Opinions Needed - 4 Stroke MX HELP!!!


Oct 6, 2000
I am assisting my cousin is purchasing a "00-02 4 stroke to ride mostly MX tracks and some trail 80% / 20%. I own a "98 YZF 400 and he likes my bike, but I do not have the experience with the other 4 strokes and I know bike and Techno. has improved greatly since my purchase.

This will be his first dirt bike, but he is excellent street bike rider CBR 929 RR. He is very aggressive and expect nothing less when he gets on his own dirt bike. He is 5'-8" and 170 lbs strong and muscular (if that matters just trying to eliminate all possible left out info). We will be riding mostly Northern California tracks.

I narrowed it down to the following, please add some if my list is incomplete. In addition, please give as much info as possible. I realize that to ride is the best way to, but on some of these this is not an option and my cousin is not to comfortable riding others bikes and wearing others gear.

"98-99 YZF 400
"00-02" YZ 426F
"01-"02 YZ 250F
"01-"02 KTM 520
"01-"02 KTM 400
"02 CRF 450

Thank you in advance for your help.



May 20, 2001
I would opt for the safe choice, the YZ426F (whatever year, they haven't changed that much). I think that at 5'8" he may just fit on it.

At my 6'4", 200 lbs. and two years experience I will go from my -00 YZ250 to a -02 KTM 520 SX since they are the same price as a YZ426F around here and have the good parts and ergos for big guys stock from the factory (the jap bikes have handlebars that will be bent in the first good crash and the YZ needs a new top T-clamp to reposition the handlebar and the ergos are very cramped for bigger riders).

I wouldn't bother with the YZ250F. It's a bloody screamer of an engine and since I find even the 426 a bit gutless, not something I would want to even try. The YZ's have awesome suspension, tho', and of course any competent rider on a YZ250F would kick my arse to Lapland on one of those, but I wouldn't be having fun on one.

scar tissue

Dec 27, 2000
cr450f is supposed to be the best, but I haven't ridden it.
KTM 520 is a great bike but the power is very, very smooth, which some like some don't.
yz426 power growls and snarls etc. more of a rip up the track style.

Pick your posion, for me I'd try the cr450, it's supposed to have 2 great qualities the others don't, alot less compresion braking, (better for jumps and turning until you get used to it) and its supposed to be easy to start, though so is the KTM.

good luck :)

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