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ADV BikesFirst Ride: CSC Motorcycles Cyclone RX-3 Review

First Ride: CSC Motorcycles Cyclone RX-3 Review

CSC brings the 'fun factor' with its light and nimble 250cc Adventure Bike.

Published on 11.26.2014

The Adventure Touring category has grown prosperous over the years by focusing on liter-class Adventure Bikes that generate the most profit. Meanwhile, many riders are discontent with the current options. They seek an inexpensive, light and nimble Adventure Bike to explore the world on; a bike that’s easy to maneuver and pick up when the inevitable fall occurs off-road. A motorcycle that comes equipped for long-distance touring from the factory, without the need for excessive aftermarket modifications.

CSC Motorcycles, a California importer of small Chinese bikes, saw there was a huge gap in the market and decided it was time to shake up the industry. It was a bold move when CSC announced last August that they would begin importing a small Chinese-built Adventure Bike to the United States. Not only would they need to convince people that a 250cc Adventure Bike is a smart choice, but they would also have to overcome public perceptions about Chinese build quality.

ADV Pulse was one of the first publications to inspect the CSC Cyclone RX-3 and considering the low price, we were left impressed with what we saw. It’s a legitimate Adventure Bike with a modern fuel-injected liquid-cooled counter-balanced engine, 6-speed transmission, touring windscreen, large fuel tank and lockable luggage. The bike has a lot to offer off-road riders as well, with a metal skid plate, crash bars, wire-spoked wheels, tapered handlebars, platform-style footpegs and an adjustable rear shock.

Zongshen RX3 250cc Adventure Bike
The Zongshen RX3 offers a fuel-injected liquid-cooled 25 hp single-cylinder engine with a 6-speed transmission and a full range of standard touring equipment.


The CSC Cyclone RX-3 may be small in stature but with a price tag of just $3,495, it’s a lot of bike for the money. With its modern Adventure Bike styling, it’s also not a bad looking bike either. While we didn’t find many nits to pick during our initial inspection, we reserved judgement for the day when we actually had a chance to ride the bike.

Last week we got the call from CSC Motorcycles inviting us to a full-day of testing the Cyclone RX-3 in Southern California. The guided tour offered a chance to evaluate the bike on a combination of highway and city riding, along with some world-class twisty asphalt and rocky fire roads in the Angeles National Forest.

In The City
Our ride began on city streets where we got a feel for the Cyclone RX-3. It’s always a big shock jumping on a 25 horsepower bike after just riding in on a 100+ horsepower machine. You instantly feel how much lighter and maneuverable the bike is, and the Cyclone seems even lighter than the claimed 359 pound dry weight. Tall gearing on a 250cc bike means acceleration is less than impressive and you spend a lot of time at full throttle, but the power is more than adequate for quick overtakes on city streets.

The riding position is compact but doesn’t feel cramped for 6-footers. Handlebars and footpegs feel comfortably placed for longer rides and the two-piece seat is flat, firm and supportive. The seating position provides a commanding view of the road ahead, while the attractively styled mirrors offer a vibration-free look at the road behind you. A modern digital display shows speed, time, odometer, trip mileage and water temperature. An electronic fuel gauge and gear indicator are a nice touch on a budget bike, while the simple analog tachometer makes it easy to keep an eye on the revs for perfectly timed shifts.

CSC Cyclone RX-3 highway riding
The RX-3 offers comfortable long-range touring ergonomics, even for taller riders.

The EFI fueling feels spot on with no hesitation, surging or flat spots under acceleration. The six-speed gearbox is smooth-shifting, but can be difficult to get into neutral at stop lights. The front brake offers linear and predictable braking but requires a solid squeeze with three fingers to be effective during emergency stops.

Highway Performance
Merging on to the freeway onramp provided an opportunity for a full throttle acceleration test through the gears. The Cyclone’s single-cylinder motor makes a nice whine when revving up to the 9,000-rpm redline. The engine doesn’t make much power until you reach 7,000 rpm; anything below that and you’re just making noise. Yet, staying in the powerband and choosing the right gear are all part of the fun of riding a 250cc motorcycle.

