I currently ride an '07 525 XCW, which I bought new. I am wanting to buy a new bike right now myself so the local dealer let me take out an '09 450 XCF he had on the floor, just to see if it was something I might be interested in. I would imagine it is similar to how the 505 rides because it too has the 450 SXF motor in it. Yes, that motor was fast, but after riding my bike with the wide ratio tranny for the last 3 years, I felt like I was shifting all of the time on the XCF. The bike felt like a motocrosser to me. The XCW is SO much more forgiving. So, I ordered a 2010 530 XCW Six Days Edition and it supposed to be here any day. Personally, as an expert level rider myself, my recommendation would be the XCW. You won't regret it.