I'm looking at purchasing a motorcycle, and I am a beginner's beginner. I did some research, and I like the look and some of the specs of the Yamaha V-Star 250. I'm starting to get more into cars and motorcycles lately, so it definitely caught my attention. But I've brought up models similar to this in the past, and my Dad seemed to think that a 250cc bike was a little weak. My question is, is a 250cc a bad choice (or a rather "panzy" style choice) for a beginner? I know I'll love riding it if I get it, and after some definite experience, I'll definitely want to upgrade to a bigger bike. But for starters, is it a good choice? Also, if you know anything specifically about the Yamaha V-Star 250, that would also be helpful. Thanks guys. I appreciate it.
I can see no reason why you would need a bigger bike. If you know you'll have fun on it and you know you're a beginner, then get the 250. Judging from the research you have done and your seemingly quite balanced sense of self awareness, don't worry about what your dad or anyone else thinks is weak, go with what you think will be ideal for how YOU want to ride. You're the one buying it (I assume), and the one who will be riding it.
I've had several bikes and the one I had the most fun with was my first bike, a tiny 400cc Honda. Bigger than a 250, but not by much, and probably not any faster. The ideal way to learn to ride, in my opinion, is to start small and go from there.
Those aren't bad bikes. A good trick would be to get a used one fairly cheap and then when you want to sell it to upgrade, you can get most if not all of your money back. Ebnded up doing that when my wife wanted a bike. Bought Honda Rebel 250 used for $1900, sold it 6 months later fro $1900. Also, you might want to check into a little 650. Suzuki has the S40 (older ones were called Savage). Single cylinder, nice little scoot and if you get tired of the way it looks you can turn it into a cool little bobber. But I'll tell you, don't let a bunch of people tell you that you need the biggest, nicest thing you can afford. It's all about the ride and what makes you feel good when you're in the wind.
250 is plenty unless you are wanting to do long haul rides on the freeways (more weight on the frame is helpful for stability and comfort). City/Town/local roads - you are good to go. Plenty of pep in those little frames, and japanese engines.
You might also consider the Suzuki TU250X - for a similar style and good price point (new or used). Both should be reliable, great rides.
Bah - we did fine with 250-450 for decades. :)
I'm going against the flow to advise against it. But it depends on what driving you intend to do. Where I ride in Michigan the posted speed is 70mph on the highways, so I would say its actually dangerous to go less than 500cc's in that scenario.
I think people overdo the beginning bike thing. Yeah its a bad idea to go straight to a supermoto, but other than that, I think big bikes is a bogeyman. I started on a 600cc and it has been perfect.