KTM 4-stroke reliability.

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10/9/2013 2:03 PM

I am thinking about buying a new (2013) KTM 450SX. I have heard a couple mixed reviews on their durability in comparison to Honda and Yamaha. Any input would be much appreciated.

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Go Hawks!

10/9/2013 2:43 PM

They are built like sherman tanks! The 13 450sxf is the best production 450 made. The 14 even better!

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10/9/2013 3:06 PM

I know of couple of 450s with over 200 hours on them with just rebuilding top end, I would say that is dependable and long lasting.

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10/9/2013 4:22 PM

BTW, 50 hours = top end from KTM manual.

I've got a 13 450. Sweet bike, 7 hours on it.

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10/9/2013 5:27 PM

11 ktm 40 hrs no problems, never even had the valve cover off, 2012 yamaha 29 hours blown up, piston flipped...... I think i am going to stick with the ktm's

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10/9/2013 6:14 PM

I think KTM's quality has surpassed the Japanese in the last few years. My next bike will be orange.

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10/9/2013 10:33 PM
Edited Date/Time: 10/10/2013 2:28 PM

My brother bought a 2012 450sx and it didn't have very many hours on it when the crank went bad,parts are more expensive and he now wishes he bought a Yamaha or Honda. He may have got a lemon from KTM because most people say they are built very well.

The bike ran great and handled great just had a major engine problem way too soon.

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Ed Johnson

10/9/2013 10:40 PM
Edited Date/Time: 10/9/2013 10:44 PM

Ktm 4 strokes have been reliable for quite some time. This is not a new thing for the brand. The RFS motors were as bullet proof as a odern 4stk could ever hope to be in a time when the "big 4" were going through valves like toilet paper. They could go 100s of hours before ever needing a top end. One of the mags did a long haul on a 400 back in '05ish and put 20,000 miles on it. They said that the piston could have stayed in it but they replaced it since they were in there.

There will be isolated horror stories with all the colors of bikes but in general, ktms are known for reliability.

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10/10/2013 2:25 AM

Markee wrote:

BTW, 50 hours = top end from KTM manual.

I've got a 13 450. Sweet bike, 7 hours on it.

I have CRF450, and the manual says a new piston and rings at 15 hours. sad

My next bike WILL be a 2 stroke. cheerful

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10/10/2013 2:56 AM

Your mistake was buying a Honda in that situation

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James = #7. Malcolm = #27
7/27=0.259259259259259259259
Stewart return confirmed!

10/10/2013 4:06 AM

11 350sxf, had the crank bearings replaced when the bike was brand new due to a recall. as of now 31hrs on it, and have had multiple problems with the throttle body/FI mostly fuel leaking out of it. Injector replaced one time. As for the mechanicals it has been good though. Personally I won't buy another. I will stick to Hondas

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10/10/2013 4:16 AM

racerx217 wrote:

11 ktm 40 hrs no problems, never even had the valve cover off, 2012 yamaha 29 hours blown up, piston flipped...... I think i am going to stick with the ktm's

ive seen a backflip, but never a piston flip

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10/10/2013 4:29 AM

I've ridden a couple and compared to my Honda they are very heavy feeling bikes. But my friends that own them haven't had any issues save the guy who bought the first year 350. He had a lot of fuel system issues. The 450s seem to be a little less on the edge and more reliable though.

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10/10/2013 4:37 AM

I know a few people that have newer KTM and I will stick to my Yamahas and Hondas. Im not saying they are junk but I doubt I will ever buy one.

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10/10/2013 6:01 AM

After working as a tech at a KTM / Yamha dealership I can honestly say that the KTM are heads and tails better in terms of quality and reliability. I have seen multiple failures on 1 250SXF and 1 450SXF. The key problem with both of those bikes was the owner as there maintenance was not where it needed to be. The wild thing was KTM replaced both motors out of warranty for no charge to the owner. Good luck trying to get Yamaha / Honda / Kawasaki / Suzuki doing that with a 6 month old bike.

As for the Yamahas several heads had to be replaced due to oil starvation, Worn out cam chains causing timing to jump, Piston skirts collapsing taking out cases, heads, cranks............

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10/10/2013 6:11 AM

Haters going to hate. People are scared of change a lot of the responses prove that.

The bikes are solid . I was the first to get one with my buddies and now all bar 1 has one. They have all been Trouble free. Parts are the same as jap bikes ,some cheap some expensive but overall my experience has been great with the pumpkin. I can't see me going back to a jap bike. Whoever said they feel heavy has got there head in the sand . They do physically weigh a lot ,but riding it feels super light and I can now cut inside lines like never before.

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14 350sxf - Stock and loving it

10/10/2013 6:12 AM

KTM build quality and attention to detail are very impressive compared to the previously known as Big 4. Single bolt seat removal, no tool air filter changes, no inserts to spin in the fuel tank, minimal fasteners, factory powdercoat on the frames, billet triple clanps, good bars, good chain and sprockets, hydraulic clutch, sealed bearings in the brake pedal, a factory supplied tool kit that will almost take apart the whole damn motorcycle and spare needles and jets for the carbed bikes. Good stuff.