On the freeways of Southern California, the flow of traffic typically moves between 75-85 mph and this is where the Cyclone feels least at home. The bike is happiest if you settle into a cruising speed of 65 mph. The bike has enough torque on tap to keep up with traffic in the slower lanes, but passing takes some strategic planning. There is a noticeable buzz under full acceleration, but this smooths out once you get up to speed. Under hard acceleration, we encountered a false neutral between 5th and 6th gears on a few occasions, but the problem was easily resolved with more deliberate shifts.

The tall windscreen does a good job of keeping the air off your body and head, providing enough wind protection to ease fatigue; it’s also short enough that it doesn’t obstruct your field of vision. We noticed the speedometer is overly optimistic though, indicating 75 mph when our GPS showed we were traveling at around 65 mph. CSC has informed us that they are aware of this problem and they are working with the factory to ensure production bikes have better calibrated speedometers.

High winds-not-a-problem for the Cyclone RX-3
The Cyclone RX-3 maintained composure at speed even during a high wind advisory.

One of our biggest questions before the test was how would the Cyclone compare in acceleration to a Kawasaki KLR650. The KLR650 is probably the closest competition for those in the market for a low-cost fully-equipped Adventure Bike. On paper, the power-to-weight ratios of the two bikes are similar, so we brought a 2008 KLR650 along for the ride for comparison. On the highway, we had an opportunity to perform some rolling acceleration test to see how the two bikes compare. Accelerating from 55 mph to 75 mph, it became clear right away that the KLR650 has a significant power advantage. The little RX-3 always felt stable at high speeds though, even during a high wind advisory that had us all leaning sideways into the wind.

Riding Off-Road
Turning off the highway, we arrived at a dirt road in the Lytle Creek area of the Angeles National Forest. We rode on graded dirt roads for 6.5 miles to get a feel for the bike’s off-road characteristics. Most of the trail was smooth and offered few challenges, but one section did include a steep descent with large rocks.

The Cyclone’s suspension gives riders a feeling of control and provides instant feedback from the trail. Its lower weight and seat height, along with the smaller wheels, inspire immediate confidence on tougher terrain. It’s a highly maneuverable bike that can quickly change direction and most riders can put both feet firmly on the ground when needed. The turning radius of the RX-3 is excellent and you can quickly turn the bike around on a hill without much strain.

CSC Cyclone RX-3 Adventure Bike Review
The excellent maneuverability of the Cyclone RX-3 is confidence inspiring off-road.

Platform-style footpegs provide excellent grip and the handlebars offer good leverage for aggressive stand-up riding (although the bars are a bit too low for taller riders). The tall touring windscreen also remains safely out of contact with your helmet in the bumps. Traction off-road with the road-biased tires was better than expected.

The Cyclone’s chassis feels tight and the suspension is firm and well-dampened. The taught suspension works well for aggressive stand up riding and the bike is able to carry 240 pounds of rider and gear at a high rate of speed. However, the suspension lacked suppleness over smaller bumps.

Steep inclines require a bit of clutch work to keep forward momentum. Power is adequate, but the bike’s tall gearing hurts its climbing ability. The Cyclone’s excellent maneuverability makes it easy to navigate around rocks and other obstacles. However, the small wheels can get a bit jittery, making it harder to maintain a clean line through rocky terrain.

Hill Climb on the CSC Cyclone RX-3 250
Steep uphills on a 250cc require generous amounts of clutch slippage and throttle.

While we only had a short time with the bike on basic off-road trails, the Cyclone RX-3 seemed very capable of handling more difficult terrain. Hopefully, we’ll have an opportunity in the future to put the Cyclone through more rigorous testing to get a better sense of its long-term durability in the dirt.

