Originally Posted by sonic reducer
just for clarity, what are the differences between the '95 and lower, and '96+ bikes?
I'm no expert on this material, but I'm pretty sure that almost every part changed from 95 to 96. It was a full redesign of the bike. Having said that, the overall result is quite similar. All of the bodywork is different, the suspension is different, the motor went from wet sump to dry sump oiling and I'm sure a bunch of other details I'm overlooking.
I'd have to think that the newer version handles better and has some more power, but in the grand scheme of things, an XR250 is an XR250 - these bikes have decent performance, are tough as nails and are friendly for beginning off roaders.