2015 Beta Evo 250 Sport

Sit Down, Trials

A trials bike with a seat? Your eyes are not deceiving you—and neither is Beta. Dubbed the Evo 250 Sport, this hybrid was designed for low-speed trail riding, particularly of the “double black diamond” variety. I began testing it in the most civilized manner possible (beating the snot out of it at EnduroCross), and then took it to the trails, the desert, and even a round of the Southern California Trials Association series.

The seat proved to be a great addition for racing EnduroCross, as it allowed me to sit off the start, as well as in a few corners. The saddle will give your legs a rest and help you regain your composure when you get into trouble, but don’t plan on spending too much time there. The reserve tank is also an awesome mod for long trail rides, as the low stock fuel capacity is a limiting factor of standard trials bikes. We had one small durability issue when the “Y” connector linking the two tanks together broke on a trail ride, but thanks to independent petcocks we were able to reroute and use the auxiliary tank as the main tank. With the added range, we felt much better about venturing away from the truck.

The power on the Evo is expectedly trials-like: torquey, responsive, and surprisingly quick in higher gears. Second through fourth were our most used gears, as we found that first would wind out quickly and provided somewhat “lurchy” power in very slow terrain. Part of this is due to the knobbies, which perform moderately well if you lower the rpm and begin lugging, but they still slip (and deflect) more than trials tires, especially if you hammer the throttle. I ended up “borrowing” a trials rear wheel off of the Beta Evo 250 (they have the same size rear sprocket) for the EnduroCross main event. It was a big improvement over the knobby, especially in wet sections and when the front was coming to an abrupt stop. The knobby just feels different when splattering (a traditional trials move) onto rocks, as well as when trying to weight the rear end and get it to hook up. I’m not a huge fan of the left-side kickstarter, but I do appreciate the added hand guards and the fact that the shift lever is not unreachably long like on most trials bikes.

Don’t expect big bike suspension from the Evo 250 Sport; this is still a trials bike with the same suspension as the Evo. The fork, once through its stroke, will transmit any remaining force straight through the handlebar and into your wrists if you start riding too hard. The shock has a springy feel that works well for popping over obstacles and planting the rear end precisely where you want it. Overall handling is surprisingly stable considering how light the bike is, though it gets sketchier when you get higher than fourth gear. Again, you’ll spend most of the time on the trail in the standing position, which—not surprisingly, and aside from a little extra area to pinch with your knees—feels just like a trials bike. In the end, the Beta Evo 250 Sport is among a handful of 2015 models that bridge the gap between trials machines and standard off-road motorcycles, and it’s among my top picks for a bike to race in the TrialsCross class at EnduroCross—I’ll be the guy sitting down and trying to catch his breath!

2015 Beta Evo 250 Sport Specs
MSRP: $8099
Seat height: 31.0 in.
Ground clearance: 11.5 in.
Fuel capacity: 2.0 gal. total (1.3 auxiliary, 0.7 main)
Weight (both tanks full): 175 lb.
Contact: betausa.com

Want More? Hear Beta USA importer Tim Pilg talk about the new Beta Cross-Trainer model at dirtrider.com/features/dropping-in-on-us-beta-importer-tim-pilg/.

Items Included With All Evo Sport Models

  • Long-range fuel tank with built-in seat
  • Knobby tires
  • Front fender lift kit to prevent mud from packing
  • Updated clutch setting for a more aggressive engagement
  • Beta hand guards
  • Odometer mounted on handlebar
  • Larger countershaft sprocket for casual trail riding
  • Special graphics

Second Opinion

Pete Peterson

Ht: 5’10” Wt: 170 lb. Off-Road 40C Class, Recent Trials Initiate

I have almost no experience on trials bikes, and the idea of the Sport model sounded great to me—a go-anywhere (easily) trailbike. The biggest problem I had with this bike compared to the traditional Beta Evos was the factory’s tire swap. Without a rear trials tire’s amazing traction to convert “throttle” to “front wheelie lift,” the whole front end felt much heavier. I know it was heavier, but I think the rear tire spin contributed more than the pounds. The seat is too low to comfortably ride, but it does work great as a “safety catch” if you forget you’re on a trials bike and sit down. And if you’re not used to a trials bike, it is a short rest for your back or neck muscles on a trail ride. The extra fuel capacity is the big upside to this bike. If you want to get away from the truck, it’s great to have the fuel in the bike, not in a fuel bottle. If I had this machine, my first mod would be to put a rear trials tire back on it. I’d keep my speeds low and have an incredibly fun, light, and quiet go-anywhere bike.