The Suzuki V-Strom 250 is an ideal commuter, but does it have any merit as a tourer? Bryn Davies finds out…
It’s been four months since I welcomed Suzuki’s baby V-Strom to the ABR stable and in that time, I’ve been trying to answer the question ‘why?’. By this I mean, why would you buy a small capacity adventure motorcycle over a large or mid-capacity bike?
In the last issue of ABR, I expressed just how adept the Strom is when it comes to commuting. It’s easily manoeuvrable and the 80+mpg makes it economically viable.
But what about if you’re not looking for a commuter? What has the V-Strom 250 got to make it appeal as a tourer or your weekend warrior steed? This takes a bit more thinking. It’s safe to say if your touring style sees you take in motorway miles, the baby Strom isn’t going to cut it – redlining while struggling to keep up with even the slowest traffic just isn’t fun.
Despite this, there is a certain charm in selecting ‘avoid motorways’ on your SatNav, and the V-Strom 250 is at home on the smaller, slower-paced country roads where it pays to chill out and enjoy the scenery. That’s not to say you can’t get a thrill out of riding this machine, but it’s not going to blow your socks off and leave you grinning from ear to ear.
From a comfort perspective, the bike performs well. Though it may be slightly cramped for the taller amongst us (at 6’2 it’s a little on the small side), the saddle makes long days on the road comfortable, and the seating position is, by and large, spot-on for touring.
If you’re serious about munching miles on this baby though, I’d invest in either a better screen or a spoiler to reduce wind buffeting.
If you want to really get the bike set up for adventure, then you’ll want to add the Grand Tourer Accessory Pack, which adds £999 on the price of the bike.
For this you get a 23-litre top box, 40 litres of pannier storage, a centre stand, and handguards. I was actually pleasantly surprised by the quality of these accessories, and they certainly open up possibilities of long-distance touring.
That said, throw in the luggage and you’re now looking at £5,598 for a 250cc bike, and when you consider that the Benelli TRK 502 X, which we reviewed here, is just £5,499, you really have to wonder whether the novelty of plodding along is worth it.