Wr450 Vs. 525mxc

I switched over from an XR650 to an 03' 525 MXC a couple years ago. I ride primarily open desert, so far I have been very impressed with the KTM. I'm considering purchasing a WR450, mostly out of curiosity to compare the two and to try something different. I have heard good things about them mostly here at TT. If they don't compare and I like the WR450, maybe I will keep it as a 2nd bike. Any input would be appreciated.

I have both. :) I really like the 525 power in the open desert and the 6 speed gear box. The WR has more bottom end & midrange grunt but revs slower. The KTM likes to rev more and out powers the WR450 up top in a drag race.

The stock oversize gas tank on the KTM is perfect with the gas in the shrouds. My aftermarket tank on the WR450 goes up to the handlebars.

The KTM is more nimble and narrower between the legs and feels lighter and less top heavy. The WR is more stable and easier to handle in first gear rocky technical riding. They ride differently enough that it takes a little while to adjust. The 525 needs very few mods from stock the WR needs a lot of annoying mods to run with the big dogs.

They are great bikes and you will not be disappointed having both! :)

I would have to agree, the KTM is an outstanding desert bike, along with the few mods. Thats good stuff, I would have thought the WR would feel lighter and narrower, at least from what I have heard, and from just looking at the two. Thanks for the info., that is the comparison I was looking for. What year WR do you have? If it is an older one, have you compared it to an 05' from a riding stand point and not from just the factory specs. I am considering an 04' because looking around I'm sure I can save some $$$$$. :)

Good compairson Indy.. I would agree with you... :)

I have an 03 WR450. I think the 05's are made slightly narrower and smaller. Dan Lorenze has ridden and owned both 03 and 05 WR450s. I have not been on an 05 yet. :)

Thats what I have heard, I'm not sure if I want to go much smaller. I'm tall myself and I don't want to be to cramped. I'll have to check both the 04' and 05' out to really see if there is much of a size difference.

Hey Dan Lorenze, if your out there and read this let me know if there is a noticeable difference between the two in size. Thanks!

I have the '05 WR and I have a friend that has the MXC. Tecate, you need to compare the KTM to an '05 WR not an '03. The '05 has lower center of gravity, better suspension, better starting, and better handling than all previous WR's. I'm 6'3" and I was surprised at how comfortable I was on the WR. Unless you go on 100+ mile rides on fire roads all the time, that KTM tank is way too big. The KTM has alot of nice stock components, but I can't get comfortable on it. It might be the linkageless suspension, I don't know.

Just my 2 cents.

I've ridden the '04 450 EXC back to back a couple of times with my '04 WR, and the WR seems a little bit bigger actually. So the '05 WR would probably feel closer the KTM.

If you are in California, then I would definetly get the '05 WR over any other model year between 2002 and 2004. Reason being that the '05 is green sticker, whereas the '03 and '04 are not.


I love the KTMs... Great bikes, they're getting better and better every year.. Back when WRs had an enormous hit KTM was developing smooth and fast fourstrokes, now it seems like the Japanese engineers are trying to mimic the smooth power characteristics of the KTM rfs line. Looks like the smooth power thing is catching on....

Check out this picture below, on the left we have a stock Canadian 03 that I just finished jetting for a friend, on the right is my 05 midget (sorry, little person) bike.. WOW.... What a difference huh? Both bikes are stock and new.

Big difference...

Dan :)

Great pic Dan. I really like the '04 motor. Smooth delivery, but a blast when you need it. IMHO an '05 WR chassis with an '04 WR motor would be about right, except for the CA folks.

ya thats about what it felt like when i sat on the 05 at the dealer,people over 6'2" should stick to the 04's for any serious riding. my next bike will be a yzf450,they are still the same size,and i think with the auto clutch i could live with the tall 1st. button?we do'need no stinking button :)

Thanks for all of the possitive information, thats what I was looking for. I am going to kick it around and see what I really want to do. I am very happy with my KTM, just pulled all my suspension off to have it rebuilt. I guy I know has an 04', maybe I can hook up and give it a ride. That should give me a descent idea. Dan, that pic. of the 03' and 05' looks like a huge difference. That makes me wonder about the 05'.

Big difference...

OH MY GOD !!!!!

The 05 looks like a "mini me" next to the 03! :) I did not know it was so much smaller and narrower! It may now make a great woods bike! :)


The day I took that picture I had rolled both bikes out of my garage to throw a coat of paint on the floor, I did a double take at the bikes.. Whoa :) Truly a big difference. It can be good for some guys and really bad for others. If I were a 6'0 220lb desert racer, I'd probably pass on the 05 WR.

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