Opinions on a KTM 500 EXC for ex-motocrosser/?

Related:
Create New Tag

9/1/2016 4:28 PM
Edited Date/Time: 9/1/2016 4:30 PM


  • I would love the have a new KX450f but places to ride are just about non existent and can't be arsed to load up and drive hours and back just to ride around a MX track
  • (work, getting old, tired, etc.)

  • There's some of the old trails scattered about but most need to be gotten to by the way of the road
  • (sections overtaken by housing developments blocking large sections of trails among other things).

  • Friends want me to get a road bike to ride with them
  • (road bikes aren't my style but I used to love riding my dirt bike on country back roads when I was a kid so doing it legally sounds cool, especially some nice weather night riding)

  • I never did like dual sport or trail oriented only machines
  • (too heavy, bulky, crap suspension, lame style, etc.- I always liked MX style machines and always felt more comfortable on them and like to hit MX style jumps)

  • I honestly like trail riding and exploring just as much as MX, riding on road would be a new thing for me and my friends want me to get a road bike, would the KTM 500 EXC fit the bill for me?
  • (is it really a MX bike that's road legal?) MX bikes have always been my style, even when I didn't race and only trail rode I chose MX bikes because I like to do MX jumps and MX track riding for fun too.


    Is there anyone out there that used to ride MX and has the KTM EXC? KTM's are so pricey but if it can fit the bill of a MX/trail and road bike, I think this would be the perfect machine for me!
    |

    9/1/2016 4:35 PM

    My dad has one and it is a lot of fun on and off the track. I rode it in practice at the Lake Havasu WORCS race and it was a blast. Had license plate signals and a mirror and was still riding it like an mx bike. I don't think you'll regret getting one for an all around bike.

    |

    9/1/2016 4:54 PM

    I have a '14 EXC500, which is the same as the '15-'16's. I love the bike and have ridden it at several MX tracks in the past. Depending how you set up the suspension, it works very good on the track. Mine has an off-road suspension valving, so it's a little soft, but manageable.
    If you can afford it, wait for the '17 EXC500, it's going to be even better and 18 lbs lighter. That's a lot of weight....

    |

    9/1/2016 5:02 PM

    I've heard good things, they sound intimidating but seat of pants feel is that it's just a real mellow slower revving 450 with torque that actually slightly alters the earths axis

    |

    9/1/2016 5:07 PM

    I don't have one or ridden one so I don't claim this as fact but if I was in your position I'd probably go with the Husky FE501s. Very similar bike but with the linkage rear suspension it may work better on a mx track. Just food for thought anyways.

    |

    9/1/2016 5:10 PM

    I bought a 2013 KTM 500EXC new for the same reason you did, places to ride. Coming from a Honda CRF450 the power is a lot smoother, no hard hit like the 450. I did an exhaust, mapping and de-smog kit on the 500 and it was like riding a different bike, they are very choked up from the factory.

    |

    9/1/2016 5:21 PM

    I'm considering the 350 EXC. I do wonder if the 250 uncorked would be more fun

    |

    9/1/2016 5:36 PM
    Edited Date/Time: 9/1/2016 5:40 PM

    I just picked up a '16 500exc last week. It's a freaking wheelie machine. It will be hard to keep a license on. wink
    I was going to wait for a 17 until I found out the '17's are going to have the universally hated 4CS forks and a new unproven motor. The 12-16 motor is proven reliable with a huge knowledge base on it out on the net. I'm just a little gun shy about buying new models after my '97 CR250 experience. wink
    I had an '07 450exc and it was the most versatile bike I ever owned. I would race local Saturday night under the lights mx races, hare scrambles, explore local power lines or ride it to work. Regretted getting rid of it.
    "Super pumped " about this new '16.
    I say get one, you'll love it.

    |

    9/1/2016 6:15 PM
    Edited Date/Time: 9/1/2016 6:16 PM

    WhiteTaco wrote:

    I just picked up a '16 500exc last week. It's a freaking wheelie machine. It will be hard to keep a license on. wink
    I was going to wait for a 17 until I found out the '17's are going to have the universally hated 4CS forks and a new unproven motor. The 12-16 motor is proven reliable with a huge knowledge base on it out on the net. I'm just a little gun shy about buying new models after my '97 CR250 experience. wink
    I had an '07 450exc and it was the most versatile bike I ever owned. I would race local Saturday night under the lights mx races, hare scrambles, explore local power lines or ride it to work. Regretted getting rid of it.
    "Super pumped " about this new '16.
    I say get one, you'll love it.

    No 4CS on that bike, from what I read.
    The motor/frame/etc looks to be based off of the '16 SX-F 450, but maybe not ?
    I had a '07 EXC525 and then an '09EXC530. Both were GREAT bikes and they improved them each time. The '17 will be no different, but I can totally understand waiting for the bugs to get worked out.

