XR650R vs XR400

39 replies to this topic
  • Norge

Posted June 04, 2004 - 07:54 PM


A Texas trail is just a gravel road. I have owned XR 650L's and XR 600's, great bikes for baja and wide forest roads. Not worthy for cow trails. :thumbsup:

  • big t

Posted June 04, 2004 - 09:50 PM


I have both bikes. Bought both bikes new. I have not ridden the 400 since I got the 650. I love the 650. The only thing I didn't like was the hard starting after a fall or stalling but I fixed that with the Edelbrock. The 400 is great all around bike and very reliable and the 650 should be also. The 650 does carry the weight well and doesn't really feel any heavier than the 400 on the track or trail. I regular ride mine on mx tracks to stay in shape for riding trails. Granted I don't do big air jumps but I'm not scared to jump the 650 within my capabilities. It is a fun bike. I have had alot of fun and ridden the hell out of the 400 and it has taken everthing I could throw at it with no problems (mud, sand, snow, mx, trails, water, rocks, whatever). Both are great bikes but I would say go with the 650. It's better to have to much power than not enough. :thumbsup:

  • heliosstudios

Posted June 05, 2004 - 03:38 AM


I took my XR650L to the woods first thing after I got it, bone stock. The woods here are gnarly, overgrown, tight, unpredictable beasts. She does feel a little heavy at first but if you make the weight work for you instead of against you, then the bike really comes alive. There is so much torque, you have to forget that old notion of winding it up to power through turns. Just touch the throttle and remember not to plant your foot. :awww:

It is an awesome bike. I left the woods with one markedly vivid thought: "These woods are TINY now..." :thumbsup:

  • JetPilot

Posted June 05, 2004 - 07:07 AM


Get the XR650R rather then the 400. People will give you pros and cons as to which one is better, but it all boils down to this. I have heard about a thousand people say they wish they had gotten a bigger bigger bike, but have NEVER heard anyone say they wish they had gotten a smaller bike.

  • JR650

Posted June 05, 2004 - 12:07 PM


i have ridden both and must say, they feel like they weigh about the same, just the 650 makes twice the ponies. I've never had mine overheat screwing around in first gear following cow trails. And when you get out on the roads, there is a reason no-one else has won at BAJA since the 650R was introduced. Wow, i think that was my first post in like 2 months! JR

  • Norge

Posted June 05, 2004 - 12:27 PM


I want to apologize for being rude last night, too many Fosters. At 6'5" 220lbs, I can really appreciate what big 4 strokes and 2 strokes can do in washes and hill climbs, etc. I have noticed that my trail times are quicker with the XR 400 vs previous big bores and I'm less tired after an hour of hard riding. Did not mean to offend any Texans. Texans are very usefull, they make great traction for my bike at 12,000 ft in the Rockies. :thumbsup:

  • jwriott

Posted June 05, 2004 - 05:34 PM


Sorry but that's way too much hp for the XR400 without a big bore kit and carb. I had all those things done to mine and they are putting out closer to 33-34 rwhp. That is just the beginning of what is needed to make an XR400 right. The front springs are crap and the forks flex like rubberbands so a steering damper and fork brace are also required. You also really need to revalve the front and rear. Also the layout feels super old school and the seat/tank junction sucks. By the time you do all that, you might as well buy a different bike for the amount of $$ spent.

Between the 400 and the 650, I'd buy the 650 hands down and I'm not a big guy at 5'7" and 165 lbs. I can go faster on that bike even in the tight stuff because of the better suspension and handling. Once it opens up, it's not even close. Also, my buddy installed the higher pressure radiator cap after the first ride and his bike has not overheated since so to me that's not an issue with the 650's.

The 426's feel A LOT lighter than the XR650R. I've weighed mine wet without fuel and it hits the scale at 265 lbs. with skid plate, bark busters and radiator guards. I haven't ridden a new WR450 but with the battery up high, I'm sure it feels heavy.

  • qadsan

Posted June 05, 2004 - 06:19 PM


The following data is from my notes and the power figures represent an uncorked XR650R.

