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Still In The Crate: 2002 Kawasaki KX250 L4

The term mint-in-box is something I hadn’t heard before I started using eBay back in the mid-1990s. We’ve seen around a dozen motorcycles still in the crate here, but this 2002 Kawasaki KX250 L4 is as close to being mint-in-box, or crate, as it gets. The seller has it listed here on eBay in Elmhurst, Illinois and the current bid price is $8,000, but the reserve isn’t met.

In the early days of eBay, mint-in-box things were mostly related to packs of baseball cards or maybe a scale model kit of a car (do they still make those?) or something small. I’ve gotten a few MIB items over the years but not a motorcycle. I did buy a NOS carcass of a mid-1970s battery-powered mini bike once that came in a big box, but this XK250 would be fantastic to own. In case you were wondering about the L4: Kawasaki named the 1999 version as L1, and by 2002 they were L4.

It’s hard to take great photos of a vehicle in the first place and most of you know that I can be tough on sellers sometimes (ok, oftentimes) for providing such bad and incomplete photos. In this case, there isn’t much leeway, this thing is in a packing crate, pretty much, surrounded by a cardboard box. Kawasaki came out with the first perimeter-frame motocross bike with the KX-125 and KX-250 way back in 1990, before 40% of Barn Finds readers were even born – just a guess.

Years of refinement and fine-tuning just made it better and this 2002 KX-250 has the same basic perimeter frame that they introduced in 1999. This model did have other improvements, including 48-mm (KYB) fork tubes, another first for Kawasaki for a stock bike. KTM also used that same size with mucho success in offroad racing. There were also new aluminum front brake pistons, stainless steel footpegs, the rear suspension was re-valved, and, of course, engine improvements.

What a beauty, at least condition-wise. This engine may not be something you’d put on your fireplace mantel, but I would. This is Kawasaki’s 249-cc two-stroke single-cylinder, a beast of a somewhat small engine, and this whole bike weighs just over 200 pounds, less than 40% of Barn Finds readers – just a guess. Ha, just kidding. With around 56 horsepower thumping out of that single-pot, this bike won more than its share of Motocross/Supercross events and it’ll be hard to find a newer one than this one still in the crate. Have any of you gotten a motorcycle still in the crate?


  1. Avatar photo Aussie Dave Member

    Ahh, it’s a chook chaser.

    Like 3
    • Avatar photo Jon Calderon

      “Chook hates the Japanese!” 😉
      Remember that line? Muriel’s Wedding, back in 93 I believe.

      Like 0
  2. Avatar photo Raoul-F

    I belong to the estimated 60%…born 1957, weight 170lbs… 😊

    Like 5
  3. Avatar photo Smokey Smokerson

    Born in 1972, weight 315 lbs.

    Like 4
  4. Avatar photo Tom

    Older than 99 % of you and weigh in at a solid 185. Same as I weighed in College back just before dirt was invented. I would love to have this cycle. Wow, in the original shipping box no less. Price is getting way up there though.

    Like 6
  5. Avatar photo Frog Man

    That’s so cool, I’m also up there remember seeing ads in Popular Mechanics for $50.00 gov jeeps. Would love another 2 stroker. Currently riding a 83 XR650 when my gimp ass right leg can lick it over.

    Like 5
  6. Avatar photo Rob W Adkins

    Love these 2 strokes, had an 89 KX 250, Nice Bike, Currently have a 98 RMX250, last year made in the states, Love it !!

    Like 4
  7. Avatar photo jim

    If that was a Suzuki 450L I would be high bidder Best bike I ever had and I have had a few different bikes

    Like 2
  8. Avatar photo Matthew Dyer

    Still in the box doesn’t add value. It is old technology. The rubber parts may be pretty rigid now. Just my opinion.
    Good luck to the seller.

    Like 8
    • Avatar photo Scotty Gilbertson Staff

      You’re right, sir. That is unless it had been hermetically sealed and kept in a #2 mayonnaise jar since noon today on Funk & Wagnalls’ porch…

      Sorry, that was an old Johnny Carson/Ed McMahon bit. I agree about rubber parts degrading over time. Two decades doesn’t do rubber bushings, boots, belts, etc. any favors.

      Like 5
  9. Avatar photo Canadian Friend

    Born in 1959, 200 pounds…when I was 18 I had a Yamaha RT3 2 cycle engine 360 cc dirtbike.

    It weighed 260 pound… a bit heavy in part because it was street legal with large brake light, turn signals, two mirrors etc

    I much prefer a two cycle motorcycle, too bad they don t make those anymore.

    I had so much fun with that bike playing in the dirt and jumping as high and as far as I could, I still have a scar on my left leg from that one time I crashed…ahhh to be young again !

    Like 3
    • Avatar photo Worlds Fastest Woods Racer

      They still make plenty of 2 stroke motorcycles just not the Japanese.(Except Yamaha). Almost all European manufacturers build 2 smokers, KTM, Husqvarna, GasGas, Beta, Sherco. And to boot they are the preferred bikes for Cross Country and Enduro racing. Moto/Supercross moved to 4 strokes around 04-05. Most modern 2 strokes are now fuel injected, electric start and have the same technology as the 4 strokes have. But there’s still nothing like getting on the pipe and hitting the powerband on a 2 stroke.

      Like 1
      • Avatar photo Rob W Adkins

        That is what the KDX and my RMX were made for, they won many cross country/enduro titles between them !! The one i am riding won multiple local cross country titles !

        Like 0
  10. Avatar photo Howard A Member

    While the “mint in box” has some merit, one might think, this, still unassembled in its original shipping crate, must be rare. Um, no, fact is, it’s not really. Kawasaki made thousands and sold hundreds, all those “extras” had to go somewhere. Many, as newer models came out, I bet were simply thrown away. I’ve personally been in warehouses you couldn’t see the other end, stacked to the ceiling with crates. I’m sure motorcycle warehouses are no different.
    As mentioned, many issues come up with long term new storage, PLUS, you have to assemble it. The KX was a game changer, and still is, but just not sure about these “mint in box” motorcycles.

    Like 2
  11. Avatar photo justpaul

    Bidding ended at $8K with the reserve not met.

    To which I’d only say “You should have taken the money, Tombs”.

    Like 4
    • Avatar photo Scotty Gilbertson Staff

      Thanks for that update, justpaul! I was just going in to add that, thanks much.

      Like 1
  12. Avatar photo Gus

    Wow i used to race this same bike back in early 2000s.
    I was laughed at frequently because of my age ( was 61 years old).
    thay werent laughing so much when they saw my trophy room.
    Now at 83, its so nice to see that brand new.

    Like 6
  13. Avatar photo Mike

    I bought a 2014 Honda ctx in 2020 dealer had just uncrated 0 miles. I put new tires on since
    originals 6 years old.otherwise fine brand new bike for 5 grand still riding.

    Like 2
  14. Avatar photo PRA4SNW Member

    MSRP for this was $5799. Nothing suggests that this would be worth even close to that just because it was never used. It certainly isn’t the sort of thing a collector would want.

    Like 2
    • Avatar photo Rob W Adkins

      Maybe if it was a KX500 OR CR500, That would be worth it !

      Like 0

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