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2020 Beta 300 Race Edition Initial Impressions: A Winning Combination!

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After seeing the 2020 Beta 300 Race Edition at the AIMExpo in Columbus, Ohio last week I was very excited to get a chance to actually ride one. As part of the 2019 dealers meeting Beta held a demo ride of the 2020 models at the Hidden Spring Ranch facility in Springfield, Ohio. It rained the night before so the trail portion of the short test loop was slick with slippery rocks and roots that never dried out during the hot (91F) and humid day. There was a rocky uphill that was rather tricky thanks to the wet and muddy rocks. I was able to "clean" this tricky climb only a few times during the day. I rode multiple laps (I think about 5 or 6 total) on the 300RE during the afternoon. These are just my initial impressions from some slow laps around a tricky demo loop. Just for reference I am 195 lbs and currently ride a 2019 Husky TX300, recently spent a few hours on a 2019 Beta 300RR, owned a 2016 Beta 300 Race Edition in the past, and am strongly considering buying a 2020 Beta 300 Race Edition.

For me the biggest question was counter balancer: does it work? 100% yes! Vibration levels are noticeably reduced. Is it as smooth as the KTM/Husky 300 counterbalanced engines? No. But the Beta 300's are now smooth enough that vibration is not an issue. The power is typical Beta - very smooth and linear with a full flywheel traction finding feel. Easy to modulate power with great connectivity from the throttle to rear wheel. Even with the hot and humid conditions the non oil injected 300 Race Edition ran clean from low to high rpm with crisp throttle response.

The new chassis: In the showroom the new seat, tank, and shrouds feel low and flat. The tank seems wider in the mid section but never noticed it while riding and the shrouds felt smooth moving forward or back on the bike. The bike felt lighter and a little more playful in motion compared to the 19 300RR I rode recently. The front end seems to have a little more precision and response to steering inputs. The frame is more open around the mid section which should allow for easier access to the carb and rear shock.

Suspension: As expected the Race Edition has a firmer overall setting compared to the RR (this is especially noticeable when riding them back to back even on this short loop). The KYB fork had good control yet still absorbed the small inputs. The Sachs rear shock felt a bit stiffer compared to the fork and gave me a little more feedback mostly on acceleration chop. The base setting is very good so a few clicker changes should really dial things in.

Misc: The new seat looks cool, is lightweight, and foam is thin....I am sure Seat Concepts and Beta accessory will offer an options soon. These bikes look even better in person...even all muddy!

2020 Beta 300 Race Edition: KYB forks, simple yet effective Keihin carb, more precise and lighter feeling chassis, less vibs, and fantastic Italian styling....a winning combination!

Here is a slow lap around the short demo loop....

 

IMG_1147.jpeg

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So if buying a new bike now, its sounds like you would go for the Beta 2020 300 RE over the TX?

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9 hours ago, rocky4by said:

So if buying a new bike now, its sounds like you would go for the Beta 2020 300 RE over the TX?

Still thinking about this exact question.  I really like the smaller and lower overall feel of the Beta 300RE....and they still look good muddy.  Need to decide soon as I think these 2020 Race Edition models will sell out quickly.

Edited by mxengineer4
add pictures
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You have really done it now?, all the photos and posting your review of the new 300.  I have to call tomorrow and put some funds down on a New RE 300?.  

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8 hours ago, KRAYNIAL said:

Looked like those forks were packing up pretty badly, but then again, that terrain was probably rougher in person........

GoPro Hero 7 with stabilization really smooths the bumps out.  I was purposely hitting certain bumps and parts of the trail with each bike to feel the response of the new chassis and KYB vs Sachs forks.  Surprising how much you can get a feel for a bike on a short loop.  I think the base setting is very good for a Race Edition model and could be dialed in with a few small clicker changes for various riders.     

Looks so nice....some clean pics!:)

IMG_1108.jpeg

BIMG_1028-1.jpeg

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Any comments on the lack of vibration, did you almost fall asleep? ?

Not as smooth a KTM, but improved? Doesn't seem like a strong endorsement?

Edited by Johnny Depp

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10 hours ago, KRAYNIAL said:

Looked like those forks were packing up pretty badly, but then again, that terrain was probably rougher in person........

The trail was really cobby in more than a couple spots, and the offensive rocky uphill was slippery with a short run up. If you stuck it on the hill there wasn't much opportunity to get moving uphill again.

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15 hours ago, mxengineer4 said:

Still thinking about this exact question.  I really like the smaller and lower overall feel of the Beta 300RE....and they still look good muddy.  Need to decide soon as I think these 2020 Race Edition models will sell out quickly.

I picked up a '20 300XC and the height (in the super slow stuff) is definitely taking some getting used to. Most times it doesn't feel taller, but then some times I'm "Oh there it is" when placing a foot just isn't as solid. 

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9 minutes ago, Goatse said:

I picked up a '20 300XC and the height (in the super slow stuff) is definitely taking some getting used to. Most times it doesn't feel taller, but then some times I'm "Oh there it is" when placing a foot just isn't as solid. 

Is it just me or is the XCW with PDS shock even taller? I sat on one and couldnt even touch the very tip of my toe on both sides at 5'10"

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22 minutes ago, DirtJunkie69 said:

Is it just me or is the XCW with PDS shock even taller? I sat on one and couldnt even touch the very tip of my toe on both sides at 5'10"

I've ridden the 2020 300XCW and it does ride and feel a little taller than the 2020 TE300i - easy to notice when riding them back to back.  The Beta is lower to the ground compared to the KTM and just "feels" smaller.  

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I forgot to add this photo. Beta had a 2020 BYOB build bike on display.  I believe it had the 2 inch lowering kit installed along with plenty of other BYOB options.  This bike also had the new Race Edition graphics on the RR white based plastic....

IMG_1005.jpeg

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1 hour ago, mxengineer4 said:

I forgot to add this photo. Beta had a 2020 BYOB build bike on display.  I believe it had the 2 inch lowering kit installed along with plenty of other BYOB options.  This bike also had the new Race Edition graphics on the RR white based plastic....

IMG_1005.jpeg

I'm sure many will prefer that look. No me, but choices are good. I wonder how many are BYOB'ing the lowered suspension? It probably has a really big demographic like the XT if they get the word out.

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23 hours ago, Johnny Depp said:

Any comments on the lack of vibration, did you almost fall asleep? ?

Not as smooth a KTM, but improved? Doesn't seem like a strong endorsement?

The latest counterbalanced engines in the 250/300 KTM/Husky set the bar for smoothness and almost total lack of vibration.  That was my expectation for these new counter balanced Beta 250/300 engines.  The counter balancer takes edge off the vibration and brings it to an acceptable level just not KTM/Husky level.

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1 hour ago, mxengineer4 said:

The latest counterbalanced engines in the 250/300 KTM/Husky set the bar for smoothness and almost total lack of vibration.  That was my expectation for these new counter balanced Beta 250/300 engines.  The counter balancer takes edge off the vibration and brings it to an acceptable level just not KTM/Husky level.

Thanks for posting. Were you able to ride a 250 vs the 300? I have not had a Beta since my 14 250 RE, but thought it was more like a strong 200 back then........

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27 minutes ago, KRAYNIAL said:

fixed

You may have been exposed to some of those 2-stroke genes, probably the LBGT type?  Turning to the dark side...

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