Engine Life Question

I recently bought a 2003 WR 450 from a good friend, and the bike has 1400 miles on it. (He never reset the odometer) He is a fairly hard rider but did not race it, and he changed the oil often.

So I am wondering how long this bike might last, considering I will be only trail riding with my son, not racing, and I will maintain the bike rigorously.

The reason I ask is I just read in Motorcyclist, I believe, a service question, where someone wrote in that his new KTM 250 has recommended top end rebuilds after 20-30 hours. That kind of interval is unacceptable, in my opinion, especially considering how expensive KTM's are. My Yamaha has at least that many hours on it now, and runs like a raped ape.

Comments are appreciated. Thanks. :smirk:

Congratulations on the bike!

I purchased my 2003 WR450 brand new, and rode it for 5 seasons and accrued over 10,000 miles of dirt, supermotard street riding, and dualsport riding.

Only had to do a single valve adjustment at about 6,000 miles.

Here are a few items that I remember replacing during my ownership:

Wheel bearings


Waterpump impeller shaft & seals

Front and rear brake pads x2

Chain & sprockets x3

Rear swingarm linkage lubrications x2

These are very reliable bikes, just routine maintenance and no worries.

Cool. I appreciate the response. Other than some scrapes all over the bike, which I have mostly cured with new plastic, the bike is in great shape. I hope it lasts a long time.

Even with the low miles, some shock linkage bearings were rusted and trashed. I do not think any bike manufacturer lubes those bearings very much. My KLR 650 needed a full lube down there when it was brand new.

I put over 5k miles on my 03 WR; dual sport, hare scrambles, trails, street, MX. The only problems I've had were a dead starter, broken kickstart stopper and a leaking water pump seal. I shimmed the valves once and other than that, just regular maintenance, though it is now due for a clutch and timing chain.

If you keep your maintence up I honestly 100% think it'll last you next to forever. If your running it WFO in the desert or dunes thats going to bite into your top end life but i've also heard of wr450's that have run 300 hours plus and are still going strong

Congrats! your the proud owner of (what may be) the most reliable 4 stroke bike money can buy :smirk:

Thanks everyone. I appreciate it.

my 03 is still on its original top end , its had one valve adjustment so far along with front wheel bearings , a few chains , and thats about it .

its usually held wide open :smirk:

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