New bike decision - help!

I would be biased but, I would race the CR250 for MX and go with the YZ426 for desert. I rode a 91 CR500 around an MX track and was very impressed. I used to race open class a long time ago. That low end torque is just awesome!

Still though, that CR500 is pushing 60hp, and sand just eats horsepower. Maybe the CR500 would be better for desert. Put on the heaviest flywheel weight you can find, and go dig some trenches. I don't know, it is a real tough decision.


I think you should buy one of each and bring them all to Moab in October so we can all test them and help you make your decision.



P.S. Did you get my e-mail last night? I haven't checked my other mail yet.


There are a lots of things to consider. The biggest and deciding factor for me would be that the YZ426 has a closer ratio gear box than both the CR500 and your current YZ400. This would make for too much over-revving or a VERY tall 1st gear and force you to slip the clutch alot at lower speeds.

-Your current YZ400 is dialed, and has a slightly wider gearbox, desert race it and maybe get the CR250 for MX. The CR250 is the lightest and arguably best 250 2-stroke made.

- Wish it was my problem too!!

James Dean


After reading everyones reply, I've got it. Keep the WR and buy the CR250. Put a CRE kit on it and make it street legal. Bring it to Moab and I will race test it for you. I have never met you but I think we could be great friends...And what are friends for anyway? I guarantee I'll give your bike a great write-up and you will be so proud!!

All right, I can't wait to try that CR!!

I agree w/ James on the YZ tranny, too close!! I didn't think about it.

[This message has been edited by Kevin in New Hampshire (edited 06-09-2000).]


Don't know what your body weight is. But the new YZf250 four-stroke would be a hoot in the 125 class. What about the YZ250 two-Smoke it was voted best 250 by MX Action for whatever that's worth.

Go blue!


The Close ratio box isn't too bad out here, I can work around it with sprockets. Most of the desert I ride is "medium" speed stuff not wide open Baja but not rock crawls either...Some guy named Ty (Davis) and another named Paul (Krause) seem to do okay out here on the 426 :) If I was going to buy new I'd hold out for one of the new WR426s, but price on this bike is a steal...

Brian M. The KX500 is a great bike, but my nearest Kawi shop is 2 hours away. I've ridden the CR500, vibration is noticable but GREAT power and long legs(gearing) The Honda, Yamaha shop is in town. I could mail order stuff for the Kawi but it's nice to have local support. I really wondered about the riding style and power delivery of the 500's wearing on me for MX.

Brian H. I got the email and responed, thanks :D

Bill - The new YZ/WR250F is a very interesting bike, it may replace my wifes KDX200 at some point. Not that I'd ride it....much (LOL)


Chris in the Mojave

'98 YZ400F

[This message has been edited by Chris in the Mojave (edited 06-09-2000).]

I'm sitting he sweating over buying a 426. I've got a acquaintance in AZ that bought a new YZ426 and YZ250 this year. He can't start

the 426, 2-stroke in his blood. The bike is perfect, 10 hours on it total,

still has the nubs on the tires, Pro-tapers, CF glide plate, extra plastic and

suspension done for close to my body weight. I can get it for a "really good" price.....

I'm sweating because I'd decided to get a CR500 to set up for Desert races and

keep the 400 to ride MX. My 400 is dialed in and has been a great trouble free ride.

Wife green lighted a second bike to get me to sell my skydiving gear, after 15 years and 900 jumps.....

I'd also though about getting the 426, selling my 400,getting a CR250 and setting the 250 up for MX.....ARGGGGG, ITS A BIKE QUANDARY (LOL) What I found really surprising is

the weight difference, go sit on a CR250, it feels WAY lite! This is a good

thing for an old guy like me at the end of a moto when my tongue is hanging

out....decisions, decisions

You get to have any two of the above bikes, one for desert, one for MX. What would you do and why? I'd really like to hear from you guys

that have raced on both the thumper and the 2 smokes.


Chris in the Mojave

'98 YZ400F


Oh to have your troubles....

Seriously, I can ride faster longer on my WR400 than on my KX500. It's the riding style/fatigue thing.

Also, remember that Scott Summers has tested lap times on the XR250, XR400 & XR600 and was fastest on the 250 (I think this is correct). Bigger is not necessarily always better.

Curious, why the CR500 for desert instead of a KX500? If you're serious about the 500cc 2smoke I've got '90 KX500 for sale :)


This is a no contest. I owned a 1996 CR500 and one of my happiest days was when I sold it.

Reliable-sure, fast-you bet. But what an animal. It must be one of the most tiring bikes to ride with that brute, vibrating powerband. The minute you get tired you start wiping out - Ive got a couple of broken bones and ambulance rides at the local harescrambles to prove it. Its also quite a cramped bike for a tall rider, making it uncomfortable over long distances. I let a friend ride it as he was thinging of buying it. Its the first time I've seen a bike on a hill climb do a 360 deg backward somersault and land on its wheels unscratched. Unfortunately, I lost the sale as it cured him of his open bike macho dreams. :)

The YZF426 with the WR gearbox is far more versaitile and almost as fast, the suspension is way better and I much prefer the ergonomics. Gas (or petrol as we call it) consumption is also a lot better. As one magazine scribe says

"You really ought to have known." Shame on you for even comparing the two bikes.

OK, here goes my experience. I have ridden CR250 (99), CR500 (98) and WR/YZ400 (99). Here are my thoughts.


CR500, forget it. Riding position does not assist with cornering. High speed stability OK, but cornering with feet up in a standing position tends to leave you falling on your hips. OUCH.

CR250. Lots of Fun. A complete blast. Light and flickable. BUT, very rigid and very unforgiving. It required presicion handling

WR/YZ400. For my riding style, and we are talking about MX, alot of wideopen, high speed cornering, big berms, etc... The 4 stroke is certainly the best. but we all know that. Weight, yes, a problem. But this becomes managable after a while.


CR500. Riding along a river bed, standing position, leaning forward and power sliding. YEEHAAAAA.

The YZ/WR is also impressive, particularly if there are a few turns.


No question - CR500. To many places for sand to get into the WR/YZ and the 250 is just not strong enough

Tight trails

This is simple and based on weight and basic ridability

CR250 - With flywheel weight

WR/YZ400 - This would win, but riding in tight trails all day would take the energy right out of me.

CR500. Foprget it, I have tried and it is a pig with no feet.

Super Motard

Go Blue. Keep away from the 2-smokes.


It's about time you sold that crazy jump'n out of airplane stuff. That sport will KILL you. There's no replacement for displacement, well that works fine when you want to haul butt through wide open spaces. But as a recent X-KX 500 owner I think that Yamaha has a good set up with the 400 series thumper. Buy that used 426 and set it up for desert. Then figure out what you want to ride on the track, and how much time you are going to spend riding on the track vs desert. Lighter is better on the track in my opinon. Do you want 100 MPH +++ through the desert. You might as well Jump out of an air plane :)

See ya :D

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