Yamaha vs. KTM


39 replies to this topic
  • Crabtree426

Posted September 15, 2005 - 09:17 PM

#1

First off, I've always been a Yamaha guy. First bike was a PW80. The old man has a 1971 250 that stills runs although he doesn't. Anyways, I rode my buddies KTM 450 the other day and loved it. I've never ridden a WR450 so I couldn't say if it's better but the KTM is a great woods bike. Anyone else ridden one or even the 525 for that matter? What did you think?

  • clark4131

Posted September 15, 2005 - 09:26 PM

#2

KTM's are great bikes, there is no way to deny it. The only real issue that seems to regularly plague the KTM's is that parts are comparitively very expensive, and they are often hard to come by when not in stock, with lead times in the weeks or months, rather than in days like the Yamahas. Also, initial cost and model availability can be issues as well...SC

  • Matty05

Posted September 15, 2005 - 10:35 PM

#3

I would go a KTM525. They rock! I think a better bike than WR450. Easier to ride too.

I went WR450 because I had to buy 2 bikes. 2 yamaha's are a fair bit cheaper than 2
KTM's.

  • BergArabia

Posted September 15, 2005 - 10:53 PM

#4

Last week I went to buy some chain lube from the nearest bike shop next to me. It just happened to be a KTM dealer..

12 bucks for the chain lube yeah fair enough I guess but I did mention I thought it was a bit steep..

Anyways I asked him about the KTMs and prices etc. His answer

If you find the chain lube expensive then you can't afford a KTM

*&*hole how does he know what I can afford? But at 9500 bucks for a KTM450 Exc he might have a point. Especially since I just purchased a brand new YZ450 for about 6500..

Anyways the YZ will no doubt be pulling strong on many days when the KTM is in for repairs...
:banghead:

  • cbff33

Posted September 15, 2005 - 11:23 PM

#5

hope you are exaggerating on the price he told you. At that price it better have every accessory under the sun.

  • BergArabia

Posted September 16, 2005 - 02:08 AM

#6

Prices here are a bit weird..
I got a good deal on the YZ but I would not be surprised if you get a better deal there on the KTM.. The guys here blame the price on the strong Euro. Our currency here is pegged to the dollar. But that doesn't really make much sense as the Yen is stronger now also..

34500 dh for the KTM 450 Exc
22900 dh is what I paid for the YZ 450.

The exchange rate is fixed at 3.67 dh per dollar. Did the math in my head but I think it is about right..

  • Blaster21996

Posted September 16, 2005 - 06:36 AM

#7

First off, I've always been a Yamaha guy. First bike was a PW80. The old man has a 1971 250 that stills runs although he doesn't. Anyways, I rode my buddies KTM 450 the other day and loved it. I've never ridden a WR450 so I couldn't say if it's better but the KTM is a great woods bike. Anyone else ridden one or even the 525 for that matter? What did you think?


I ride a 05 WR450, but one of my riding buddies rides a 05 KTM 450exc. I am thinking about trading to a 06 KTM 525exc, but, every time I ride that 450 I change my mind! It just does not rev out like my WR. :banghead:

  • elton

Posted September 16, 2005 - 06:50 AM

#8

I dig KTM 2-strokes. KTM 4-strokes are nice, but the Yamaha 450's are hard to beat for a 4-stroke.

-05 WR450's have significantly more power than 05 450exc's; even more so if you do all of the "free mods" and add a 3rd party pipe to the WR.

-The WR's suspension is far better out of the box.

-The handling and brakes are on the same par; KTM's do have a hydraulic clutch (but such is not that noticeable vs. the WR IMO).

-In 05, the KTM 450exc is 5-8lbs lighter (depending on who you ask). Some say the KTM "feels" significantly lighter -- maybe, but the WR is very well balanced and I don't notice any weight problem.

-The KTM requires more frequent valve adjustments, but they are easier to do than the WR.

-The WR is far easier to change the oil vs. the KTM.

I have nothing bad to say about KTM; if I did go for a KTM 4-stroke I'd look hard at 525 if you like power and a 400 if you like agility in a 4-stroke.

However, for the money the WR450 is hard to beat; especially if you want the most powerful 450. The money you save can be used as a down payment on a KTM 2-stroke as a second bike :banghead:

Elton

  • Stinson

Posted September 16, 2005 - 12:42 PM

#9

Well I had a 03 WR450 my comparison to the KTM 525EXC is this

Motor
1)WR has less snap on the bottom but loved to rev out.
Oil was cheap and easy to change. One filter.

2)KTM More snap on the bottom and less on top
Runs on synthetic oil only (gets expensive fast), two oil filters and two oil screens.
Have to lay bike over to do filter changes, (really no big deal)

Suspension
1)WR seemed softer out of the box
2)KTM a litte stiffer, hard to say what is better at this point

Starter
1) WR I had to upgrade to the 04 starter parts
2) had an intermediate gear failure at 9hours
and had to put in a 02 gear, I hope this solves problem

Tranny
1) I loved the low first on the WR for the tight single track.
2)KTM has the wonderful 6th gear that huals ass. KTM tranny feels a little smother??

Tank
1) the 03 WR had a 2.6gal seemed to be enough
2) the KTM only has a 2.1gal and the 525 seems a little more thirsty

Seat
1) WR was a rock
2) KTM is alittle softer not much


Problems
1) WR all I did was upgrade the starter parts because of the woodruff key problem. Other than that never ever had a problem. The battery never even lost charge. Sweet bike, really nice motor I would buy another one for sure!!!

2) KTM Intermediate starter gear failure, teeth came off and floated around in the oil, scary on a new bike for sure. Header pipe doesnt fit real well and the exahaust leaks causing a backfire on decel. Working on sealing that up now. And I have a problem with the bike smoking when warming up. Very light but its oil for sure, prolly a bad valve guide seal. Took the bike back and the dealership wouldnt tell me if the problems were going to be covered under warrenty so I choose to fix them myself so some monkey is not working on my new bike.
I hope when I get these problems sorted out I will love the KTM as much as the WR but right now I cannot say for sure if I would buy another.
Lots of my buddies have great luck with the KTM's so thats why I decided to give it a try. I guess ill find out what happens. Cya Stinson

  • GCannon

Posted September 16, 2005 - 01:24 PM

#10

The Ktm's are great bikes i have been working on my ridding buddies mxc 525 nice bike but maybee too big for most things. I know all you macho riders out there are saying never too much power. Lets get real how long can you hold the throttle wide open on your 450 yamaha truthfully anything more than a few seconds and you are probably on the pavement. The fuel mileage is terrable he has clarke 3.2 Gal tank and he runs out around 75 miles my wr 426 will go 110- 120 miles on the same amount of fuel. Parts are 1/3 more expensive and you will need alot more of them. You will also be working on the KTM more often. The handling is comprable (great) and the suspension is also great. The joke is I ride in the California Desert I cannot imagine riding a KTM 525 in tight woods. KTM has done a lot beter with their product line (# of models) than the japanese. certianly you could chose a better model for your type of riding. Like a WR 250 or a KTM XC 400 Good luck with your choice.

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  • JTWR450

Posted September 16, 2005 - 02:09 PM

#11

I have owned a KTM - MXC 450 - and currently ride a an 04 Wr450. Both bikes have more power than I need. KTM does have a 6th gear, nice feature when connecting trails on pavement. Parts - KTM can be gruelling to get them in a timely manner and when you do get them they are not cheap. Yamaha parts are easily found. Maintenance issues - KTM's are harder to work on...period. As has been stated, oil changes are more costly and need to come a bit more frequently. KTM does have a juice clutch and better stock parts; bars, pegs, chain, pipe. You will need to do some upgrades on the WR but you can do them over time to help offset the cost. The KTM is a twitchy bike for sure. The WR seems a bit more forgiving. The KTM suspension is a bit stiffer whereas the WR is ready to go right out of the box. Dirt bikes cost too much to start with and when you start adding up the cost to run them with gas prices etc. I think both bikes are great don't get me wrong. The KTM's sure do look good for the 06 line up. If I was buying another bike today I would go buy another Yamaha.

  • Crabtree426

Posted September 18, 2005 - 05:21 PM

#12

I ride a 05 WR450, but one of my riding buddies rides a 05 KTM 450exc. I am thinking about trading to a 06 KTM 525exc, but, every time I ride that 450 I change my mind! It just does not rev out like my WR. :banghead:

I noticed that it didn't pull near as hard as my bike but the power was very easy to put to the ground.

  • Crabtree426

Posted September 18, 2005 - 05:23 PM

#13

I dig KTM 2-strokes. KTM 4-strokes are nice, but the Yamaha 450's are hard to beat for a 4-stroke.

-05 WR450's have significantly more power than 05 450exc's; even more so if you do all of the "free mods" and add a 3rd party pipe to the WR.

-The WR's suspension is far better out of the box.

-The handling and brakes are on the same par; KTM's do have a hydraulic clutch (but such is not that noticeable vs. the WR IMO).

-In 05, the KTM 450exc is 5-8lbs lighter (depending on who you ask). Some say the KTM "feels" significantly lighter -- maybe, but the WR is very well balanced and I don't notice any weight problem.

-The KTM requires more frequent valve adjustments, but they are easier to do than the WR.

-The WR is far easier to change the oil vs. the KTM.

I have nothing bad to say about KTM; if I did go for a KTM 4-stroke I'd look hard at 525 if you like power and a 400 if you like agility in a 4-stroke.

However, for the money the WR450 is hard to beat; especially if you want the most powerful 450. The money you save can be used as a down payment on a KTM 2-stroke as a second bike :banghead:

Elton

Nice comparison. I'd like to try the 525 sometime.

  • Crabtree426

Posted September 18, 2005 - 05:27 PM

#14

Well I had a 03 WR450 my comparison to the KTM 525EXC is this

Motor
1)WR has less snap on the bottom but loved to rev out.
Oil was cheap and easy to change. One filter.

2)KTM More snap on the bottom and less on top
Runs on synthetic oil only (gets expensive fast), two oil filters and two oil screens.
Have to lay bike over to do filter changes, (really no big deal)

Suspension
1)WR seemed softer out of the box
2)KTM a litte stiffer, hard to say what is better at this point

Starter
1) WR I had to upgrade to the 04 starter parts
2) had an intermediate gear failure at 9hours
and had to put in a 02 gear, I hope this solves problem

Tranny
1) I loved the low first on the WR for the tight single track.
2)KTM has the wonderful 6th gear that huals ass. KTM tranny feels a little smother??

Tank
1) the 03 WR had a 2.6gal seemed to be enough
2) the KTM only has a 2.1gal and the 525 seems a little more thirsty

Seat
1) WR was a rock
2) KTM is alittle softer not much


Problems
1) WR all I did was upgrade the starter parts because of the woodruff key problem. Other than that never ever had a problem. The battery never even lost charge. Sweet bike, really nice motor I would buy another one for sure!!!

2) KTM Intermediate starter gear failure, teeth came off and floated around in the oil, scary on a new bike for sure. Header pipe doesnt fit real well and the exahaust leaks causing a backfire on decel. Working on sealing that up now. And I have a problem with the bike smoking when warming up. Very light but its oil for sure, prolly a bad valve guide seal. Took the bike back and the dealership wouldnt tell me if the problems were going to be covered under warrenty so I choose to fix them myself so some monkey is not working on my new bike.
I hope when I get these problems sorted out I will love the KTM as much as the WR but right now I cannot say for sure if I would buy another.
Lots of my buddies have great luck with the KTM's so thats why I decided to give it a try. I guess ill find out what happens. Cya Stinson

Damn, you and Elton should work at a dealership selling KTM's and Yami's!

  • Bamster

Posted September 18, 2005 - 05:29 PM

#15

The KTM 300 exc is simply amazing in the woods.
I love my 4 stroke but I can see me on a 2 stoke in the future.

  • SPDFRK450

Posted September 19, 2005 - 07:49 AM

#16

Berg, I cant believe that guy told you that at the bike shop. What a stuck up SOB. I have never ridden a KTM, but for how much more expensive they are, I cant imagine they would be that much better than any of the Jap bikes. Besides I bleed blue.

  • old-n-sloow

Posted September 19, 2005 - 10:12 AM

#17

I just bought an 06 450xc KTM. Replaced my 02 YZ250 2st. I was going to get an 06 YZF450, but for an extra $300 I got an electric starter, a 6th gear, a lighting coil and a Calif green sticker. I compared parts prices before buying and found that KTM prices are very comparable. Top end parts are pretty high for the KTM, but plastics, rads, subframes etc are right in there, some of these parts are considerably less for the KTM. I miss the Yamahas ability to be ridden right out of the box, I needed springs and clicker work for the KTM to work right, but its good now. If this KTM holds up good I could see myself buying another one, if it has problems than I'll be back on blue (or whatever Yam does) in a year or two.

  • alfie

Posted September 19, 2005 - 11:09 AM

#18

With my experience of owning Ktm's id personally never own one again.
The best move i made was buy a WR and love it to bits, i can see another WR being bought next year.

  • old-n-sloow

Posted September 19, 2005 - 02:14 PM

#19

With my experience of owning Ktm's id personally never own one again.
The best move i made was buy a WR and love it to bits, i can see another WR being bought next year.


What was bad about your KTMs? As the owner of a 3 week old 450, I'd really like to hear about your experiences so I know what to watch out for. What models/years did you own?

Thanks

Reg

  • drzjay400e

Posted September 19, 2005 - 04:46 PM

#20

Lets face it! this is an expensive sport/hobby/pass time/thrill. Whether you have a KTM or a Yama. it can get expensive either way. I would choose a KTM because it has the best stock exhaust, brakes, clutch, handlebars...etc. There is no FREE mods you can do to the ktm. It is not needed. And after your free mods, now you have an anchore of a exhaust you have to replace on the Yama and this and that. Before you no it your paying the same for the Yama as I did for the KTM. Just nip it in the rear and buy the KTM. Plus it is a better feeling and controlable ride.




 
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