WR 450 03 v 04

03 prices are good but Is it worth pay extra for 04

any fault with one or other ? :thumbsup:

the biggest change from '03 to '04 will be the starter system upgrades. do some searches in this forum and you'll find a ton of info. they should be done and they cost a couple hundred dollars U.S. they (yamaha) made the real changes in '05.

the biggest change from '03 to '04 will be the starter system upgrades. . they should be done and they cost a couple hundred dollars U.S.

I've had an 03 since 03 and haven't had a problem with my starter. what are the repercussions for leaving it be?

to tell you the truth, if it hasn't happened by now, i doubt it will be a problem. the failure rate was not 100%. there were a lot of pieces to the puzzle and one of the biggest was jetting. the '03's were jetted so poorly. they were so lean that they were hard to start and tended to back fire. that back fire would send a "shock" back through the starter system which broke stuff. if your jetting is good (48 pilot etc. etc.) and the flywheel nut was tightened correctly, you may never have a problem. do a search. there used to be an early thread that charted the failure percentage by vin number. don't know if it's still there.

my '03 sheered the flywheel key twice. they did the lap and glue yamaha update. then it broke the side cover. i couldn't risk being left in the woods. there was no choice but do the update. since then my starter motor went tits up and the starter clutch failed. i am now kick start only. yamaha has always maintained that there were no issues with the '03's. ha!

I have one of each and there is really no difference between them other than the starter drive. While some never have had a problem with the '03 starter if it does happen to you you're walkin. So if for no other reason than peace of mind I would upgrade to the '04 parts. Oh and the '04 has a much nicer kickstand :thumbsup:

don't forget the gripper seat!

The 04 forks are better and also the shock. Side stand is better for not hooking your leg on and is good on solid ground only when you need it to hold the bike up. Combine those with the starter mods the 04 is worth some more coin. But then again I have over 15,000 miles on my 03 with no starter problems and like it still.

I would recommend the starter upgrade on any 03 to the 04 parts. I just took my 03 apart and discovered missing teeth on the idler gear that the starter engages, the stater shaft gears were chewed up, the left cover had been broken. $500+ worth of parts later it is fixed, but it would have been a lot cheaper and taken less time if the upgrade had been done before the problem.

Well I had my Woodruff key shear during my break in period and that was covered at the dealership (who wouldn't touch it until it sheared). I had it jetted to be run uncorked shortly after (huge difference that depending on temp gives a nice off throttle popping)

The starter gear thing has me a tad worried. I've been running into an issue the last few months of riding where occasionally I'd hit E start, the motor would cycle and then it would lock, I'd try to move the kick start (which would only move 1/4") and the kicker would lock up, then hit the E start which would move again everything would be kosher after that.

I have over 5,000 miles on my 2003, and no problems with starter related issues.

I did the upgrade on my 03 and it was a piece of cake, my thought is to eliminate anything that will stop me from riding, I hate to travel 4 hours on a riding trip up north and have a breakdown!! My buddy had it happen and that was close enough for me, also can't hurt the resale. Good luck. :thumbsup:

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