2014 KTM 500 EXC vs. Beta 520 RS

That's an interesting article, I would not have thought they would have been that close. If I were in the market I might go with the beta! I love my 05 450 MXC, it just keeps on going and keeps up with the newer bikes! Drag raced a 13 300 XCW on a Forest service road and smoked em, 300 guy said his jetting was off......:(

That's an interesting article, I would not have thought they would have been that close. If I were in the market I might go with the beta! I love my 05 450 MXC, it just keeps on going and keeps up with the newer bikes! Drag raced a 13 300 XCW on a Forest service road and smoked em, 300 guy said his jetting was off......:(

Of course it was!! All 2t are faster than all 4t........ Until they actually race! Lol!

I like how KTM went up 6 Teeth on the rear sprocket!

Of course it was!! All 2t are faster than all 4t........ Until they actually race! Lol!

 

would love to line up next to a 500EXC on my KX, I think I know how that would turn out

 

I also really like the looks of the Beta, its getting parts that concerns me, plus I live in a area with tons and tons of dirtbikes and have never even seen a Beta, although someone that has one in another thread said they have been making bikes under the same name for 100 years

would love to line up next to a 500EXC on my KX, I think I know how that would turn out

 

I also really like the looks of the Beta, its getting parts that concerns me, plus I live in a area with tons and tons of dirtbikes and have never even seen a Beta, although someone that has one in another thread said they have been making bikes under the same name for 100 years

That's my concern is aftermarket parts, like a bigger tank for the Beta. Man I see you have an IT490, that was my dream bike as a kid! I bet that's fun to ride.

That's my concern is aftermarket parts, like a bigger tank for the Beta. Man I see you have an IT490, that was my dream bike as a kid! I bet that's fun to ride.

 

yea its the only one I"ve ever seen, seen a lot of 200"s though, best woods bike ever, 2-stroke tractor lol

It's obvious from the street photos that the Betas race sag was set too big...or not set at all....accounting for the 'slow' handing...of a bike with steeper steering angles and more trail..... very dumb.

 

I hate reviews by enthusiasts, as opposed to experts.

 

At least someone finally mentioned the larger ergos and power that is useable below 6k, on the Beta.

It's obvious from the street photos that the Betas race sag was set too big...or not set at all....accounting for the 'slow' handing...of a bike with steeper steering angles and more trail..... very dumb.

 

I hate reviews by enthusiasts, as opposed to experts.

 

At least someone finally mentioned the larger ergos and power that is useable below 6k, on the Beta.

 

Sharp observation Bill! I had to look twice. 100mm sag my ass. More like 120mm sag, at least. And to say the PDS suspension is sharper handling is just wrong. For the average guy, the KTM will need an expensive revalve to make it safe to ride offroad. 

Sharp observation Bill! I had to look twice. 100mm sag my ass. More like 120mm sag, at least. And to say the PDS suspension is sharper handling is just wrong. For the average guy, the KTM will need an expensive revalve to make it safe to ride offroad. 

Well hear comes the KTM haters....to make it safe to ride..Really.  My stock 500exc gets 65 mpg highway with FI and that Beta not getting that Sir..

All my KTMs been PDS never had any issues..but I guess Im not the Pro riders you are Sir.... :lol:

Well hear comes the KTM haters....to make it safe to ride..Really.  My stock 500exc gets 65 mpg highway with FI and that Beta not getting that Sir..

All my KTMs been PDS never had any issues..but I guess Im not the Pro riders you are Sir.... :lol:

 

Easy now partner, Just a fun poke at the KTM is all. I do own both after all. I still think the stock PDS suspension is horrible for the average guy coming off a Jap bike. I'm a "C" rider at best and can never get the sag and clickers to work for me with stock PDS suspended machines. After a revalve they are very acceptable and quite good.

 

As far as fuel injection, It's one of the reasons I decided against the KTM 500 when looking for a reliable and easy to work on machine. The reason you get such good mileage is because you bike comes lean from the factory. Of course a carbed bike will not get close to the mpg as a FI bike. The tradeoff is better on/off throttle performance (at low rpm), reliability and easy to work on. 

