Bikes we love

What I want: Hyosung GV250

One of the things you’ll see from British motorcyclists on various internet forums is the belief that no one would or should want a 250cc bike. The space between a learner-level 125 and a 500 is no man’s land, they claim. But they claim all kinds of things, which is the modus operandi of internet forums, I suppose.
A fair few manufacturers offer 250s in the UK. Honda has the CBR, Kawasaki has the Ninja (actually a 300, but close enough), Suzuki has the Inazuma, and KTM has the Duke. Meanwhile, Yamaha may bring the YZF-R250 to the UK and there is talk of Suzuki reviving its Hustler name for something in the 200-300 range, as well as introducing the Z250.
On top of this, you have 250s (or close) from lesser-known manufacturers like AJS (who offer several 350s: the Stellar, the EOS and SPT), Daelim (who offer the unexciting VJF) and Hyosung, who offer the GV250, the GT250 and the GT250R. No doubt, there are one or two others I failed to mention (1). 
With so many bikes of this size on the market, I don’t think you can claim no one wants them. Certainly I do. And among the aforementioned blur of seemingly incongruous letters and numbers are several bike models I’d like to have. In terms of visual appeal, the Hyosung GV250 leads the pack for me.

I’m a cruiser guy.

I think.

I don’t actually know because I’ve never been on a cruiser. But I definitely like their look and the not-worried-about-getting-there-first attitude they exude. I don’t want to take corners at butt-clenching speed. The appeal of motorcycling to me is the freedom to wander, and as Howlin’ Wolf sang: I’m built for comfort, not for speed.

The only cruisers I can find in the below-500cc range are those provided by AJS and Hyosung. I only just found out about AJS this weekend and have had little success in finding reviews of their bikes beyond the usual racist/pointless laments that they are manufactured in China.

More information can be found about South Korean manufacturer Hyosung – most of it positive or neutral. And I’ve found forums in both the United States and Australia singing the praises of the GV250 (also known as the Aquila or Mirage). It’s the right look, the right size and the right price. I want it.

Maybe.

What causes concern for me is Hyosung’s poor UK infrastructure. Go to its (substandard) website, do a search for dealers, and you get a list featuring some dealers who have gone bust or whose websites make no mention of Hyosung. I sent a query about dealers more than a month ago and still have not heard back. The closest Hyosung dealer I can find is GV Bikes (2) in Taunton – some 84 miles away.

All this makes me nervous. I worry I’d find myself in the wilderness in terms of servicing and repair. So, although I love the look I’d probably choose something else.

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(1) It’s a shame that Cleveland CycleWerks bikes are not available in the UK.
(2) Nice website from 1999, fellas.