XR650R vs 520 EXC

How do these bikes stack up agains each other? Is the KTM worth the extra 3000 CND I would have to pay for it?

XR Pros (as I see it)

Power (specially after upgrades)


Strong aftermarket following

$7099 Canadian

XR cons

Heavy (compaired to EXC)

Poor lighting

Only Kickstart (no electric)

EXC pros

Light (again compaired to XR)

Electric and Kickstart

Lighting system

Hydraulic Clutch (Boon or Bane, depends on YPOV)

EXC cons

$9999 Canadian

Few dealars

Aftermarket ????

I am now leaning towards the KTM even with the 3000 bux difference. This bike seems to be what I am after. Winter is setting in, so I have time to mull it over. Thoughts???

I have riding experience on both. I now have a 650R that I'm building for the fire trails in Tenn. and N. Carolina. If you lust for the KTM then that is the one - it is worth the extra money.

Apples and Oranges. These bikes are meant for two different things. The XR650R is a 100 mph plus open area machine. As I said in the other post it can be used almost anywhere but its heart and power is in Baja, WFO conditions.

The KTM is a great machine. Almost bought one. Despite the changes made in the 520 this year, it is still just an avg. handling machine. The thing will tend to push into corners instead of holding an inside line. Though the forks have been upgraded to 48 mm they still need stiffer fork springs. The electric start is a big bonus. At my old age, I wish the XR had that ability. Power is great on the KTM using less RPM to get the job done. Why didn’t I buy the 520 you ask, I could not see the extra money.

Have you seen the new Cannondale bikes?

They have several very interesting bikes. For instance, their E440 weighs less than 250 lbs, has the magic button, EFI (Electronic Fuel Injection), Ohlin's front & back, costs less than a KTM, etc...

If ever a company was to make a custom bike to my wish list, this would come the closest to anything out there based on what I've read so far. The specs on all the Cannondales look very impressive to me, but I've never seen one of these new bikes in person. If you click on the 'Exotics' section here in Thumpertalk, you'll find a couple guys who own them and talk very highly of their Cannondales.

Here's the link to the E440... http://www.cannondale.com/motorsports/moto/e440_model.html

Here's the link to the rest of their bikes... http://www.cannondale.com/motorsports/moto/

Good luck!

ps. I just bought a new XR650R :)

LOL qadsan. How do you like the XR? I have decided as of today that it is the bike for me. The KTM is an AWESOME machine and all, but I cannot justify the 3000 more bux it will cost to get it. Besides, I am not going to compete with the bike, I just want something lighter than my KLR, Dont have to insure, AND can bear my weight. The XR will do just fine.

<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:<HR>Originally posted by Dramus:

LOL qadsan. How do you like the XR...The XR will do just fine.

So far, it looks real pretty :)

I just got it the other night and haven't even kicked it over yet. I'm waiting for the dealer I bought it from to send me a cirtificate of origin so I can register my bike. The dealer I bought my bike from sends out this paperwork about three weeks after the purchase date to help protect them against fraudulent deals (store ploicy). Since I live in California and purchased this bike from a different state, I have to provide the California department of motor vehicles with the cirtificate of origin before they will register it for off road use. They also have to physically inspect my bike as well, all because I purchased my bike out of state. Now if I bought the bike in California, I wouldn't have had all these hassles, but then I would have had to pay another grand for the bike from my local dealers.

Sooo...the BRP sits quietly in my garage for a while longer. For 'my' application, the price, performance, reliability, etc, fits my needs very well. Like you, I'm not going to race it (my racing days are over) and the XR will just do fine :D

We have similar laws here in Canada as well. You have to have any insurable vehicle inspected before it can be licensed in BC, even if the vehicle is brand new. Just another way for the Govt. here to get bit more out of our pockets.

I would have thought you'd have taken that bad boy out and give it a run, or do all bikes in Calf. need to be registered regardless if they are insured or not?


<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:<HR>Originally posted by Dramus:

...I would have thought you'd have taken that bad boy out and give it a run, or do all bikes in Calf. need to be registered regardless if they are insured or not?

All bikes in California have to be registered for something such as street, green sticker off road, red sticker off road, non-operational, etc :) . I'm dying to kick it over and ride it on my property, but my neighbors have some Very High Strung horses that go completely nuts at the sight or sound of anything unusual. About two months ago my kids pulling a small wagon of firewood down the horse trail in back of our house and three of their horses panicked and went completely crazy. They were crashing into and kicking the gates, fences, each other, etc. They had some major vet bills as a result of all this. I have an external garage in addition to an attached garage and everytime I open a garage door from my external garage, the horses go crazy. Everyone elses horses including ours are pretty calm, but the horses at my neighbors house are lunatics and I feel terrible whenever they get riled up & crazy like they do because they always get injured. I'm sure that if I started this bike up or rode it anywhere in my lower yard by my external garage/shop, they'd completely freak out and hurt themselves or each other.

I'm about to freak out myself from not being able to ride this thing, but that will soon change in the next few weeks :D

Have you already ordered your parts to uncork it? I have :D

No, unfortunatley I have to wait until I can get a hold of my XR. Winter is about to set in and I want to save up some cash. Come spring time, I'll trade in the KLR650 and hopefully will have 2 grand to put down as well. The hop up parts will have to wait as well.


520vs650r? Apples and Oranges is right.the 520 is an advanced ride for an advanced rider. This bike will sing in the hands of the right pilot. The 650 is and excellent bike where as the 520 is an excellent machine.Believe me I ride my 650 next to one every couple of days. [ November 05, 2001: Message edited by: METZ32 ]

[ November 05, 2001: Message edited by: METZ32 ]

I used to own an XR 600 and considered an XR 650 but decided on the KTM for a couple of reasons. First is the weight. The 520 is significantly lighter than the XR. The second reason is the button. At my age (49) picking up a 650 after a fall and then trying to kick start it is more than I want to do.

I had a recent experience at falling over on my 600. Picking it up was bad enough. Then I had to start the thing. I held up the group of folks I was riding with for about 10 minutes.

For me, the weight, power and button on my 520 are well worth the extra $$.

HEY ! I am NEW here ! :) I recently sold my used 01 520EXC for the BRP :D I am 38 and tired of RACING everywhere, the XR really fills the bill, it is a little heavier but like all bikes, you get used to it. 1 big plus, XR's are like chevy trucks, there's a dealer in every city.

I own both and they each are tricked out. I prefer the KTM over the Honda for anthing except Dual sport with a lot of street as the big XR is more comfortable on the street and smoother at higher RPM. The thing about the KTM is I never get tired when riding it and the XR does tire me out. The KTM is the easiest bike to ride and enjoy that I can remember and I have owned all of the hot four strokes sans the new Honda 450. So I ride my XR out of my garage (more street use keeps miles off the KTM) and my KTM goes with me when I head out riding in my truck or motorhome. At times I will take the Honda out to the desert but each time I do I wish I was on the KTM.

My friend has the 520EXC and the Yamaha 426 and feels the same about the KTM, easier to ride and much less tiring. His 426 is collecting dust except for a occasional spin.

Must admit that Honda has the dealer network and after market but the KTM only needs a couple of bolt on items to enhance durability and personal perferance.


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