'98 WR400F vs newer 400 & 426?

Hey guys,

There's a used '98 WR400F for sale not too far from me that sounds interesting. Its a lot cheaper then the newer 400 & 426's that I have seen.

Can any of you tell me if the differences between the 98 and the later years are significant?

Any things to look out for, or mandatory upgrades?

I do mainly tight, wet woods riding up here in the NorthWet, with some occiasional trail riding in the Cascades where its a little dryer and the trails are a little more open (Little Naches, Easton, Cle Elum).

I was hoping to get a new or newer 400 or 426 or maybe even a WR250F, but I am having trouble raising the money, and I could afford this bike right now, so I am tempted to go check it out.

Any input would be greatly appreciated.



ps: I rode a nicely setup 2000 WR400F recently and loved it.

If the '$' is right for you, it was maintained properly and runs good when you test ride it, it should be a good bike. The biggest changes from '98 to '02 were; better carburation, stronger clutch and titanium valves.

Good luck...Mike

better suspension

better steering (frame geometry)

MUCH better carburation

beefier clutch (early ones EXPLODED)

426 has better low end torque

better rims (Excel)


Please check PM

The 98's are good bikes mine has done a swag of kays no major dramas. The newer ones will steer better/tighter. the titanum valves are not always good they bed in and have to be re shimmed after around 1500-2000km's though dont need much attention after that where as mine is on original shims. The 426/250 have a differnt header higher bend where the 400's you have to loosen off to change oil filter, they still have takasago rims on the 98's just not excells and i feel they are stronger than the excells anyways i have hit biiiig stuff and still fairly round. grease the steering bearings and linkages once a year drop the oil after the 3rd tank or after every race meete run good fuel and a good plug and you wont have any problems as long as it has been kept well

Originally posted by arrow101:

The 98's are good bikes mine has done a swag of kays no major dramas.

A swag of kays?

I have a hard time believing that. Got any pictures???

what the hell is a kay?? a kilometer?

[ May 13, 2002: Message edited by: lewichris ]

Better frame geometry? What'd they do?

-Ken '99

I've got a 98. I run the hell out of it. Original clutch, no carb mods. The bike runs good and has been very reliable. I ran the forks up in the clamp 0.350" and it turns fine. I don't feel the 98's had any "major" failings, at least not in my experience with one. I say:

Buy it. Ride it. Break it, Fix it. Repeat cycle.

Just my $.02

Thanks for all the great feedback guys! -Ed

it matters alot on how well you take care of it. and how much preventitive matinence you do.

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