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DRZ 400 or a KTM 530 EXC

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I had a XR 400 which I sold so I could get a dual sport that I can register and ride on the road. I weigh about 200 and am 6 feet tall and 49 years old (been riding since I was 12 and am in good shape; running a marathon in January). My budget is $6000.

What kind of riding I will be doing

New England Riding: I live in Rhode Island and want to buzz back roads in CT, RI or MASS looking to find new trails. Most everything is woods riding with a couple of fire roads mixed in.

Colorado riding: I will be doing a 1000 mile week long ride in colorado in Sept in around colorado springs (something through ADVrider)

I want to buy a bike for around $5000 - $6000 set up for what I want to do or buy a stock bike and put about $1500 of accessories into it?

With that said I know I can go the DRZ route but can I go the KTM route in that budget? Should I?

Thoughts?

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Either bike is going to be a good choice. The wife and I have DRZ 400s (ones a S and the other a SM) and were super happy with them. For what your describing, I would lean towards a KTM. They are a little more bush friendly compared to the DRZ. The suspension on the KTM will do better off-road. Your trip in sept. seems to be a one or 2 time deal and the KTM will so just fine. I would swing towards the DRZ if you were going to do more road rides and tamer trails (though I take mine places I wouldnt take my 250xc). The older KTMs with the RFS motors have a good track record when it comes to reliabilty. If you look around enough you should be able to find a KTM for that 6k price no problem. Also, dont be afraid to look at a Husaberg, they make some great bikes for what your describing. Heres a website ot give oyu some kind of idea about Husabergs for adventure riding. The bike also comes with fuel injection which to some might be a bonus.http://www.expeditionportal.com/vehicules/motorcycles/70-other/321-so-you-want-a-lightweight-adventure-travel-bike.html

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thanks guys

As for the feel of the bike how do both the 530 EXZ and and the DRZ 400 compare to a honda xr400? Also which one is more reliable?

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thanks guys

As for the feel of the bike how do both the 530 EXZ and and the DRZ 400 compare to a honda xr400? Also which one is more reliable?

530 is a dirtbike with blinkers. The bike is narrow, agile, super fast, weights quite a few pounds less. The DRZ will most feel like the XR. About the same performance, but the DRZ will feel and be heavier. Its just my opinion but bikes like the DRZ are not meant for hardcore off-road. The motors are slow revving, the suspension is soft, they are heavy, they dont produce a lot of power. Wheres as a 530 is not really meant to be driven on road. Its a super fast, high revving (compared to a DRZ), stiff suspended bike though heavy is still quite light for the dual-sport world.

The DRZ is going to be the most reliable. It holds more oil and produces about half the power. The KTMs are also super reliable but when comparing to a DRZ, the nod goes to yellow!

Have you looked at a KTM 690?

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Drz is going to be more reliable.

I disagree. With respect to quality, I dont think any Suzuki product is close to the KTM enduro bikes. I personally know a guy who bought a 530 new and has put that bike though hell...had a hole in the homemade overflow and ran it out of water...almost ran it out of oil one time and the bike just keeps ticking. I know several other guys that run 450s that have hundreds of hours on the top ends with no issues...especially true with the RFS. I have been riding a while and have owned every Japanese brand (and a Husky). I recently bought a 300 XC. KTMs are better bikes than any Suzuki I have ridden. I dont really understand the appeal of the DRZ for offroad, there are better bikes on the market.

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Most modern bikes are reliable if maintained correctly....Some are just higher maintenance than others....

The drz is more a general purpose deal than the KTM with a lower

maintenance schedule..

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The DRZ that comes street legal is a bike that can be riddin in the dirt.

The KTM 530 EXC is a dirt bike that can be riddin on the street.

The DRZ dirt version with an added plate is in between.

Yes the DRZ steel tank bike will go anywhere in the dirt, but why would you torture yourself.

The 530 EXC could be riddin cross country on the freeway, but why would you torture yourself.

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I have a hard time believing that any DRZ is lower maintenance than any big bore KTM EXC, especially with respect to the RFS engine. I know many people that have put many hours on the EXCs.

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All

Great input, and good contrasting opinions. Very helpful. With that said I am leaning toward the KTM 530. I have a street bike so I if I ride distance I can use that, and will proably ride for 60 minutes max on back roads... Also, I dont like heavy bikes in the woods, even my Honda XR 400 "felt" heavy at times.

With that said how will the KTM Feel compaired to the XR 400? I assume lighter, but how much?

What about the comparison of power between the XR 400 and the KTM 530? What is the difference? what are the power bands like?

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How do you figure? Please explain.

I am talking stock DRZ400..

The DRZ is a general purpose machine,does most things ok, but doesn't really shine any particular aspect of motorcycling...it's heavy for of road, underpowered for on road with an uncompromising 5 speed gearbox..

The KTM is more of a purpose specific machine for off road with more power, less weight, 6 speed wide ratio box and has more frequent service intervals...

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u can go down to a dealer and pick up a left over model drz for less than 6grand. i dont believe the bike has really changed over the years so no real point in paying more for a newer year. i bought a 09 drz sm in may with lesss than a mile on it. my out the door cost was 5600. if u go into a suzuki dealer and they havehad one sitting there for that long u may even get it for less. the dealer i went to had to locate the sm model and have it shipped there. i do not know the ktm's cost but i think in general they run a little more than the drz.

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I am talking stock DRZ400..

The DRZ is a general purpose machine,does most things ok, but doesn't really shine any particular aspect of motorcycling...it's heavy for of road, underpowered for on road with an uncompromising 5 speed gearbox..

The KTM is more of a purpose specific machine for off road with more power, less weight, 6 speed wide ratio box and has more frequent service intervals...

Well said!:bonk::thumbsup:

Also, the KTM has less oil capacity, meaning more oil changes!

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I have a hard time believing that any DRZ is lower maintenance than any big bore KTM EXC, especially with respect to the RFS engine. I know many people that have put many hours on the EXCs.

Regarding a drz you don't talk hours you talk miles...drz's will regularly reach 20,000 miles on the same top and bottom end....bias or not you cannot say the same for ktm.

I'd say maintenance is the same with 1,000 mile valve checks( mine havent budged in 5,000) and slightly more frequent oil changes.

If its going to be your true dual sport and you plan on racking up the miles get a low mile plated used drze. You will have enough money to get it up to a bulletproof 50 hp and do suspension with 2 grand to spare.

I really like the 530 for our area, I'm just extremely abusive with bikes and on a lower budget than you, but the ktm is slightly the more capable offroad.

Consider a crf450x too, their quit nice.

I think you'll end up getting the 530 since its the latest and greatest but your more than welcome to swing by and give the ol goat a test ride for comparison.

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Great input, and good contrasting opinions. Very helpful. With that said I am leaning toward the KTM 530. I have a street bike so I if I ride distance I can use that, and will proably ride for 60 minutes max on back roads... Also, I dont like heavy bikes in the woods, even my Honda XR 400 "felt" heavy at times.

With that said how will the KTM Feel compaired to the XR 400? I assume lighter, but how much?

What about the comparison of power between the XR 400 and the KTM 530? What is the difference? what are the power bands like?

The xr was air cooled and kick start so the weight difference may not be that big, however the power and the way the weight is distributed on the ktm will both be night and day from the xr.

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