*** HP ***
2000 YZ426F 45.3 HP @ 9,000 RPM
2000 XR650R 48 HP @ 5,500 RPM
2000 XR680R 64 HP @ 7,500 RPM

*** Torque ***
2000 YZ426F 31.2 lb/ft @ 6,800 RPM
2000 XR650R 42 lb/ft @ 6,500 RPM
2000 XR680R 50 lb/ft @ 6,000 RPM

In regards to various bike weights, the May 2000 issue of Dirt Rider weighed the following bikes full of fuel, oil and ready to ride. Here's what they printed as honest full wet weights.

Honda XR650R = 302 lbs
Suzuki DRZ400E = 295 lbs
KTM520 E/XC = 272 lbs
Husaberg FE600E = 285 lbs
Honda XR400R = 278 lbs
Yamaha WR400F = 276 lbs
Kawasaki KLX300 = 271 lbs

Here are the ready to ride full wet weights for some more bikes, but I got these figures from owners who posted in the Yamaha & Suzuki TT forums that weighed their bikes filled with oil, gas and ready to ride.

2003 WR250 = 253 lbs
2001 WR426 = 265 lbs
2001 YZ426F = 266.8 lbs
2003 WR450 = 269 lbs

  • BWB63

Posted June 05, 2004 - 07:36 PM


03' XR650R New with the weight being 299 ready to ride after I got rid of the Heavy exhuast, smog stuff and put a real skid plate on it and it wasn't bad at all coming off a XR600R, Then I started adding stuff (4.6 gallon, Steering dampener, skid plate, hand gards, fork brace) it all adds up and I am at 321 now; Full ready to ride. That's still 13 pounds lighter (334)then the 600 with it's 5 gallon tank and the extras it had. The XR 400 I have weighs right at 286 (it has some of a Baja kit on it)and it feels way lighter. We have a big, super accurate scale at work. You'll hear alot of numbers fling around about the BRP putting out 55hp but, that's at the fly wheel and Quadsan posted 48 from a uncorked BRP is about right I think about 49 out of mine with an non 'O' ring chain, header, R4, Uni and holes in the air box, I guess I might get a higher reading when I went to a Mikuni and if I would run a street tire insted of a worn MT21. There is alot of tricks and you can get just about any reading you want out of a Dyno. Rob Barnum was saying he dosn't see Dyno readings higher then 48 out of a stock BRP no matter what the mods and no more then 58 out of a tricked out 680 on the Dyno he uses. I quess if you want to impress with high numbers you wouldn't want to use a honest Dyno like Barnums, but, if your looking for the best tuned bike then, what I have heard (many times) Dynos are for use to get the most out of your bike but, you have to use the same dyno and it has to be setup the same everytime. Most don't want to talk torque numbers. That realy shows a power difference between 2 smokes, four strokes and bigger four strokes. I got this off Erics Pig Pen:

An uncorked XR650R produces close to 42 lb/ft of torque at 5,500 RPM and close to 48 rear wheel HP at 6,500 RPM. The CRF450 comes stock as a full fledged race bike and produces about 29.5 lb/ft of torque at 6,500 RPM and 40 rear wheel HP at 8,000 RPM. The CRF450 has a much broader powerband that's very linear and it will keep pulling where the XR650R falls off in the RPM range, so naturally it will feel faster to some people. Gearing also plays a big role in all of this.

A modified CRF450R that includes a special cam grind that's installed to the correct degree with higher performance valve springs, retainers, guides, porting, 12:5.1 piston, power now valve, Doma exhaust and running Nutec Special 5 fuel produces about 34.7 lb/ft of torque 7,200 RPM and about 53.4 rear wheel HP at 9,200 RPM.

Now if you modify the XR650R with a 680 kit, cam, piston, header & exhaust, you can boost the torque to about 50 lb/ft at 6,000 RPM and raise the rear wheel HP to 64 at 7,500 RPM.

If you take the total torque of the bikes and divide it by the weight of the bikes, you'll get a better idea of the power to weight ratios.

