2017 Motorcycle Previews 2018 Suzuki GSX250R Katana First Look | 12 Fast Facts

2018 Suzuki GSX250R Katana First Look | 12 Fast Facts

2018 Suzuki GSX250R Katana First Look |

12 Essential Facts


The 2017 model year is barely underway, and Suzuki is already tempting us with 2018s, including the 2018 Suzuki GSX250R Katana. This new Katana is part of a larger play for new riders—along with the naked GW250, retro TU250X and oddball VanVan 200—with the sporty GSX250R ready to appeal to nascent sport riders. Here are the fast facts.

[Visit the 2017 Motorcycle Previews page]

  1. The 2018 Suzuki GSX250R Katana motor has the same bore-and-stroke as the 2017 Suzuki GW250 commuter motorcycle. More of a fuel-sipper than a tire shredder, the slightly undersquare parallel twin is tuned for torque. That should give the Katana effective real-life performance on the street, even if it will likely struggle on the freeway.
  2. The GSX250R does suffer a displacement disadvantage to the twins from Yamaha and Kawasaki. The Yamaha R3 is 73cc larger, while the Kawasaki Ninja 300 has 48 additional cubes. Like the Ninja and R3, the GSX250R has a six-speed transmission and fuel injection.
  3. Suzuki claims a number of performance upgrades for the GSX250R powerplant. According to Suzuki, the 2018 gets new roller-type rocker arms, slimmer-stem intake valves, low-tension piston rings, an efficient oil pump, projected-tip spark plugs, and a low-drag electrical charging system.
  4. The 2018 Suzuki GSX250R is a bit portly. According to Suzuki, it tips the scales at 392 pounds, ready to ride. 2018-suzuki-gsx250r-katana-first-look-previewThat’s 24 pounds more than the larger-displacement Yamaha R3 and 35 pounds heavier than the single-cylinder Honda CBR300R. To be fair, a few of those pounds are due to the Suzuki’s larger fuel tank.
  5. Suspension is by KYB. The GSX250R lacks adjustable damping, but the shock has seven spring-preload positions.
  6. The seating position is on the sporty side of upright. While it has clip-ons, the GSX250R’s grips do sit above the triple clamp in a compromise between pure-sport style and around-town comfort. The seat height is an approachable 31 inches, with a step-up for the passenger perch.
  7. The wheels are aluminum and the tires are by IRC. The ten-spoke design looks good, and IRC Road Winner RX-01 tires work well on small displacement bikes.
  8. The range of the 2018 GSX250R should challenge adventure bikes. With a four-gallon fuel tank and a claimed 76 mpg, you’re looking at potentially squeezing over 300 miles from a single tank.
  9. The 2018 Suzuki GSX250R could be a sport-touring bike. For a light rider looking to avoid interstates, this could be a workable sport-tourer with soft bags. Suzuki has also outfitted the crankshaft with a balancer to reduce rider fatigue.
  10. The electrics on the Katana are impressive. The instrument panel uses a reverse-lit LCD, with the speed readout in large numbers. The tach is a bar-graph style, and there’s a programmable shift light, as well as a gear-position indicator.
  11. Lighting is a mixture of LED, halogen, and traditional. The headlight is halogen, the turn signals incandescent, and the taillight an LED array.
  12. Neither the price nor the availability date of the 2018 Suzuki GSX250R Katana have been announced. Remember, we’re talking about a 2018 model!

2018 Suzuki GSX250R Katana Specs:


  • Type: Parallel-twin
  • Displacement: 248cc
  • Bore x stroke: 53.5 x 55.2mm
  • Compression ratio: 11.5: 1
  • Ignition: Transistorized electronic ignition
  • Fuel System: EFI
  • Valve train: SOHC, 2 vpc
  • Cooling: Liquid
  • Transmission: 6-speed constant mesh
  • Clutch: Wet, multi-plate type
  • Final drive: O-ring chain


  • Front suspension: Non-adjustable forks
  • Rear suspension: Preload-adjustable shock
  • Front brake: Disc w/ Nissin 2-piston caliper
  • Rear brake: Disc w/ Nissin single-piston caliper
  • Front tire: 110/80-17; IRC Road Winner RX-01
  • Rear tire: 140/55-17; IRC Road Winner RX-01


  • L x W x H: 82.1 x 29.1 x 43.7 inches
  • Wheelbase: 56.3 inches
  • Seat height: 31.1 inches
  • Fuel tank capacity: 4.0 gallons
  • Curb weight: 392 pounds
  • Warranty: 12-month unlimited mileage limited warranty (coverage extension and additional benefits optional)
  • Availability: TBA

2018 Suzuki GSX250R Katana Colors:

  • Pearl Glacier White No. 2
  • Pearl Nebular Black

2018 Suzuki GSX250R Katana Price: $TBA MSRP

2018 Suzuki GSX250R Katana Gallery


Don Williams
Don Williamshttp://www.ultimatemotorcycling.com
With 50 years of riding experience, Don Williams is a fan of all kinds of motorcycles. He enjoys sport bikes, cruisers, dirt bikes, touring bikes, adventure bikes, dual sport bikes, and rideable customs. Ask Don what his favorite bike is and he will tell you, "Whatever bike I'm on."

Classic Superbikes by Frank Melling Book Review: Motorcycle History

Frank Melling is an old-school moto journalist and former factory racer. He lives with his wife Carol on a beautiful farm in northwest England....

Harley-Davidson IRONe12 Review (14 Fast Facts)

Electric bicycles are growing in popularity across a broad spectrum of people and a wide array of uses. This is a story about one...

2021 Honda Rebel 1100 First Look (8 Fast Facts + 40 Photos)

In spite of the Japanese manufacturers’ general retreat from the cruiser market, Honda is going against the current with its third iteration of the...

Garmin Montana 700i Review: Motorcycle GPS Adventure Partner

I am starting to do adventure motorcycle riding here in the Pacific Northwest, and I am a fanatic about my personal safety. I do...

2021 Kawasaki Z H2 SE First Look (5 Fast Facts—Supercharged)

We met the Kawasaki Z H2 last year, and now it’s time to upgrade. The 2021 Kawasaki Z H2 SE takes the standard supercharged...

2021 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R and ZX-10RR: All-New (15 Fast Facts)

Kawasaki has totally revamped its 2021 Ninja ZX-10R and ZX-10RR superbikes. The motorcycles, built with input from Kawasaki Racing Team (KRT), won the past...