    I'll be selling my '14 here soon, I've got a small fortune into it, so I'll be taking a bath on resell for sure. It's been a great bike, but I'm dying to lose another 18 lbs off the bike. I've had the '14.5 and '15.5 FE 450's and there was a HUGE difference in the bikes, IMO.
    Basically the same bikes for upgrading, in comparison.

    |

    9/1/2016 6:33 PM

    If you plan on MX, go for linkage. Husky or Beta.

    |

    2015 Beta 500 RS, history: 99 KTM 300, 87 CR250, 84 KLR 600, 82 GPZ 550, 81 KX 250, 80 KX 250, 79 Montesa 414 VE, 78 250 VB, 77 360 VB, 76 360 VA, 75 YZ 125, 74 TM 125, 72 TS 125, 60's West Bend Go Boy Kart

    9/1/2016 6:38 PM

    I sold my 2013 500exc looking to upgrade to the 2017 500exc, any word on when they will be at the dealers? I will say one thing, these bikes do hold their value pretty well. I paid $10,800 out the door in CA in Feb 2013 and sold it for $9,600.

    |

    9/1/2016 6:51 PM

    I recently sold my 2014 500exc and picked up a 2000 kdx200. I liked it a lot at first but the more i rode it the more i didnt anymore. I thought the suspension was horrible. Felt stiff sitting on the bike but the forks blew through the stroke. That was probably my biggest issue with the bike. Mine had 200 hours on it and the valves barely moved i never had to adjust them. I think the motor was really solid. Riding a mx bike on the street was sweet at first but the thrill didnt last long. If it didnt cost a fortune id probably still have it but i was tired of making payments.

    |

    9/1/2016 7:34 PM

    Everyone pops for the 500 over the 450 thinking your getting something for nothing. But you aren't. There's a very noticeable difference in weight when riding

    |

    9/1/2016 7:34 PM

    I picked up a 2016 Husky 501 in June and have been very happy with it.

    I was racing a KTM 250, so the motor has me smiling. the chassis is a race bike, the suspension is race stuff, i weigh 155 so stock springs are fine. the bike is superb on the trails. it's a 500 exc with linkage and composite rear subframe. oh and white plastic :0)

    Photo

    |

    9/1/2016 7:36 PM

    The 500exc is a great bike and will do everything you need it to. I have a 15 and have put it through it's paces and plan on keeping this bike around for a while. I converted mine to an mx set up to test it's capabilities and it does pretty good for practice days on the mx track but the 6 speed doesn't give you everything you want out of third gear. Great for off road and dual sport but you'll want to dump some cash into the suspension and throw an fmf on there with the euro efi map. I'll probably end up getting another 450 next year to do some mx races but the 500 will remain in the stable.Photo

    |

    9/1/2016 7:40 PM
    Edited Date/Time: 9/1/2016 7:50 PM

    Underground wrote:

    Everyone pops for the 500 over the 450 thinking your getting something for nothing. But you aren't. There's a very noticeable difference in weight when riding

    The 450 hasn't been available in the US for awhile as far as I know. (Maybe since '12 ?) The '17's will have a 250,350,450 and 500 in the EXC line-up. I'm not sure if they'll import them all to the US, but if they do, they will sell a shit load of dual sports here.

    In '07, my buddy bought the 450 and I got the 525. After a few trips, he sold his 450 and bought the 525. He said there was a pretty significant difference, enough to sell the 450.... But that was the RFS motor, so apples to oranges.

    Pics of mine-
    http://www.vitalmx.com/community/langhammx,27612/setup,42458?scope=newest&query=Exc+500

    |

    9/1/2016 8:40 PM

    langhammx, guys must hate it when you pass them with lights and a tag......tongue

    |

    9/1/2016 9:44 PM

    I bought my 13 for the same reasons and riding that you are interested in. I love mine, it can do it all! From single track to the motocross track to the street. You won't find another bike that can compete with the KTM/Husky 500's on all the different terrains. Lots of bikes will be better at one thing but none can do them all as well. I wish the Japanese would try to compete but I don't think they have anything close at this time. I love riding past the police on my dirtbike and being 100% legal!

    |

    9/1/2016 9:52 PM

    Photo

    Photo

    Photo

    |

    9/2/2016 1:57 AM
    Edited Date/Time: 9/3/2016 1:03 AM

    You will need to get some supermoto wheels for longer rides in the asphalt roads.

    [LINK TO IMAGE]

    Riding knobbies on the asphalt for longer periods is real pain. I have 2008 Husaberg FE650E with supermoto wheels and it's really fun to ride with those on twisty asphalt roads

    Photo

    |

    9/2/2016 6:39 AM

    langhammx wrote:

    No 4CS on that bike, from what I read.
    The motor/frame/etc looks to be based off of the '16 SX-F 450, but maybe not ?
    I had a '07 EXC525 and then an '09EXC530. Both were GREAT bikes and they improved them each time. The '17 will be no different, but I can totally understand waiting for the bugs to get worked out.

    I'll be selling my '14 here soon, I've got a small fortune into it, so I'll be taking a bath on resell for sure. It's been a great bike, but I'm dying to lose another 18 lbs off the bike. I've had the '14.5 and '15.5 FE 450's and there was a HUGE difference in the bikes, IMO.
    Basically the same bikes for upgrading, in comparison.

