Small Sportbike Shootout 2018

We round up the CBR300R, Ninja 400, RC390, GSX250R, and YZF-R3 for a small-bore smackdown

If you’re just getting started in motorcycling, you have a very important question to answer: What bike should you get? Ask any seasoned rider and they’re likely to suggest something small, affordable, and not too powerful. For years that meant a Ninja 250 or Rebel 250, but in 2018 new riders (and those who just prefer affordable, fun bikes) have loads of little motorcycles to pick from.

Step into a major dealership and you'll be able to gaze upon the Honda CBR300R, Kawasaki Ninja 400, KTM RC390, Suzuki GSX250R, and Yamaha YZF-R3. They're all sleek, sporty, and very tempting to the rider with a fresh motorcycle license. And to help you figure out which one suits you best we piled on the miles and compared notes. The result is this latest episode of On Two Wheels, which we hope helps steer you toward the perfect bike for your journey into motorcycling.