1999 YZ400F

I have been snooping on this board for a while waiting to get a bike. Lots of great information. I have learned quite a lot.

I was going for a new model 2002 250f or 426f. Today I got word of a 99 YZ400 for sale 3000.00. It is supposedly in very good condition. I don't think my riding skills would begin to tap the power of a 426 so the 400 would be plenty of bike to get back into riding. It would save a lot of money to spend on other stuff.

Is there anything wrong with the 99 400F model that I should be aware (design flaw)? Other than the typical risk of a used bike.

I am still debating what to do but would appreciate any input.

This my opinion, and ONLY my opinion. Take it with a grain of salt. The power of the 426 and the '99 400 is barely different. The 426 was designed to simply have a wider spread of power plus a little more torque due to it's increased displacement. The 426 has more at the low-end and middle but virtually the same as the 400 on top, so, to think you could handle the 400's power but not the 426 is unrealistic. $3,000 for a '99 is a bit much in my opinion. The reason being is in this day of the new Honda, KTM's 520, whatever Yamaha has up their sleeve, plus other new 4-strokes leaves the YZ400F losing it's appeal pretty quickly. In a market driven by supply and demand, the 400 is not that high in demand. I think you could bargain from this perspective and pay between $2,000 and $2,500 as much more realistic price. These are pure race machines and are subjected to severe use. At best, it's extremely difficult to judge whether this machine is in "excellent condition". Personally, I can't see how these machines can hold their value since they aren't rare and their intended use causes damage and wear quickly.


My thought is if you're new or getting back into the sport, the 400 is going to provide you with plenty of power that you won't regret.

I haven't looked at used prices, but regardless of price-have the bike checked and ridden by someone very familiar with the YZF. Perhaps post here if someone in your area can look with you. Just because it looks great doesn't mean it's mechanically sound.

I don't believe there was really inherently wrong with the 99's. If the bike had good maintenance and was not beaten to snot, it should be fine. The 98's had carb slide and waterpump probs. The '00's have cracked tanks, bad crank key, broken hubs, bad clutches, and who knows what else. The '01's are an improvement in these items. Also the suspension/carburation is much better on the new models.

I did'nt mean to imply I could handle the 400 but not the 426. I just meant I don't need maximum performance because I am not a maximum performance rider. The 426 is a great machine. The YZ250F is also great I am a big guy (6'1" 230) and think the 250F may not pull up hills and such very well

Thanks for the input. It is a good suggestion to bring a knowledgeable YZ four stroke rider to take a look.

Steve, I bought a used '99 last fall. As mentioned above it had the snot beaten out of it. Although the plastics were ugly the guy vouched for great upkeep and maintenance. He also argued that being a four stroke it was bullet proof. Wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong! I bought but had to do the following : replate cylinder, drop in piston & rings, change fork springs, rear link and swingarm bearings, new platics, change lousy handle bar, new cables, etc. You get the idea? Yes, take a friend who can grab your arm and drag you away if something dosen't check out. used bikes are like buses, there is one avery 30 minutes! The whole deal almost made me want to never again even look at a dirt bike. Sorry for being negative, had to vent.

If you can afford a new one buy it. I made the used yz mistake and it will cost me a fortune to fix. My bike was desert raced before I bought it, and maintained very well. A new rod, piston (420) and valves (headwork also) were installed just before I bought it. It lasted 7 months of play riding and a missed shift (transmission was very sloppy) caused a dropped valve. Now I have to mention the '01 520 EXC sitting in the garage. Bone stock and it will stay that way. YZ-420 in pieces and it will stay that way.


Pretend it's flat and give it the gas.

I must be very lucky!!! In 98 I got a great deal on a 98 WR with goodies and extras. a friend now has this bike. it has been ridden quite hard, and has never needed anything except oil and carb tuning..... Then I bought a 2000 WR from ohio, 16 hrs drive, round trip. It was also a perfect bike. Jay was honest and nice enough to let me take all of his extras. She too has been perfect to me. used bikes are fine, as long as you look closly, and its nice to have a fellow TTer set up and break in your baby..

don't get scared away... 3000 dos'nt sound too high to me, just be careful!!


Hey Steve- I purchased a 98 yz400 from a friend about 9 months ago for $2400. It was hardly ridden and had some extras. Im 6'3" 230lbs, and love the bike. I dont think the 250f is enough. I use it every weekend. I ride my friends 2-stroke 250's, and there is no comparison. Once you get used to the power its unreal. I ride trails and track. I havent had any problems. Just change the oil regularly. I'd offer the guy $2600. see if he bites. Also find out how to start it properly. makes a huge difference. I can start my bike with 1-2 cranks...hot or cold. It doesn't sound like you need a brand new bike, so if this one is in good shape...get it....good luck

[This message has been edited by Kaholo (edited September 18, 2001).]

Steve, I have my 00' 426 up for sale for $3800, I live in Texas and could make a road trip if interested.

Norman K.

Beaumont, TX

I am Disapointed!

I looked at a 2001 426 yesterday. It was only about six months old. The guy showed me the oil he used and it was one with friction modifiers. I guess the clutch will shortly need replacing. It looked tired for for only six months old.

Thanks for all the post. I will keep looking.

Thanks Norman for the offer. A texas to Florida road trip would be a long haul. I am still thinking of buying a new one unless a super deal drops from the sky on a used one around here.

Maybe there are some new 2001's around for a discount. I will call around.

Steve, the only reason Im selling is because I put money on a CR450, I dont want to lose it and Im running out of time, my e-mail is xrman96@aol.com, if you are interested at all, e-mail me and I can give you more info, my bike is loaded with extras so let me know.

I am from Ocala, Fla. so the drive doesnt bother me.


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