Sinnis Retrostar

Sinnis, Retrostar, 125, motorbike, motorcycle

Click here for 2 long term reviews of Sinnis Motorcycles

From July 2012 – June 2015 I had the good fortune to own a fantastic wee Sinnis Trackstar, which I went everywhere on. I kept a long term rolling review going on it, and to many peoples amazement I clocked up just over 65,000 mostly trouble free kilometres, before an unfortunate engine failure.

Soon after I acquired a brand new Sinnis Retrostar, this time from Sinnis themselves. To see how I get on, and if I manage to beat 65,000km on the newer model, you can click the following links :

Sables Flickr Sinnis Retrostar Gallery posts tagged Retrostar

Sinnis Retrostar Long Term Report #1 – First Impressions

Sinnis Retrostar Long Term Report #2 – Shakedown

Sinnis Retrostar Long Term Report #3 – Customer Relations

Sinnis Retrostar Long Term Report #4 – Character

Sinnis Retrostar Long Term Report #5 – Brighton Burnup

Sinnis Retrostar Long Term Report #6 – Benchmarks

Sinnis Retrostar Long Term Report #7 – Comparisons

Sinnis Retrostar Long Term Report #8 – Upgrades

Sinnis Retrostar Long Term Report #9 – The Unfortunate End

13 thoughts on “Sinnis Retrostar

  1. Colin

    Hi good blog hope you update with how many miles you actually manage to get out of the Retrostar. Very honest and to the point comments and opinions easy to read kept me interested.

    1. sable Post author

      Thank you Colin. I don’t think I will run it as far as the Trackstar got (67,500 km) largely because I cannot order anything from sinnis for it and it’s already had a few problems. I expect at some point I’ll strip it and sell its parts and get a new bike.

      1. Rob S


        I was wondering if you could give any more details about what it was that lead to the end of dialogue between you and Sinnis and why it is you can’t get hold of their parts anymore?
        I’m curious mostly because I myself was thinking about buying one of theirs for my first 125 following my CBT.

        Your’s is by far the most long-running and complete review of what owning one of their bikes is like and I just want to know more about the end to your fantastic blog!

        1. sable Post author

          Hello Rob

          Thanks for the comment. To be honest frustration both ends. If you read part 9 of the retrostar review, I found that Sinnis are impossible to get the right parts from. When you need the bike as a daily it costs in lost days work, bus commuting and taking the bike to the dealers twice to get the same thing done due to incorrect parts. From the Sinnis side I imagine they wanted something as positive as the Trackstar review and just ended up with an angry customer who couldn’t continue to be honest and positive.

          You can always try a Herald. Price difference isn’t that much and their parts team at least send the right items out. The classic 125 and mutt is the same frame, engine and everything else as the retrostar. Parts are entirely interchangeable.

          If you have more questions let me know.

          Thank you for the compliment as well 🙂

  2. Saf

    Great to get firsthand experience of a bike. I’d considered a Sinnis, as I liked the retro look. A local dealer also specialised in Henleys which are similar – but have been built according to the dealer’s specs. Most dealers advised against the Chinese bikes, mainly due to problems with the availability of parts. You had a good run with your Trackstar though. Interesting reading, especially for someone new to the biking world.

    1. sable Post author

      Hi Saf, to be honest the problem was the British staff. The Chinese have built some OK bikes, it’s the white English guys in Brighton that let the bikes down. If you still want one, try looking up Herald Motor Company. They sell almost identical bikes.

  3. Wade Wiley

    I am a longtime Honda fan in the USA and have never heard of Sinnis motorcyles. Thinking they were a British make, I was surprised at your problems. Upon a Google search, I find that they are a Chinese make, manufactured by Jinan Qingqi Motorcycle Co., Ltd. Previous researches into Chinese scooters have found lots of nasty comments about apparent lack of a PDI performed on these scooters by the distributors. It may have been that your parts problems stemmed from the fact that your dealer had to order parts directly from China, and there were mistakes at the supply end. I’ll bet that you can not obtain a parts and service manual for your poor bike, either, sigh. (ComCat of SL)

    1. sable Post author

      Aha, hi Wade!

      How many bikes are manufactured in the right country anymore? European Hondas are made in India or China, American ones are Brazilian? Yamaha’s get made in China. Harley’s get made in America (from Chinese parts). Heck even triumph do work out of Taiwan. Sad state of motorcycle manufacturing.

      Sinnis are now their own British company, and source bikes from various Chinese companies. The parts problem stems from hopeless British staff. They have the parts (mostly), they just either send out the wrong parts or second hand parts. Frustrating.

  4. Paul Farrell

    Hello there, I just came across your blog type thing and found it very interesting. I bought a Sinnis Heist 125cc couple months ago on my doctors orders. ( kept falling off my big bike).I absolutely love it. However it could do with a bigger motor in it. The fine chaps at CCW in the US tell me that the 250cc would bolt straight on to my frame. GREAT I thought, but they haven’t got one. A bit like everything else they haven’t got. Can you enlighten me on this matter . Where can I get a 250cc motor that will do the job and hopefully just ” bolt straight on ” . Any info on the Heist would be gratefully great. Know what I mean.


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