What are some pros and cons of the KTM400 vs the XR400.

If interested, I can give you the email of a riding buddy of mine that went from a 2001 XR400 to a 2001 KTM520exc and he said its the best thing he has done.

Just let me know. RICKM7331@aol.com

I'm going to be a little biased, but here goes:

1) You get German/Austrian engineering in a KTM. The quality of a KTM is significantly better than Japanese bikes.

2) KTM = Electric Start! Enough said there.

3) KTM = Liquid cooled. Enough said there.

4) KTM has a 6 speed, close ratio tranny vs. the Honda's 5 speed.

5) KTM is approx 10 pounds lighter (out of the box).

6) KTM comes with White Power suspension. Arguably, much better than Showa.

7) KTM has a 3.5 gallon tank vs. Honda's 2.5 gallon.

8) Magura hydraulic clutch on KTM!

9) KTM will cost you about a $1000 more - but worth it!

10) The KTM will be far more verstatile than the XR400. The XR400 is a trail bike. The KTM 400 will do anything you want it to.

11) With a KTM you can be certain you have one of the best built, best performing motorcycles in the world - hands down.

Buy a KTM.

I almost bought a new XR250 last month then got to thinking about "bigger and better" bikes. I done everything but sign papers. Then someone let me ride their KTM250exc. WOW. Alot different. Only thing is, I want to stay with the thumper.

So here I am looking at KTM. Why don't they offer

a smaller 4 stroke? I think alot will depend on

availability and price. From what I have read and your responses, the KTM would be the better choice. Thanks for the input.

Just wondering - why specifically do you want a smaller thumper? Listen to my experience...

I have a Yamaha YZ426 and hadn't ridden a dirt bike since I was 10 years old (I'm 35 now, 5'10" 185 lbs). I was worried that a 426 was too much bike for a "newbie" but listened to others who said I would "grow" into it. They were right. I was a little nervous the first few times I rode it, but after about the 4th or 5th long ride, I was very comfortable with the power delivery. Since the KTMs are well known to have an even smoother delivery then the YZ, I think that most people should be able to handle the 400/520 after a little "warm up" time on the bike!

Now, unbiased XR vs. KTM comments (as I mentioned before I have a Yamaha):

(1) Get the Honda if you want a bulletproof trail bike

(2) Get the KTM if you want anything more out of it (hare scrambles, a little MX, etc). The KTM is well worth the extra dollars for the better suspension, light weight, high performance water cooled engine, accessories, etc., etc.

I will consider the KTM, the CRF, and the YZFs for my next bikes. I will not be considering an XR.

Good Luck,

Steve T

I'm a current XR owner but as soon as the finance check comes next week I'll have my first KTM.

01' 400EXC

I'll play devils advocate on this...

Here is what the XR is good at.

It is bullet proof, they run forever. They are very much a ride it and forget it type bike. Although it is advisable to change the oil often it's not like KTM often. You can change the oil and clean the filter every few rides and you're golden. It's very common to see XR's that are 10 years old still going strong.

It is air cooled, you don't have to worry about puncturing a radiator. For rides like Baja where you may be 50 miles from ANYONE this can be improtant. It's a great buddy bike, no worries when they dump it every hundred yards.

The bike is dated and not competitive racing but for the weekend warrior or guy just puttin' around with the kids it's fantastic.

When the trail gets REALLY bad is when the XR is REALLY good.

Still I'm buying the 400exc... so take it for what it's worth


[ November 16, 2001: Message edited by: Rodzilla ]

Oh p.s.

KTM is working on a 250 thumper. Should be out next year.

Pretty much agree with the above, but the KTM is a lot more money than an XR. However, if you compete or ride aggressively, it's easy to dump a few thousand into an XR4 to keep up with your riding demands. I've done almost every mod to my XR4s over the past several years and I'm now targeting an EXC. It's not that I can't keep up with my riding buddies or that I'm seriously "out-riding" the XR4's capabilities, it's about the riding enjoyment I expect to derive from one of the best designed bikes ever made for the dirt.

Whoa Rod! you got orange fever too? Congrats on the EXC and be sure to post your experience.

Hey Rod,

Glad to see you over here.

Even though I am still a 2 stroker, I enjoy this 4 stroke KTM forum. Congrads on your upcoming KTM400, you will love it as two of my x-XR400's buddies have. Come over and visit us once in awhile over at X-DB.

[ November 15, 2001: Message edited by: KTM250rm ]

Inmy opinion the XR400 is a great trail bike, there is no amount of $$ that will turn it into a 400 E/XC or especioly a 520 E/XC.

I have an electric start XR400, an XR650r and a 520E/XC, I havn't had the desire to ride the XR's since I got the KTM.

The XR's will run forever with little maintence, but I have had NO problems with the KTM either.

