The Buell Blast is a very good beginner motorcycle, although it is a tad basic compared to other bikes in it's class. Buell is a branch of the Harley Davidson company that makes sport bikes instead of cruisers. People are very passionate about the type of motorcycle they like, usually they either love sports bikes, or they love Harleys. That makes the Buell family of bikes something of an odd duck in the two wheeled world. So how does it measure up when compared to the likes of Suzuki, Honda, Kawasaki or Yamaha?
Well before we dive into the review itself we should get the specifications out of the way. The Buell blast is powered by single cylinder, 4-stroke, 492cc (30.02 cubic inches) engine and it produced about 34 horsepower. This makes it less powerful than either the Suzuki GS500 (44 bhp) or the Kawasaki Ninja 500 (52 bhp), even if it happens to be lighter than the two of them.
The low power and the light weight of the Blast makes it a good middleman between the Ninja 250 and the Ninja 500. The controls of this motorcycle feel very basic however. Like most cruiser style motorbikes there is no tachometer included in the instrument cluster, just a speedometer. Therefore you will have to guess by engine sound what RPM your motorcycle is doing, and trust yourself not to take it past the invisible red line.
A few quirks in need of polish
The transmission on the motorcycle also feels much more clunky compared to it's Japanese competitors, although you won't have any trouble finding neutral with this bike. Buell's generally are hit or miss when it comes to reliability, and the blast is definitely no exception. Some riders claim they never had any problems with the Blast, while others have spent more time wrenching on the bike than actually riding it.
Overall the Buell Blast is a unique motorcycle with a few quirks. That doesn't stop it from being very fun in the curves and twisty roads.
- Lightweight and nimble.
- Less powerful than other 500cc bikes, but more powerful than a 250cc motorcycle.
- Hit or miss reliability.
- Clunky transmission.
- No tachometer.
- Displacement: 492.00 ccm (30.02 cubic inches)
- Engine type: Single cylinder
- Stroke: 4
- Power: 34.00 HP (24.8 kW)) @ 7500 RPM
- Torque: 40.68 Nm (4.1 kgf-m or 30.0 ft.lbs) @ 3200 RPM
- Starter: Electric
- Cooling system: Air
- Gearbox: 5-speed
- Clutch: Wet, multi-plate
- Fuel capacity: 2.80 gallons
- Power/weight ratio: 0.2082 HP/kg
- Dry weight: 360.0 pounds