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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hi, I’m Scott, new member here.

I’m looking to get my first sport bike. Looking hard at the R3. Hoping you guys can steer me in the right direction.

Bit of my background, I’ve currently got a ‘18 YZ250X I picked up about 8 months ago. Been riding it about every other weekend. Nothing crazy, just getting back in the swing of things. Rebuilding a ‘98 Yamaha Banshee as well. Quarantine got me back into the sport, as I’m sure it did a lot of people.

Anyways, I’m interested in a sport bike now. I’m 37, rode dirt bikes and quads when I was a teenager, haven’t ridden much until more recently when I got the YZ250X. I had a YZ125, KX125 and a Yamaha Blaster as a kid, so I’m used to a clutch needless to say. Never have I ridden on the street though. I’m signed up for the BRC class at the end of June. Just finished the 3 hour MSF online course.

Since I’m a little older rider and new to sport bikes, would the R3 be a good place to start for me? I’m 6ft, 200 lbs., of course the guy at the local dealership said I was too big for an R3 and said I needed to look at a bigger bike. I don’t agree, but should I be looking at something else for a first bike? I’m not looking to do any track days, or anything crazy. Just enjoy riding and don’t want to die on something like an R6. Yes, I’ve read the “so you wanna get a sport bike” thing already. :ROFLMAO:

Appreciate the advice and help!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
R6 has been discontinued. There is an R7 now instead. This is a relatively "slow" motorcycle compared to R6. Looks like you have plenty of experience so why wouldn't you consider an R7 instead of an R3? It's not a big jump from R3.
I don’t want to start out on too big of a bike at first, engine wise that is. Didn’t know if the R7 would be too aggressive honestly?
 

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There are plenty of tall riders who ride R3s. Don't go by what we think, take one for a decent ride preferably on some twisty roads and on the highway so make sure you find it comfortable. You can always add aftermarket rear sets, handle bars, seat, suspension, etc to cater to your height.

The R7 certainly is a good suggestion from @privilege15. It's a slightly larger bike, but it's not stupid fast so with your existing off-road experience you're not going to go kill yourself. The larger CC might also stop you from getting that urge to get something larger than the R3 which a lot of people get. It's ergonomics are also street focused.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
What do you guys think about a used R3 first to get me used to the street? Since it looks like it will be a while before the R7 hits showroom floors. Just checked the R7 forum and they’re saying pre-orders are sold out. :oops:

 

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What do you guys think about a used R3 first to get me used to the street? Since it looks like it will be a while before the R7 hits showroom floors. Just checked the R7 forum and they’re saying pre-orders are sold out. :oops:

I'm 5'8 and 215 and I feel fine on the R3. I actually like a smaller feeling bike. Get a used one and if it isn't for you you won't lose much if anything just reselling it.
 

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It sounds like you'll be fine with the power of an R3 (5'10, 175lbs), just do some suspension upgrades to match your weight (Ninja 650 shock and proper weighted front springs are an inexpensive start) and I feel you'll have a blast.
 

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What do you guys think about a used R3 first to get me used to the street?
If I could turn back time I would have bought a second hand R3 with low KMs instead of buying new like I did.
 

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Hi Scott. Im 5'9" 185lbs and feel a bit cramped, but i know of an avid R3 pilot that is like 6'5" 300lbs, and he makes it work. IMO the R3 is just a great all around bike that i recommend to almost everyone.
 

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As an initial street bike, the R3 is a good choice in my view, and one of the reasons why is that a decent used one will cost half as much or less as a new R6/7. The ergonomics are comfortable, it's easy to operate, and not intimidating in any way. It's also a really good looking bike, but setting all the reasons to buy an R3 aside, one of the reasons for keeping an R3 is that they're just fun to ride.

On a (related) side note, I have a friend that bought a new Honda CBR1000 a couple of years ago, shortly after getting his MC endorsement. The bike sits in the garage and every time I ask him about it, he has excuses for not riding it. But, we all know that he bought too much bike. So, pay no attention to the "you'll grow into it" theory and get whatever bike you want. If you end up with an R3 and later decide to move to a larger displacement bike, you can keep the R3 because it didn't cost that much in the first place, or if you decide to sell, it won't be difficult to move to a new owner. Good luck and let us know what you end up with.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thanks for all of the advice guys! I appreciate it! The R3 still seems like a good candidate to me for a first bike. After I get my M endorsement, I’m going to go test ride some for sure. My class is at the end of June.

