I have a '99 380 EXC and I love it. It's a very versatile machine (except it needs a 6-speed tranny). They all have different personalities, but mine is great. Good, predictable power from low rpm to top, no big hit anywhere, starts first kick usually, light and nimble but pretty decent power. If you have specific questions, I'll be happy to give you my $.02.
The 380 is an awesome bike. The bike of choice for many of my riding buddies (5). If you like a bike with lots of power, combined with modern technology. This is the 2-stroke for you. I had a 380 for about 9 months and dropped down to the 300. I have a 300 because I don't like that much power, otherwise, it's just like my 300 (which is the best bike I have ever owned)
Didn't the 380 get best enduro bike from either Cycle World or Motor Cyclist a couple of years ago?
I know those are street bike mags, but that might be an advantage. Instead of constantly evaluating bikes that are almost idendtical and having to find problems that either don't exist or are extremely minor, they just give an honest evaluation of the bike. My theory anyway.
I've never riden a 380, but I love my 360exc- all the power you'll ever need. Mine is trail ridden on single track, hill-climbs, woods, desert--anywhere I want to go. A very tractor like bottom end, a strong mid hit, and the top feels like a 250! I've added the FMF Fatty pipe with a Turbine core spark arrestor and a Boyesen Rad valve (reed cage w/carbon fiber reeds), and these mods increased the bottom end response.
My exc came with wide ratio tranny, 3.2 Gallon gas tank, 18" rear wheel, heavier fly-wheel weight- just to name a few of the things that make the exc's trail-worthy. If you like horsepower in a light, well handling package, this is the bike for you.:D
I have a 2000' 380EXC mainly because of the power :p I have a #7 slide and the FMF gnarly and spark arrestor...I live in NV so alot of desert riding so the suspension is well tuned for that. This is my first dirt bike so :eek: I was leaning at first to get the CR500 but heard alot of shake/vibration on the front then heard the 380 would give the CR a run set up properly?
I think it depends on the kind of riding you plan to do. When I was looking to upgrade a couple of years ago I talked to a guy selling a 380. He was a trail rider and he said the 380 engine tired him out during the ride.
I love my 300. I do a lot of trail riding (the tighter the better). My bike a heavier flywheel and acts like a tractor in the tight woods.
My .02 worth.
Here's another reason I bought the 380 instead of the 300: I don't have to spend any money on aftermarket exhaust to get another 5% of power out of the machine and further damage our sport by increasing the noise (I ride in the mountains a lot.) I don't have to spend any money on rad valves, delta-2 reeds, special porting, etc. Don't get me wrong, sometimes it's FUN to experiment with that stuff, but with the 380 you never feel like it *needs* something. If you're comparing it to a CR500, the CR has a *lot* more power. (At least it sure feels like it when I hop on my friend's CR500.) However, often more power is not useful. We were drag racing once with my 380, a CR500, and several 250's. The 380 beat everything every time except once I lined up in a muddy patch. Technique, body weight (the CR guy outweighs me by 50 lbs.), tire condition, etc. are all big factors.
IMO you don't have to spend money on all that stuff to get more power out of the 300. The 300 has plenty of power! My friend rides the 380 and says it tractors a little better but it doesn't seem that much faster. We have run em before and I'm about 1 bike length behind. Mine doesn't feel like it *needs* anything, and it's straight up stock. Thats the beauty of these bikes! BTW I also ride in the mountains only. Don't get me wrong I think the 380 is a great bike to, I just wanted to be clear that not everyone has to spend a ton of money on ther 300 to make it acceptable.:p
I would half to agree i just got the FMF and the #7 slide not excessive spending to make the bike perform better...especially the slide with the elevation 5000ft here helps considerably (seems too :)...other than that I plan no mods...
With all this talk of enough power, I must disagree. yes the 380 makes good power and is slightly faster than a 300, Which is about equal to a CR250. There are plenty of areas that I ride in that require plenty of power. As a matter of fact, riding down sandy beach type fire roads saps power and 500cc bikes excell here.
I ride a Husky 360 and it does not have enough for me.