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Carts and Horses – 1990 Honda CBR250RR MC22

With the sporty styling of its better-endowed siblings, the CBR250RR was a new rider’s showroom dream in 1990’s Japan.  The sweet-handling lightweight was rarely exported from the island by the factory, which makes it a fine entrant to the rarity sweepstakes elsewhere.  Though many have come to us by way of a hard life down under, this gem is undamaged and boasts a Washington state title.

1990 Honda CBR250RR for sale on eBay

The RR had the right numbers of everything, if just a bit smaller.  The 249cc inline four had four tiny Keihin carbs, alloy perimeter frame, twin front disks.  Gear driven cams deliver a quite healthy 45 hp with 350 lb. wet weight equaling almost unequaled responsiveness.  The full fairing had a pretty chiseled nose, great factory graphics, and a handy sandwich compartment under the pillion seat ( for which, ironically, there are no footpegs ).

Listed by a parts re-seller, this CBR shows just over 9,000 miles and looks better than 9/10ths.  A lot of glamour shots and this description in the eBay auction:

All of the body panels are original and in good condition, there are no major cracks or major nicks anywhere just some light scratches here and there. The wheels are also in excellent condition with perfect paint and no major chips anywhere. Even the windscreen is original and in great condition. Basically the motorcycle is a 9 out of 10 cosmetically.

Mechanically the bike runs and rides perfect. All of the electrical components work as they should; lights, blinkers, horn, speedo, tach, temp gauge, all work properly. The bike just had a full service tune up including new tires, mechanically everything was inspected and replaced if necessary, all fluids were flushed.

Though the factory was busy racing the two stroke RS250, the light four cylinder was a winning solution for the road, and re-affirming their faith in light sports, the factory commissioned a new CBR250 twin last fall.  The auction has a surprising number of bids, and while the bidding hasn’t gotten crazy give it time.  This CBR might be hard to catch in the twisties and harder yet at auction…



  • Wow. That thing is gorgeous. If I hadn’t just bought an NSR250r I would totally be bidding on this. I had never looked into one and had no idea they made 45hp from a 250! MY 2013 CBR250r makes about 25 and weighs a good 30lbs more.

  • How about the ’89 GSXR-750 the seller also has listed? Would love to hear commentary on that specimen as well as the price point.

  • The earlier MC22’s like this did pump out an amazing 45PS(HP) @ 15,000rpm.

    By 1994 the MC22 had been squeezed down to 40PS @ 14,500 – so if its the “Big HP” 250 you are after then this little screamer is the one to get 😉

    It is amazing that in 20 years entry level bikes have taken such a step backwards.

    Back in the day we had water cooled, gear driven cam 4 cylinders that looked like liter bikes shrunk in the dryer.
    What is out there now? Air cooled parallel twins that look like grocery delivery bikes?

    Auction price on track – back in the day the CBR250 was a $7,000 bike give or take a few Yen and import costs.

    I recall paying $9000ish (exchange rates and inflation considered) for my lightly used CBR400RR. Ah, the good old days LOL

    This 250 will make someone a happy camper.

  • I would like to see specs on a Dynomometer. I have great difficulty believing it’s even within 10% of expected drivetrain losses to 45. Or even 40. I had a FZR250R in Japan and there’s no way it was anywhere near as quick as my 37hp Hawk. But it would max out at 180kph on the Daisankeihin, and that seemed to not be gearing limited. And since I was a young idiot I disconnected the EXUP in the open position for a throatier idle. And painted the exhaust blue to be like a Britten, which it emphatically wasn’t.
    I’d take one of these 4-stroke 250s over a 2-stroke any day. And I’d take a CBR400RR with gear driven cams over both of those!

  • Love it, can’t afford it.
    So why does a japanese market bike have graphics all over it in goofy english: “super response quarter”?!

    • That’s funny you say that. It’s Japolish thing. You should look into weird Japanese car names and stuff like that, you’ll get kick out of it.

  • Cool bike. I owned one for a while and loved it. The pillion footpegs fold away, so aren’t missing on this bike.

  • There are hundreds of these bikes in Australia. So many of them were being “grey” imported in the nineties that Honda Australia took the hint and began importing them officially in ’94. Unfortunately these official imports were the derated 40hp version, so the “grey” market continued to flourish, as demand was hot, especially for the ’90-’91 RR(L).
    I bought a pretty good L model in 2010 as a project and have only recently completed a ground up restoration in the same colour scheme as the one in your article.
    Here in Australia it’s still surprisingly easy to source OEM parts from Honda Australia, and it’s fortunate that the majority of the parts available are common to all models from ’90 to ’96.
    It’s a sweet handling and surprisingly fast little machine and a hell of a lot of fun on the track, making up in the corners what it lacks in the straights.
    However, I can’t spend too long on it. It wasn’t designed for six foot two inch westerners!

  • Sold for $7075.


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