Does anyone know of a good dealer in DFW to work with, or a place to look besides Craigslist or Cycle Trader? The two local dealers I talked to were basically asking MSRP, or wouldn’t budge off their used prices at all.
 

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Hi, I’m Scott, new member here.

I’m looking to get my first sport bike. Looking hard at the R3. Hoping you guys can steer me in the right direction.

Bit of my background, I’ve currently got a ‘18 YZ250X I picked up about 8 months ago. Been riding it about every other weekend. Nothing crazy, just getting back in the swing of things. Rebuilding a ‘98 Yamaha Banshee as well. Quarantine got me back into the sport, as I’m sure it did a lot of people.

Anyways, I’m interested in a sport bike now. I’m 37, rode dirt bikes and quads when I was a teenager, haven’t ridden much until more recently when I got the YZ250X. I had a YZ125, KX125 and a Yamaha Blaster as a kid, so I’m used to a clutch needless to say. Never have I ridden on the street though. I’m signed up for the BRC class at the end of June. Just finished the 3 hour MSF online course.

Since I’m a little older rider and new to sport bikes, would the R3 be a good place to start for me? I’m 6ft, 200 lbs., of course the guy at the local dealership said I was too big for an R3 and said I needed to look at a bigger bike. I don’t agree, but should I be looking at something else for a first bike? I’m not looking to do any track days, or anything crazy. Just enjoy riding and don’t want to die on something like an R6. Yes, I’ve read the “so you wanna get a sport bike” thing already. :ROFLMAO:

Appreciate the advice and help!
Hi, I’m Scott, new member here.

I’m looking to get my first sport bike. Looking hard at the R3. Hoping you guys can steer me in the right direction.

Bit of my background, I’ve currently got a ‘18 YZ250X I picked up about 8 months ago. Been riding it about every other weekend. Nothing crazy, just getting back in the swing of things. Rebuilding a ‘98 Yamaha Banshee as well. Quarantine got me back into the sport, as I’m sure it did a lot of people.

Anyways, I’m interested in a sport bike now. I’m 37, rode dirt bikes and quads when I was a teenager, haven’t ridden much until more recently when I got the YZ250X. I had a YZ125, KX125 and a Yamaha Blaster as a kid, so I’m used to a clutch needless to say. Never have I ridden on the street though. I’m signed up for the BRC class at the end of June. Just finished the 3 hour MSF online course.

Since I’m a little older rider and new to sport bikes, would the R3 be a good place to start for me? I’m 6ft, 200 lbs., of course the guy at the local dealership said I was too big for an R3 and said I needed to look at a bigger bike. I don’t agree, but should I be looking at something else for a first bike? I’m not looking to do any track days, or anything crazy. Just enjoy riding and don’t want to die on something like an R6. Yes, I’ve read the “so you wanna get a sport bike” thing already. :ROFLMAO:

Appreciate the advice and help!
The R3 would be suitable to get you back to street riding. It's light weight, comfy & not too aggressive. Cheap to run too. It's a good all-rounder. Try to get a used one that's in good condition. Once you're used riding again, you can re-sell it & get the new R7. Have fun!
 

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Lots of good advice here.

I am the same size as you and am on my second R3 (first one I rode and sold a couple of years ago). Missed it and bought another one.

I have ridden bigger cruisers, faster crotch rockets, and dirt bikes. With the type of riding I do (lots of city but 100 mile highway stretches regularly, too) I find the R3 to be the most enjoyable. I rode a 250 Ninja a handful of years ago, and while fun, it was definitely a little more “wheezy” getting up to speed. The 300-400 cc segment is kind of the sweet spot for commuting and having enough power for me. Just quick enough but not so fast you will break the speed limit everywhere. I enjoy being able to shift through gears instead of hitting 60 in 1st like the faster bikes. About the only time I have thought about having a little more power is on freeway rides...but honestly, it’ll accelerate in 6th up to 80mph just fine. Anything above that I don’t care to go anymore. I’m around the same age as you and would rather stay alive at this point.

Ergonomics on this bike to me are great. I normally like to stop every 45-60 minutes anyways, and any longer rides than 3 hours in a day my back gets a little stiff. It is nothing like the super sport bikes.

I used to live in DFW (didn’t ride there, though)...it gets hot there in the summer!

You might check Facebook marketplace, too. That is where I bought my recent R3. I am a fan of buying used, especially bikes. It is too easy to drop them or scratch them up to bother buying new IMO. My ‘15 R3 I bought for $3,000 with under 2000 miles on it (back in ‘18). My current ‘17 R3 was basically lightly scratched from parking lot drops (nothing cracked) with 12500 miles on it and I picked it up a few months ago for $1750. If you shop around there are decent deals to be had.