CRF450R @ 29.5 / 225 = 0.1311 lb/ft torque per lb of bike weight.
CRF450R modified @ 34.7 / 225 = 0.1542 ft/lbs torque per lb of bike weight.
XR650R @ 42 / 277 = 0.1515 lb/ft torque per lb of bike weight.
XR650R modified @ 50 / 277 = 0.1805 lb/ft torque per lb of bike weight.

It's hard for me to beleave that a YZ426F can put out 45.6hp to the rear tire but, that's because it isn't RED :lol: I see some numbers that float around of guys with his 650R's putting out 64hp and others with 680'putting out 68hp. I want mine to put out that much :thumbsup: it's only right to keep all the numbers right 680cc and 68hp :awww:

  • qadsan

Posted June 05, 2004 - 08:10 PM


I got this off Erics Pig Pen:

I'm familair with that info because I wrote it and Eric put it on his site :lol: There's a lot of factors that account for differences between dyno testing including the dyno itself. Here's an XR680R dyno chart for you to check out while you're eagerly awaiting your bike :lol:

And here's the article with more info...

Check out what Ron Hamp has done with this YZ450F...60 ponies! And the 2nd link is to a CRF450 with close to 60 ponies.

I can't wait to hear the outcome of your 680 even though I know it will be first rate & completely reliable. I've been comtemplating this upgrade for a while and I'm definitely jeallous of your bike. Heck, maybe even Rob will be jeallous of your bike after he's done with it :thumbsup:

Don't worry, it won't be long before one of your kids decides he likes your bike better and then you'll have some more decisions to make :lol: From the pictures & vids I've seen, your kids are getting pretty good :awww:

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  • BWB63

Posted June 06, 2004 - 06:36 AM


How do others get 64hp readings for a XR650R and 68hp readings for a XR680R? If Barnum is getting 58hp and your getting 64hp out of the 680 getting 68 is quite a jump. :thumbsup: Are these Motard? I can see getting 64 with a higher lift cam and porting but, 68 :lol: that's must be alot of low end torque that is given up. Thanks for all the kind words about my sons. Now that the Baja is all but over and after the long trip back (and some rest) for the Barnums my piggy will be getting attention :awww: Did you see the DVD? Who do you hang with that has it?

  • BWB63

Posted June 06, 2004 - 04:16 PM


If you look at what I wrote you are getting more at the rear tire them what I wrote down. My estemmet of 36~38hp at the engine wouldn't be near as much as your 34hp to the ground. I used the engine hp to show it compared to a 250 two smoke at 43hp at the engine. I can't find the torque number yet but, I am looking. If you have ever taken the valve apart on a XR400 forks you'll see that it sucks! I have done more then a few and done a lot more XR650R's. Your right the forks suck but, with help and resprung I can best myself on the goat trails at higher speeds. Right now I am riding my sons XR400 setup for 130 pound rider. My XR650R is in the prosess of getting the works done to it. The truth is when it gets back I won't even think of getting back on the 400. But, if your not a rider that is looking to ride on the edge and never want to go over 70 MPH; with a little work (not any more then what you would do to a new XR650R) you'll have a great bike with a XR400R. It is the old CR125 frame before it went aluminum. (at least that is what I was told) will last for years and take you everywhere you want to go. I am not knocking the XR650R saying this....because if your looking to ride at the edge this is where it is at! I ride with so many guys that would do better on the XR400 but, they like the thrill of the torque (and who wants to pass up saying they ride a BRP?)and fight the 650 they just don't have the balls to use the power to throw the bike around. My good freind that I ride with couldn't handle the XR650R so, his step brother has it. Now he has a XR400 and loves it. He is bigger then I am and has the suspension setup for his 225# big but. I have a blast jumping the 55' table tops with it and I haven't found anything but, the steapest stuff (straight up) that it wouldn't go up. Till it opens up and your not making 90 degree turns all the time the XR400R rocks. (it is better if you raise the forks for the tight stuff) http://home.earthlin...borynack/Video/

  • qadsan

Posted June 06, 2004 - 06:08 PM


How do others get 64hp readings for a XR650R and 68hp readings for a XR680R? If Barnum is getting 58hp and your getting 64hp out of the 680 getting 68 is quite a jump. Are these Motard? :awww:

