Best Dirt Bikes Brands
Dirt biking is increasingly becoming a popular sport for most people. The vast majority nowadays no longer want to watch moto professionals enjoying all this fun alone. Instead, they’re yearning for first-hand riding experience on the bike this time around.
From taking high octane jumps to racing around tracks, a dirt bike will up your racing game. However, choosing the best dirt bike brands could be a challenge as not everyone is giving it the commitment it deserves.
So, which models are the best for racing in today’s market? Here’s the list of the top dirt bike brands for you.
Top 5 Best Dirt Bikes Brands
In our top selections, we’ve considered all the best features that a reliable motocross bike should have. As experts, we’ll help you understand why these recommendations are the best for your money.
1. KTM 250 SX-F
If you’re finding it hard to identify the dirt bike with a dynamic, lightweight chassis, then KTM 250 SX-F could be the best bet by all means. The feature helps in improving above-ground controllability on the air. As a beginner, you can easily pick it up and move around with it if you find yourself on the ground.
Veterans love its compact 2-stroke engine that produces plenty of power (torque and top-of-the-line power). The engine cements its high performance, especially on those dirtiest tracks and any terrain.
Recently, the manufacturer has updated the front and rear suspensions. The front suspension is adjustable with a travel of 12.2 inches, while the rear suspension comes with 11.8-inch travel.
The two features combined deliver superior traction when cornering and braking. They allow the bike to ride downhill incredibly faster.
Even better, the six-gear transmission enables its powerful engine to stay on power excellently. Thanks to the clutch system that comes with innovatively designed heat-resistant plates. The plates ensure unbeatable reliability as they’re super easy to disengage.
Its silicone stripped seat allows comfort to meet performance. The bike qualifies in every aspect of rideability, braking, cornering, and acceleration.
What we like:
- The bike rides superbly and looks aggressive
- Has adjustable front and rear suspensions for soft landings
- Lightweight designs ensure easy controllability
- Silicone stripped seat for comfortability
- A superior engine that enhances performance in any terrain
What we don’t like:
- It’s geared too tall for short and average people
- The spring might are a bit soft for heavy riders
2. Honda CRF250X
Always the master of innovation, Honda launched its first dirt bike in the early 70s. And five decades later, the company continues to dominate with a four-stroke dirt bike. Compete focus and passion have seen Honda dikes win a lot of races.
Honda CRF250X features a 4-stroke motor alongside a wider powerband. This gives a rider easy control once the bike is in the air. Its liquid-cooled 250cc engine ensures consistent power, allowing the throttle to twist without any hitch while still packing torque for a smooth ride.
The racing champion is customized with well-sophisticated aftermarket parts to meet the rider’s taste. The suspension lowering kit allows shorter riders to drop the bike down at ease.
When you’re on the trail balancing through tracks and wheeling over boulders, you’ll want to kick the motorbike over. Just push the electric button as you pull in the cable-actuated clutch. By doing so, you’ll get the bike rolling again. Smooth and simple.
Better still, the five-speed transmission makes everything easy and hassle-free. The wheelbase that resembles its motocross cousin stands above ground to help clear any terrain.
With a wider, 18-inch wheel, the rider will feel comfortable and confident over the rough terrains. It also boosts stability because of the bike.
The CRF250X weighs 254 pounds, something that promoted weight distribution. It’s designed to possess a low center of gravity. Beginners will love this as they’ll be able to manipulate the bike on the trail.
What we like
- Has a controlled speed
- Excellent weight distribution that enhances stability and comfortability
- Aftermarket parts galore .e.g. suspension lowering kit
- Electric start button for a smooth ride
- It can beat the inconsistent terrain.
What we don’t like
- Some beginners will have the challenge of balancing this bike
- The upgraded flat-side carburetor of the bike can’t match the reliability of the old-school carburetor
3. Kawasaki KLX110 Dirt Bike
Kawasaki KLX110 is the best bike for trail riding that you should take a shot on. Motor modifications, graphics, and beefed-up bolt-on parts make it the most customized bike to scoot around in any terrain.
Like other powerful bikes, the KLX110 is equipped with a 4-stroke engine that generates more power. And a low center of gravity ensures comfy and comfortability to aged beginner riders. Plus 4 gears to pass through, quick throttle, and no clutch to burn, the bike will accelerate to your liking.
The good news is that the gear ratios are closely stacked to ensure rideability. A 14-inch front tire and a 12-inch rear tire make the bike more predictable. It will maintain comfort as you enter into rocky terrain.
In addition, the tire size allows the bike to handle high speed with just a little balance. Thumb up to 8.5-inch ground clearance.
What truly wins my heart is the dual-sport performance and capability of this bike. For long travels, it displays agile controllability and maneuverability when riding on a single-track trail.
The frame is rigid enough to guarantee on and off-road stability. A stiff ride is the only drawback that poses a challenge to beginner and average riders.
