Small wonders

Small wonders
10 ROAD TEST Lexmoto XTR S 125 / White Knuckle WK125 Sport / Rieju RS3 125LC
Fa -—e EE ow
Words: lggy Grainger / Mel Falconer
Pics: Joe Dick
IF YOU'RE reading this as a middle-
aged former teenage bike fan then
you'll no doubt remember your
very first day on the road. You
morphed overnight from a BMX
bandit into a biker; you'd got the
kit, saved up your Saturday job
money (or got a loan/generous
parent) to buy your first 125cc bike,
Despite the skinny tyres,
the Lexmoto rides well
ll wonders
Nishi je E chips
Telephone 01507 522556
a re A e Es
Й = a i
x Gr e
With the En ва {| 25 ana и it's never been
easier (or cheaper) to buy a brand new learner legal bike
got it insured as cheaply as possible
and were out there burning petrol
like it only cost 34 pence a litre... oh,
it did in 1988!
Although they were good times
and petrol was cheap, bike choice
was limited to mostly Japanese
smokers. Fast forward to 2011 and
the world’s your oyster. Far Eastern
imports mean that new bike prices
are often cheaper than they were
back in the day and there are plenty
of different models to choose from.
As good as the best-selling Yamaha
YZF-R125 is, we've picked three
alternative new ‘race to the chippy’
learner legals on the market now.
With our three machines ranging in
price from just £1199 to £3399 we'll
find out if the old adage ‘you get
what you pay for’ is still true.
Lexmoto XTRS 125: £1199
Let's start with the cheapest of the three
test bikes, the Lexmoto XTR S 125.
Visually, the Chinese built XTR S has
wheels skinnier than you'd find on the
aforementioned BMX, the fairing is a
bit weedy looking but ‘fits’ the bike well
with no gaping holes anywhere and the
frame welds aren’t too messy either.
Annoyingly the sidestand flicks up if
you take any weight off it and the
analogue clocks are very 1980s. But let's
put cosmetics to one side for the time
being - remember, this is a brand new
bike with a 12-month warranty for less
than the price of the computer I'm
typing this on. In these cost-straitened
times, that counts for a lot.
Like most modern small capacity bikes
the Lexmoto comes with a simple air-
cooled four-stroke engine; it’s got a five-
speed box and our test bike came with
an aftermarket can already fitted
(available from parts website The XTR $ starts
fairly easily on the button (it also has a
kick-start), but needed a bit of choke
from cold. The skinny looking tyres
didn't really fill me with confidence but
How to ride a 125 W
Currently, to ride a motorcycle
legally on the road you must be 17
years old (16 for a moped) and
have category A (for motorcycles)
on your provisional driving licence.
If you already have a full car
driving licence this automatically
gives you provisional motorcycle
entitlement. If you do not have any
of these licences then you need to
apply for your first provisional
driving licence from the Post
Office or apply online at and go to the
Motoring section. It costs £50 for
the licence.
This provisional motorcycle
entitlement lets learners ride a bike
up to 125cc with a max power
output of 11kW (14.6bhp), with
L-plates. Remember, you cannot
carry pillions or ride on motorways
With a provisional bike licence.
Once you have your provisional
licence, you need to successfully
complete a Compulsory Basic
Training (CBT) course before you
are allowed to ride on the road. If
you have a full car licence issued
before February 1, 2001 and only
want to ride a 50cc restricted
moped then you are not required to
do a CBT, but you will have to if
you want to ride any motorcycle
over 50cc.
On completion of the CBT you will
be issued with a DL196. After two
years, if you want to carry on riding
a learner legal 125cc motorcycle
and don’t want to put in for your full
motorcycle licence, then you will
have to take your CBT again.
If you don’t want the hassle and
expense of redoing your CBT every
two years, then there are currently
three options: the A1 motorcycle
licence, the A2 motorcycle licence
and Direct Access (DA is only for
the over-21s).
For further info on getting started
riding and details on the different
types of full licences go to
Simple air-cooled 124cc motor
I must admit I was pleasantly surprised
once I got the bike out on the road. The
motor performs quite well and will top
70mph; it sounded like a pit bike
through the stainless steel exhaust as }
12 ROAD TEST Lexmoto XTR S 125 / White Knuckle WK125 Sport / Rieju RS3 125LC
well so should impress down the chippy.
The single disc front and rear brakes are
superb and it’s easy to lock the rear
wheel if you're a bit heavy with the back
pedal, great for... err..., backing it in on
your favourite bends! The Lexmoto
actually goes round corners better than
I expected on its 100-section rear
Continental ContiGo rubber so you can
have a bit of fun on it, although the wildly
oscillating fuel gauge is a little off-
putting. Out of our three test bikes the
Lexmoto was second quickest on the
road, and was also the best for pillions,
with a surprisingly well-padded seat and
a handy rear grab rail. The XTR S looks a
little dull in its black paint scheme but
the alternative white and red options
provide more street appeal.
Lexmoto has gone all-out to reassure
potential customers that buying a
cheaper bike doesn’t mean you're on
your own in terms of parts or dealer help.
There is full backup with more than 60
dealers in the UK and currently 15
different learner legal bikes and scooters
in the range, from £839 through to £1599.
Lexmoto XTR S 125
Price: £1199 (plus first reg and tax)
Engine: 124cc, air-cooled, five-speed
four-stroke single
Power: 11.3bhp @ 9000rpm
Tank capacity: 11 litres
Wheels/tyres: Continental ContiGo - F: 80/90 x 17;
R: 100/80 x 17
Colours: Black, white, red
Budget Lexmoto is a smart choice
Which one would we buy?
There's no mistaking that all three
bikes are very different, in looks,
style, price and performance.
The WK sits in the middle price-
wise but would actually be at the
bottom of our three bikes’ shopping
list. The brakes let it down badly
and it’s a bit too slow when put up
against the others. The Rieju is the
coolest looking without a doubt -
it's the best to ride, the quickest but
also the most expensive.
However, if you're looking for a
stunning learner legal bike, and
your budget will stretch to it, then
the RS3 is a winner. Having said that
though, it's not the most practical
(not that many teenagers are
bothered about practicalities, but
hey, we can always dream).
But it was the Lexmoto that
surprised us - on paper it looks a bit
tame and isn’t the fastest 125 on the
planet but it is lively and comfy
enough. It's pretty similar to look at
and ride as a Honda CBF125 and if
you're only keeping a 125 for a year
the wise shopper would spend
£1199 on a half decent bike that is
cheap and cheerful, such as this.
Think of it another way: you can
spend the £2200 you've kept by not
buying a fancier machine on
passing your bike test and saving
towards your first big bike instead.
Was this manual useful for you? yes no
Thank you for your participation!

* Your assessment is very important for improving the work of artificial intelligence, which forms the content of this project

Download PDF