Most people that ride motorcycles today have been doing so for a long time.
No too many people suddenly decide that riding bike for the first time at age 45 is a good idea, so most people start out as kids.
The law was changed in the mid-90s, when teenagers were only allowed to ride little 50cc buzz bikes, and buzz bike is an appropriate word. They were thin, spindly, unflattering machines with a top speed of 100km/h on a downhill, and larger kids had to shove with their feet on uphills.
But teenagers still loved their little zoot-arounds, and adorned them with stickers and performed whatever mods they could with daddy’s toolbox - usually starting with sawing off the silencer, which actually made the bike slower, but it sounded better which was the important thing.
In the late 90s, the law changed to allow kids to ride 125cc bikes, which opened doors to little, pimpled faces that led far beyond anything they ever dreamed about. Bikes that could do more than 120 km/h now sat in the showroom, available for their (by ‘their’ we mean their parents, but we are living in a dream world, remember?) purchase.
They had farings, fancy clocks and wider back tyres - every kid’s dream! Honda has now upped the ante even more with their new little CBR range – the CBR125, and CBR250.
The CBR125 has been around for a few years now, but while it did have the fairing, and back tyre(ish), and speed, it still had a small element of buzz bike to it.
The new one has the looks of a superbike, the size of a superbike and the feel of a superbike, at least to youngsters anyway. A veteran biker might still find it to be a tad small and slow, but kids have dreams, and will imagine it bigger than it already is. More good news is it produces 12.5 horsepower, has a top speed (on a steep downhill with a laaitie on it) of more then 150 km/h and it has a sturdy, confident feel.
Good news for the parents, Honda’s claimed fuel consumption is 41.6 km/l, and with its 13 litre tank, it should manage 540 km per tank.
But Honda’s claimed figure is with a Japanese man the size of a chipmunk riding it in the most efficient way possible, so the larger South African laaitie doing Rossi impersonations should get less, but should still be far better than mommy’s Landcruiser.
The CBR250 is designed for when the laaitie leaves school and goes to varsity, or starts a job packing bags at Spar. It is a new model in South Africa, but has been produced in Japan since 1984.
It has a liquid-cooled, single-cylindered engine that produces 24 hp, has a top speed (laaitie on downhill again) of 180 km/h and has a fuel consumption (Japanese chipmunk riding slowly) of 27 km/l.
It isn’t solely designed for laaities, in fact many a grown man, and lady, has already taken purchase of it. It looks good, it has decent enough power, it is more economical than a car and it only weighs 161 kg - 40 kg less than a superbike - so it is nimble through traffic.
Posted on: 15:00 Tue, 07 June 2011
Confirmed Covid-19 cases in Garden Route District: