A WR450 over a KTM 525, am I crazy?


24 replies to this topic
  • hartzpad

Posted April 24, 2007 - 11:01 AM

#1

Got a plated, modded WR426 that has been 100% reliable and a great trail/street bike, just needs electric start and a 6th gear.

I was set on a 2003-2005 KTM 525EXC but I've ridden 2 used 525 MXC's lately and both had very strong low end but little to no top end. My WR seems much more fun to ride, it has good low end power (heavy flywheels helps on trails) a strong mid-range hit and it pulls hard to redline. The KTM's I rode have great power until a perceived 6-7,000 RPM's where the power just almost stops, you almost have to short shift it to keep accelerating. I love everything about the KTM's, the ergo's, the looks. the seemingly easy maintenance, and especially the 6th gear. I've been told that it is the lower compression ratio and longer stroke that keep the 525 from "feeling" fast like a WR with its high compression and high revving 5 titanium valve engine.

So now I'm looking at used WR450's, how could I go wrong? I know about maintenance on them, all mods, have spare parts and filters already, etc. If only they had a 6th gear they would be the perfect bike for me.

What changes were made from 2003-2006? I've been told that the WR426's are slightly faster than most WR450's or have more hit, is this true? What years of WR450's came with the digital speedo? I've got a trailtech Vapor now but would rather have the smaller factory unit. Can it be retrofitted to older bikes I assume?

So am I crazy to pick another WR instead of a KTM?

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  • SXP

Posted April 24, 2007 - 11:40 AM

#2

Have you thought about an 07? The stock gearing on an 07 is 13/50 which is more or less equivalent to the 14/50 of the pre 07s (the primary drive ratio on the 07 is different from all previous year WRs in this respect). By bumping the gearing up to to 14/50 I have been able to hang quite well with my 525 riding buddies when speeds open up. At the other end, the incredibly torquey nature of the motor pulls the 14/50 gearing even in the tight stuff. Only if I'm riding VERY tight terrain do I switch back to the 13/50, in which case the KTM 6th gear is a moot point anyway.

Food for thought.....

  • hartzpad

Posted April 24, 2007 - 11:48 AM

#3

Have you thought about an 07? The stock gearing on an 07 is 13/50 which is more or less equivalent to the 14/50 of the pre 07s (the primary drive ratio on the 07 is different from all previous year WRs in this respect). By bumping the gearing up to to 14/50 I have been able to hang quite well with my 525 riding buddies when speeds open up. At the other end, the incredibly torquey nature of the motor pulls the 14/50 gearing even in the tight stuff. Only if I'm riding VERY tight terrain do I switch back to the 13/50, in which case the KTM 6th gear is a moot point anyway.

Food for thought.....


Hmmm...didn't know that the '07 WR had different primary gearing than the previous years. Mine is currently geared 13/47 and is great for singletrack and trailriding but it tops out at about 75 fully revved out. I can maintain 55 for a few minutes to connect trails but it is revving pretty good. I have used a 15 tooth front for a while on long mostly highway rides, but it is not good at all for most tight trails.

I will never buy a brand new bike (unless I came into a bunch of money, then I would still hesitate).

  • ARin

Posted April 24, 2007 - 12:41 PM

#4

bottom line.

No, you are not crazy for considering the 450 over the 525.

  • patrickincc

Posted April 24, 2007 - 12:50 PM

#5

I sold my ktm for a yamaha. So no your not nuts.

  • wrjdm

Posted April 24, 2007 - 12:54 PM

#6

I ride with a few orange 525's and 450s'. In my opinion you'll never regret a WR in any terrian.

  • Tough Guy

Posted April 24, 2007 - 01:39 PM

#7

My WR is the best all-around bike I've ever ridden. The handling is amazing, the power is awesome and the gears couldn't be more perfect for the trails I ride. Its worth the money to buy a new WR IMHO...:applause:

Chris

  • postalrider

Posted April 24, 2007 - 06:54 PM

#8

does the e start work on the 07 ?i ride a 03 with around 7000 miles on it and i do love ol blue but the truth is .my sons 400mxc is twice the bike in all areas ,yes i still bleed blue !but if you want the facts.......

  • timvv51

Posted April 24, 2007 - 08:03 PM

#9

No your not crazy but. I went from a 2003 WR450 to a 2006 KTM525EXC. Would not go back and I am a big Yamaha fan. Main thing I like besides great handling and suspension and power and hydraulic clutch and great brakes is no more bucket and shim valves. I said I was a Yamaha fan but the local dealer left a bad taste in my mouth over the original 03 flywheel key shearing issue and the electric starter was junk. These are old and corrcted issues but it made me consider a KTM and I glad I did. This is the first time I have even looked at this forum in a year and will probably get horribly flamed so let me just say that Yamaha blue is much prettier than pumpkin orange.

