Gas Gas E4 300cc TRS 250 RR
The fact that the rejuvenated Spanish Gas Gas brand is back and winning creates a massive amount of respect for this manufacturer. Just over twelve months ago they returned to motorcycle production after a very difficult period, with a new management structure which continually reverts to the ‘Still Riding’ phrase and that’s exactly what they are doing. Gas Gas UK had their first ten bikes delivered on April 15th last year, and seven went straight to the SSDT for the ultimate test. The new management continues to work very much on what it considers to be part of a ‘Big Family’ approach to its various global importers, and in the UK it’s no different with the Shirt family. As the official UK importer for close on thirty years, Gas Gas UK have continued to keep very good stock levels for parts and machines and remain a significant part of the sport. We witnessed this with the ‘One-Two’ by Jack Price and Michael Brown at the recent British Championship round, proving that with the new range of models they are still very much winners. Bringing innovation to trials motorcycles since the very beginning in the mid-eighties, the company from Girona has constantly been the benchmark for developments such as the hydraulic diaphragm clutch system, for example, many years ago. The launch of the latest generation TXT Racing E4 model range further endorses this.
The change to the new Euro4 environmental regulations is a natural progression and the 300cc model we had our ‘Quick Spin’ on carries some welcome improvements, claimed by the manufacturer to offer total excellence regarding stability, traction and control. Available since April last year the new E4 RACING model is very similar to the RACING model but has been cleverly enhanced ever so slightly in a few areas which improve and update the machine. It looks a winner from the outset with new graphics, and as with anything, the saying goes that if it looks good, it usually is.
Already a proven machine, the company’s research and development personnel were given the task of attention-to-detail changes, which are not immediately obvious but show up in the handling to gain stability and traction with this new model.
The steel 25CrMo4 grade chrome-molybdenum tubular frame has been around for quite a while, providing rigidity and flexibility, but with its new weight distribution, it is claimed to produce a significant adjustment to further improve the centre of gravity and distribution of the ‘mass’ of weight. This change is aimed at increasing its stability even more and provides the rider with an even tighter turning circle, necessary in the modern day type of hazards.
To further enhance these new changes the front end has a new spring and setting in the aluminium anodised Tech forks. The rear suspension is taken care of by the quality of the Reiger 2V shock absorber, which once again features revised settings. Michelin X11 tyres at the front and rear are fitted as standard.
The engine has also come in for some welcome minor tweaks with attention to detail. The hydria twin-spark ignition has also been improved to provide a smoother power delivery. Gas Gas now fit the proven and best Keihin carburettor to enhance smooth power delivery. This single cylinder two-stroke model is available in the engine capacity sizes of 125cc, 250cc, 280cc and 300cc. As you can see from the studio photographs in this article, it certainly looks a winner, stood still with its vibrant aesthetics and bold appearance.
NOW IT’S TIME FOR A ‘QUICK SPIN’ WITH PHIL DISNEY
“It seems quite a while since I had a quick spin on a Gas Gas, and was very much looking forward to the opportunity as, at my local events I compete in, there certainly appears to be quite a few of the new 2017 models about already.
“These Spanish manufactured machines always look good in the flesh and this latest generation 300cc TXT Racing E4 model is no different. After a quick look around it’s good to see they have fitted the latest Tech front forks and Reiger rear shock as in my opinion these are possibly the best in the business and are a feature on many of the latest production models from the various other manufacturers.
“Gas Gas takes this a step further, with its specification and settings at both the front and rear. This test machine was one hour old and was the one John Shirt would be using a few days later in the Bemrose National Trial. The machine was 100% standard and was ready for action. The riding position on the ‘Gasser’ always impresses me as you feel very much at home straight away. Nothing needed adjusting, as you would expect with one of ‘Shirty’s’ machines, as he is an old-school rider like myself.
“The power and torque from the engine impress you immediately, and to get the best from the machine correct gear selection is very important. On the hazards, we were using in the rock-filled river at the Robinson’s Rocks venue the first of the six gears on offer was ideal, with second used if a little more motion was required.”
FEELING THE DIFFERENCE
“When you read in the specifications about changes to weight distribution and geometry you often wonder just how true it is, but with the changes to the distribution of the mass on this new model you certainly can tell the difference. Riding it — and I do not know why as it appears to look the same — you get the impression that the machine is lower. In difficult situations, it can be moved around more easily, and the more I rode it, the more evident this became.
“The clutch action is, as always, first class and the ‘biting point’ is very strong and consistent. I didn’t need to adjust the front or rear suspension, but it coped easily with all the hazards I attempted. The feedback from the rear end of any trials machine is important, and here I felt very much in control, being able to easily stay on my chosen line through a hazard.
“The power output is very strong, and the torque is smooth and very much aimed at the modern rider, and when you watch the likes of Jack Price in action, you can understand why. This machine is a proven winner out of the box, and if it’s the top spot of the podium you are aiming for then this machine has to be for you”.
“This 300cc model certainly has plenty of power on hand, but I would always advise potential buyers to try the other models in the range. From my past experiences, I would advise riders to try both the 250cc and 280cc models as they are so different. Trial Magazine editor John Hulme would tell you the same, as when he was riding on a regular basis, he chose a 250cc.
“Andy Blackman, another Trial Magazine test rider, always goes for the 300cc model from any manufacturer purely and simply for the power on the big hills found in the Southern centre, and the torque which helps to find the grip. As he says: “Put it in fourth gear, and it will go anywhere”.
“Machine choice is down to the individual rider’s requirements and as much as I liked the 300cc model if you are a potential Gas Gas purchaser try a 250cc or maybe a 280cc as they are all very good.”