Jun 8, 2001
Currently I ride my YZ 125/99. At the end of the year I want to change to a 4 stroke bike. I have tested already a 520exc but it is nearly too strong for me!
And now my question: Do you think a KTM400SX is strong emough for the 500 class or shout should I wait for a CRF 450 ( is the new Honda already good enough??? :think ) or should I directly buy the KTM 520SX ??


Sponsoring Member
Sep 15, 1999
If you are not going to commit to one until the end of the year, you might wait. I have to believe KTM's 400SX will be a 450.. But we still won't know for a month or so.........


Jun 8, 2001

Regardless which bike you buy you'll have to adjust to the power differences coming from a 125. I've already reserved my CRF450R. I probably won't get it until Nov. '01. From what I read it's got a boat load of power especially if you're coming from a 125.

KTM has awesome workmanship and it's really a beautiful bike. The Honda is going to be the lightest of all the 4-stroke 4xx machines. They've done a great job. The one wild card is it's a first year bike.

Have you considered a YZ250F? I know it won't race in the class you mentioned but it's a great replacement bike for the 125 class.

Good luck and let us know what you do.


Nov 2, 2000
You might want to think about putting your money down now ,both KTM models have a 6-14 month waiting list. And the Honda will be in High demand also.:cool:


Jun 18, 2000
At this point, if I were you I’d hold off for a few more months. As far as weight goes the Honda will probably be about the same weight as the KTM’s. The only place I’ve seen that it will be lighter is on the Honda web page or a few of the magazines that got the spec sheets from the same web page. I believe my KTM is in the 238-pound range (which is about 10 to 12 pounds lighter than the current YZF’s). The other thing to think about is Yamaha will probably be shaving another 5 to 8 pounds off so I’d guess they will all be around 5 to 10 pounds of each other.

I currently have a 520sx and love it. A friend who has a 426 isn’t as convinced but strange enough, he rode a 400sx a few weeks ago and keeps saying how much nicer it is? The 450 (if it is for real) could be the hot ticket.

The wild card in my opinion is the starting. If Yamaha doesn’t address the “top dead center starting ritual” I’d take them off the list.

I’d put deposits on both the Honda and KTM and make sure which ever one you decline on you can get store credit. It’s usually $100 deposit in CA and that spends pretty quick. If you decide to go with the Yamaha it should be easier to get.


Mar 29, 2001
Most has already been said but -- I own a 2001 520SX, came from a CR500 and a '98 CR250. I've teamed race with a guy who has a YZ426 in desert races. Went with the KTM for the weight, HP and quality. First KTM/4-stroke that I've owend. KTM makes on very detailed engineered bike. The attention to detail that is in this bike is better than any of the Japanese brands.

Was a little worried about the power band on the 520 -- its at the low RPM's where the 426 requires the high RPM's to get into the meat of the power. Can tell you that the 520 is a better deal vs the 426 and most likely the 450. With the power being down low in the RPM range it makes coming out of a turn into a double one of the easiest jumps you can make. The power is great, weight is great and it is as easy as a 2-stroke to start.

The 450 will weigh around the 520 weight -- Honda always claims weights that are not the true weight.

This wait for a bike thing has me puzzled -- I walked into two KTM dealers early this spring and both has the 520 SX sitting on the floor. No order and no waiting -- just look around.

Just my take on this subject

Coach in ND

Mar 19, 2001
I went from a 2000 YZ 125 to a 2001 KTM 400 SX and haven't had any problems adjusting to the power. I have spent some time on 250's in the last couple years and my 400 seems way easier to ride. Smooth, endless power that can be lugged or revved in any situation. I race mine in the 250 class and this past weekend I holeshoted all four motos against 250 2-strokes and a lot of 426 Yamaha's.:p

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