05 WR450 vs 03/04 WR450F vs KLX400

Hey WR Guys, I need some opinions on these three bikes. I realize this is the blue room and the "Mr Yuck" green bike is probably the underdog, but have at it.

I currently ride an 03 YZ262F for Enduro & Hare Scramble racing (Senior A). Also, I have an almost new 03 KLX400 which I was intending to DS, but then I just got this tickle to get a WR450 for DS that instead. Whichever DS bike I have, the YZ262 will still be my "go-fast" woods bike and the DS would be for non-serious riding or trail working bike.

My plans for the DS bike would be for limited tarred road use (25%), gravel & minimum maintenace type roads (35%) and tight single track or maybe some limited play moto with the rest of the time. I want to keep the bike kinda quiet so I would only partially uncork the stock silencer.

I realize that all three of these choices will be heavier than the YZ262, but I'm sure there are going to be some BIG differences between the WRs and the KLX, so here's the questions:

1- The 03/04 WR450 has the bigger tank and was reported to feel quite a bit heavier than the 05. True or not really so bad?

2- Is the 05's smaller tank too small? Do you find that you'd rather have the larger 03/04 tank and then tolerate the fatter tank?

3- Just flopping the bikes side to side in the garage/showroom, the KLX feels really top heavy despite being supposedly only 16# heavier. How much lighter will the WR450 feel in action? (lots, some, you-won't-believe-the-diff, etc)

4- For just driving on the street, how are the 450s for riding 60mph sort of stuff? I might sneak it to work once in a while (30 mile drive on light traffic).

5- It's going to cost about $2000 to make the swap from that almost new KLX to a carryover new 05 WR450. Is the $$ worth the upgrade?

Thanks in advance for some quality answers. :thumbsup:

Anybody with an opinion? :thumbsup:

My plans for the DS bike would be for limited tarred road use (25%), gravel & minimum maintenace type roads (35%) and tight single track or maybe some limited play moto with the rest of the time. I want to keep the bike kinda quiet so I would only partially uncork the stock silencer.

If thees are your plans for the bike I would just keep the KLX you already have and not spend the extra $.

The WR450 is a much faster and lighter feeling bike in any year. The 2.1 gal tank of the latter years is a little small. Most folks go to a larger aftermarket tank. I have a bud that rides a KLX300 and it's asleep compared to the 450. But for dual sporting like you mention the KLX400 would be just fine.

1. The bigger tank made it feel a little wider and obviously meant that it could go further, didn't really affect the weight a great deal - my '05WR450 gets around 95~100klm before reserve when i'm pushing it hard through the bush ...

2. Having that knowledge i ride accordingly and take extra fuel for the ride or incorporate a fuel stop through a country town ...

3. The KLX is a good trail bike (DRZ 400) but it is heavier and slower reacting than the WR. It is also a tractor and will pretty much take you anywhere and everywhere you want to go. If you try to ride the KLX like a WR, you'll be worn out at the end of the day (or end up super fit?)

4. KLX400's and for that matter DRZ400's are great dual purpose bikes - which is pretty much what they are built for - road riding is second nature to them, more so than a WR.

5. For street riding and trail riding, i'd stick to one of these and be happy with the low maintenance, reliability and good nature of them. For keeping up with KTM's, sreaming through the tighter stuff and the occasional club race (enduro) get the WR450 and have a ball ...

Thanks for the replies! Good info.

That's good to hear from riders w/ experience with the bikes in discussion, that the KLX400 (green DRZ) is a pretty good trail bike. Magazines can have a guy thinking that a DRZ is some sort of prehistoric boat anchor. I had strongly suspected that it wasn't so bad.

But,,,, I can plainly see if I was to have just one bike to do both DS and trail with more focus on the trail, the WR450 would clearly be the superior choice.

Thanks again and don't be surprised if I show up asking some Qs about the WR450. Something about the color blue which just looks better in my garage than green. :thumbsup:

What could be better than a green bike in your garage?!?!?

I also own an '03 KLX 400 that I've been trail riding for a couple of years now. I am also very interested in a new WR as my KLX wears me out on the trails after chasing my buddies on CRF 450's, KTM's and a few two strokes. From what I know about them, the WR is pretty bulletproof and you won't regret the decision if you get one. It would make a fun dualsport but I think, for any distance riding, you'd be happier with the even more bulletproof DRZ/KLX. Low maintenance, decent power and a really good SM bike for the odd track day. That's my plan anyway

Don't believe all the negative talk about the 400. Yes, it is a little outdated but who cares?!? It's a solid bike that will last for years without the valve problems etc you see so often with new higher revving 4 strokes.

That being said, my plan is to DS the KLX ('cause it isn't worth anything anymore on the used market), and get a new WR (only because Kawi doesn't make anything equivalent) for trail riding. My KLX has me worn out after a half day and I'm 6'1" 220lbs and in good shape.

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