Riding The Twisties
Back on asphalt, the 250cc Cyclone strained to keep up with the KLR650s in our group as we climbed 2,600 feet over 7-miles on Lone Pine Canyon Road entering the city of Wrightwood. The bike had just enough torque to maintain the 55-mph speed limit up the steep grade. Heading back towards Los Angeles, we continued climbing over the San Gabriel Mountains as we reached our maximum elevation of 8,000 feet. Angeles Crest Highway 2 offers some of the best twisty asphalt in California, giving us the perfect opportunity to see how the 250cc CSC Cyclone RX-3 would keep up with the larger Adventure Bikes in our group.

The Cyclone RX-3 feels right at home in the tight twisties. Ground clearance is plentiful and the tires offer ample grip when leaned over on their edge. Corner speed is key with smaller bikes and the CSC likes to be leaned. Any ground lost on the straightaways to faster bikes can quickly be made up in the tighter sections.

Corner Speed CSC Motorcycles Cyclone RX-3
The CSC Cyclone RX-3 excels in the twisties with plenty of ground clearance and maneuverability on tap.

The bike’s small wheels give it a light flickable feel, allowing mid-turn line changes with ease. The Cyclone’s firm suspension helps keep it stable in the turns but can feel harsh on bumpy asphalt and potholes. The firm seat and suspension can begin to cause soreness at the end of the day. However, we didn’t try adjusting the rear shock to soften the ride.

After traveling roughly 100 miles, the digital display began warning us that we were low on fuel already (we expected at least 200 miles from the 4.2 gallon tank). When we stopped for fuel, we were surprised to find the tank was still half full. CSC assured us that this is another known calibration issue that they plan to resolve with the factory before the production bikes arrive in the U.S.

CSC Cyclone RX-3 at Newcomb's Ranch
We made a stop for coffee at the popular biker hangout, Newcomb’s Ranch on Angeles Crest Highway 2.

At the end of the day, we were amazed with how little fuel the Cyclone RX-3 burned. After spending most of the day at full throttle climbing 5,000 feet, the bike used less than 2 gallons of fuel in 120 miles. Claims of 70 mpg under normal conditions seem well within reach. We felt like our bodies had used less physical energy as well. The light-weight maneuverability of the Cyclone RX-3 reduced the fatigue we would normally experience after muscling around a heavy Adventure Bike all day.

Final Thoughts
The CSC Cyclone RX-3 reminds us of all the fun that can be had riding a small bike. With a 250cc engine, you may be limited on power but never short on smiles. It’s a less intimidating entrance into the world of Adventure Riding that keeps the fun factor high and allows new riders to polish their skills.

CSC Cyclone RX-3 Screw Missing

The only problem we experienced was the chain slider bolts vibrating loose.

While we didn’t have enough time with the bike to assess its long-term durability, our first experience riding the bike increased our confidence. Although we did notice at the end of the day that a few screws holding on the plastic chain slider had vibrated loose. It’s hard to be critical of this detail when we’ve seen countless screws loosen on bikes costing five times as much. We expected to find more at fault with the RX-3 because of its budget price, but the truth is the bike doesn’t leave much to want for if you are in the market for an inexpensive, fuel efficient, light and nimble Adventure Bike.

With a sticker price of just $3,495, the new CSC undercuts the Kawasaki KLR650 by $3,100. The Cyclone RX-3 may have an acceleration disadvantage, but its lighter weight and more agile handling give it advantages in the turns; and all that extra cash saved can be applied toward accessories, riding gear and your travel fund.

Check out the video footage from our test of the CSC Cyclone RX-3 here.


Ground clearance:
Seat height:
Dry weight:
Max Load:
Engine type:
Compression ratio:
Fuel system:
Claimed Top Speed:
Starter system:
Suspension Front:
Suspension Rear:
Brakes Front:
Brakes Rear:
Tires Front:
Tires Rear:
Fuel tank capacity:
55.12 in (1,400 mm)
8.27 in (210 mm)
31.30 in (795 mm)
359 lbs (163 kg)
331 lbs (150 kg)
4-stroke, liquid-cooled, single cylinder
11.5 : 1
Fuel injection
24.8 HP
16.5 lb.-ft.
84 mph
Inverted Telescopic, 5.1 in. (130mm) travel
Link Type Adjustable Shock, 5.6 in. (142mm) travel
dual-piston caliper, single disc
single-piston caliper, single disc
100/R90-18″, Tube Type
130/R70-15″, Tube Type
4.23 gal (16.0 L)

