The Kawasaki Ninja 250R (codenamed EX250; previous generations had market-specific names) is a motorcycle in the Ninja sport bike series from the Japanese manufacturer Kawasaki originally introduced in 1986. As the marque’s entry-level sport bike, the motorcycle has undergone few changes throughout its quarter-century lifetime, having received only three substantial redesigns. In some markets the Ninja 250 has been succeeded by the Ninja 300.
In 2008, Kawasaki gave the EX250 its most extensive redesign in twenty years. The EX250-J model is known as the Ninja 250R worldwide, regardless of market. Parts from the third generation are still found on the -J, but its redesigned exterior panels bring the Ninja’s appearance out of the 1990s and into line with late-2000s sportbikes. The engine and drivetrain retain 30% of the -F model’s parts, according to Kawasaki. The engine’s compression and maximum torque have been lowered to provide better midrange performance. The redesign of the engine resulted in improvements in engine response at low engine speeds, making the bike smoother and “much easier to ride.” Though the previous generation Ninja 250 had a peak power advantage of 1 to 5 hp (0.75 to 3.73 kW), the new version’s 20 or 30 percent increase in mid-range power allows the bike to pull from 3,000 rpm where previously it had to be revved to 4,000 rpm. The U.S. -J model uses dual carburetors like the -F model, but the European, Brazilian and Thai models have fuel injection. The wheels were increased in size to 17 inches, the front suspension was improved, and the brake rotors were replaced with a larger petal shape. On the carbureted version, a fuel gauge was added in place of the temperature gauge. With the additional and redesigned equipment, the EX250-J suffered a 10 kg (22 lb) increase in wet weight over its predecessors.