May 23, 2001
I was wondering what the consensus was on the these two bikes, the Honda XR400 and the Suzuki DR400. Which one would you vote for and why?

my 2 cents: gotta love honda's reliability but that black and yellow looks GREAT! I just cant decide...:think


Sponsoring Member
Nov 27, 2000
Either bike is good, The Honda's suspension is a little stiffer, the DRZ's motor has a wider power band, I picked the DRZ because of Price,and it just fit me better Ride both if you can, sit on both preferably side by side like I did.
Either bike would make a good choice.



Jul 21, 1999

The Suzi is a lot more updated and puts out about 8 more ponies. Personally I don't care for yellow but that's my opinion and thats all. The XR is still the best all around "survival" bike to ride (I ride an XR4). And most guys that ride areas like Baja stick with the XR because you can't kill them. But alas the XR is still heavy and wears you out, but on the plus side it'll make you a strong SOB if you ride enough ;)

That said get what feels best.

dirt bike dave

Sponsoring Member
May 3, 2000
Both have their loyal followings, but the Suzuki clearly has more mid to top power. IMO the Suzi has better handling, suspension and feels lighter on the trail, alhtough actual weights are probably pretty close. The Honda does have better low end power, though. For me, the Suzi is more fun to ride, but your mileage may vary. :cool:

John K

Feb 22, 2000
The DRZ is clearly a more recently updated bike more inline with the WR400. The XR400 can pretty much try its hand at anything, and as said is bulletproof. I think the DRZ is a little more pidgeon holed. It certainly is lighter, more powerfull. I'm surprised that the DRZ is cheaper over there. It certainly isn't here in Australia, and we can buy both as registerable models.

Like jdrobins said, ride both one after the other if you can. Also I think there is still more aftermarket gear and hot up ideas for the XR's than just about any other bike.

my 10cents! ;)


May 17, 2000
The DRZ feels and handles so much lighter than the XR, even though they are about the same 265, stock the power is mainly in mid and on top, but
if you take off the air box lid and do some rejetting, it picks up a ton of
low end, it has a great spread of power, best compromise between a XR and a WR, it truly handles Fantastic through the woods and trails. I sold my XR
to get the DRZ it was the right move for riding here in Michigan, I also have
raced it in some MotoX (enduro class) and just firmed up the suspension
clickers, it jumps very well and is balanced in the air, unike the XR, Both are
great bikes but the DRZ more modern, be looking for a new XR450 within a
year or two though, good luck Borsy


Jul 31, 2000
ridden both

My father in law has a DRZ, I ride the XR. I like them both. Like everyone said before, the DRZ is more updated and has e-start, which is a huge advantage if you plan on dropping it a few times.:p You can hop up the XR to handle very well and put out decent midrange too, but you will never have the top end of the DRZ. The Xr is "bullet proof", I have seen DRZ's with drained batteries. Tons of aftermarket stuff available for the XR and DRZ.
Personally I like my XR better, but thats because I sunk a bunch of money into it to make it decent (I even MX it). Out of the box I think I would lean towards the DRZ.
Anyway, good luck, both are great rides.


Feb 9, 2000
QUITE what !!! ... QUITE quiet ... ey !!! ;)

Yeah, the DRZ is quite a bike, have yet to find anyone who dislikes the bike. Add to that the S model and you have two of the best bikes around. This bike has been receiving rave reviews and already has a ton of after market support. Suzuki definitely got this one riot !! ....... right ?



Apr 7, 2001
I own a DRZ 400 and I have no complaints so far. Great bike and very quick. I have only ridden an XR400 two times and both times I liked it. I prefer my DRZ but I say just pick a color. You cant go wrong if you pick one of them.

Good luck and be safe.



