DR650 vs. 400s

I ride a 400 but my little bro wants a dr650. So we thought we would ask the experts. Pros & cons on both....your thoughts?


I have a DR 650 and i like it for basic fire roads and long distance rides. My buddies have 400s and they seem to be able to get around a little better in rougher terrain. Some times i wish i would have gone with the 400 but i still like my bike. When we hit the pavement i can run at higher speeds longer than them. There is more aftermarket parts for the 400. Its a tossup for me i like both.

I think it would depend on a few things...most of all, what type of riding he plans to do most...I would have got the 400 if I was just bouncing around town and hitting the trails a lot. I opted for the 650 because I wanted a bigger dual purpose that could handle the highway well and was simple by design. I dig the air cooled motor without all the digital gauges. The 400 is geared more for trail I think with better suspension, 18' rear wheel, and lighter weight. I have to say, the 650 can be a total bear to pick up. If you go to Suzuki's site, you can compare the specs of the two.

the 650 is a better streetbike, the 400, a better dirtbike. I bought the 650, cuz I spend most of my time on pavement, and I occasionally carry a passenger.

Both bikes are heavy the 400 is much more manageable off road if your tall and have long legs how ever the 650 has a lower center of gravity that makes it very manageable off road with dot off road tiress, the DR excels on the highway and is as reliable, easy to work on,modify as a volks wagon. riding both in the summer the DR650 is much cooler than the 400 with the radiators keeping your legs warm. OH and CHEAPER

In 2002 I had a 02 DRZ400S. I really liked the bike. It really is better off road than on. It's a tall bike, and I'm certainly not tall so that got a little tricky in some nasty rock and hill situations. I'm not by any means a hard core rider. I had it for a couple years and decided to part with it.

I love old Honda XL's and restored a few. I bought an 87 and made it like new again. I recently just bought a 06 DR650 so I'll be able to give you a great opinion once I get to ride it. Just looking it over I think it will be much better on the street, where most of my time will be spent.

If he likes the dirt and jumping, go for the DRZ. He he wants a cruiser with light off road use, go for the DR. :thumbsup:

The better rider a person is the more he/she can use what the DRZ has to offer, but the less they will need it. As a side note I have a DR and have ridden a DRZ. I just bought and setup a Honda XR650L for my brother and am really impressed with the handling this bike offers. In my opinion it is as good as a DRZ but some lbs heavier. If you want to compromise between the DRZ for dirt and the DR for street teh XL may be just the bike.


Had my 650 out in the dirt last week-end.

I think I had the most power on the track, and the most weight !

The DR still feels 'dirt bike-ish' enough for an experienced rider to pull it off.

The Honder looks real dirt bike-ie, the Kawi looks real street-ish.

DR seems like the best of both worlds yet is IS a hand full to pick up out of the dirt(and I know :thumbsup: ) but on the road it hauls ass !

My favorite parts is wheelies at the stop lights with no effort at all :bonk:

Thanks for all the input. How about mods for the 650. Is there much out there? Exhaust, carb, cams....?

I had an 02 DR650. I bought it to commute to work but decided I didn't like riding on the street that much. So I decided to make it more dirt worthy. Here's what I did:

Super trapp exhaust

Dynojet kit

Stiffer front fork springs

(the stock ones are way to soft for anything above moderate trail speed, the front end dives bad under braking both on the street and dirt)

Utah sport cycle skid plate

Acerbis hand guards and plastic tank

Dunlap DOT knobbies (606's I think)

Removed the turn signals, mirrors and grab handles

1 tooth smaller counter shaft sprocket

It was still street legal, where I live you can use hand signals.

The weight wasn't noticable unless you dumped it, it was really fun to ride offroad, the thing has more low end torque than any other bike I have ridden, but would still hit 80 in the long sand washes. I kind of regret selling it.

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