Thinking about switching from an XR650R to a WR450


I'm having a real rough time navigating my Uncorked BRP in the desert technical, rocky, slow sections. I'm 5'7/225 and have installed a lowering link and can touch mid-foot(not flat), but I feel that this bike might be too much of a monster for this type of riding. I hate coming into a sharp corner on this beast because I always feels that I'll plow right through the berms....I have to slow way down. Fire Roads and wide open stretches are what the XR650R lives for, but that's not always the type of riding I do. I've ridden my buddies DRZ 450 and it handled way better and was far more responsive and "floated" on the gravel trails. I was thinking on ditching the BRP for possibly a WR 450. Has anybody ridden both and have any comments or suggestions?



Not a personal rip, but add your weight plus the BRP weight and you have a lot of weight to manuever.

The WR will be a slimmer and much more responsive bike in all aspects! It would be a good switch for sure as long as you setup the suspension for your weight and riding style.

I came from XR600 to a KDX250 now on the YZ426. The 600 was a great bike in the dry, in the wet there was to much front end weight. Washed out a lot and literly sank in most holes you came through. I added a SRC fork brace and that made a WORLD of difference in the tight stuff with the bike. (something to consider if you really like the bike). But in the end, it was to heavy for what I wanted to ride. So the KDX was cheap, got that. Ended up doing Everything to that from KX forks, ohlins shock, pipe, port etc. Great bike, but I was pushing the limits of the bike. Now the YZ426. Great bike, lighter than both, slimmer and more power! Also they are very dependable bikes for a hipro 4 stroke.

I actually went from an xr650r to a wr450f. Im so glad that I did. The XR was great and reliable and everything but comparing the 2 is like comparing a cadillac to a porcshe(sp.?) The XR is much easier to ride. I get worn out a lot faster on the WR but I can also ride alot faster. The only thing that I would worry about if I were you is the seat height on the WR. It is the tallest bike out there that I have seen. Power wise I think it beats the XR everywhere except way down low. Price wise is a differant story. All in all it is a switch that I am sooo glad I made. I also made it for differant resons though since I am 6'5 I wanted the extra seat height and was looking for a little more performance. If you LIKED the drz450 you will LOVE the WR. Hope this helps. If you want any more specifics just PM me I owned the XR for about a 1.5 years and put all the perfomance mods into it. Ive had the WR for about 6 months. Good luck :):D :D

Took me a while to figure out what the hell a BRP was.

That's pretty funny.

I've not ridden a WR 450, but I've been on a few BRPs, and can vouch for the accuracy of that TLA.

Took me a while to figure out what the hell a BRP was.

That's pretty funny.

I've not ridden a WR 450, but I've been on a few BRPs, and can vouch for the accuracy of that TLA.

Big Red Pig


I owned my BRP for 2 years and sold it to buy the WR450 and am very happy with the move. I am 6'4 and 230 so seat height was not an issue for me but could be for you. I strongly recommend a test ride first. The weight and handling in tight stuff is superior on the WR. I traded because the BRP was wearing me out in enduros. I belive the BRP is around 30 pounds heavier. The BRP is a very good trail bike for a big guy and a great desert racer but the WR is the hands down winner anywhere else. I really feel the WR has almost the same grunt and revs quicker. Sit on a WR and see if you can handle the seat height and I gaurantee you will like everything else. Tim

One more thing to keep in mind. I would not recommend buying a used 03 WR450. If you read this board you will know about the woodruff key and electric starter problems. With an 03 you could inherit someone elses problem. Go for an 04 which has been upgraded and havent had any problems whatsoever. Myself and others have not had any key problems and I hate to condem my bike but honesty compells me to warn you that others have had these problems with the 03 models. Tim

the '03 thing scares me....I'm not sure I want to shell out cash for and '03 that has problem w/ the woodruff key. Also, the seat height, as you tell me could be a problem. I'm 5'7" and have a lowering link on the XR. I don't think they make a lowering link for the WR - That sucks. It would be nice to actually touch the ground....I guess the WR has a tall seat height. I'll think I'll keep looking....Would a CRF250X be too small??

Dont give up on a used 03 WR too quick. If the seller can show receipts for the upgrade to 04 parts and the price was right I would jump on it. Just need to know what you are lookin at. Plus the upgrade to 04 parts is only about 250 or so. Somewhere on this board the price has been posted. But I am pissed at Yamaha and will never buy another bike from them. My bad. I knew better and got impatient.


I don't think seat height will be an issue for you, especially with your weight. I'm 5'6" and weigh 165lbs and i ride a '00 WR 400 with no problems. But if you're a new rider and tend to stop/touch ground a lot then you might notice. After I set the sag on the shock for my weight, I'm good to go. I love the bike. Best I've ever had.

I'm 5'10" and have no problems with the hight on my 98 WR400

I also have extra tall seat foam, so sliding up to that tall wr tank is easier, also helps with the transition from sitting to standing.

I usually flatfoot one foot, works out so my other leg is flat across the seat.

As a previous rider of the XR650, putting over 500 miles on a KTM450EXC and a current owner of a WR450... I'd definitely take a look at the KTM. A little more money than the WR, but a lot less Yamaha arrogance if/when your bike breaks down. Yamaha's lack of customer service coupled with known design flaws have given me nothing but buyers remorse.

If you are willing to take "new model" risk, the CRF250x looks like a great bike, or if you can wait a year or two more the CRF450x would be even better. If you feel uncomfortable with the "new model" risk...the 450EXC is an awesome bike (i.e., lower center of gravity and seat height that the WR450). Most importantly... you can ride with no fear of having to drag your bike out of the woods/desert after dark only to have Yamaha tell you that their design flaws are YOUR problem (no support from Yamaha).

I had lots of problems with Yamahas got fed up wanted something that works all the time we ride once or twice a week thats why I bought a xr650 only other bike I would buy is a crf450x not trying to start something here, I have friends who dont take care of their yamahas and they keep running I took care of mine oil changes ect and they had major breaks all the time. Two new yamahas in 6 months with 3 major repairs and over 2000 in costs. I have in the corse of 26 years of riding, had 7 hondas and probally around 50,000 miles on them and NEVER a problem with Honda. They have never ever left me anywhere ever.


I used to own a XR650L. Loved it on the street, on trails, but hated it on steep hills and tight turns. The thing would dig holes before going up anything steep. Going down was another thing. Using the brakes was pointless, it would just slide down like it had none. All of a sudden riding bikes with my buds wasn't so fun anymore. They were all having fun but me :). I had it for 6 months, sold it and got a WR450 :D. This has been my favorite bike so far, I'm definetly keeping this one :D. It has all the power I want, and it's lighter. I'm 6'2 200lbs, this bike's all you need! Hope you go with the WR! :D

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