 

I have a few riding buddies that have the KTM 500 and love it. For me, the Beta is a much more durable and suitable machine for the kind of stuff I ride. Add to the fact that it has separate oil chambers, stainless valves, double overhead cams, and a lot of the motor parts riding on roller bearings, and I have a winner. Can your KTM go 150hrs before a valve adjustment? My Beta is just now needing it's 1st one at just over 150 hours.

Easy now partner, Just a fun poke at the KTM is all. I do own both after all. I still think the stock PDS suspension is horrible for the average guy coming off a Jap bike. I'm a "C" rider at best and can never get the sag and clickers to work for me with stock PDS suspended machines. After a revalve they are very acceptable and quite good.

 

As far as fuel injection, It's one of the reasons I decided against the KTM 500 when looking for a reliable and easy to work on machine. The reason you get such good mileage is because you bike comes lean from the factory. Of course a carbed bike will not get close to the mpg as a FI bike. The tradeoff is better on/off throttle performance (at low rpm), reliability and easy to work on. 

 

I have a few riding buddies that have the KTM 500 and love it. For me, the Beta is a much more durable and suitable machine for the kind of stuff I ride. Add to the fact that it has separate oil chambers, stainless valves, double overhead cams, and a lot of the motor parts riding on roller bearings, and I have a winner. Can your KTM go 150hrs before a valve adjustment? My Beta is just now needing it's 1st one at just over 150 hours.

You say it comes from the factory lean,well not really..all you have to do is plug some air injection system off and walla, not lean with the factory pipe as long as you dont open up the end cap.Even with the stock pipe I can loft the front wheel when needed, and do it in stealth. My buddy has the 350exc with the JD kit and we get the same mpg trail or hiway.

Was thinking about a 3gal tank but why..the bike can do (depending on type of riding)110-145 miles....not a beta with stock tank.  Looked into Beta before the KTM and they couldnt even show me a new bike anywere,nobody had jack,the guy at Get Dirtie (the only dealer for 100 miles) said I would have to BYOB to see it.

Maybe when Beta comes out of the mom and pop garage bike dealers and gets on its own, I can take another look, and Im sure by then they will have stepped up to FI.... :thumbsup:

Edited by trailheadposer

 Looked into Beta before the KTM and they couldnt even show me a new bike anywere,nobody had jack,the guy at Get Dirtie (the only dealer for 100 miles) said I would have to BYOB to see it.

Maybe when Beta comes out of the mom and pop garage bike dealers and gets on its own, I can take another look, and Im sure by then they will have stepped up to FI....  :thumbsup:

 

Easy there about Dave. I know for sure he will let you ride one of his personal Beta's if your interested in buying one. Where do you live anyway? Instead of us yapping and arguing, we should get together for a day ride one of these days. It all comes down to personal choice. In all honesty, the KTM and Beta are both great bikes. If we are ever on the trail, you are more than welcome to ride mine. 

 

When I had the cash to buy a plated dirt bike, I looked at the KTM, no one had a demo I could try. The 500's were just coming out so none of my riding buddies had one I could try either. When I went to Dave's at Get Dirty Dirt Bikes, he let me hop on one of his. I was sold on it. I have ridden enough KTM's (and own on as well), to know that the linkage suspended/carbed Beta's were a better choice for me. 

 

FWIW, the new Beta 350's will have FI for 2015. I have no regrets getting an old school carb bike. 

Biggest issue is parts....You are more likely to find parts of the KTM and the 500exc does share the same platform as other KTM machines.

Especially up here in Canada, you could grow a 3rd eye and have less surprise from people then if you mentioned the word Beta ("huh, what's a Beta, that one if them fancy education college type computer words, huh?").....

agree with Monk, for one of the oldest dirt bikes in the world according to one Beta owner, they sure havnt made their way to Texas

Easy there about Dave. I know for sure he will let you ride one of his personal Beta's if your interested in buying one. Where do you live anyway? Instead of us yapping and arguing, we should get together for a day ride one of these days. It all comes down to personal choice. In all honesty, the KTM and Beta are both great bikes. If we are ever on the trail, you are more than welcome to ride mine. 

