Changes to the WR450?

People around here know Yamaha's - obviously. I was reading a rider review of the new 07 models yesterday. They said that in addition to the aluminum frame there was also some changes made to the engine.

Could you break down the differences between the 06 and 07 models? Is there any difference in the suspension? What's the difference in the engines? Have they changed at all for 08 or 09?

My local dealer has two 06's left over in his garage. They were not demos, they're brand new. He wants to make me a killer deal on an 06. I'm just thinking that if I get one, I'd want the aluminum frame. I'm still keeping my 426 for the plate and just because I like it. What are your thoughts?

Anyone own an 06 or older and switch to the aluminum frame?


Yes I have both, they are both great trail bikes.I like 07 better for single track.A pain to work on the alu frame bike,but once set up not any work to do.

I have an 07 and an 02. I have seat time on a buds 05. The steel frames definately give you a little more room to get to the carb. on the 05-06 you can loosen the carb boots and rotate it for work. The aluminums you just about have to pull out the sub-frame. I think the 07s have a slightly more supple suspension but that's my opinion. I have no facts. The 07 has a big electronic speedometer that is easy to read. The 07s have a protaper fat bar + 05s don't. I think the 07 feels lighter and lower though it's a small benefit on the scale. I think they advetise dry weight at 247lb for the aluminums. I think the 07 has more over-rev but they all have enough to move out when you learn them. I don't know what changes were made and it could be my 07 is just fresher, but I feel it. At some point they went with a bigger battery, a -7 vs a -5. This is slightly heavier but the big battery has more margin for sure starting. To tell the truth, I love the 07, but if I got a real deal on an 06, I bet I could take the savings and make the 06 haul the mail. The commonality in parts on the WRs tells you the package works and they stick with it for years. Good luck.

06 vs 07 (pasted from

New engine and balancer

New integrated oil tank location

New camshafts

New exhaust system

New aluminum frame

New body styling

New LED taillight

New quick-access airbox

New wave-style disc brake rotors

New ProTaper handlebars

New wider footpegs

New full-coverage skid plate

New radiator with bracing

New radiator louvers

New forged top triple and handlebar clamps

New seat cushion design

Sealed O-ring chain

i went from a 06 to 07.the alum frame is nice,it DOES feel lighter,carbs a pain to get to.the 06 was bullet proof,easier to work on, and seemed to have more bottom the steel frame seems to me ,to be more of a trail bike and easier to chug down the trail on.the alum frame seems to feel more like a hr.scrbl bike:excuseme: either way can't go wrong...they are both blue:lol:

A pain to work on the alu frame bike,but once set up not any work to do.

amen to that. Dang! you gotta take half the bike apart to rejet it. And then you have to deal with all the rubber pieces, tubes and wires:banghead:

I am currently on my 6th Wr, it's an 08', and it is by far the best one yet. I had an 06' and hated it. I was never pleased with the power especially the bottom end. The 08' has way better bottom end and the way the new frame is it gives the bike a much more stable feeling. The brakes are way better and all around a much improved bike. The difference between the 07' & 08' is just cosmetics.

My .02

I have the 05 and 08. The 05 is plated and used mostly for dual sport riding. The 05 is a bullet proof bike. Very dependable, but I seem to dump the crap out of it on tight single track. The 08 is set up for mostly desert/single track and has much more "lower center of gravity". If I could remember right? the 07 - 09 was heavier by 2lbs but the "LCG" seems to make it feel 25lbs lighter than my 05.

On the 08, I just lowered the front forks about 3/8" to help with tight single technical stuff and seems to help a lot. Plan on doing the same to the 05 soon.

For the price, You really can't go wrong, like them both. Get the 06 and laugh at all us dummys that paid full price because we were just too gitty.

Is the 3\8" drop in the fork easy to do? and does that affect the high speed tractability?

Do you give up stability for turning ease?

I had an '04 and rode a friend's '05. As others have stated, the 04 and earlier bikes were pigs on tight single track, but have monster engines. There were some very subtle changes on the '05 that helped alleviate the top heavy feel including reduce fuel tank volume, shorten the suspension, and soften the low end hit. I would agree that Yamaha was somewhat effective in that the '05 felt easier to throw around, but still had the monster top end of the older models. The '04 and '05 were pretty even on top as verified with some add-hoc drag races. The '04 would go like a bat out of hell from upper mid range to top end, and the only thing that could pull it had more than 450cc, as in a KTM 530. I remember doing 95mph indicated on a dirt road and the only reason that it wouldn't go faster, is that the back end would break loose in the soft sand with more throttle.

I would imagine that the '06 is pretty close to the '05, which means Yamaha had developed the steel frame bike as much as it could or was willing to.

I've got an '08 now, and after the free mods and GYTR AIS removal kit it is better in every way. It feels slimmer, lighter, smoother, and more refined. It pretty much looks and feels like an MX bike with lights on it, that is until you jump it, and the true weight and soft suspension will become more evident. Anyway, unless they are selling the '06 really cheap, I would look for a leftover '07 or '08, which is what I bought. IMHO, the '06 is a great dirt bike, but beginning with '07 it became an awesome dirt bike.

Just out of curiosity what are they asking for left over 06's? I am considering the same thing where I live.


I'm in Utah and i will sell you mine for 3,400. All stock except for FMF quiet core pipe with sparky. Awesome bikes.

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