Best of luck!
 

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Really good discussion. I just picked up a 2018 R3 with about 10000 miles on the clock for cheap. My previous bikes were a Ninja 250R and a CBR 125R. This is my first bike with ABS. ABS is nice, but not a necessity in my opinion, for any rider, let alone someone who has as much experience with motorbikes as you. You sound like you're level-headed and have your s$%t together - you won't be street racing or red-lining the bike the first time you try it. So you'll figure out the brakes very quickly.

I'm 5'8" so I'll defer to the other guys who are more your size who have already commented on whether you'll be cramped on the R3 or not. But I agree with Dreadwil, I would try to find a used bike rather than buying new. And from your description of how you plan on using the bike, I think an R3 would work fine for you and you'll love the bike. My Ninja 250R was a fantastic bike, I loved it dearly. I only upgraded to an R3 because I had a good deal I couldn't pass up. I'm like you, I'm a little older, I ride around town and occasionally on the freeway, I enjoy riding but I'm not looking to race or anything like that. The R3 works perfectly for my needs, and I think it would work for you too. Ninja 300 or Ninja 400 would also be good choices. Good luck.
 

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I don't know if this will be after the fact, but anyway, IMO, ABS is not important. In fact, you might be better off in the long run learning how to properly use the brakes WITHOUT ABS. It will give you a better/deeper mechanical understanding of what is actually happening when you get on the brakes at various speeds and with varying pressure on the pedal/lever.

If you are still looking for a bike, one thing to consider regarding which model to go with is how fast you want to cruise and how easily you want to be able to do that. The R3 has enough power to do 85 all day in almost any road conditions, for a lighter rider. It will still do that fine most of the time with a 200 pound rider, but it will occasionally struggle. If you don't ever want to experience engine bog or have to struggle to maintain higher speeds like that, you might want a bigger bike (a 650 two cylinder might be good, as others have said). If you're okay with cruising a little slower or at least occasionally down shifting and going slower on some hills or whatever, then the R3 will generally have plenty of power. You won't ever have any issues just maintaining 65 mph or whatever (even if that means down shifting).
 

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Hi, I’m Scott, new member here.

I’m 37, rode dirt bikes and quads when I was a teenager.... Just finished the 3 hour MSF online course.

Since I’m a little older rider and new to sport bikes, would the R3 be a good place to start for me? I’m 6ft, 200 lbs., of course the guy at the local dealership said I was too big for an R3 and said I needed to look at a bigger bike. I don’t agree...
I'm 63 years old, 210 pounds and ride an R3. You are not too big. The bike is a complete riot to run around on, will do the highway, and has a great motor in it. However, you may need to consider suspension spring rates. I found the stock setup on the earlier bikes (<2019) too soft for me. The 1st gen bikes, up through 2018 have .66kg fork springs, great for a rider in the <140 pound range, but are noticeably soft for heavier riders - creating a lot of nose dive under braking mostly, and too much pitch for-aft when accelerating hard. The 2nd gen from 2019 onward have .80kg fork springs good for riders up to 185lbs - which is close and may even work fine for regular street commuting and around town riding. You can get a set of springs for $110. I use .825kg on my '17 R3, took all of 10 minutes to install. The rear shock on the 1st gen is also a little soft, with fairly harsh compression dampening. The 2019 up shock is a little stiffer, with more basic preload, and better daming profile (less compression and more rebound damping). A near new take-off from a 2019 and later bike can be had for less than $60. and takes less than an hour to install. The two adjustments will make the bike right for you weight, and you'll not find a more fun bike to play on than the R3. If you buy a new '20 or later bike, you will likely not need to change anything at all, since they have the post '19 springs and rear shock in them already. But there are good deals on low mile 1st gen bikes that are really hard to pass up.

I've not regretted buying mine for a minute.
 

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Just to add some additional perspective, I am on the opposite spectrum size wise. I’m 5’6” and 165lbs. I was worried the R3 would be too big as a first bike and considered a CBR250 and a Ninja250. But after sitting on an R3 and watching the reviews, I pulled the trigger. Now that I’ve had this for 5 years, I absolutely love it. Sure, sometimes I wish for something more powerful but honestly, it’s SO well balanced size wise. And it has one thing that other ’upgrade ‘ bikes don’t have - a fuel gauge. Small thing, but so many bigger bikes don’t have this so I’m staying with mine for now. I also love the more upright riding stance which makes it easier to ride for longer periods.

I say go for it
 
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