Primary Use: Motocross
Main Mods: Works Connection Air Fork Pump, Works Connection No Air Loss Adaptor, Autotrader/Yoshimura/Suzuki Factory Race Team Kit, ProTaper Contour handlebar (Ricky Carmichael bend), and ODI Emig V2 Lock-On grips
Moment of Glory: Dragging a footpeg in a left-hand corner at Milestone MX Park
Forgettable Experience: Spending a fair amount of time applying Autotrader/Yoshimura/Suzuki Factory Race Team Kit graphics
Aftermath: Three DT1 air filters, three oil changes using Maxima Pro Plus 10w-40, one K&N oil filter change, one set of Dunlop Geomax MX3S tires, and lots of bike washes
With nearly 40 hours on the RM-Z250 in bone-stock form, I have developed a good understanding of what this bike does well, and not so well, right off the showroom floor. The yellow machine feels light on the track and is easy to ride, and with an agile chassis and slim bodywork, the RM-Z is easy to lean over and charge through a corner. The RM-Z250 has great cornering ability, but the bike is somewhat inhibited from a soft, docile motor that requires a lot of shifting to stay in the meat of the power. Lastly, the air fork, which I admit I struggled with at first, has become much improved as the amount of time I’ve spent testing different settings has enabled me to find quite a bit more comfort in the KYB PSF2 fork.
A few new additions I’ve made to the RM-Z250 since my last Long Haul update are an Autotrader/Yoshimura/Suzuki Factory Race Team graphics kit, a ProTaper Contour handlebar (Ricky Carmichael bend), and a set of ODI Emig V2 Lock-On grips. After 40 hours of testing, the stock graphics understandably looked a bit rough. However, after I applied the Autotrader/Yoshimura/Suzuki Factory kit, the bike looked more similar to Justin Hill’s RM-Z250. The graphics kit is customizable between five styles of fonts and has the option to have your name printed above the airbox as well.
The Suzuki RM-Z250 comes stock with a Renthal Fatbar, which I quickly came to like. However, after months of testing the bike with the stock bar, I swapped them out for a ProTaper Contour in the Ricky Carmichael bend. Changing the bars created a new feel on the bike, but with very little testing on the ProTaper handlebars, it’s too early to say which I prefer, but stay tuned as I will go over that in an upcoming Long Haul update.
In addition to the new handlebar, I decided to throw on a fresh pair of ODI Emig V2 Lock-On grips. This was my first experience with the grips, and although they are about twice the price of any other set of grips, the Emig V2s offers a unique function. When replacing your old set with a pair of grips and installing the V2s, the job becomes quick, simple, and mess-free. The V2s come with the new grip mounted to a throttle tube that is designed to match nearly every make and model of dirt bike. The left grip has a “lock-on” system where you simply slide the grip onto the bar and fasten it down with an Allen key. This has created an easy way to install new grips without having to glue your grips on or cut the old ones off, so long as your old grips are V2 Lock-Ons, anyway.
In the upcoming months, I look forward seeing how the Autotrader/Yoshimura/Suzuki Factory Race Team Kit holds up and testing the ProTaper Contour handlebar and ODI grips, and continue spending time on the RM-Z250.