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Considering three bikes. . . .

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New to Thumpertalk, and I wanted to first ask possibly one of the most frequent questions: which bike would I be best suited to? The three I am considering are a basically new XR400, a low-mileage CRF 450, and a KTM 450EXC. I'll probably use the bike at some point for dual-sport and extend my riding into late fall and early spring with the possibility of light MX or trail. I already have a Ducati, so I know the drill for high-maintenance bikes, but I'd perfer a more reliable bike if I'm out in the elements. I have done some reaserch on weights, power, and valves. But in real-world use, how do these stack up? Thanks for any opinions.

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you are considering 3 entirely different bikes.

in a nut shell

xr400:

low maintenance, very reliable, excellent choice for trail and dualsport, not really good for mx (even if it is light), low cost

crf 450:

higher maintenance, do not know enough about reliablity, excellent mx bike, can be made and okay trail bike but the power delivery is not right, not good at all for dualsport, carries less than a quart of oil, higher priced

450exc:

probably the best all round bike, i would get one if i had the cash, downside is probably maintenance and price

i am pretty happy with my xr400 though. part of that is because it is so tricked out i could never sell it for what i have in it. i do keep up with my buddy on a wr450. granted it trail riding and the power hit isn't like the wr. but nonetheless, i'm on his back tire.

my is also street plated. i love it.

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I have an XR400 and a 450EXC. mrscullini did a pretty good job. I ride exclusively trail (fairly tight with some more open spots - 3rd gear max though) but have MX'd in the distant past.

You would never appreciate or use the XR for the track. If track is more than playing once a year or so do NOT get that bike, though it's bulletproof and virtually maintenance-free - something you won't get with the other two.

The 450EXC is your happy medium of the three and is a superb trail bike. I ride that one almost exclusively now that I've got it.

If you want to go 50/50 trail/track I wouldn't really hesitate to get the CRF450R. I've ridden one a couple times on the trail and it's a fair bit more work than the other two for obvious reasons. But the power is huge and that makes up for a lot in the grin department. You won't go all day on it though. But it is simply the ONLY bike of those you mentioned for the track.

So, in summary - you can't really use the other two on the track, but you CAN use the CRF450R on the trail so it's your only choice imo.

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