2004 WR450 Questions

Hi All - First post here.

I have been bitten by the four-stroke bug. I currently ride a 2003 KTM 250 EXC 2-stroke, which is a really hard bike to find fault with. But I am ready to try a four-stroke. Without much thought, I nearly bought a 450EXC, then paused to checkout the blue thumpers. I must say that in the showroom the WR egos suit me better. Could someone familiar with both orange and blue thumpers please compare and contrast them regarding durability, ease of maintenance, suitability for tight single track and ability to meet a 96dba noise limit while in performance trim. Also, does the WR have separate sumps like the CRF450 engine?

I'm 6 foot 2, 230lbs, ride tight Michigan single track and will likely enter my first enduro later this season.


BTW - Great site.

you really need to ride both. my buddy has an '04 450exc and he hates the ergos of my '03 wr450. i get on his and it feels like the seat is made of stone. the ktm's '04 suspension is better (big improvement over '03). i like my motor better. we play the "mines better than yours" all the time.

one way or another, it's going to be a big change from a 250 two stroke. neither one will turn quiet the way your 250 does. you will love the e-start!

both are very reliable. although i have to think that parts for the yamaha will be easier to get just about anywhere you go. the yamaha beats the ktm hands down when it's time to change oil. the ktm has two oil filters and a drain plug that almost takes an act of god to remove the first time. the yamahas no fun but not as bad as the ktm. the yamaha does not have the duel sump system the honda has.

as far as noise goes, i don't know why anyone would change the exhaust on the exc. it's right from the start. the wr needs help. there's alot of debate on the forum about wr exhaust. you'll have to decide that one. i use the $40 gytr insert and feel it's very quiet but haven't had it tested.

Thanks Mmtrablue -

My brother is getting our dealer's only 2004 400EXC (a special model in '04) so I will have a chance to ride that, but I'll need to find a WR in my area to sample. Most dealers around here are so focused on sleds right now, that even IF they have a WR, it's in a crate, on a rack somewhere, with little chance for a quick spin.

I'll keep mulling the orange / blue thing.

Bob, C&C in Brighton has a WR450 on hand and out on the front porch every day. They're good folks, I've done business with them in the past. I'm sure they'd let you check it out. Call 810.227.7068 and talk to Dan Zink, tell him Mark (with the Ducatis) sent you his way, he's a good guy.

Thanks Mark -

I went to C&C on Saturday (first time). I met Dan and he remembered you.

Cool Bob! Did you get to ride one?

Hi everyone. I have been considering a wr450 for my next bike. Been riding KTM 400 and 450 exc's since 2001. Read the reviews on the 04 wr and they say it feels a little top heavy compared to the KTM. Is this much of a factor? I would purchase a FMFQ silencer, put on a YZ rear fender and number plate,and change top triple clamp and bars for weight reduction. I am also spoilt by the hydraulic clutch on the KTM. How does the clutch compare on the wr?

Dont buy the WR450 for tight woods! The top heavy factor is huge in tight conditions. I ride wide open conditions where the WR really shines. You will get mixed answers on this but in my opinion it is not good in tight situations. :)

I rode a 300EXC with a hydraulic clutch and couldn't tell the difference between the WR450.

The WR is top heavy but I don't notice it in technical riding but it is very noticeable at the mx track.

Just my two cents,


It feels real light on top for me, but I guess thats cause Im coming form a BRP(XR650r) :)

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