The CRE 250, possibly starting from 1989 or 1990, was a CR 250 conversion with additional lighting installed by HM, the Italian Distributors for Honda CR models. They did this same conversion with the CR 125 and the CR 500, too.
All CREs came with paperwork and a license for road use, which made them great sellers, becoming even more popular than KTMs and Huskys at that time.
The wider ratio gearbox doesn’t come stock. It was an extra option offered by HM, where taller 4th and 5th gears were installed, upon the owner’s request. This basically allows for a lower sprocket combination.
1st, 2nd and 3rd gear become lower, for tight woods riding, while 4th and 5th remain reasonably tall.
On the earlier HPP engines the gear kits were a direct fit into the cases, while on the 1992 – 2001 engines some minor grinding was required, for proper clearance.
All of the same wider gears will carry over to the latest 2002-2007 engines.
“In the later years the request for the wider ratio kit seemed like it faded away, I have not heard of any recent CRE with a modified gearbox.” said an avid CRE user in Honda Forums. “Some long time HM dealers may still have leftover kits, though. I bought a set in around 2003, and installed it into my own 1994 CRE 250, while the cases were split for new crank bearings.
That was a nice addition, although the jump between 3rd and 4th/5th gear became a bit annoying.
These seem to be durable parts, made with quality, hardened material.
I have no idea wether the CREs imported from Italy into the US in the 1990s had been specified with a WR gearbox; if they did, that must have been an expensive option by HM.