I dunno exactly how they get those big numbers, but their porting work must be very good in combination with a special cam grind, higher compression, etc. I'm not in the business of building these engines and only get to tinker on a few of these bikes just for the fun of it. Those are both Motard & flat tracker bikes in the dyno charts I provided that were getting those big numbers. I always view peak numbers as subjective anyway and don't trust them 100%. Unless you can put each and every bike on the exact same dyno under the same exact conditions with the same dyno operator, etc, the results can be pretty subjective. My bike puts out a bit more power than a stock uncorked with my Hotcam, pumper carb, exhaust, airbox mod, etc, but nowhere near the numbers on those dyno charts. I'm guessing that my bike in its current state is probably close to where your bike currently is powerwise, maybe a little more or a little less powerwise, but your 680 will soon make mince meat out of my bike :thumbsup:

  • Old_Man_Time

Posted June 06, 2004 - 07:02 PM


Qadsan, another question about the Z-Start. Is there any reason why you chose to retain the stalk clutch lever instead of converting it to a rear brake hand lever?

  • qadsan

Posted June 06, 2004 - 07:12 PM


Yeah, I kept the stock clutch lever because I didn't want to rely on clutchless shifting. Without the clutch lever, you've got to use proper clutchless shifting techniques or else you'll trash your gearbox over a period of time. I do use clutchless shifting on some of my upshift, but not that often with my downshifts. I still like having the clutch lever to use every so often, especially when downshifting. I still have plans on placing a rear brake lever there in addition to keeping my clutch lever, but haven't got around to figuring it out. I found one guy who made a kool setup that had a short brake lever with the master cylinder and its purpose was to simply lock up the rear break with a light push of the lever. It was designed for people with disabilities, but I lost his contact info and haven't been able to find it since. It was also quite expensive for that setup, but someday I'll get around to figuring it out...maybe :thumbsup:

  • MindBlower

Posted June 08, 2004 - 04:56 PM


Get the XR650R rather then the 400. People will give you pros and cons as to which one is better, but it all boils down to this. I have heard about a thousand people say they wish they had gotten a bigger bigger bike, but have NEVER heard anyone say they wish they had gotten a smaller bike.

Had one. Was too big. WIshed I'd gotten a 400. :thumbsup:

  • XR6's_rule

Posted June 14, 2004 - 01:49 AM


It depends on where you're going to ride the bike. Really, they are two different bikes, the XR650 has mega power, a very stable frame and excellent stability. It is the king of the high speed dirt riding. The XR400 in my opinion is much lighter a lot down on power compared to a 650 but this actually works against the 650 in tight going, 400 better for technical riding(hills rock etc)-650 is too much bike. I'd even rate my XR600 a better tool in tighter going in comparison to the XR650. The XR650 has had a mixed response in Australia due to these shortcomings.

  • 1redrider

Posted November 17, 2009 - 06:54 PM


What about if building a super motard street legal bike, modified XR400 or XR650R?

  • valvesrule

Posted November 17, 2009 - 07:07 PM


What about if building a super motard street legal bike, modified XR400 or XR650R?

Absolutely no question, the 650! The 400 would feel pretty lame as a road burner without lots of engine mods.

  • 95xr600man

Posted November 17, 2009 - 09:39 PM


[quote name='Old_Man_Time']Like you said you got used to the 400 in the woods and it was alright. I feel the 400 is an excellent woods bike but it's limited to the woods, don't take it to the dunes.[QUOTE]

My brother and I went riding several times in the Buttercup / Glamis / Gordon's Well area. I was on a stock 85 CR500 and he was on a stock 2002 XR400 and both of us had 10 paddles. We both weight around 215 LBS and both bikes performed nearly the same. I thought I would kill him, but much to my surprise he climbed every hill and did everything as fast as I did. The XR400 ran perfect and never flinched. As a matter of fact it still runs perfect and my old CR500 was dead years ago. I still miss the 2 stroke powerband though:eek:

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