Considering buying a DRZ400...

Hello, I currently own an 05 RMZ 450. I absolutely love it. I love it so much that I want to ride it everyday...but I can't. I've owned it since the end of last year and it was the first bike I've ever owned (yeah, I know it's one hell of a bike to learn on, I didn't know I got when I got it).

Anyway, the problem is the lack of places to ride and the fact that I have to load up my truck and drive at the very least an hour to hour and half to be able to enjoy it. Then after a ride, I have to clean the air filter, after two change the oil, after 5 check the valves and adjust the timing's a lot of work!

I absolutely don't mind and don't want to come off as complaining, but I'm thinking I may enjoy something else a little more. I'd love to own two bikes, but can't afford that.

There are tons of fire roads and stuff like that that are legal for plated bikes. I'd also like something to run errands on. Run around town getting 40 MPG as opposed to taking my powerstroke, getting 18-20 MPG.

So, a couple of questions. I know you guys love your DRZ's. I've heard great things about them. But will I be disappointed and miss my RMZ? I know it's a heavier bike, how much heavier? I mostly do trail riding and have heard the DRZ does OK at this.

Now as far as maintenance, what's it involve?

As far as handling on pavement, will I be able to enjoy myself driving on these mountain roads that we have in Roanoke? Or do I really need a street bike for that?

Sorry for all of the questions. Like I said, I really do love my RMZ, but I need to look at all of the possibilities. I just don't want to make a mistake.



Yes, you will be dissapointed. Yes, you will miss your RMZ. I sold my YZ426 to get my 06S and regret it. The DRZ is a capable bike but nothing compared to a MX bike without dumping tons of money into it.

Now that being said, it is very nice to get home after work and go for a 30 minute ride. Being plated has some big advantages but I do miss the punch of a true MX bike.

If I could do it again I would have kept the YZ and bought a DRZ.

If you can't have two bikes and a dual sport sounds good I'd say go for it but be prepared to put another $1,000 into the bike to liven it up.

Hmm..........well then maybe I should save up and get two bikes.

Or is it not even worth getting the dual sport? Maybe I should get a dedicated street bike...

I'm keeping my eyes open for a cheap 2T for a play bike. The DRZ is a fun bike but coming off of a MX bike it is a dog. I looked into how much $$ it would take to get me some more HP and I would spend more on parts than I paid for the bike.:thumbsup:

yes I 2nd what kenr74 pointed out

but I come from a different side of things

I have been riding over 20 years now ( mostly street bikes ) living in IOWA I have to traler a RMZ 450 3 hours to ride it

so having some thing street leagle is a 99% nasasady

last year I put on 10,000 miles on a 05 DRZ400sm with only 1,000 miles oil change intervalls 1 new chain and 5 new tires

yes I did some mods but I'm still at 35HP buy eddys dynos

You will probably loose an amount of depreciation if you sell the RMZ that would be equal to a cheap streetbike. Save up and buy a cheaper DRZ s or a cheaper street bike. I'm doing this in reverse. I have the Drz farkled out and now still want a true dirt bike so I'm saving up for that. 2 bikes would be so cool. Realizing that some people on this forum have 4 or 5 makes me envy just a little.

I got tired of trailering my old XR-250 so I purchased a 400/S. Its been a great bike but while living in Seattle I am still in the same boat. Either load it in the truck or risk my life driving interstates for 1-1.5 hours in order to hit the dirt. I really like the bike and its fun but I mostly ride it around town on sunny days. With your situation I think you should look for a good deal on a used Sm and keep the RMZ. I know lots of people do the street tire/brake conversion but I would rather have both an S and Sm. :thumbsup:

Having two bikes (or more:thumbsup: ) is really a good way to go! I have a dirt cheap 2t for stretching my arm out (2000 KTM 300 Exc), and a Drz for everything else. You also mentioned that you have firetrails near by. The Drz is great on those. Iffins I was you, I'd buy an older, low mile Drz. Just my .02

Yep,like everyone else has said,drzs are great all rounders,but you would definately miss the hit of the rmz,.Buy a cheap drz and keep the rm too thrash off road.Getting your buzz off road is far safer than getting your buzz out of an r1,gsxr,etc on the road,but more fun.

Not sure about the laws in Virginia but have you thought about trying to plate your RMZ:excuseme: I had a WR450 that was Plated for NV and it was awesome..I now live in CA and the laws are different so I ended up selling and getting a DRZ...I now ride to work everyday and I love the thing!! but its not the WR out in the dirt...its definitely capable and a ton of fun in the dirt but its not an MXer.

Thanks guys for all of your opinions.

I'd love to plate my RMZ but it's damn near impossible do to the electrical system, along with the fact that it's only a 4 speed and you have to change the oil so often (same oil for engine, gearbox, and wet clutch). So that's not a possibility.

Now I'm thinking about finding a cheap Ninja 250. They have a tiny twin and weighs just 300 lbs. I have heard nothing but awesome things about this bike. It's kind of like a Lotus Elise of motorcycles.

But then I think about hoping on a DRZ and finding some backroads that lead to fire roads.

