Buy a WR or DRZ

I'm going to buy a 2005 bike and the choice is between a WR450 or a DRZ. I'll be riding trails primarily, but I love the jumps and the fast stuff. The WR is about 1000$ more expensive. Is it worth it. What about the Trinity (handling, suspension, and power) of each bike.

Should I ride Blue or Yellow?

Thanks for the advice.


I haven't compared the 05 but I did compare the '02 DRZ and WR426 and I'd say that the WR had definitely better suspension. The handling of the WR was better too to my opinion (better ergos, very stable front end, lighter). The 426 I've tried was more powerfull than the DRZ. Both bikes were fairly stock. I know DRZ have a strong engine... lots of torque and thus lots of potential HP but I would guess that the WR5450 is more powerfull.

The WR is an excellent high-performance race bike, which means you will have to do significantly more maintenance for the price of that extra performance. The DRZ has excellent performance and great suspension for a trail bike. That is the big difference, the DRZ is a trail bike and the WR is a race bike. Many folks have DRZs with 20,000+ miles on the original engine (never rebuilt). You'll be hard-pressed to get 5,000 miles from a WR without rebuilding the top end.

IMO, a DRZ400 is more comparable to a XR400 (dead this year); ie, a big Trail Bike vs. a RFS.

I truly believe that the 05 WR450F has been refined to be the best big 4st made; the only other 4st I would consider would be a KTM525. But given maintenance, out of the box suspension, and more radical (fun) power, the WR rules 4st's IMO.


The biggest difference between the two bikes when I bought my WR was that the WR is a lot more agressive. Suspension, seat, handling, power... all made to be ridden hard. If you are an agressive rider you'll like the WR.

If you want to spend all day in the saddle taking in the view with occasional moments of MX grandure the DRZ works well. It's also a little shorter than the WR and that seems to be a big deal to some people. Your a little shorter than I am and it may or may not be an issue to you.

Either bike may require mods to make it exactly what you want.

At 240lbs you're probably heavier than the stock springs on either bike were intended.

The WR might be a tad stiff for more casual trail riding and the DRZ isn't quit stiff enough for really agressive riding.

You should jet it for for where you'll be riding no matter what you buy.

The WR seat is too hard for what you want.

The DRZ may need mods for a little more power.

I agree that having a kickstart as a backup is a must.

Either way you'll love the bike but wish one or two things about it were different. The only way to make it perfect for you is to modify it.

Now, ask yourself. Are you as agressive a rider as you used to be?

I think the DRZ might be better for you but ultimately you are the only person that can answer that question.

Better motor + better suspension = WR! :)

You'll be hard-pressed to get 5,000 miles from a WR without rebuilding the top end.

Although I do agree with the beginning of the message I don't agree with this later sentence.

First, higher maintenance on the WR means: frequent oil changes and air filter cleaning (which you should do on any bike anyway).

Second, I see riding a race bike as an advantage for reliability (unlike what is generally thought). Figure out that a WR is built to be ridden by Ty Davis. I'm so slow compared to Ty, how the heck could I cause dammage to the engine of this bike? I'll never be able to ride my WR as hard as it is made to be ridden so if I do the proper maintenance, chances are it's gonna be pretty darn reliable :D . Just like when you buy a sport car from an old woman :D . This is why I don't see a week-end warrior do a top end rebuilding before at least three years (if you don't ride during the winter).

And effectively: many guys on the forum will confirm that they opened the top end of their WR for absolutely nothing after 10 000Km. My bike has way over 10 000 Km. I inspected the whole head, piston, rings and the only thing that was not perfect is that the valves were a little tighter. I had to slighlty reajust two of them.

Don't play dumb buy overreving it to cut-off on neutral, give it good oil often and keep this air filter'll be more than satisfied :)

That said, the DRZ has more power than an XR400. It is true that it is rather heavy and trail-oriented (like the XR was) but it is water cooled and being so allows for more power to be generated because you can get rid of the heat easier... I think a DRZ torque is much higher than an XR400 and thus, it should produce more power at the same RPM.

You can talk to TT member "Burned". If my souvenir is right, he has modified DRZs to reach up to 60hp! :) I don't think you could do that on a XR400. :p That is because of the torque the engine produces.

My bike is not '05 vintage, it's a '00WR400F. I'll assume the 450 is at least the bike mine is, likely much more. I've ridden a '01 DRZ, and it's a good bike with the proper mods. To ride it fast, the DRZ needs more mods. The WR is designed as a very high performance machine. The DRZ feels slower and heavier with slightly sluggish handling to me.

As for reliability, I've never been into the engine on my WR for anything. Valves are the most vulnerable part, and the '00 has no valve problems. Anything with Titanium valves will require a valve job at least at 60-70 hours. Aside from that, friends have had much the same experience as mentioned in previous posts.

If you want performance, I'd get the WR. If you want to casually trail ride with no particular performance need, get the DRZ.

My experience sounds almost identical to Dan's above. The DRZ will need suspension work, the WR is good right out of the box. Most important, it has been a very reliable ride that yanks my arms off!

C'mon, the two aren't even comparable. If yer a cheapskate or can't afford the WR go with the DRZ. If you can afford it go with the WR. Ya get what ya pay for!!!!

And you'll get more than 5000 miles outta the top end, especially if yer trail ridin'!!! :)

one more vote for the wr.... :)

the extra grand is well worth it.. :)

A DRz in stock form will be a decent trail bike.

A DRz with all the mods and reworked suspension can be competitive.

I have been riding DRzs since 2000. I'm still on my 2002. I ride a lot. Last time I adjusted my valves was after the 2003 Colorado 500. They have been spot on ever since. I have run it out of oil and coolant until she seized. Burnt the clutch after a small piece of the case found its way into the shifting mechanism. Oh and I won the 2003 B four stroke enduro championship (NETRA) on my 2002. (Over a CRf450 and WR250 and KTM's)

Yes it is heavy but it is reliable. Same battery on my 02. Tend it after long times between rides. DO this for any bike with a battery IMO.

If you decide DRz you can pick them up relatively cheap.

I should also let you know I am having one heck of a time choosing my next bike.

WR450 or the new CRf450x.

Leaning toward blue!!!

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