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Discussion Starter #1
Hi All,

I considering getting a motorcycle license and am looking for first bike options. I have it down to these two models. My first choice was the GW250 for price and all around good reviews. But today I discovered the TU250 and aesthetically, it stole my heart! I love the retro look and is actually closer to the look of a motorcycle I was thinking of when I first thought about getting a license.

I will be using my bike predominantly to get around town solo (in urban environment), and go for occasional rides, which would be streets and secondary routes. Although I do plan on some highway driving, this would be for point to point commute only, and would be an extremely small part of my motorcycling. It will really be more of a toy than anything.

That being said, the GW seems to be more highway capable, should I require it, and has a more beginner-friendly dash; and with the extra power it has over the TU, I'm thinking maybe it's a better segway to something bigger down the road. But then I come back to that classic retro look of the TU and its simpler engineering. I kind of see it as being to motorcycles what my 79 Spitfire is to cars.

I really am torn between these two models, and I feel ultimately, it will come down to test riding each and determine which one I feel more comfortable on and which one I enjoy more.

But based on my intended usage, is there one that is better suited over the other, or does it really come down to my end impression after a test ride?
 

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l would do a little research and see if one or the other is easier to change the gearing on. My friend has a V Star 250, and it is a really common mod.
 

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I do plan on some highway driving
I guess that would depend on how define highway. If you're taking about speeds of 55-65MPH, that TUX is very good at those speeds. I've done a bit freeway speeds at 75MPH on the TUX. It'll do it and is very stable, but it's a bit buzzy at those speeds. Not terrible, but you can feel it. There's also not much passing power at those speeds You've got to plan your passes, so you don't get run over. You can get a 16 tooth sprocket for the TUX and it drops the RPMs, but you lose acceleration and the TUX isn't very fast already. It's still light and flickable, and a lot of fun to ride.

While it's true the GW has more power, it's heavier and particularly top heavy. If it were my money, I'd look at the CB300F over the GW cause it seems like a better bike. Maybe something like the CB500F might be worth a look too. It'll give you a little more room to grow, but still is novice friendly.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for info. I am a newb and not technologically savvy when it comes to transport: explain why I would want to change the gearing and what effect that would have?

I saw one youtube review where the driver lost his mind over how fun the TU250 is but kept going on about how slow it is. That being said, no review ever takes into consideration that the people most likely to buy these bikes are beginners: I won't know the difference between a slow and fast bike, and frankly, I'm not looking for a racer, I'm looking for a toy, a cool way to get around, and occasional scenic/therapeutic ride.

By highway I mean 90-100km/hr (55-65 MPH), but not for any extended period of time.

I would consider a 500-600 cc bike but at present, cost vs time spent on bike is a big factor (and I do need to consider replacing my car in 2-3 years): bike and insurance. I am just starting out and feel a 250-300 will suit me just fine, and as said, riding is occasional and more commute-oriented: go to the gym, to the tennis court, to a friend's, go for a morning ride for a couple hours on a sunday morning. This won't by used to go to work because I wear office clothes to work.
 

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Thanks for info. I am a newb and not technologically savvy when it comes to transport: explain why I would want to change the gearing and what effect that would have?

I saw one youtube review where the driver lost his mind over how fun the TU250 is but kept going on about how slow it is. That being said, no review ever takes into consideration that the people most likely to buy these bikes are beginners: I won't know the difference between a slow and fast bike, and frankly, I'm not looking for a racer, I'm looking for a toy, a cool way to get around, and occasional scenic/therapeutic ride.

By highway I mean 90-100km/hr (55-65 MPH), but not for any extended period of time.

I would consider a 500-600 cc bike but at present, cost vs time spent on bike is a big factor (and I do need to consider replacing my car in 2-3 years): bike and insurance. I am just starting out and feel a 250-300 will suit me just fine, and as said, riding is occasional and more commute-oriented: go to the gym, to the tennis court, to a friend's, go for a morning ride for a couple hours on a sunday morning. This won't by used to go to work because I wear office clothes to work.
While his bike might do 70 or 75 mph stock, it was running at high rpm's and he didn't like how hard it was laboring, even at 50 or 55. So he changed the gearing from 16-45 (stock) to 17-40, which gave him a little bit less low end power, but better highway gears. Now he says he can do 65-70 comfortably.
 

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The Suzuki TU250 is a nice retro looking air cooled 250cc single that seems to have all the right stuff, but never really sold well. The fact that it was priced higher then the competition's more advanced sport bikes didn't help.

The newer GW250 is still a 250cc single, but has water cooling and makes better power. The styling leaves me cold, but the prices these days are very attractive.

I see that you are in Montréal, QC and having lived there myself, I would not buy either of these bikes. Drivers in your city seem to have two speeds, flat out or crashed. My better half was born there and she still drives that way.

I have just read that Yamaha will be releasing a new naked version of their sporty R3 model and this would be my number 1 small bike choice. After this, I'd look at the KTM 390 Duke naked version. Both offer a better riding position for newbies and would likely be less expensive to insure under the Quebec licensing regulations.
 

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y highway I mean 90-100km/hr (55-65 MPH), but not for any extended period of time.
The TUX is fine at those speeds. When you go above those is when it gets a bit buzzy, though is very stable at 75RPM. Changing the gearing will lower the RPMs, but cost some acceleration. The TUX isn't fast bike, I think my car is faster, but a lot of fun to ride.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
The Suzuki TU250 is a nice retro looking air cooled 250cc single that seems to have all the right stuff, but never really sold well. The fact that it was priced higher then the competition's more advanced sport bikes didn't help.

The newer GW250 is still a 250cc single, but has water cooling and makes better power. The styling leaves me cold, but the prices these days are very attractive.

I see that you are in Montréal, QC and having lived there myself, I would not buy either of these bikes. Drivers in your city seem to have two speeds, flat out or crashed. My better half was born there and she still drives that way.

I have just read that Yamaha will be releasing a new naked version of their sporty R3 model and this would be my number 1 small bike choice. After this, I'd look at the KTM 390 Duke naked version. Both offer a better riding position for newbies and would likely be less expensive to insure under the Quebec licensing regulations.
Absolutely, the drivers here have issues in their heads. But I won't let that dictate the choice of bike I get. It comes down to price. for less money I'd rather get the GW, for the premium, I like the style of the TU.

I am leaning more toward the SU at this point simply because of aesthetics, but seeing as the purchase won't be until sometime between April or June 2016, who knows how I'll feel then and how much I'll be comfortable spending. True that for comparable price, the R3 is a nice choice of bike.

Here's how I see things in my head:
if I get the GW, it will be nothing but training wheels, quickly disposed of once (1-2 yrs) I am comfortable and feel ready to upgrade

If I get the TU, even once I feel comfortable and experienced, I will likely hang on to it for a few years, until ready to upgrade to a more powerful bike of similar style (Bonneville, Scrambler, or even (admittedly not similar style) Vulcan 900 Classic)

Thanks for your input!
 

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Discussion Starter #9
SteveM to thank you. I didn't bother looking into the R3 until you mentioned it, and it falls right in line with the TU.

Those two bikes, to top it off, are only a few hundred dollars more than the GW, and seeing as the R3 is a much better bike, I would probably keep it longer, justifying the higher price tag.

That being said, I'm back to square one because I still have 2 bikes on my short list, but at least now price isn't the factor (both come in at around $4500 if I can find it), the ride is!

Can't wait for my license to start test driving each of these!
 
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