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Two-Wheel Tuesday – 19,000 RPM: All Day, Every Day

Peter Tanshanomi May 16, 2017 Two-Wheel Tuesday 22 Comments

Thanks to their tiny pistons and rods, production 250cc four-cylinder street bikes could safely access engine speeds that would turn larger engines into jackhammers—and before too long, molten metal. At one time, all the Big Four Japanese motorcycle manufacturers built 250cc fours. But the cost of a high performance four doesn’t change too much based to displacement, so they were never imported into the big-bike-loving U.S., and due to that rather high cost-to-performance ratio these tiny, high-revving wonders are now extinct worldwide. But folks in places like Australia were able to sample this forbidden and super-exotic moto fruit. The custom hybrid featured in this video is a bit of an Internet star, having the higher performance, peakier Kawasaki ZX2R engine slotted into a standard ZR250 Balius chassis. The free-flowing exhaust provides a spine-tingling soundtrack to what is admittedly a fairly ordinary trip through city traffic on a 45 HP bike. But the rider’s cackling laugh demonstrates the endearing thing about these little four-cylinder bikes: even heading to the corner market, you could feel like a racing hero.

Rumors began percolating last month when a spokesman within Kawasaki said the company was “seriously considering” developing a new 250cc four to compete against the parallel twins Yamaha and Honda’s currently offer in that segment. It would be a risky move, but I for one would love to see one of these little screamers make a comeback.