2011 Motorcycle of the Year | Best Bang for the Buck

Honda CBR250R
The $4000 Motorcycle

After winning our recent 250cc sportbike shootout, how could the CBR250R not win in this category? The Honda’s $3999 price tag and meager displacement belie its refinement and fun-factor. Don’t be mistaken: This is one entertaining, capable and well-developed motorcycle.

Considering its budget status, you’d be forgiven for looking for vestigial components from Honda’s Rebel, CRF250 or VTR250, but you won’t find any. Because no one wants to look like a beginner, Honda lifted styling cues from the top-line VFR1200F so you’ll fit right in at My First Bike Night. The CBR is a clean-sheet build loaded with Honda engineering and innovation. Power comes by way of an efficient fuel-injected single with more than enough pep to turn any twisty road into a playground. Want more sophistication? Get ABS for an additional $500.

The CBR250 was built to offer outstanding rideability and durability, and with a wet weight of just 355 lbs. and a maintenance schedule that could fit on the back of a business card, it’s hard to find anything that compares.

Alternative Take

Yamaha FZ8
If versatility is what you're after, Yamaha's FZ8 has it. This 779cc naked bike is powerful, responsive and one of the most comfortable we've ridden. At $8490 it also happens to cost $3300 less than the Triumph Speed Triple and $2500 less than the Honda CB1000R. That's bangin' bucks!