2018 Suzuki TU250X

A dose of old-school soul

2018 Suzuki TU250X
2018 Suzuki TU250XCRS

Channeling ye olde English bikes from the 1950s and Japanese imports from the early ’60s, the TU250X is a retro lightweight with modern conveniences. All of the bodywork—“cycle parts,” as our UK friends call them—are rounded and organic looking, achieving the throwback style. But a drilled disc brake is fitted up front; electronic fuel injection and CDI ignition feed and spark the engine; the cylinder bore is electrochemically plated, eliminating the need for an old-fashioned iron liner; an air-injection system and a catalytic converter reduce emissions; and starting uses electrons only, daddy-o—no kickstarter is even fitted.

Befitting its role as an inexpensive, casual-use retro bike, the TU250X scrimps here and there with air- instead of liquid-cooling, a five-speed rather than a more versatile six-speed gearbox, and a drum rear brake in lieu of a disc. But for the TU’s intended duty, these are perfectly reasonable compromises. And speaking of “intended duty,” how about a racing class for new retro bikes like these? Might be pretty fine!

Likes: Looks properly vintage, minus the inevitable "vintage-bike" problems.

Dislikes: Needs a separate tachometer and properly retro round mirrors.

Verdict: If you've been longing for a 250cc "Royal Enfield," here it is.

2018 Suzuki TU250X Specs and Pricing

MSRP $4,599
DISPLACEMENT (CC) 249
SEAT HEIGHT (IN) 30
WET WEIGHT (LBS) 326