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Tiny Terror: 1990 Honda CBR250RR for Sale


Displacement creep means that although a 750cc motorcycle was considered big in the 1970s, it’s barely a middleweight now. And while there used to be a variety of sophisticated, small-displacement motorcycles, these days anything under 600cc’s is considered “entry-level” and probably has just one or two cylinders. Surprisingly for a quarter-liter machine, the Honda CBR250RR is powered by an engine with four tiny pistons and sixteen jewel-like valves operated by gear-driven cams, with a six-speed gearbox putting a very reasonable 40hp to the rear wheel. The wet weight of 350lbs isn’t quite two-stroke territory, but the bike is still an excellent handler and the shriek of those little oily bits spinning at 18,000 rpm might make up for that somewhat.


Produced between 1986 and 1996, the CBR250RR was sold mainly in Japan, although some found their way to other countries as grey market imports. Here in the USA, they are as rare as hen’s teeth, but will likely become a bit more common as importers scoop up these relatively common machines in Japan and ship them over here, alongside the usual NSRs, TZRs, and RGVs…


From the original eBay listing: 1990 Honda CBR250RR MC22 for Sale

Red and white version very rare bike for the USA. Perfect, like-new fork tubes. 17,000km. The carbs were recently cleaned hand have new floats, gaskets, NGK plugs, air element, and runs perfect. The only defect is the trip meter knob was broken when shipped to me in crate with body set upper was off and has a spare speedo set with 22,000km to install later. New o-ring chain, new Pilot Power tires, near new F/R OEM discs, Motul oil and filter change. Valves were adjusted and checked for proper tolerance. The bike has a new aftermarket body set, the only difference is the white is not a a pearl white but is very high quality fit and finish. The tank is very clean except for two light scrapes and light indentation. It comes with the original body set that has a few scrapes but still very clean. Has an English service and parts manual. Imported last year, no title, bill of sale only. Import documents provided, not sure if it can be titled in California and is your responsibility.


The Buy It Now price for this little beauty is $8,500 which is, I think, ambitious. It is a very cool motorcycle, but these seem to generally sell in the $5,000 range, on those rare occasions they come up for sale. Obviously, the usual “make sure you check with your local DMV” admonishments apply here. It’s in excellent condition and miles are relatively low though, so I’m curious to see if some quirky collector decides that this little bike is worth that big chunk of change…




  • I’ve seen and heard one in person before sounded like a weak 600. You can’t get pistons for this bike anymore not even aftermarket cylinders are non plated steel bored over type like early cbr 600’s. All desire for wanting one went away after seeing it in person 45 hp at the crank not rear wheel more like 35. Only cool thing about it was it red lined at 18.5k can be had in Japan easily for 2k really nice low mileage ones for 4k if you can find one. Not in the same league of a 250 smoker.

    • Very true, “250 smoker(s)” were entirely different animals – they don’t even belong in the same category except for the displacement. Having said that though, those little 4-cylinders are quite fun. They are a serious technological marvel, really (proper aluminium fram, 3 floating discs, 4 valve per cylinder, cam gear-train, come on!!), absolutely not a single bit like today’s entry-level sports bikes.

  • $8000? Seriously? Would be interested at about $5k tops, especially with no title!

  • Smoker joe, you can still get pistons for these. I just rebuilt an mc22 engine and with some tweaks we got 49 rwhp. A stock one will do mid 40s and that’s not at the crank. Red line is 19,500 not 18,500. I also know the owner and he’s a stand up guy.

  • it is always fun to spew inaccurate bs .for 2k in japan you will get a corroded junk bike that sat out side especially a very rare red white 90

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