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Ryan

Honda XR400 vs. Honda XR650

15 posts in this topic

Hello there, I have a 1998 XR4 that is all tricked out with HRC kit and suspension mods, etc. I was really wondering though, how the XR4 compares to the XR650R. I haven't had the opportunity to try one of these bikes, but I was wondering if someone has had the chance to ride both of them. How do they compare? Is the 650 a heavy pig, or can you not really notice the extra weight? Does it have a whole lot more power? OK, thanks in advance

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Yes, the 650 is heavier than the 400. It has waaaaaaaaay more power too. The 400 is better for really tight nasty woods, the 650 is better at everything else.

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Wieght - The 650 is heavier. You will notice it in the woods, nowhere else.

Power - Huge difference. You will not run out of power on the climbs like the 400 does. Scarey fast once their uncorked. Be prepared, the 650 will spank you harder then anything I've ever ridden before.

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Depends on what you want the bike to do. It sounds like you got a real sweey bike with the tricked out 400. The 650 is similar to an xr600 except on steroids, and with far better suspension. but it does handle similarly to a 600. Of course that's just my oppinion , I could be wrong!

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On a cross country course 10 miles long doing 6 laps I am overall faster on my 650R than I was on my 400R which had over $8500 invested. The 650R is about 17 pounds heavier but has about 20 more horsepower! More importantly, this power is more tractable than any other dirt bike in the world. When I'd ride my 650R I'd run between 1,000 and 4500 rpm the majority of the time.

I now own a Cannondale E440 which I love but I miss the CHUGA-BILITY of my 650R. As result, I;m looking into buying a HUSABERG FE650e. 244lbs dry with eletric start.

jay peter

P.S. My 650R is for sale by the way.

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I also did a test of sorts between a very stock 97 XR400 with Factory Conection suspention and a XR650r with a W.B. E-series pipe only. Both bikes had the same Pirelli tires and both were completly stock except for these mods. The loop was perfect the day we did this.

I had been racing the 650r in harescrambles and loved the power and suspention, the only time the weight botherd me was when I went to stop. The 400 was previously raced for about a year before and had been recently, completely rebuilt.

We conducted our test on our 3 mile loop, I rode 4 laps the 400 first, then the 650, then the 400, and finaly the 650.

I don't remember the exact #'s, but I do remember the 1st 2 laps I was just 5 or 10 seconds faster on the 650. On the last 2 laps I was 25 seconds faster on the 650, this puprised me because I was getting a little winded. I was actualy quite a bit faster on the 650 even though it realy didn't feel like it. In a harescramble 25seconds every 3 miles is alot, I won 2 local races on the 650 last year.

I don't plan on racing the 650 anymore, now it's my Dual Sport bike.

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Thanks alot for all of the info., I didn't know that the 650 was such a good bike, apparently a fair amount better than the 400. I will try my best to try one out this spring, and buy one if it really is as good as you guys say it is. I do a fair amount of exploring down dirtroads and stuff and some singletrack from time to time. It sounds like it would be a really good bike for me.

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Originally posted by TwinSparXR:

I also did a test of sorts between a very stock 97 XR400 with Factory Conection suspention and a XR650r with a W.B. E-series pipe only. Both bikes had the same Pirelli tires and both were completly stock except for these mods. The loop was perfect the day we did this.

I had been racing the 650r in harescrambles and loved the power and suspention, the only time the weight botherd me was when I went to stop. The 400 was previously raced for about a year before and had been recently, completely rebuilt.

We conducted our test on our 3 mile loop, I rode 4 laps the 400 first, then the 650, then the 400, and finaly the 650.

I don't remember the exact #'s, but I do remember the 1st 2 laps I was just 5 or 10 seconds faster on the 650. On the last 2 laps I was 25 seconds faster on the 650, this puprised me because I was getting a little winded. I was actualy quite a bit faster on the 650 even though it realy didn't feel like it. In a harescramble 25seconds every 3 miles is alot, I won 2 local races on the 650 last year.

I don't plan on racing the 650 anymore, now it's my Dual Sport bike.

Yeah, it's amazing how you don't really "feel faster" on the 650R but actually are when you pull out the stop watch. I'm going to set up a 7 mile GNCC loop and do 10 laps on my Cannondale E440 as fast as I can and then come back another time and ride the 650R for 10 laps and compare times. When you're super winded the riding style of the 650R really works.

I love my Cannondale E440 (especially because of the electric start) but I'm amazed at the 650R's ability to really hook up in rocks, mud and other slippery conditions. People say I'm nuts but there's a lot of times where the 650R's weight makes me feel really comfortable (especially in rocks). The only time I feel the weight is a disadvantage is when falling or going under 5 miles an hour. In fact, if my 650R had electric start I would have never bought the Cannondale E440.

I'll probably end up keeping my 650R as I've been hearing no other bike (even the Husaberg FE650e) makes the incredible power and torque from Idle to 4,000 rpm.

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Quote by jpeters

In fact, if my 650R had electric start I would have never bought the Cannondale E440.

Change your bike to a 520exc and you have where I'm at. I also felt that the weight was an advantage at speed, as the bike didn't move around alot and held a line very well.

[ February 09, 2002: Message edited by: TwinSparXR ]

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Originally posted by TwinSparXR:

Quote by jpeters

In fact, if my 650R had electric start I would have never bought the Cannondale E440.

Change your bike to a 520exc and you have where I'm at. I also felt that the weight was an advantage at speed, as the bike didn't move around alot and held a line very well.

[ February 09, 2002: Message edited by: TwinSparXR ]

Good to hear someone else is with me on this weight thing! Everyone I talk to thinks I'm a freak - woods riding a 650R with 29inch pro tapers at race speeds!

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Originally posted by jpeters:

Good to hear someone else is with me on this weight thing! Everyone I talk to thinks I'm a freak - woods riding a 650R with 29inch pro tapers at race speeds!

Hello J Peters......... Did you buy your Cannondale from Hales in Prescott?

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Originally posted by jpeters:

Good to hear someone else is with me on this weight thing! Everyone I talk to thinks I'm a freak - woods riding a 650R with 29inch pro tapers at race speeds!

Hello J Peters......... Did you buy your Cannondale from Hales in Prescott?

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Originally posted by largethump:

Hello J Peters......... Did you buy your Cannondale from Hales in Prescott?

Yes!

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I own a 97 XR400 with excellent mods for tight trails and such: Aloop body kit, FCR carb, larger hearder and exhaust , suspension work, etc. And I love it. I also ride with my cousin and his 2001 XR650R, that is derestricted and aftermarket exhaust. We trade off quite a bit and bottom line I think the 650 is better. Stronger brakes, more power (although mine as more instant snap... FCR carb, the 650 would be awesome with that carb) and most of all better handling. The XR400 forks are always twisting and doesnt give much confidence in the front end. The 650R would even be that much better with a Summers frok brace. The only other think I would like from the XR650R would for it to be slimmer but you can get used to that.

William

Santa Cruz, Ca

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