If you don’t ride a motorcycle and have never been tempted to, you will probably think this is boring. If you do ride a motorcycle, you will dismiss what follows as the work of a neophyte, a newcomer, a beginning rider. You are mistaken. If you don’t ride a motorcycle, I will clue you in: in riders’ circles, the bigger the bike: the better. Little bikes don’t get much respect. If you don’t ride a motorcycle, I trust you have enough spirit in yourself to thrill to the idea of what it is like to ride unencumbered, free as a bird, alone on the open road. If you do ride a motorcycle, I ask you to read closely and feel the same sensations this author does on the road. Anyone on a bike is better than everyone in a car.
A Poet Reviews Riding the 2007 Ninja 250.
Kawasaki is rolling out a new and supposedly improved model of its cultish Ninja 250. No technical details are discussed below and neither is the new bike. This is about the thrill and contentment that comes from riding a compact and power-packed motorcycle. We trust the engineers haven’t fiddled too much with the past models’ details. The small engine size categorizes the Little Ninja as an entry-level bike, but it is a bike that will carry you throughout your riding career. It is kind. It has pep. It has style. It is reliable. It is the best deal for the money, and it is a steady companion for those who choose to make its acquaintance….
When Life lets you down, your best friend is the Little Ninja. 250cc of comfortable power between your legs makes for a smooth ride able to handle whatever comes your way. The wind blows away cares and the hum of the engine drowns out complaints. The Little Ninja won’t force you to smile. You’ll do that naturally. Cares float away on any ride that unrolls under the Little Ninja’s wheels. In a pinch, the light Little Ninja will whisk you to safety and peace.
The Little Ninja loves to rev. The more revolutions per minute: the better. The faster and longer the twinned tires turn: the better. The more miles traveled, the longer the hours, the more sights passed, the higher the whine: the less the complaints. Life is good on the Little Ninja. Rider and machine are perfectly matched. No motorcycle compares to the Little Ninja. It welcomes all riders and it exceeds all expectations. The Little Ninja never disappoints. It thrills and it comforts in equal degrees.
Name your poison: straight, boring stretches of smoothly featureless highway, tight turns followed by tighter turns, city traffic, suburban rush hour, potholes, broken pavement, rutted, sun-baked mud, farm vehicles in the road, farm animals in the road, wild animals darting across the road, or distracted drivers on cell phones in SUVs. The Little Ninja has the strength of just enough horses that have been eating their vitamins and turning their octane into energy. These horses are sturdy and stalwart as Clydesdales but much more nimble. The Little Ninja purrs like a kitten even at full throttle. Whatever the situation, the Little Ninja is happy to deliver on spec and on time and under budget at around 70 miles per gallon. It performs as it is supposed to and then it does a little bit more.
Do you want comfort with just enough speed? Do you want just enough power and just enough torque? Do you want to look good and feel good? If you have something to prove, the Little Ninja won’t sit well between your thighs. If you have somewhere to go, the Little Ninja will take you there and back again, and back again, and back again.
The Little Ninja doesn’t recognize limits. The Little Ninja enjoys extremes and pushing past where other people think it should stop. Its engine revs like it should have an ejector seat, while it swallows obstacles like an old gentleman sipping smooth, old scotch. When you meet the Little Ninja, you make friends quickly. Master and servant accommodate each other like sides of a coin or a card. There are no gambles, only controlled chances and choices. When you ride a Ninja of any size you expect a sporting chance. When you ride the Little Ninja, you make your own fate while you sail closer to journey’s end.
Some people supplement their testosterone levels with added, irrelevant horsepower. Other people are content being in control, just getting by. The Little Ninja puts you in charge of the tachometer needle. It isn’t what you own that matters. It is how you deploy your talents for the biggest return that counts in a crunch come Doomsday. The Little Ninja’s engine hums the perfect soundtrack for any adventure. The road unravels, the miles slip by, the cloudscapes unfurl overhead, and the gas tank rarely needs to be topped off. The Little Ninja starts and idles until called into service; then it responds like a soldier. There is a job to be done. The Little Ninja answers the call of the mission at hand and the call of the open road.
When the open road beckons, the Little Ninja will take you over the horizon.