Q: FIRST AND FOREMOST, IS THE 2016
KAWASAKI KX250F BETTER THAN THE 2015
A: No. Why not? Because the 2016 Kawasaki KX250F
is the 2015 KX250F (with a green rear fender). One of the
conundrums of the Japanese manufacturer’s four-year
development cycles is that the R&D programs run out of
steam in year four. With a new bike on the horizon, it is
hard to justify spending money on making substantive
changes to a design that won’t be around in 12 months.
That money is better spent on the next model.
There is no guarantee that Kawasaki will offer a total
remake of the KX250F next year, but there is evidence to
suggest it. In 2016, Kawasaki introduced an all-new KX450F.
It was redesigned from the ground up. It was lighter,
thinner andvastly improved. Based on history, it is logical to
assume that the same chassis, engine and cosmetic changes
will be made to the Kawasaki KX250F in 2017.
Q: WHAT CHANGES DID KAWASAKI MAKE TO
THE 2016 KX250F?
A: It’s important to note that while the KX250F may
be stagnating in 2016, Kawasaki did make modifications in
2015 to the piston, exhaust system, magneto rotor,
ECU’s droplet size, SFF fork valving, axle wall thicknesses,
graphics, rear axle nut, 270mm Braking front rotor, four-position handlebar mount slots, adjustable footpeg brackets
and subframe, which leads us to the 2016 KX250F updates.
Hold on to your hat.
(1) Rear fender. Last year the KX250F had a white rear
fender. For 2016 it has been changed to green.
( 2) Bearing retainer screws. The eight Phillips-head
screws that hold the various bearing retainer plates on the
2016 engine have been upgraded in strength from 1000
N/m to 1200 N/m.
( 3) Engine plugs. The engine plugs have been changed
from green to a candy-apple color.
( 4) Tank graphics. If we hadn’t told you, you would
never know that the tank graphics are ever-so-slightly
different from 2015.
Q: WHAT ARE THE BEST ATTRIBUTES OF THE
2016 KAWASAKI KX250F?
A: All motocrossers are drawn to newness like moths
to a flame. So, when a brand’s latest offering isn’t new,
we lose interest in it. MXA test riders are no different—we
are always looking for the next flashy toy. But, that gives
short shrift to the 2016 Kawasaki KX250F. We forget that
the KX250F has been the defining 250cc four-stroke of the
last decade. It won the “MXA 250 Shootout” crown in 2006,
2007, 2008, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2014. And, one short
year ago, in the 2015 MXA 250 shootout, it finished second