Photo Gallery

CSC Cyclone RX-3 in the San Gabriel Mountains

CSC Cyclone RX-3 Off-Road Ready Adventure Bike

CSC Cyclone RX-3 top box and panniers

CSC Cyclone RX-3 and the Kawasaki KLR 650

CSC Cyclone RX-3 Angeles National Forest

CSC Cyclone RX-3 first test

CSC Cyclone RX-3 test

CSC Cyclone RX-3 Off Road Test

CSC Cyclone RX-3 off road testing

CSC Cyclone RX-3 review

CSC Cyclone RX-3 steep hill climb

Easy Descending on the CSC Cyclone RX-3

CSC Cyclone RX-3 Cornering in the Twisties

Road Testing the CSC Cyclone RX-3

Testing-the-CSC Cyclone RX-3 250cc Adventure Bike


CSC Cyclone RX-3 angeles crest highway

CSC Cyclone RX-3 Exiting The Tunnel

Photos By Bill Lieras and Jim Downs

Author: Rob Dabney

Rob Dabney started a lifelong obsession with motorcycles at the age of 15 when he purchased his first bike – a 1982 Honda MB5. Through his 20’s and 30’s he competed in off-road desert races, including the Baja 250, 500 and 1000. Eventually, his proclivity for exploration led him to dual sport and adventure riding. Rob’s never-ending quest to discover what’s around the next bend has taken him on Adventures in Latin America, Africa, Europe, Asia, and throughout the American West. As a moto journalist, he enjoys inspiring others to seek adventure across horizons both near and far.

Author: Rob Dabney

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November 26, 2014 7:23 pm

I’m not sure that a $3500 bike will have the build quality necessary for a durable adventure bike. I’d like to see a long-term report before I open my wallet. I also think that a 250 just doesn’t make enough power for this type of bike. Too bad it’s not a 350! By the way is it 359 lbs wet or dry? The article says 359 dry but the specifications state wet.

Rob Dabney
Rob Dabney
November 26, 2014 7:40 pm
Reply to  Jesse

Thanks Jesse. 359 lbs. Is the claimed “Dry” Weight according to CSC.

Mike Giuliano
Mike Giuliano
December 3, 2014 4:09 am
Reply to  Jesse

There’s a guy on a forum I’m a member of that reports 67,000 miles on an older Zongshen, andaccording to him it has been reliable. The power is another thing. I’ve toured on my klx250 quite a bit, including one 2 week trip in Colorado where I was over 12,000′ loaded with camping gear. A 250 is enough power as long as you don’t want to ride highway all day. My bike will do 70 as long as you want to, but it feels better going 55 or so on the back roads. I have a big bike for longer highway trips.

November 26, 2014 8:22 pm

I like the idea of a smaller, 250 – 500 cc adventure bike. I wish the CRF250L had a larger fuel tank. How about a standard 3.0 – 3.5 gallon tank?

albert gonzalez
albert gonzalez
November 26, 2014 9:42 pm

I do believe that this bike will fill a void in the market since the major manufacturers don’t have anything in this size in the adventure category. I already have a GS and DRZ but I will definitely be buying one of these bikes. The price is great and even though we won’t know the long term durability of the bike I think that it is a bargain for what you get. If you try to get a similar bike with all the features and accessories made by one of the big names you will be spending 8k. This bike will send a ripple through the market and if it does well maybe other manufacturers like Yamaha will bring the smaller bikes to the US. Bike like the Tenere 250 come to mind. Overall it will be interesting to ride this bike on a long trip.