    You're right. The KTM website now shows the '17 coming with WP Xplor 48 forks. I'm almost certain earlier this summer it said 4CS.

    |

    9/2/2016 11:43 AM

    How much self control do you have?

    When I plated my CRF450 after converting it to a supermoto, it was really really difficult to behave myself on the road.

    It became a track only bike after I found myself block passing a bus in downtown Vancouver chasing a buddy around town.

    |

    [LINK TO IMAGE]

    Empty a bag of skittles into the toilet and then flush. It's like watching a five second long nascar race.

    9/2/2016 7:01 PM

    Does the linked rear suspension really make that much of a difference? I think the KTM looks better. Self control? Gulp... Passed a sheriff at 134mph in a Ford Lightning once... but it's getting better with age. wink

    |

    9/2/2016 7:06 PM

    Yeah, I'm wondering the same with the link. Does it really make a difference to a weekend warrior? The KTM will match my Dads 690 much better than ugly white and blue.

    |

    The race goes to the swift. Unless they fail to show up and then I get a shot at it

    9/2/2016 7:20 PM

    rt987 wrote:

    Yeah, I'm wondering the same with the link. Does it really make a difference to a weekend warrior? The KTM will match my Dads 690 much better than ugly white and blue.

    EXCs are street-legal off-road race bikes (XCFW with lights). They are not street legal MX bikes. I love my 350, but it will blow through the suspension when tasked on a track, and I'm 145 lbs. Linkage helps, but it's valvjng that makes the difference.

    You can still have fun on a track, but it requires precision. Where a properly sprung MX bike can absorb over-jumping, an EXC will collapse. If you're style is hammering the track, the EXC may not be the best option.

    |

    "You can't resist the louder pull..."

    9/2/2016 7:38 PM
    Edited Date/Time: 9/2/2016 7:40 PM

    The 500 motor is awesome ... had a 2012 XC500 PDS that I made street legal. Great bike as was all my RFI bikes. As far as PDS vs Linkage... for me linkage wins hands down!

    I just bought a 350 XCF for off road and will make it street legal - illegally.....hahah, by adding a plate that I renew every yearsilly

    My moto bike is a 350SXF so a 350 for off road made sense .......

    Would I buy or have another 500? Absolutely ..... it would be a Husky 501 with linkage!

    |

    Germany 1975 250 CZ Centerport, laydown shocks, mikuni with reed valve, Marzocchi forks with me as the motopilot

    9/2/2016 7:48 PM

    Platted 2014 fe501 enduro
    Other than the 4CS, the bike is great. I checked the valves at 100hours. No adjustment needed


    Photo

    |

    9/2/2016 8:55 PM
    Edited Date/Time: 9/2/2016 8:55 PM

    i bought a 16 500exc this spring. love it. there are some draw backs and some tweeking that needs to be done to getting running "right". this was a little frustrating for me... go to Thumper Talk there are some guys on there that know their shit on this bike specifically and can help with the tweek

    Just back from a 2 week colorado dual sport trip and had a blast running down some incredible forrest service roads

    I am super happy with mine

    I will also say my Ducati scrambler is a blast too and I NEVER thought I would own a road bike...

    |

    9/2/2016 9:08 PM
    Edited Date/Time: 9/2/2016 10:13 PM

    My PDS KTM just wouldn't "leap" off of jump faces. Switch to a bike with linkage on the same day and I instantly clear stuff I just couldn't with the PDS. PDS is a non starter for MX to me.

    Photo

    |

    2015 Beta 500 RS, history: 99 KTM 300, 87 CR250, 84 KLR 600, 82 GPZ 550, 81 KX 250, 80 KX 250, 79 Montesa 414 VE, 78 250 VB, 77 360 VB, 76 360 VA, 75 YZ 125, 74 TM 125, 72 TS 125, 60's West Bend Go Boy Kart

    9/2/2016 9:12 PM

    Underground wrote:

    Everyone pops for the 500 over the 450 thinking your getting something for nothing. But you aren't. There's a very noticeable difference in weight when riding

    langhammx wrote:

    The 450 hasn't been available in the US for awhile as far as I know. (Maybe since '12 ?) The '17's will have a 250,350,450 and 500 in the EXC line-up. I'm not sure if they'll import them all to the US, but if they do, they will sell a shit load of dual sports here.

    In '07, my buddy bought the 450 and I got the 525. After a few trips, he sold his 450 and bought the 525. He said there was a pretty significant difference, enough to sell the 450.... But that was the RFS motor, so apples to oranges.

    Pics of mine-
    http://www.vitalmx.com/community/langhammx,27612/setup,42458?scope=newest&query=Exc+500

    Fair enough. The 500 is definitely and easy to use big engine, but it does also get tiring over distance too due to the extra inertia. If it was going to be used as a MXer, I definitely be going the 450 route as they do rev out better

    |