...how do you like your 250 v-star? I saw a 250 Rebel about 3 years ago and it looked great. I've got a 650 V-Star .... I was looking for a Virago because I find them comfortable for my size. The 650 seems to be just as comfortable.
The Vstar 250 was the Virago 250 or some other name for a while when the Vstar line first came out. The Vstar 650 has pretty much the same engine as the Virago 650 - its an evolution from one model line to the next.
The 250 has a chain drive and a couple other things that were stepped up on the 650 (shaft drive, tire size...)
When I took the MSF beginners class we rode Rebel 250s, they are decent bikes for riding around town and commuting.
The 650 hits a pretty sweet spot, its good for commuting edging out about 60mpg with a stock engine if you dont ride it like a wild man all the time. It has enough HP to put a windshield and saddle bags on the bike, and still be able to cruise at 70mph and hit 80mph+ if you need to.
I wondered why Yamaha discontinued the VS 650 last year, its a very popular bike, they run forever. I think the reason is a lot of people get a 650 and are happy with it and never step up to a bigger bike. I can imagine 20 executives sitting around a big conference table in a board room having this discussion: "its the perfect mid size cruiser bike, people buy them and ride them for 20 years... so we have to stop making them!"
Ive had mine for 5 years, and Im thinking of getting a bigger bike for taking longer road trips. On the 650 Im good for a couple hundred miles a day, on a 3 day weekend - but to take on a 1500 mile road trip, or to take off for a week or more, I think I want a VS 1300, Roadstar 1600 or 1700, or maybe even something more aerodynamic like the FJR1300 sport touring bike.
A bigger bike is the difference between riding being possible, and being enjoyable. If you take a Roadstar out on a long trip you will definitely be more comfortable, the bike will be more stable, and you will enjoy the ride more.