RI­VALS Smoke ’em if you’ve got ’em...

Mid-’80s two-stroke good­ness at its very finest

Practical Sportsbikes (UK) - - YAMAHA TZR250 -

SUZUKI RG250 Gamma

By the time the TZR came along, the early-’80s RG was get­ting long in the tooth, but it’s still a quick bike, with a 115mph top end and about the same peak power as the Yam. The TZR out-han­dles the Suzuki with ease though.

HONDA NSR250 MC16

If the TZR was sharp like a Stan­ley knife, the 1987 NSR250 was sharp like a new scalpel blade. Heav­ily based on the firm’s Grand Prix bikes, it fea­tured Nikasil-plated bar­rels, a cas­sette gear­box and a twin-spar ally frame.

KAWASAKI KR-1

Ja­pan got the KR-1 in 1988. We had to wait a year - but it was worth it. 130mph and over 200bhp per litre weren’t to be sniffed at. Fast, light, harsh and a bit frag­ile, its main prob­lem was lousy build qual­ity.

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