A few days ago, Honda dropped a bomb of a news. The bikemaker will bring in the legendary Moto3 motorcycle, the NSF 250R, for the 2019 season. There will be an exclusive racing championship where the top riders can get a taste of this quarter-litre pocket rocket. The championship will be running in parallel with existing national championships. Unfortunately, this motorcycle is only for racing and is not road-legal. Let’s see what this race machine packs.
The Honda NSF 250R was conceived for a single purpose: Racing. True to its ethos, the motorcycle features a full aerodynamic fairing covering the whole engine. The tail cowl rounds off the design at the rear and the seat features a thin back padding as well, apart from the minimalistic cushioning at the bottom. This, coupled with the low set clip-ons and compact 11-litre aluminium fuel tank with adequate recesses for the knees make the ergonomics extremely aggressive. Keeping handling in mind, even the exhaust system has a reverse S-shaped layout with a centralised muffler for optimum centre of gravity.
The Honda NSF 250R employs an all-new 249.3cc DOHC liquid-cooled single cylinder engine that has been designed under the concept “Light weight, Compact, High-Output and High-Efficiency". Understandably, for better charging efficiency, Honda has positioned the ram-air intake port in front of the engine cylinder, while the exhaust is at the rear. The cylinder is also inclined at 15 degrees towards the rear for better mass centralisation. This high-revving engine commands better vibration damping, and Honda has positioned the balancer shaft above the crankshaft for a compact overall length.
This fuel-injected powerplant produces a whopping 48.2PS at a dizzying 13,000rpm and 28Nm of torque at 10,500rpm. This, coupled with an insanely light kerb weight of 84kg (Yes, you read that right!), translates to a power to weight ratio of roughly 574PS per tonne, and that’s supercar territory! The powerplant pairs with a 6-speed gearbox. For better versatility, Honda offers fuel injection setting tool, mode selection switch and pit road speed limit switch as optional fitments.
The NSF 250R’s explosive powerplant nestles inside an aluminium twin-tube frame. The frame is made of lightweight 7000 series pressed aluminum alloy. The 7000 series is one of the strongest forms of aluminium alloys, and offers optimum riding dynamics. Inverted front forks and a pro-link monoshock at the rear handle suspension responsibilities. The 17-inch light-weight alloys are shod with 90-section front and 120-section rear racing slicks for leech-like grip on the track. Brakes include a large 296mm front disc and a tiny 186mm rear disc. Race bikes mostly use the front brake more than the rear, and hence a small rear disc does justice to the bike’s purpose.
Since it is a race bike, the Honda NSF 250R does not come under warranty. We hope Honda launches a production version of the bike some time in the future. Stay tuned for more updates.