 

When I had the cash to buy a plated dirt bike, I looked at the KTM, no one had a demo I could try. The 500's were just coming out so none of my riding buddies had one I could try either. When I went to Dave's at Get Dirty Dirt Bikes, he let me hop on one of his. I was sold on it. I have ridden enough KTM's (and own on as well), to know that the linkage suspended/carbed Beta's were a better choice for me. 

 

FWIW, the new Beta 350's will have FI for 2015. I have no regrets getting an old school carb bike. 

Now calm down Chris, not bagging on Dave...but if Im going to buy a biken from a dealer he better be open on Sat,Get Dirtie by appointment only.. WTF. I work M-F so I would be screw for help or parts.

Check out his web site,by appointment Sat. I will keep a eye out for ya and that bagged up Beta and get my test drive  :ride:

Biggest issue is parts....You are more likely to find parts of the KTM and the 500exc does share the same platform as other KTM machines.

Especially up here in Canada, you could grow a 3rd eye and have less surprise from people then if you mentioned the word Beta ("huh, what's a Beta, that one if them fancy education college type computer words, huh?").....

 

agree with Monk, for one of the oldest dirt bikes in the world according to one Beta owner, they sure havnt made their way to Texas

 

I guess it depends where you live. Parts are actually way more available for Beta than a KTM. No issues at all. Of course I'm not worried about parts so much. My bike has none of the issues my money pit KTM has. Funny thing is I almost always get my KTM parts shipped from Chip at Munn Racing in TX. My local dealers here in CA very rarely carry anything I need. BR7ES plugs, pipe 0 rings, master cylinder rebuild kits, pads, rotors etc, take at least a week when going down the street. Order from Chip and I get them shipped to my door in a few days.

 

As far as the Beta, Dave almost always has anything I need in stock. Oil pump gears, plugs, shims, pads rotors etc are at my door next day with a quick email or phone call. FWIW, oil pump gears are part of maintenance schedule. Very cheap and easy to change.

 

Now calm down Chris, not bagging on Dave...but if Im going to buy a biken from a dealer he better be open on Sat,Get Dirtie by appointment only.. &%$#@!. I work M-F so I would be screw for help or parts.

Check out his web site,by appointment Sat. I will keep a eye out for ya and that bagged up Beta and get my test drive  :ride:

 

No longer riding the bagged up beast. It's set up lean and mean! And yes, I get Saturday Appointments with Dave for riding or sometimes just hanging out and working on my bike. I'm going in this Saturday for a valve adjustment and a few goodies installed on my bike.

 

IMG_20140603_091445_zpsf0f3a2e2.jpg

 

100_4224_zpsdd394a40.jpg

http://www.motorcycle.com/shoot-outs/2014-open-class-dual-sport-smackdown-beta-520-rs-vs-ktm-500-exc

 

Nice article IMO. Apologies of it's been posted in here already.

 

I've seen the Betas in person and they are some good looking bikes. I'm actually a little tired of seeing every KTM in orange. It's been quite a few years KTM, pick a new color already huh!!

 

I'm very happy with mine. It's proven to be very reliable and capable of any trail or pavement blast. OTOH, the KTM 500 is a proven machine as well. The fuel mileage is sick. The deal breaker for me was the fuel injection and PDS suspension. Some guys like it. I don't.

 

I ride in remote spots a lot of miles from my truck. Fuel injection has not come far enough for me to trust it offroad. For track, yes it's a good choice. One thing to remember is when something goes wrong with fuel injection, you are stuck. No quick fixes on the trail. 

 

There have been quite a few documented failures of the KTM fuel injection systems. Fuel filters, 0-rings, injector modules, and pump to name a few. Any one of these will leave you stuck on the trail. Carb, OTOH, is extremely rare to fail.

 

The KTM fuel injector failures are so widely known that companies have actually made a "pill box" to keep a spare injector on your bike. 

 

http://www.motominded.com/products/pillbox-fuel-injector-holder-fully-loaded

would love to line up next to a 500EXC on my KX, I think I know how that would turn out

I'm not a KX guy, but been there and done that personally this past summer and two separate 500EXCs lost every time until the KX ran out of legs just shy of a ton. Standing starts and roll ons. As an old CR500 guy, I had no issue chasing the KX and it brought home to me that no matter how fast i think the EXC is, a good 'ole smoker is a good 'ole smoker.

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now