  • patrickincc

Posted April 24, 2007 - 08:43 PM

#10

Yamahas are much more refined then KTM. Ktm came up with a lame idea for 2006. They decided to create a gas cap that leaks, and then send out viton gaskets that dont fix the problem. They also thought that there was some benifit to saving weight by not using linkage in the rear suspension, and then they try to fix it with valving. It seems that they want you to burn your nutts or go over the bars. Go yamaha, I was not impressed with my 450 XC.

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  • Fullbore4

Posted April 24, 2007 - 09:55 PM

#11

Perhaps my bike is just tuned well but I rode a tricked out 07 525 exc and it really lacked snap and power compared to my tricked out 06 WR450. Also look at the rear suspension difference. The KTM has a much more radical angle and hence leaves a slower, less responsive feeling on the back. The KTM front shocks are arguably better but for me, yamaha is good enough.

  • eissinger4

Posted April 25, 2007 - 12:32 AM

#12

. This is the first time I have even looked at this forum in a year and will probably get horribly flamed so let me just say that Yamaha blue is much prettier than pumpkin orange.


LMAO- Good save, though!!:applause:

  • SXP

Posted April 25, 2007 - 06:45 AM

#13

Yamahas are much more refined then KTM. Ktm came up with a lame idea for 2006. They decided to create a gas cap that leaks, and then send out viton gaskets that dont fix the problem. They



My (and apparently so do a lot of other) 07 WR450 pukes gas out of the so called one way gas cap valve on to the front fender when the tank is full:busted: And yes, it's installed correctly.

  • jsaffordwr426

Posted April 25, 2007 - 08:03 AM

#14

i have an 01 wr 426 but i've ridden a few wr 450s i have found that the 450s dont have the same snappy power the 426 has...personally i like the aggressive snap, although i've heard Yamaha has been taming the 450 because people dont like the snappiness....from what i've experienced i would say this is true, and i would not want to down grade to a 450 from a 426!

  • markseaba

Posted April 25, 2007 - 08:10 AM

#15

I sold my ktm for a yamaha. So no your not nuts.


X2 I did the same thing. I think the Yamaha is more dependable. Seems like with KTM, you either get a good one, or a bad one.

  • hartzpad

Posted April 25, 2007 - 08:25 AM

#16

I'm going to find some local WR450's to ride and compare them to my WR426.

What changes have been made? I was looking at 2003-2004 until I read that in 2005 the WR450 got an updated frame, some lighter weight components and some other changes. I would like to find something for around $4000 which seems like it would be a 2003-2004. is the 2005 noticeably better?

  • blackdog9

Posted April 25, 2007 - 11:08 AM

#17

X2 I did the same thing. I think the Yamaha is more dependable. Seems like with KTM, you either get a good one, or a bad one.

X 3... SWITCHED MY 450 EXC FOR A 07 WR 450. BETTER RIDING POSITION, FEELS LIGHTER IN TIGHT TURNS, AND SPARE PARTS SUPPLY FAR BETTER THAN THE ORANGE....:applause:

  • JaysDirtyRide

Posted April 25, 2007 - 12:51 PM

#18

does the e start work on the 07 ?i ride a 03 with around 7000 miles on it and i do love ol blue but the truth is .my sons 400mxc is twice the bike in all areas ,yes i still bleed blue !but if you want the facts.......


Hi postalrider,

I really like the e-start feature on my '07 WR450. In fact, on the single track, it's pure heaven.

I usually kick her over but, when I'm felling tired or stall it on the ST, I stab the joy button and smile at my buddy kicking his KTM.

Yeah man.

-Jay

  • TheBlackSheep

Posted April 25, 2007 - 01:19 PM

#19

I dunno.......I love my 07 WR450. But my buddies got a 06' Ktm 450 e-start and the thing's pretty killer!

  • Fullbore4

Posted April 25, 2007 - 05:01 PM

#20

i have an 01 wr 426 but i've ridden a few wr 450s i have found that the 450s dont have the same snappy power the 426 has...personally i like the aggressive snap, although i've heard Yamaha has been taming the 450 because people dont like the snappiness....from what i've experienced i would say this is true, and i would not want to down grade to a 450 from a 426!


I think the 450's you rode possibly were not set up right. I had a 2000 WR400 that ran really good but my 450 runs a lot better. This is according to myself and other riders who have ridden both. I really like snap in a throttle too but there are several tricks to make on a stock 450 in achieving that. I litterally wear out a new dunlop back tire in one 4 hour ride. Next time I'm going with a maxis as they're supposed to last longer.




 
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