Rob Dabney
Rob Dabney
November 26, 2014 11:37 pm

Hi Albert. The RX-3 would make a great 2nd, 3rd or 1st bike. A small bike war between top mfgs is currently going on with the sport bike class. Kawasaki redesigned the Ninja 250 in 2008 and it was a huge success. Honda jumped in with a CBR250. Next Kawasaki went to 300cc that was even more popular and Honda followed with the CBR300. Now this year, Yamaha and KTM are getting in on the action with the R3 and RC390. Let’s hope this repeats some time soon with small ADV Bikes.

dav k
dav k
November 26, 2014 10:11 pm

Well I ve read 1 ride through china on one. 15 000 K . Keep trashing rear wheel bearing . Few issues beyond that. another review Europe seem to find issues with water after being washed with pressure washer . It causing issues with the Fuel injection . Seem like the wring loom wasn’t waterproofed . When someone done 20 000 miles plus on one then I ll be interested. The other issue is the importer doesn’t have a wide dealer base in all the USA. brake downs mean your many be waiting for parts . Nice bike but at that price there KLR used and already outfitted for travel.

Rob Dabney
Rob Dabney
November 26, 2014 11:12 pm
Reply to  dav k

Hi Dav.

From what we understand CSC recommends owners take their bike to any reputable motorcycle mechanic for repairs. It’s a simple enough motorcycle that it doesn’t take a certified engineer to work on it. If you need parts, your mechanic can order directly from CSC and receive them in a matter of days. Time waiting for parts should be similar to what you would expect from most top mfg dealerships (Honda, KTM, BMW, etc.), since they usually don’t hold inventory. The money CSC saves by not maintaining a large dealership network is reflected in the price. We’ll have to see how this strategy pans out.

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November 27, 2014 12:04 am

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November 27, 2014 12:39 am

Of course, motorcycles being hard to shift into neutral from a stop, is a quite common occurance. I’ve owned many that did that. If it’s not a clutch adjustment problem, then you learn to live with it by snicking it into neutral just before the bike comes to a stop. I had a 2001 Kawasaki KLR250 that exhibited the false neutral when shifting from 1st into 2nd. On that bike, I cured the problem when I decided to try a synthetic oil. Once I changed to that oil, on that bike, the problem never occured again.
As for the bike only being a 250, we’ll see. I bet they sell a bunch of these to riders like me that appreciate a smaller, lighter dual sport.

Brian Cary
Brian Cary
November 27, 2014 1:54 am

With a dry weight of 359 lbs it is heavier than most other 250s and even some 650s, if they cut the weight it would be impressive though.

Rob Dabney
Rob Dabney
December 1, 2014 8:16 am
Reply to  Brian Cary

Hi Brian. While we agree the RX-3 could stand to lose some pounds, it’s hard to compare it to bikes that don’t have racks, windscreen, skid plate, big tank, crashbars, etc. Once you add those accessories to the other bikes, they will probably be closer in weight to the RX-3.

November 27, 2014 12:28 pm

Boy, this sounds like a winner. What a great one day road test, you seemed to put it through quite a bit in one day. And the cost is about half of a KLR or XR650L,

albert gonzalez
albert gonzalez
November 27, 2014 2:50 pm

Hi Rob, you are right about the small sports class. I also failed to mention that the test ride was very impressive. The failure of the KLR’s rear caliper also prove that any bike can have a problem every now and then. I like long rides and I have had my share of problems with bikes that cost 5 or 6 times as much. The frame of my old GS1150 broke in the middle of a trip to Guatemala so I have come to accept that every now and then something will break. The DRZ has proven to be one of the best bikes I ever had. It is bulletproof because of its simplicity and that is exactly what I hope the RX-3 will be. Chinese manufacturers have come a long way and with the proper quality control they can produce very good bikes. I have owned a couple of chinese bikes and quads in the past and other than loose bolts every now and then I have been satisfied with their product. The first thing I will do to the RX-3 is go over every bolt with blue loctite and check or replace every bearing. Then again I do that to every bike after a purchase. The RX-3 comes with features that I really like such as a full fairing, luggage, fuel injection, fuel gauge, windscreen and superb styling. I can only think of 2 things that I will do to it, aux lights and a proper center stand. I am looking forward to more reports on this little gem.

