The all-new completely redesigned 2017 KX250F breaks cover.
For 2017 Kawasaki have completely redesigned their KX250F to fall in line with the all-new 2016 KX450F released last year. The updated model offers a more powerful engine, a significantly lighter chassis, all-new bodywork and slimmer ergonomics.
The 2017 KX250F weighs in at 104.2 kilograms thanks to a completely redesigned frame. The 2017 KX250F frame with a lighter aluminum perimeter and a new front downtube has been narrowed by 6mm overall and frame rigidity has been optimised to gain improved front end feel. Showa 48mm Separate Function Forks (SFF Type 2) are featured up front with a works-style internal construction that locates its damping assembly in the left fork tube and a spring in the right.
The Separate Function Front Fork construction contributes to a planted feel in the front end, superb damping performance and ride comfort with greater bottoming resistance. It’s also said to feature improved stability when on the brakes or when landing off of jumps. For 2017, settings have been revised to contribute to greater stability over braking bumps and through corners.
The Uni-Trak rear suspension with Showa shock now features revised valve settings and linkage ratios, contributing to improved ride feel and traction and increased rear-end feedback. A lighter shock spring in 2017 means weight savings, and the lower rate contributes to the reduced pitching effect over braking bumps. The rear shock linkage mounts are also below the swingarm to maximize wheel travel and the new linkage geometry increases cornering stability.
Tuned to best suit race-experienced riders, the 249cc liquid-cooled four-stroke power plant has been redesigned with a focus on high-rpm performance that extends way into the over-rev. Highly acclaimed for its high output and smooth power delivery, the 2017 model KX250F has race-inspired tuning and parts like the high-performance bridged-box bottom piston and down draft-style intake routing.
Mechanical friction has been reduced thanks to things like an offset cylinder with increased forward lean angle and plateau honing, resulting in a stronger low end as well as an increase in maximum peak power. The connecting rod now features a journal bearing in lieu of a needle bearing and items like the camshaft sprockets and chain have been revised along with a newly revised exhaust camshaft, all factors resulting in more efficient power.
The KX250F dual-injector fuel injection system is a key component to its performance; introduced in 2012, it was the world’s first to be featured on a production motocross bike. Unlike a standard digital fuel injection that uses one injector downstream of the throttle valve, the KX250F system uses a second, upstream injector located close to the airbox. The downstream injector—redesigned for 2017, is used to help ensure smooth, instant response featuring a finer atomization with more holes in the injector itself. The downstream injector creates that stronger low-to-mid range power and quick throttle response, while the upstream injector is charged with providing power.
As rpm and throttle position increase, primary operation switches from the downstream injector to the upstream injector, depending on whether in a low (1st, 2nd) or high (3rd, 4th, 5th) gear, the transition is gradual or almost instantaneous. The upstream injector’s greater distance from the combustion chamber gives the fuel particles and intake air more time to mix, as well as allowing the mixture to cool before entering the combustion chamber, both of which contribute to more efficient filling, and ultimately more power.
The 2017 Kawasaki KX250F maintains the three engine maps that come pre-loaded into the motorcycle’s ECU that are easily accessible through the DFI coupling plug. These three color-coded couplers are designed to tune for hard, medium or soft track surfaces, and allow riders to find the perfect power delivery for a particular terrain. Using the optional KX FI Calibration Kit (Handheld), sold separately as a Kawasaki Genuine Accessory, a rider can store and select from up to seven separate engine maps. The kit includes a portable handheld calibration tool, which enables riders to make changes to the engine maps without the need of a PC, laptop or battery, making it easy to tune at the track. It plugs in thanks to an additional harness not included in the kit.
The 2017 KX250F also features a launch control system that, with the simple press of a button, allows riders to activate a separate engine map designed to assist starting in certain conditions. The launch control mode map retards ignition timing, allowing tires to gain grip in low-traction situations, and allowing riders to focus on their lines. Launch Control remains active through first and second gear, until the rider shifts into third gear, and then it returns to normal engine timing.
Contributing to the racing components found throughout the KX250F are the brakes. The 2017 KX250F features a 270mm petal-style disc up front to cover a majority of the braking duties. These brakes deliver strong braking force and superb control and the petal style discs contribute to both sporty looks and a high-quality appearance. A rear caliper guard also protects the caliper from any mid-moto damage.
In the looks and ergonomics department, the all-new 2017 minimalist bodywork includes slimmer shrouds, thanks to the revised radiators and their new orientation. The KX250F now also features a new flatter and larger capacity fuel tank, along with a new flatter seat with reinforcing ribs. The combination of the new tank and seat aid in a more seamless design, which also makes it easy for riders to move around on top of the bike.
The all-new bodywork includes redesigned front and rear fenders, number plate and fork guards, which make the bike look more compact and is complemented by factory-style design and Kawasaki’s first in-mold graphics on the radiator shrouds. Black Excel rims, black fork guards, and green highlights help create a distinctive Kawasaki identity. Returning for 2017 are the Ergo-Fit adjustable handlebars and footpegs to better suit riding styles and different rider statures. The handlebars have four position options and the footpegs have two placements available.
Kawasaki Motors Australia has confirmed an RRP of $10,499 locally, to be arriving in dealerships from late July 2016. Visit www.kawasaki.com for more.