Here's a question. What's the handling like on the DRZ on pavement? Does it take a lot of money to get it somewhat capable of the twisties?

What's the handling like on the DRZ on pavement? Does it take a lot of money to get it somewhat capable of the twisties?

Even with the stock tires, I've been pretty happy with mine. I've even been out in the snow with it! However, it rained on me last week and going over 40 mph wasn't much fun. Once the stock death wings are off, I expect better handling all around.

my DRZsm will smoke a Ninja 250 .... short of top speed

but my SM gets 50 MPG

I have seen reports on forums ware the Ninja 250 can get 75 MPG +

I thought I would throw my two pennys in and say....I just bought a 2000 drz and its the dirt only model and wished I would have waited and bought an sm...they look sick with the street tires and better with the of both worlds.....I personally think it is fun to sink a little cash into a bike and customize it a bit......worst case scinerio you can always sell the drz sm if your not happy with it.....just my thoughts....:thumbsup:

Now I'm thinking about finding a cheap Ninja 250. They have a tiny twin and weighs just 300 lbs. I have heard nothing but awesome things about this bike. It's kind of like a Lotus Elise of motorcycles.

I've heard nothing but great things about the Ninja 250. A bud of mine just picked one up for $500 for his wife to get started on. It just needed some new plastic. I guess it just depends on what kind of riding you are going to be doing. You might not want to leave the concrete with the Ninja, though. I have an 07 SM, and one of my favorite aspects of it is that I can sneak into various off-limits locations to throw some roost or climb some hills as they pop up on my concrete journeys.

Here's a question. What's the handling like on the DRZ on pavement? Does it take a lot of money to get it somewhat capable of the twisties?

In a word: excellent. I haven't made any mods to my suspension, and it blows me away how well this thing handles. I haven't gotten the pegs to scrape yet, but I've had toes make contact with the ground. I giggled for about 20 minutes :lol:

Oh, and the dirt-bike riding position is the bee's knees :thumbsup:

I strongly considered the Ninja and a few others, but the DR-Z just seemed like the best balance of sporty vs. practical vs. comfortable vs. dependable vs. mod-able. I'm very happy I bought it :ride:

And once it's paid off, I'm sending the engine to Eddie to make it rip :bonk:

I agree with those who say keep the RMZ and look for a used DRZ. I'm in a similar situation as you. I have an '06 YZ250 with less than 10 hours on the engine. It has so little use and is so clean you can eat off it. The bike rips and is an absolute blast to ride, but living in NJ simply leaves me with very few riding options. I've considered selling it a couple of times but just can't accept the fact that I'd get slaughtered on the selling price. Even in such great condition as it is, I'd lose half the money I spent on it. So, I'm considering picking up a used DRZ, plating it, and significantly opening up my riding options. I'll keep the YZ and have it for the future when I move out west. Picking up a used DRZ seems like a great option leaving you with the best of both worlds if you decide to keep your RMZ. Good luck. :thumbsup:

Hmm..........well then maybe I should save up and get two bikes.

Or is it not even worth getting the dual sport? Maybe I should get a dedicated street bike...

Buy the sm dude. It handles unlike any crotch rocket I've ridden. Except the hypermotard. Put a yoshi on it (500 bucks) 3x3 to the airbox (free) and put in an FCR (500) and buy some dirt tires and wheels (probably 800) and you have two bikes that rock and roll.

There are many who would agree with me on this. It won't pull like an mx bike because.....its not an mx bike. But let me tell you......The DRZ is a fun machine:ride: :thumbsup:

Check out my garage to see the two versions. I'm working on getting the FCR right now.

Ok, if I were you I'd do this.

Keep the RMZ450, they are a blast to ride off road/motocross and the power is a beast. you won't find that in a comparable sized street bike or on/off road.

Ditch the idea of getting a DRZ 400 unless you get a 650. You can get wheels and brakes and have a fun supermoto to ride.

Better yet you may do what I did (I already have a YZ426 mind you) I went and got a used KTM LC4 640 SM $3,5000 and I love IT !!! It is fast, and I changed the carb and exhaust and now it is a straight demon.

I ride with a bunch of guys maybe 20 of them or so when we group ride and they have XR650L's (not a bad bike) KLR 650's, DRZ 650's and a few DRZ 400's SM.

Well the DRZ 400 SM guys are always talking about they wish they had more power and wish they had a bigger bike and struggle to keep up.

I love Suzukis and was raised on them however the DRZ 400 is not a contender if you want power and speed.

Just my two cents.

Why don't ride a buddies DRZ 400 for an hour or two then ride a 650 supermoto or enduro, you'll see what I mean.

No disrespect DRZ 400 owners

Well i went against what everyone said and got a ninja 250. I found a 98 with less than 1500 miles for $1000. Of course the carbs need work, but other than that, it's a beautiful bike. I really needed a cheap bike. Now I can spend what I have left on safety gear.

I'm planning on doing some track days with it. I hear it handles really well, but I'm definitely not going to be passing anyone down the straights.

I'm definitely not selling the RMZ! I would miss it way too much.

Thanks again guys!


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