Rob Dabney
Rob Dabney
December 1, 2014 8:00 am

Hi Albert. Yes, one of the KLR’s had 2 screws fall out that hold on the rear brake caliper on our test ride. That’s definitely a bit more serious than the chain slider. Looks like CSC will be offering many accessories for owners to customize their bikes. Post some pictures of yours on our Facebook page when you get your new RX-3.

Keith B.
Keith B.
November 27, 2014 10:50 pm

The rear tire size is going to have no choices for replacement, very uncommon size. Accessories and replacement parts will be hard to obtain. Nice to see an option that is affordable. Usually get what you pay for. Hope it isn’t junk.

Rob Dabney
Rob Dabney
December 1, 2014 8:21 am
Reply to  Keith B.

Hi Keith. CSC will offer a full range of accessories for the bike, including a 17″ rear wheel. They’ll have replacement tires and will even a knobby tire option for off-road use.

Bruce Bacon
Bruce Bacon
November 28, 2014 9:08 am

Can you give me a 350 twin version of this for around $5k?

November 28, 2014 4:27 pm

As soon as I read Chinese. I laughed, because they named it cyclone. Cy-clone. Chinese aren’t known for a sense of humor but they’ve outdone themselves with this nice piece of machinery, and the name…haha

November 29, 2014 8:38 am

Yes boys, size matters! 🙂

In the case of adventure bikes, which are bikes you take off the tarmac and sometimes need to lift out of miserable situations like deep vegetation, bushes, waterfilled holes etc, less weight is always a positive factor! Already with the 690 enduro I am not affraid to try some roads where I had turned around with the 990.

That’s why I am eagerly waiting for delivery of my new CCM GP 450 Adveture, which is even lighter than that one here. However quality comes with a price tag, you can’t normally can’t expect cheap things to last as long or be as well engineered as more pricy components, even if you can cut down on labor costs. So I am a bit in doubt about the longtime reliability of that bike!

Sean Clancy
Sean Clancy
November 29, 2014 11:44 am

15″ tire at the back? Why not go 17/18″ rear, 21″ front, and not re invent the wheel?
Seems like a neat idea for a bike, and I wish them luck . 340 lbs doesn’t seem to be a very big payload, most of the japanese bikes are 400lbs+ for a payload.
Nice to see competition in this segment of the market. The manufacturer might want to promote the bike by having someone ride the TAT and/or TCAT on it, and promote it.
Marketing the bike will be the challenge.

Rob Dabney
Rob Dabney
December 1, 2014 8:36 am
Reply to  Sean Clancy

Hi Sean. CSC will offer a 17″ rear wheel as an option for the RX-3. Putting larger wheels on the bike will improve its stability, but at the expense of maneuverability and seat height. The smaller wheels will increase confidence for new off-road riders. If you are an experienced off-road rider that rides aggressively, then a larger set of wheels makes sense.

November 30, 2014 3:14 am

In my neck of the woods you could get a pristine, very low-mileage Kawasaki KLR250 for around $2500. You could put on a rear rack and some good quality soft bags for another $500, and you’d have a vary capable, high-quality dual-sport for $500 less than you’d pay for the Cyclone. Kawasaki obviously has a much better dealer network. The parts on the Kawasaki (like the rear shock, wheels, bearings, switch gear, etc.) are no doubt higher quality than those on the Chinese bike. The rear tire on the Kawi is a standard size, as opposed to the oddball 15 inch tire on the Cyclone. My ’03 Kawasaki KLR250 now has 26,000 miles on it, and it’s still going strong. I’ve never replaced a wheel bearing, or had to do any engine work. Nothing more serious than a broken spoke in 26,000 miles. Do you think someone who buys one of these Chinese bikes will be able to say the same after 26,000 miles and 11 years of ownership? Seriously?

November 30, 2014 12:36 pm
Reply to  Dutch

Yes. Seriously.

November 30, 2014 12:41 pm
Reply to  Joe

Maybe I spoke too soon. I don’t think you’ll have to replace the spoke. Full disclosure…I work for CSC.

