Additional photos are available here for your perusal.
Back in the late 1960s, Soichiro Honda famously declared that “Honda will never build a two-stroke motorcycle.” And it’s not without good reason; the Big Red had developed a reputation for reliable, user-friendly four-strokes, so Mr. Honda wanted to avoid the costs and complications that would come about were his company to deviate from its bread and butter.
Lucky for us, his engineers had other plans. After Honda pulled out of GP racing in 1967, the team found themselves wanting for a project. Despite Mr. Honda’s sentiments, they got to work on developing a top secret two-stroke motor and took the resulting prototype to a National race in 1971. Just two years later, the CR250M hit the showroom floors and Honda had won its first U.S. National Championship.
For all of the bike’s promise, it did lag behind as the competition found its footing. Thus, Honda went back to the drawing board and released an all-new 250cc two-stroke dubbed the CR250R Elsinore. Along with a right-side output shaft and a reed-valve intake, it also benefitted from a loud, fire-engine red paint scheme. Basic specs for the CR amounted to 36hp, 28lb-ft of torque, and a 234-lb dry weight.
As Cycle World put it in its period review: “The praise could go on all day. Darkness fell before we could feel any fade in the suspension. The staff cowtrailers enjoyed the CR even if they don’t have the skill to use all the power. The experts, our desert racer and professional motocross man, liked the Elsinore as soon as they fired it up. The longer they rode it, the better they liked it.”
There is no odometer, so true mileage is unknown. Per the seller, the “bike has had five heat cycles since restoration. The 57 on the number plate is the builder’s birth year; the bike has never been raced.”
This CR250R has undergone a full restoration. The seller reports that “absolutely no corners were cut in the building of this beautiful classic. Many upgraded and hand-built parts accompany this Red Rocket. All new cables and bearings throughout. Stock bore Kehnin carb jetted for sea level. The gas tank has been professionally painted with clear coat over the decals.”
Not pictured is a Wisco Power Seal piston.
The seller states that there are no cosmetic blemishes of note.