Baked Spud
Jan 1, 2001
Originally posted by Rodzilla
But alas the XR is still heavy and wears you out, but on the plus side it'll make you a strong SOB if you ride enough

I'm part way there. When will I start getting strong:)


Nov 18, 2000
Owned a xr for 2 yrs,all i got to say is stall it or drop it on a hot humid day and you'll make up you mind quick ,the e button is the only way to go on a 4 stroke,other than that it was a great bike,if you worried about running the battery down do as i did and get a used 400exc,kickstarter makes a great back up


Jul 5, 2000
If you know the right mechanic and have enuf $$$$ your XR400 can be electric start also, mine is.
Ive never riden a DRZ but I sure would consider it. A great bike right out of the box from what all I've read and pretty reliable to. I'm not seeing as many at the harescramble races as the first year they came out though, not sure what that means, that all said I would still chose the XR.
If you get the chance to ride them both do it, this will more than likely make you decision for you.



May 23, 2001
How in the heck does anyone get a chance to ride two differnet bikes before buying? OK I can see buying used and test riding around someones backyard, but what if you want to buy new (which unfortunately I cant) how can you test a bike out..I dont think there are dealers that just says here's the key go jump that big hill out back...just a gripe:o

Anyhow back to the bike debate, I have never ridden a motorcycle offroad more than twice in my life and I am somewhat afraid of them (unsure might be a better word) would getting a 250 instead of a 400 be easier to learn on? I am over 200lb. Someone said that a 250 you have to beat just to get it up a hill whereas a 400 would make it easier...I just want this bike for trail purposes only, riding next to my wife on a quad or an occasional group ride with other trail bikes.

BTW thanks for all the I am more confused than ever!!!:confused: I guess color might be the deciding factor afterall!!


Damn Yankees
May 14, 2000
Originally posted by John K
my 10cents! ;)
Hey John, how much is that in USD? :D

If your going to make your choice based on color,....I would definatly choose Orange! :cool:
Last edited:


Nov 7, 2000
You'll have to find riders in your area to test the bikes out, too much liability for the dealers.

As for the 250 vs 400 thing, at over 200lbs you definately want the 400 class bike. No debating that. Also, at that weight on the DRZ you would need to have the springs done. Which will cost you probably $500 front and rear + labor.

As for being a relative new comer, both bikes will work fine. The XR and DRZ are both sure footed, fun to ride bikes. I have an XR400 and weigh over 200 but I would have picked the DRZ if I hadn't felt cramped on it. Must people 5'11" and over feel cramped on a DRZ.

Anyway, my 2 bits.

John K

Feb 22, 2000
Well our 10 cents is probably worth approximately 5 of yours. Our dollar is a in a sad state!

As for getting to ride the two bikes, you would really have to know people that are into dirtbikes and luck out that amongst them they would have the two, and that they would be willing to let you ride them.
Oct 30, 2000
john k: our $$ may not be too good but we've still got straight license xr650's, xr400's, drz's, wrf's, 520's, 'berg's, huskies, etc as well as never ending riding territory. for this i'm willing to cop a temporarily poor exchange rate!!

bnt5: i've got a xr400 after having numerous xr600s. most guys i ride with have xr's but following a weekend with a drz that suzuki stupidly gave to our local bike shop as a demo, we'll all probably be going that way when its time for a new bike (so long as we can afford big tanks and the other stuff we've been able to swap from xr to xr over the years).

probably the only reason you'd buy an xr over a drz now was if you could get one really really cheap or if your reel keen on reliability & simplicity (farmers etc) or if youve got heaps of stuff for the xr and your too tight to buy all new stuff for the drz.

drz mick

Jun 2, 2001
I too was an off-road 'nobber' who went out and bought a DRZ400e on the recommendation of a friends friend (Carl Fogarty no less...).
You will come on in leaps and bounds once you get the hang.
You will be scared, nervous etc at first. You will fall off but it don't hurt !
The bike hooks up like no road bike on the dirt and you will quickly gain a lot of confidence in the knobblies. IT IS TREMENDOUS FUN. I still grin now 8 months later.
Tips: Roll the throttle progressively not aggressively like a road bike. Throttle control should be subtle. Get used to sticking your leg out straight away to save slides. As a road rider this was a hard lesson. If you are lazy and don't bother you will crash in turns ! It is amazing how far sideways you can get and save it with your foot. Warm up a bit at first before riding. It will be a culture shock to your legs and hamstrings in particular.
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