February 28, 2015 5:34 am
Reply to  Dutch

Dutch: Sure…but the Cyclone has electric start, EFI, a 4-gallon tank, and liquid cooling. IIRC, the KLR250 has none of those.

Steve Lomanoco
Steve Lomanoco
December 1, 2014 3:17 pm

Thanks for honest review, job well done. It did help me decide not to get one, you get what you pay for and I read a lot more negative than positive. I’ll just need to save some more dollars.

Steve Lomanoco
Steve Lomanoco
December 13, 2014 2:13 pm
Reply to  Steve Lomanoco

If the 15″tire is unable to get here in the states the m/c should be built for use here in the states. Why should the consumer need the buy the correct rim and tire as a option. After looking into this company further I’ve read that their Mustang repo’s also have a speedo that is off and years later CSC still does not have a fix for it. I’m seeing to many red flags about this m/c and CSC

February 28, 2015 5:38 am
Reply to  Steve Lomanoco

CSC’s website now shows a 100/90-18 front tire and a 120/70-17 rear tire as standard.

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Fran Tully
Fran Tully
December 4, 2014 12:11 am

I got a good look at the RX-3 at the show in Long Beach, but haven’t had the opportunity to ride it yet. It looked pretty sturdy, and your tests seemed to work it pretty good. Thank you for the great review. One of my concerns is the carrying capacity. I’m curious to see how it climbs in loose gravel with a full load. I believe there is definitely a niche to fill. If this lives up to the expectations, this could be a big seller. I’m looking forward to testing it and putting it through the paces.

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December 11, 2014 8:17 pm

Biggest problem I see for even a casual adventure rider is the choice of tire/wheel size. There are exactly zero aftermarket 130/70-15 tires available with any retailer I’ve been able to find. That means you’re pretty much limited to the OEM tires, which look to be an 80/20 type design. Probably adequate for most of the likely buyers in most of the likely use scenarios. But unlike a bike with a more conventional tire size, this one pretty much requires that you replace the bike entirely if your needs change somewhat. But of course, that additional flexibility is part of what you’d pay more for in a different bike.

Brad W.
Brad W.
December 11, 2014 11:50 pm

@Michael, check the comments section. CSC will have a 17″ as well as a knobby option. I can’t wait to get one myself. Looks like a fun little bike.

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Stephen Bogert
Stephen Bogert
December 20, 2014 4:26 pm

I wonder if they will build a size bigger model, something from about 350 to 500cc, It could still be light and inexpensive but more capable on the road.

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Jim Martin
Jim Martin
February 14, 2015 8:27 am

Can’t wait to see how this bike does and what it does to the collective idea of what an adventure bike is.

February 15, 2015 8:49 am

5’8″ and 150 lbs. This sounds like a perfect match for me. I’m used to riding even smaller bikes(153cc FZ16) so this is an upgrade for me. I’m a newbie so I don’t mind it being relatively smaller than most adventure bikes out there. Looking almost like a R1200GS is a plus too as I like that styling very much. T I also like the idea of getting very high mpg. Only concern now is if itll be as tough as my Yamaha. I hope so. Planning to ride across America on this thing someday.

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April 10, 2015 2:17 pm

This might be my new favorite bike. Love the way the bike looks! I can’t wait to get a couple of these added to my stable.

If you are a Cyclone RX-3 enthusiast or want to learn more, check out:

It's Here - 2015 CSC Cyclone RX3 - Bike-urious
May 12, 2015 8:01 am

[…] after some first rides from the press (here’s one from, here’s one from ADVPulse), it’s now available for purchase. (adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || […]

What Motorcycle Fits Your Style? | thats him officer
May 15, 2015 12:42 pm

[…] ADV Pulse Review  […]

TransAmerica Trail on Multi? - Page 3 - - The Ultimate Ducati Forum
June 17, 2015 7:50 am

[…] Mckenzie, TN, USA Posts: 2,262 Use one of these…it's a disposable ADV bike. First Ride: CSC Motorcycles Cyclone RX-3 Review – ADV Pulse . googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display("Ducati_ms_1x1_Zedo_PS_Forum"); }); […]

