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View Poll Results: AMERICANS: Would you buy a 125cc motorcycle for the street?
Yes! 10 37.04%
Hell no! 6 22.22%
Yes, but only at the right price. 11 40.74%
Voters: 27. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 02-06-2018, 11:04 AM   #31 (permalink)
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Since this is Ecomodder...

...we should talk about the gas mileage of 125's. Or specifically, the lack of.

My buddy's WR-250R has consistently returns 75-80 MPG and occasionally pushes 90. By comparison my Lifan is doing good to get 75 with half the power (or less), usually returning around 70 and occasionally 80 if I hold my tongue right. This is downright embarrassing.

Admittedly it's an apples-to-oranges comparison. The WR is a completely modern motorcycle whereas my Lifan is basically upgraded 60's technology. I also have the carb jetted pretty fat for good running manners.

My point here is that a modern 125 would weigh and cost about the same as a 250 and get about the same mileage so there's very little incentive for them to exist in this country without tiered licensing.

(As an aside there's probably a dozen WR's in ownership among my riding buddies and one of them has 122,000 miles on it!! It was recently taken apart to replace the output shaft and while down they did a ring and valve job but it was still starting and running just fine. These are amazing motorcycles and if I had the legs to ride them I'd own one.)

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Old 02-06-2018, 07:02 PM   #32 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by woodsrat View Post
...we should talk about the gas mileage of 125's. Or specifically, the lack of.

My buddy's WR-250R has consistently returns 75-80 MPG and occasionally pushes 90. By comparison my Lifan is doing good to get 75 with half the power (or less), usually returning around 70 and occasionally 80 if I hold my tongue right. This is downright embarrassing.
Well, that's air cooled vs liquid cooled. Liquid cooled allows a higher compression ratio, and your air cooled bike probably has 4(?) speeds vs the WR's 6 speed.

Checking on fuelly, Single cylinder CBR 250Rs are getting around 65-68 MPG, CBR 300Rs' data is janky, can only get it to show one bike per "vehicle", but two bikes are getting 72 MPG. CBR 125Rs on fuelly are getting between 85-100 MPG, varadero 125s are getting around 70 MPG. CBR 150Rs are getting around 80-90 MPG. Sure seems like they have the potential to get great mpg, especially if regeared. Check out some of the cruising RPMs of these 125s on gearingcommander, the varadero has very short gearing putting it at 7000 RPM at only 45 mph.
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Old 02-06-2018, 08:52 PM   #33 (permalink)
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As interesting as a 125 motorcycle sounds, it would be crushed by the scooter market. 125 bike has a target market of high school and college students(see honda grom). Book/laptop storage, twist and go, easy step through frame, Fuel injection and water cooled, Modern designs, lower body weather protection, 12v power outlets and cubbie storage for cell phone, and stuff. Even retired people prefer scooters( or goldwing/harley trikes) the SYM Symba 110cc is what you are looking for. And can get 100mpg.
I had a 07 Yamaha Morphous sitting next to my kawasaki voyager xii and the scooter got picked 90% of the time. Only trips over 50miles two up got the voyager out the garage. Even though we sold both when we moved th GA to start a business. Two years later we picked up the R1200RT BMW cheap for our trip to the mountains. Still miss the scooter for quick trips! Im sure we will pick up another scooter but the smallest cc considered will be a 300.
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Last edited by Hip001; 02-06-2018 at 09:03 PM..
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Old 02-06-2018, 09:35 PM   #34 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by woodsrat View Post
My point here is that a modern 125 would weigh and cost about the same as a 250 and get about the same mileage so there's very little incentive for them to exist in this country without tiered licensing.
Even though a hi-tech 125cc motorcycle may be just marginally lighter and not so substantially cheaper than a comparatively-equipped 250cc, there is still some viability for them even among Americans.


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As interesting as a 125 motorcycle sounds, it would be crushed by the scooter market.
Maybe not. You know, while a scooter has been more optimized for city traffic, a more traditionally-designed 125cc motorcycle is still likely to attract those who want something more suitable to occasional short trips (for which both the gearing and the usually broader RPM range of a motorcycle often become less of a compromise). Plus a recently-licensed boy would eventually feel more inclined toward the idea that a motorcycle would make him appear more macho than his scooter-riding peers, much like the way some folks still say that "real men use the 3 pedals".


