WR450 or 525EXC?

Hey guys,

I'm hoping to get some comparisons between the WR450 and 525EXC. What are the pros/cons to these bikes? How is the power output? Just stuff like that would help me out greatly. Thanks a lot guys

Brian :)

Well 1 is blue and the other is someother scary color :)

Sorry couldn't resist.

I remember that I've read something like " ridiculously too powerful" in Dirt Bike mag talking about the 525. I've also read that the power of that 525 is smooth compared to the WRs who produce a 2-troke-like snap at high rpms.

Guys on this forum will generally admit both are great bikes.

That's about as much help I can give you

HTH anyway. :)

Too much power? Is there such a thing? :D How can a bike have too much power? Just learn how to control it, and you'll be fine, right? I've heard the 'power wheelies' on the 525 are pretty sweet. 1 more question I forgot to ask. I hate all this green/red sticker deal in Kalifornia, but is the WR450 a red sticker? Oh well, thanks for the feedback =] Hoping to get some more from you guys though.

Thanks again. :)


I've ridden both and I like the Wr better, it just seems to fit me better and I feel like the front end is quite a bit better as far as sticking in the corners. The WR is a handful in the woods but the 525 is more of a handful.. The front end will come up anytime you want with either bike and sometimes when you don't want.. I'm trying to actually give you some info here!!! I think the only place a 525 is good in the woods is in Colorado or somewhere really high that robs power, my 450 seemed like a 250 at 10,000 feet.. Parts are available and expensive for both bikes.. I think the most important thing in this question is THE DEALER, go with the bike that has the best dealer in your area.,.!!!Get the James Dean jetting kit for whichever one you chose. :):D

get the ktm 450 and put a 520 sx camshaft in it.... wow 450 nimbility with 525 hit, you wont be disappointed in the least bit, the only problem with the 525 is its rotating mass, thats why lafferty rides the 450, its a lot more nimble than the 525 in the woods, i actually prefer the wr450f above both bikes because with the yz camshaft and the wr's transmission and the electric start nothing can come near it, the wr has a 2 stroke hit, low lowspeed and a high top speed, and with the 52 tooth rear sprocket and the yz camshaft i can get the front to come up in 5th with a little movement and standing up :):D

I remember that I've read something like " ridiculously too powerful" in Dirt Bike mag talking about the 525. I've also read that the power of that 525 is smooth compared to the WRs who produce a 2-troke-like snap at high rpms.

They were talking about the SX which has a totally different motor, and it is a handful.

525 E/MXC is super smooooooth. But I don't like the rear suspension, I personally think most of the other linkage designs work better, especially on small, sharp obstacles.

OTOH the new KTMs don't handle like the old ones (that is a good thing), my pal's 525 reminds me more of a KX than a 520, the forks are much improved, they are refined, reliable, ready to race out of the box, versatile, light (and feel even lighter), and very well put together.

I've been trying to talk myself into an orange bike for quite some time, and I've ridden several, but the one thing stopping me is the rear suspension. Having said that I wouldn't buy a new WR either (due to Woodruff, Foof, & Heft, in that order).

Just my two pennies.

Yamahasocal450: I thought Lafferty was riding the 400 not the 450... :)

hmm i thought that was the case until he got on hte 450, all the bikes i saw him riding this year had the 03 side plates :D, i do remember him on a 400 because i saw him doing a wheelie out of a turn with dirt flying everywhere and i said wow i need that bike and it was a 400 exc but that was 2 years ago i was pretty sure he was on the 450 :) any one else know for sure

Thanks for the precisions regarding my comment on the 525. I did not remember which 525 version DB was talking about. I also wish to say that Dirt Bike loved the 525 and that their comments about power was of course part of their sense of humor...

I wish I could try one of those 525 one day, EXC or SX... :)


If you intend to street license a bike, it will be easier to license the green stickered KTM than the red stickered Yam (at least in CA). As it stands now, there is a time limit to dual sport dirt bikes which is Jan 31, 2004!! After Jan 31, 2004 it may be very difficult to street plate a dirt bike in CA.

I think Mike Lafferty has been riding the 450 all year.

Race Tech makes a progressive rear shock set up that is supposed to work very well and is a big improvement over stock. I upgraded my '02 520 E/XC with all Race Tech stuff and the suspension is very good now. I have heard many people say that they prefer the 450 E/XC in the woods. But, all I've ever ridden has been the 520. I don't have any problems with it in the tight stuff. I just lowered the gearing and pull a taller gear. There is no doubt that a little smaller bike would be preferable in the the woods. I like having the extra power of the 520 on dual-sport and desert rides though. :D



I have ridden both bikes -- it depends on you alot on what you like -- The WR450 is much faster handling -- the 525 feels slower -- both have alot of power - the WR450 is zippy -- the 525 is smoother -- I like the WR450 front end and cant get used to the KTM steering -- so if your changing from one to the other be carefull they feel very different

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now