Heart: The KX250F has always been weighed and measured
by the breadth of its engine. We think that it’s incredible.
About time: We’ve been begging Kawasaki to increase the
size of their front brake for years. We finally got our wish.
footpegs. Overall, the combination of 2015 updates made
a big difference. Testers could easily hop on the 2015
KX250F and feel comfortable right away. There weren’t
any peccadilloes that left a bad taste in our mouths. If
we had to pick a favorite update, we’d choose the larger
front brake rotor, as it provides progressive stopping feel
at the lever.
Q: WHY DIDN’T THE 2015 KX250F RECEIVE
SHOWA’S TRIPLE CHAMBER AIR FORK?
A: The big news on the 2015 KX450F is the switch
from Kayaba Pneumatic Spring Forks (PSF) to Showa
Separate Function Fork Triple Air Chamber (SFF TAC)
technology. Air is the new frontier in suspension
development, and Kawasaki was one of the first
manufacturers to embrace it with the KX450F. So, why
doesn’t the KX250F come equipped with TAC forks? It’s
all about the Benjamins, baby. Manufacturers work in
cycles when feeding new technology into their
product lines. The KX450F, Kawasaki’s flagship offering
in the motocross sector, typically receives the latest and
greatest updates. And so it goes for 2015. Although
the KX250F isn’t quite the redheaded stepchild in the
Kawasaki lineup, it is leapfrogged from time to time.
The 2015 KX250F boasts improvements, but they aren’t
earth-shattering updates that will make the public swoon
like the buzz of Triple Air Chamber forks.
Q: ARE WE STILL OPPOSED TO LAUNCH
CONTROL ON THE KX250F?
A: Yes. Believe us, we tried to keep an open mind
about Kawasaki’s patented Launch Control, but it doesn’t
make much sense to mute a 250 four-stroke engine off
the starting line. We accept it on the KX450F, but there
is a 14-horsepower difference between the two bikes.
As powerful as the KX250F is, Launch Control isn’t the
answer for preventing rear wheelspin off a starting pad.
All of our testers vastly preferred to meter the power
and control wheelspin with clutch technique. We think
Launch Control does serve a purpose on the KX250F,
but only for a very narrow audience. The benefactor? A
neophyte, ham-fisted rider with terrible starting skills.
Fortunately, Launch Control doesn’t detract from the
KX250F; it is merely an extraneous button cluttering the
Q: WHAT IS THE BEST ATTRIBUTE OF THE
A: The engine bar none. The potent powerband
is the primary reason the KX250F has won MXA’s
illustrious “250 Four-Stroke Shootout” for three years
running. In fact, only twice since 2006 has the KX250F
not been in the top spot. Kawasaki has long known
the secret to 250 four-stroke success: build a race-ready
engine and surround it with a chassis and suspension
package that is, at the very least, workmanlike.
Although it might appear that MXA test riders view
the KX250F with rose-colored glasses, that’s not the case.
We’ve long grumbled about the quirky handling and
pedestrian suspension; however, we’re always captivated
by the do-everything powerband. It has gusto off idle,
but not enough to overwhelm. Midrange power is plentiful, with enough hit and pull to make any skill level rider
appreciate the output. There are bikes in the 250 class
that produce more peak horsepower (read KTM 250SXF),
but none that ramp up with such broadness and ease in
transition. It is the very essence of what a 250 four-stroke
powerband should be. The KX250F engine fills the gaps
and has enough oomph to knock it out of the park.
Q: WHAT IS THE WORST ATTRIBUTE OF
THE 2015 KX250F?
A: Here’s what we wrote about last year’s model:
“The KX250F has always handled like a girl getting