartpilen is a scrambler type motorcycle while the Vitpilen is a proper cafe racer with very sharp dynamics. Both motorcycles follow a Swedish design strategy and they offer some exclusive, never-seen-before features in the market. The feature list includes metallic paint scheme, round LCD speedometer, USD forks, LED lights, slipper clutch, tail-tidy from the company itself, and a Supermoto mode like the Duke 250.

Apart from many features, the powerhouse is exactly the same as the Duke 250 too. However, since the Husqvarnas follow a minimalistic design, they are lighter than the Duke and hence the performance feels a tad better here. They are also cheaper and are more purposeful than the Duke 250. The only main let-down is the high seat height, which is not ideal for the average Indian. To sum it up, if “flaunting” is one of your key motives, the Husqvarnas should be your choice. Also, if you like a little off-roading fun, the Svartpilen is the most suitable bike in the segment.

What’s Cool

  • Both motorcycles look pretty nice and are definitely head-turners
  • Decent engine performance with a frantic top-end
  • Brakes have superb feedback and switchable ABS adds a bit more fun

What’s Not So Cool

  • Tall seat height is not suitable for average Indian riders
  • Vibrations creep in a lot when the bikes are near the redline
  • Not enough room for a pillion
250cc Naked Motorcycles
The Gixxer 250 is arguably one of the best-rounded packages in the class

Suzuki Gixxer 250 – Suzuki stepped into the world of 250cc bikes last year, and it’s safe to say that they’ve done a good job at it. The Gixxer boasts of LED headlamps, fully digital speedometer, dual-channel ABS and Suzuki’s oil cooling system. While the feature list is nothing extraordinary, the ride quality is where the Gixxer really shines. The Gixxer has comfortable ergonomics yet sharp handling, which is confidence-inspiring. The bike weighs 156 kgs, which is pretty decent for a 250cc and adds to the riding experience.

Also, the engine makes 26 BHP, which is decent and feels very refined on the go. The only real gripe we have with the Gixxer 250 is the way it looks. Although it is a decent-looking motorcycle, it looks exactly like the Gixxer 150 which robs the road presence of the bike and creates confusion. The Gixxer 250 is arguably the best pick for someone who wants a do-it-all bike under Rs. 2 lakhs.

What’s Cool

  • The engine performs really well and feels butter smooth
  • Riding dynamics are on point, very confidence-inspiring
  • Brakes are sharp and dual-channel ABS also works well

What’s Not So Cool

  • Looks exactly like the 150cc counterpart
  • The instrument cluster provides all necessary information but is hard to read in direct sunlight
  • After-sales service network of Suzuki is not as strong as the competition
250cc Naked Motorcycles
Love how the Bajaj Dominar 400 looks but budget is short? Go for the Dominar 250 instead!

Bajaj Dominar 250 – After the huge success of the Dominar 400, Bajaj recently joined the 250cc class by introducing the Dominar 250. The Dominar 250 is really just a Dominar 400 with a 250cc motor. The feature list is nothing fancy and includes dual-channel ABS, fully digital speedometer, LED headlamps, backlit switchgear, and USD front forks. The 248.77cc engine has decent power, but the Dominar 250’s weight spoils the fun.

At 180 kgs, the Dominar 250 is a massive 25 kgs heavier than the Gixxer 250. The weight can also be felt while riding too. The ergonomics are comfortable and city-friendly, but the riding dynamics aren’t really sharp, thanks to the weight. Also, while the speedometer is digital, it misses out on a gear-position indicator and a mileage indicator. You should go for the Bajaj Dominar 250 if you want a big-bike feel from a 250cc and you’re on a budget.

What’s Cool

  • The road presence of a 400 from the 250, has that big bike feel 
  • The ride is comfortable, thanks to the softly sprung suspension
  • The new engine has enough punch in the mid-range while being calm in low-end

What’s Not So Cool

  • At 180 kgs, the bike is a little heavier than the competition
  • Tyres are thinner as compared to the competition
  • Gear position indicator and mileage indicator are absent in the cluster
250cc Naked Motorcycles
Yamaha’s FZS-25 is the cheapest 250cc naked you can buy right now

Yamaha FZS-25 – The FZS-25 is Yamaha’s attempt to take on the 250cc naked segment. But sadly, the FZS-25 is somewhat a hit and a miss. The biggest thing in its favour is its pricing, as the FZS is the cheapest 250cc offering currently in India. For the price, you get dual-channel ABS, negative LCD digital speedometer with side stand engine cutoff switch, golden rims, LED headlamps, and brush guards. Quite a feature-list, eh? There’s a catch, though. The performance. The FZS makes just 21 BHP, which is almost as much as their 150cc offering, the R15. Further, the gearbox misses out a 6th gear which means it is not touring friendly. Since we’ve not ridden the bike extensively, we can’t really comment on the dynamics yet. All in all, we think that you should pick the FZS-25 if you’re on a serious budget and your prime motive is city-commuting.

What’s Cool

  • Weighs just 153 kgs
  • Offers plenty of equipment for the price and is the cheapest in the lot
  • The motorcycle looks beefy and aggressive with the golden rims

What’s Not So Cool

  • The engine seriously lacks in performance and a sixth gear
  • The bike looks a little overdone in some places

This was a brief description of the variety of bikes available in the 250cc sporty naked segment. Let us know which one will be your choice in the comments section below! To start off, we’d choose the Suzuki Gixxer 250 overall, mostly because of its versatile nature!