Five years at this game now, and I feel like I have a pretty good grasp of what the reaction to an article will be before it’s published.
With big-displacement ADV bikes, there are invariably those who arrive, deploring the unnecessary weight and size of the machine in question, and who adamantly believe that 450cc is all you will ever need off-road (let’s side-step the whole “two-strokes vs. four-stroke” debate on this one).
This group always seems to miss the point though: that one would not want to travel hundreds (if not the thousands of miles we did on our Broventure) on the wooden saddle of a dirt bike — I already cringe at the thought of the handlebar buzz as well.
As cumbersome as a big ADV bike is off-road compared to its dual-sport brethren, they get the job done well enough, without sacrificing too much on the macadam while loaded to the gills. This is what we call compromise
That doesn’t change the fact that these detractors are somewhat right though, it’s high time that motorcycle manufacturers built smaller, lighter, and more comfortable ADV bikes of the sub-800cc variety. Well, one finally has: China’s Zongshen has just debuted its 250cc Zongshen RX3 adventure machine, for your touring pleasure.
One of the more reputable brands to come from behind the Great Wall, Zongshen has built a basic 249cc motor, with a SOHC four-valve head, which is good for 24hp and 16 lbs•ft of torque. Add to it a six-speed gearbox, 16 liter fuel tank (4.2 gallons), a 31.2 inch seat height, and 385 dry weight and you’ve got the RX3 in a nutshell.
Perhaps still a touch too heavy for die-hard off-roaders, we are still impressed with the power available on the Zongshen RX3, which is comparable to a Kawasaki Ninja 250R. Complete with 55 liters of luggage, this petite ADV could fit the bill for many long-distance riders.
Sold as the Honley RX3 in the UK, and the Minsk TRX300i in Russia and other markets, there is no telling if the Zongshen RX3 will make it to the USA, though we secretly hope it does.
Source: CMG Online