Oh, and those magical Brembo's.....

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10/10/2013 6:39 AM

we had a big end bearing let go on a 10 hour old 2012 ktm 450- to be fair to ktm they replaced the damaged parts under warranty (it was 6 months after id bought the bike)- you would never get any of the jap manufacturers to do that! new cylinder, valves, con rod kit, oil pump etc- we had to pay labour costs but all parts were supplied free of charge.

The later model ktms have gone to a plain bearing rather than a needle roller, so should be alot more reliable than the jap bikes that are fitted with needle roller big end bearings in the crank- great idea! they should all do it. My next new bike will be a 350 or 450 ktm (probably go for a new 2013 model) - great bikes!

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10/10/2013 7:11 AM

I've had numerous KTMs over the years and haven't had a single problem in any of my 4strokes or 2 strokes. My latest bike ive been super impressed with is my 2013 KTM 450 practice bike. I have over 100 hours on it and havent put a single shim in the valves, the thing has been absolutely bulletproof. We run good oil, change the air filter and after 100 hours I still have the stock clutch and piston in it, just changed a set of rings.

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10/10/2013 7:27 AM

racerx217 wrote:

11 ktm 40 hrs no problems, never even had the valve cover off, 2012 yamaha 29 hours blown up, piston flipped...... I think i am going to stick with the ktm's

pete24 wrote:

ive seen a backflip, but never a piston flip

their ya go now you have seen both
[LINK TO IMAGE]

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10/10/2013 7:32 AM

tmauto769 wrote:

11 350sxf, had the crank bearings replaced when the bike was brand new due to a recall. as of now 31hrs on it, and have had multiple problems with the throttle body/FI mostly fuel leaking out of it. Injector replaced one time. As for the mechanicals it has been good though. Personally I won't buy another. I will stick to Hondas

First year bike. Almost all first year bikes suck. Think back to the start of 250f's.

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10/10/2013 9:15 AM

Photo
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10/10/2013 9:32 AM

ktm212 wrote:

I've had numerous KTMs over the years and haven't had a single problem in any of my 4strokes or 2 strokes. My latest bike ive been super impressed with is my 2013 KTM 450 practice bike. I have over 100 hours on it and havent put a single shim in the valves, the thing has been absolutely bulletproof. We run good oil, change the air filter and after 100 hours I still have the stock clutch and piston in it, just changed a set of rings.

Really? 100hours on the stock piston? I don't know if you are brave or just stupid but that's impressive!
It's been a few years since i had a pumpkin in the garage but I've never had any problems with mine, well I had some electrical problems on the 400exc but that was mostly my fault. As far as the engine goes, they have always worked like a charm. But on the other hand, I've never had any mechanical problems with my thumpers. *knock on wood*

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#1
KX125

10/10/2013 11:49 AM

Thanks for all the feedback guys. It appears to me that they are at minimum on par with Honda and Yamaha. There is a pending strike at my work so I am waiting until after the contract clears up to purchase, hopefully a 13 will still be available.

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Go Hawks!

10/10/2013 12:07 PM

Newman, u forgot the biggest thing, the magic button!

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10/10/2013 12:28 PM

rocketsocks26 wrote:

Newman, u forgot the biggest thing, the magic button!

No magic button on the 150SX. But a 200 pound 40 hp high revving tiddler is all the magic anyone could need.wink

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10/10/2013 2:50 PM

Derpin' DJ wrote:

Your mistake was buying a Honda in that situation

Only cost me $25. wink tongue

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10/10/2013 3:08 PM

i think any bike is reliable if you keep up regular maintenance. if you always do your oil/oil filter/air filter/keep bearings greased most bikes will be fine for a long time

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Slow is smooth, smooth is fast.

If you can't ride good you better look good, thats why I have new gear.

10/10/2013 7:16 PM

loads of lad s here saying my 13 has been super reliable , its a new bike i would hope so , i think any bike if your going to get a new bike every yr they are all pretty good,if u take care of them , but from what i know and have seem is , KXF 450 s i have seen a good few blow up over the last few yrs , a few yzf s gearbox s locked up , but not many , RMZ s gearbox s can wear quickly ,other than that soild bike, CRF s, valves other than that great bike , KTM , loads of crank , big end ,trouble , with a good few blow up s too , IMO it depend how long you want to keep the bike for ,i am after getting 5 yr s out of my honda , with over 500 hours on it , not one bit of trouble , best bike i ever had , i am getting a new bike now , and i will never get a KTM , just cause i cant afford a rebuild during the yr , and at the races i see so many of them breaking down , the way i look at it is valves are cheap compared to gearbox s , and big end s and cranks ,KTM is still last on my shopping list

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10/10/2013 7:31 PM

I now have 80 hours on my 13 SXF 450. Put in a new piston and ring at 60 but it looked great and wasn't really needed. Everything still in spec. LOVE the bike. Brakes,clutch,POWER,steering,etc. Love it! Had the suspension set up for me by Nick at Provalve.I'd say the weak link on the bike is the forks but even with that,they aren't that bad. Ridden much worse forks.Love the electric start too. Great all around bike!

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