July 31, 2015 9:09 pm

While there are many questions that can be raised about long term reliability,they can only be answered in time….What i find strange is Kawasaki can’t make the KLR with any of the more modern conveniences that are expected of a motorcycle nowadays. I mean seriously Kawasaki? We can’t even get a fuel gauge let alone a digital tach or speedo or god forbid EFI. Yet a KLR costs twice as much. Bad form. Somewhat regretting the purchase of my new 2013. It isn’t a particularly good motorcycle in stock form. it’s actually embarrassing and almost unridable as stock and required 1500 dollars of mods/upgrades to allow it to pull away from a stop sign without stalling and have crash protection equal to what this bike comes with standard….and lets not even talk about warranty because i can feel my blood pressure rising

December 6, 2015 1:44 pm

i did like your review , But a 250cc V a 650cc , ? not sure if that was fair ?
i think your little RX 3 is a better bike than the honda 250 NX adventure bike or the kawasaki 250 adventure , in the UK the cyclone RX3 is called the honley RX3 but it`s the same bike ,
im buying the Honley RX3 250 for myself for xmas ,
i have not had a bike for some years , the last being a kawasaki 175cc , B roads around here and easy going green lane`s so big bikes are no go , and im only 5`5 but over 50 and out to here fun , and a adventure in the new year , i thought your review was very good ,,but the cc size was a bit unfair . but yes very good ,nice one

Rob Dabney
Rob Dabney
December 6, 2015 2:09 pm
Reply to  paul

Hi Paul. I agree that the KLR 650 is a bit unfair to compare to the 250cc RX-3. However, there aren’t any fully-equipped adventure bikes in the 250cc or even 400cc range sold new here in the US to compare it to (NX250 last sold here in 1990). From a price, power, equipment and size perspective, the KLR650 is arguably its closest competition. Thanks for your comments!

Sayyed Bashir
Sayyed Bashir
December 14, 2015 10:29 pm

“We noticed the speedometer is overly optimistic though, indicating 75 mph when our GPS showed we were traveling at around 65 mph.” In Europe all bikes are required to show 10% higher speed. My new 2015 KTM 1190 Adventure R is the same way.

Rob Dabney
Rob Dabney
December 14, 2015 10:43 pm
Reply to  Sayyed Bashir

Hi Sayyed. Glad you brought this up. Since this test we understand that the speedometer accuracy has been improved significantly on the production bikes. The speedo’s optimism is now more in line with what’s normal.

Eastern Tibet Motorcycle Tour – The Land of Snows
May 26, 2016 10:17 pm

[…] Plateau. For a review of the motorcycle used for this journey, please go to the following links: Zongshen (Cyclone) RX3 and Road to Rubber Review. The majority of the roads during this journey are paved and in overall […]

Guy Dashnea
Guy Dashnea
March 13, 2017 8:33 am

Was wondering if there were any upgrades like pipe, booster plug, etc that can be added to give it the extra “UMP” that a rider may want?

Rob Dabney
Rob Dabney
March 13, 2017 11:41 am
Reply to  Guy Dashnea

We aren’t aware of any aftermarket parts that will boost engine performance, but CSC does offer a large selection of accessories for the RX3. Check it out here:

CSC RXR: A New Stripped-Down Version of the 'RX3 Adventure' - ADV Pulse
May 16, 2017 9:52 am

[…] Motorcycles announced their new RXR motorcycle, a no-frills variant of their popular RX3 adventure touring motorcycle. The new RXR has the same powertrain, chassis, seat, wheels, and bodywork as the […]

December 16, 2020 5:56 pm

Dear Rob,
I am a fan of motor bike.
I used to drive Pulsar 150 form Bajaj.
I am planning to change a new bike but I am not sure to choose Pulsar 220 or Kawasaki Ninja® ZX™-10R supersport bike
Please help!

Rob Dabney
Rob Dabney
December 16, 2020 7:03 pm

Choosing between a Pulsar 220 and a ZX10R, that’s a hard one. 🙂


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