The KTM does need the oil changed more frequently, but riding and racing harescrambles like I do I'm not realy changing the oil in the KTM any more than the XR's

i rode a Xr for 4 years then switched to a Dr400z

which i thought was a great bike and has served me well for a year but recently i brought a 400exc and all i can say is this is the best bike ive swung a leg over

in 15 years of ridding dirt bikes its the smoothest most electric grin forcing thing ive sat on EVER

go for it

Mtngoat and KTM250rm,

Thanks for th warm welcome. I've lurked here for a while just spend so much time on the other boards I've neglected to sign on. With the KTM coming next week (I bought it from Lawman) I'll be spending more time here :)

Goat Yes I've got orange fever! I always had one on the wish list but until I ran across Lawmans for sale I always thought they were out of reach financially. Well you only live once, I'm 35 and ride between 2500 and 5k miles a year so why not buy the best!

You gonna keep your XR?

Hey, how do you smoke a KTM 400 ? Light up a CRF 450. speaking of light, can you spell aluminum? Oh I Did Not think so.

Hey Dorknoid, go find another site to bash on.

What Eric said....

Grow up or move on.

i don't see how KTMs build quality is better than Japanese bikes. Where are the "1) You get German/Austrian engineering in a KTM. The quality of a KTM is significantly better than Japanese bikes." components found?

My friend has a 2001 520EXC and it is a really nice bike to ride. The front end feels really light, but you will all disagree with that. Apart from the cheap **** looking headers, it looks okay, but where's the exceptional build quality components found? It runs a basic valve train system, and earlier models did suffer problems. In fact, i think its only in the last 1 to 2 years that they haven't had too many problems with engines, busted swing arms, and so on.

Germans are not the leaders in automotive technology, its the Japanese. BMW's are overpriced junk, and you need to spend heaps of money to get a fast one. Why should their motorbikes be different? R34 GTR v's BMW M3 enough said!

"With a KTM you can be certain you have one of the best built, best performing motorcycles in the world - hands down." Get real! does that apply to all Euro bikes, or just the KTMs? What about the Husabergs and Huskys? I'll admit, the Gas Gas bikes are pretty damn good though.


Don't get all wound up, that's just some guy's opinion and you know what they say about opinions...

Fact is, you're right. All told, the Japanese, as a group, make the best machinery. There is NOTHING in motorcycling, and probably automobiles, that they can't make better than their competition, but because they build more for the masses than smaller manufacturers do, their products are more generic. They also have that "Made in Japan" stigma that may never go away. They really only compete against each other so price/value is a large concern. A seven thousand dollar dirt bike coming from Japan would be out of this world but may not sell because it is afterall,Japanese.

enough said. :)

DOC, since you dont have a KTM, why is it you continually come and post in here? I mean, after reading your posts for several months, I have come to the conclusion you are quite a troller.

Question 1-What do you ride?

Question 2-What is your dysfunction?

Question 3-Why are you such a negative wanker?

Question 4-Wht is it when the OBVIOUS answers like-"the KTMs come with:chains and sprockets that last more than a few rides, the handlebars are actually great, and dont bend if you look at them wrong, the triple clamps are multi-adjustable, the engineering quality is apparent (like -look at the drilled bolt heads), look at the comparitive rotor sizes (stock, the KTMs are larger than some aftermarket oversized rotors) ETC.

You know, I have chosen not to respond to your imbecile posts, but I am getting tired of seeing your replys pop up whenever ther is ANY chance for disagreement. Geez,choder boy, get a life.


Are you just jealous of our beloved KTMs that makes you an ass, or are you just an ass? I mean I am baffeled by what possible pleasure you derive from showing your immaturity again, and again---dont worry, we realize some people are ahem, well, socially challenged :D

Ferris Bueller said it best "its intelligence thats makes it possible for people like me, to tolerate people like you" DOC, get a life. Thanks

While I am an avid KTM fan (5 new KTm's in the last 4 years), I must state that I dont think they are the best engineered bikes since sliced bread.

Having had 2 yamahas in the same period (00 Yzf426 & 01 yzf250), I feel they are equivalent in engineering expertise and quality. This is of course in my own experience.

I am sure the Honda crf is equally competent.

One issue where I do feel the japs are better is in their spare price costs especially engine parts (compare prices of pistons, engine casings, etc, it may turn you off euro bikes for good)

While we as KTM fanatics take exception to general statements like: "turns like a euro bike", we are quite happy with other generalisations such as " typical German engineering".

At the end of the day, I don't actually care. If it works for me, I go with it, same too with my bike choices. If I could buy a Chinese 'Ikiwara XZ50' on which I could smoke Carmichael at a National outdoor, there would be a couple of them in my garage right now.

Bottom line - there are pros and cons to all makes of bikes.

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now