Quote:
125 bike has a target market of high school and college students(see honda grom).
So it doesn't seem so bad, since it would become a reasonable option for unexperienced riders who would otherwise be pushed toward an older (and occasionally neglected) higher-performance motorcycle which may not just be more expensive to mantain but also not so suitable to their (lack of) riding skills.


Quote:
Book/laptop storage, twist and go, easy step through frame, Fuel injection and water cooled, Modern designs, lower body weather protection, 12v power outlets and cubbie storage for cell phone, and stuff.
Scooters have been pointed out as an option for people who are looking for a "car replacement" to use in their shorter inner-city errands, not for a traditional motorcycle experience. The weight bias of a scooter is also more concentrated around the rear wheel, while in a motorcycle it's more centralized.
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Old 02-07-2018, 10:18 AM   #35 (permalink)
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I personally would not buy a 125cc 4-stroke for the street for the type of riding I do and the area where I ride.

As others have mentioned, the current CBR250R or Ninja 250/300 is capable of getting very good FE numbers while still providing reasonable power output.

Also mentioned - scooters have that area of the market pretty well covered, especially for most casual riders that are looking for simplicity and good economy but aren't necessarily interested in the sport aspect of riding a cycle.

As a sport rider that commutes moderate distances in medium-density traffic, I like the performance available from my SV650. It will deliver 50+ MPG in-town or at Interstate speeds, and will get into the 60 MPG range when riding at a moderate pace on the backroads.

I like small cycles (I own a 75cc 2-stroke street bike) but any 125cc bike I bought would have to be a sport 2-stroke (Aprilia, Cagiva) just for fun.

Last edited by jkv357; 02-07-2018 at 10:38 AM..
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Old 02-07-2018, 12:46 PM   #36 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jkv357 View Post
any 125cc bike I bought would have to be a sport 2-stroke (Aprilia, Cagiva) just for fun
Too bad the 2-strokes are being quickly phased out, with the remaining ones also being eventually subjected to arbitrary restrictions on their usage only for being 2-stroke. But anyway, a current-generation 4-stroke 125cc is now in pair with the performance of some detuned versions of the 2-strokes that had been available in Europe (due to both the tiered licensing and stricter emission rules).
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Old 02-07-2018, 04:58 PM   #37 (permalink)
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I think a DR650 covers what i want in a small bike. Maybe even a BMW GS650(water cooled and fuel injection) would fill my small bike desires while still able to "tour" if you will to the next town away.
I understand the stigma of nerds on scooters, but riding a modern big wheeled scooter may change your mind(did for me). Just for giggles you should test ride the new BMW 650 or piaggio BV350 scoot. I would of never thought a scooter would be for me since owning bikes from XL185 to Goldwing to Vmax to Ninja 1000 to BMW sport touring. I personally believe everyone should own 3-5 bikes at a time and select the one that fits your mood to ride that day.
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Old 02-07-2018, 05:44 PM   #38 (permalink)
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Interesting that over there a small bike is a dr650 whereas here it is a big bike
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Old 02-07-2018, 05:45 PM   #39 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hip001 View Post
I think a DR650 covers what i want in a small bike. Maybe even a BMW GS650(water cooled and fuel injection) would fill my small bike desires while still able to "tour" if you will to the next town away.
I understand the stigma of nerds on scooters, but riding a modern big wheeled scooter may change your mind(did for me). Just for giggles you should test ride the new BMW 650 or piaggio BV350 scoot. I would of never thought a scooter would be for me since owning bikes from XL185 to Goldwing to Vmax to Ninja 1000 to BMW sport touring. I personally believe everyone should own 3-5 bikes at a time and select the one that fits your mood to ride that day.
A DR650 is on my list as well, though I've not ridden one. Rode a nice older KLX650 (limited years of production, upgraded version of a KLR with inverted forks) and found that to be a hoot.

I totally agree with your last sentence, but would include - "...at least..." before "...3-5 bikes at a time...".
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Old 02-07-2018, 05:50 PM   #40 (permalink)
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Interesting that over there a small bike is a dr650 whereas here it is a big bike
I tend to think of bikes as small or large based on weight and power, so the DR at 325# and 40-some HP would be on the smaller side for me - but I get your point.

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