What we like:
- Convenient and straightforward electric start
- Delivers powerful mid-range power
- Excellent ergonomic ensure comfortability
- Perfect on both on and off-road
- Best-dual sport performance
What we don’t like
- A stiff ride wreak havoc on beginners
4. Yamaha YZ125
With an advanced host of features, Yamaha YZ125 is perfect for beginners and veterans who look forward to advancing their riding skills. Since its first launch 40 years ago, the model is by no means outdated. It has undergone upgrades in the subsequent years to suit your riding experience.
The compact body with an aluminum frame lets you throw your bike around as you swing your body weight at will. In addition, the construction ensures one of the most satisfactory handling performances.
Yamaha features a compact 2-stroke engine that delivers an electrifying power for explosive performance. The upgraded fork is superior and speed-sensitive. You’ll experience a more precise ride, whether on or off-road.
Talk of the KYB front and rear suspension that guarantees exceptional control in the pits. A fitted 250mm hydraulic disc brake is the epicenter for protection. The addition of advanced pad materials brings in unmatched controllability and stopping power as well.
Another exciting thing is the weight distribution of this model. The dirt bike’s body that weighs only 207 pounds guarantees explosive stances and cruising.
Just push and play! This model is super unique to its competition. For it to take off, you’ll use an electric start button rather than a standard kick start. So it’s the perfect choice for young beginners who would want to get into the game.
What we like
- A reliable motor that generates exclusive power
- Digital ignition thereby suitable for mini beginner riders
- Readily available – you can get even in the secondary market
- Strong hydraulic brake system for stopping power
- Lightweight body for unmatched balancing
What we don’t like
- Not as strong as a 4-stroke engine when it comes to thermal efficiency
- Requires high lubricating oil consumption.
5. Husqvarna TC 250
The model wins big on ergonomics than its competition. If you want to invest in the most recent 2-stroke motor, look no further than Husqvarna TC 250. Beginner riders will find it easy to handle it in any dirt trail.
Husqvarna has updated the forks with a new rebound spring, air seal, and an air piston to match the recent rivals. The air bypasses and extended oil reduce pressure peaks, while outer tubes provide refined rigidity.
The most exciting feature is the Magura hydraulic clutch. Worth the hype, the bike requires little maintenance than you may think. Again, it’s superior in all conditions.
Most riders are allergic to dirt, however, radiator guards are fitted on the bottom of the bike to effectively minimize the trapped dirt. The carburetor is superbly tilted at an angle that eases the fuel pickup position.
Furthermore, the remarkable powerband that comes with this model is the reason for a full horsepower at optimum RPM.
Disk front and rear brakes make it worthwhile. They ensure an amazing stopping time if there’s need be. The frame comes with advanced geometrics that helps in energy absorption, accurate rider feedback, straight-line stability, and handling response.
The premium blue powder coating on the frame aims to enhance protection, whereas the standard frame protectors are durable so that the frame lasts for years without replacement.
Professional riders like the technology and progressive engineering techniques that complement the quality bestowed on TC 250.
What we like:
- The 2-stroke engine is easy to maintain
- High level of performance in any conditions
- Radiator guards for trapping dirt
- The technology adopted complements the quality
What we don’t like
- Delivers low horsepower at high RPMs
2-Stroke Vs. 4-Stroke Dirt Bikes
When buying a dirt bike, you’ll run across a range of models with different features. The bikes are either powered by a 2-stroke engine or a 4-stroke engine. Your choice will depend on your riding experience.
If you’re new to automotive, 2-stroke has two main functions – combustion and compression. Its engine ignites a single revolution of the crankshaft. For this reason, the bike is light in weight and produces the highest pitched noise.
A dirt bike with a two-stroke engine runs more simplistically. On that note, they require much higher maintenance, but the good thing is that the spare parts are cheaper.
The feature allows the rider to throw around and make jumps with the fast punch/cc. So, you can get going faster with more power, giving you more torque.
While the bike combines a set of steps, you’ll just complete them in two strokes.
As the name suggests, the bike takes four steps – intake, combustion, compression, and intake. Unlike its counterpart, the engine fires two revolutions of the crankshaft. This ensures a more predictable and steadier power delivery.
For every engine cycle, the bike will take four movements. These bikes are large and more prevalent in competitive races. Riders like its convenience on trails, mostly for both racing and trail riding.
They’re taller and heavier than the competition. The many parts in the bike make it tough to clean in the shortest time possible.
What’s the difference?
Both types have a lot of incredible things if you go for any of them. The intention will influence your final decision. The main differences include;
- Two-stroke bikes are lighter to ride, and the novice will handle and control them at ease
- It’s easy to repair two-stroke models after taking long runs
- Four-stroke bikes deliver smooth power delivery needed for very competitive races than two-stroke
- The moving parts in two-stroke bikes are less complex, so it’s easier to rebuild than their 4-stroke counterparts
- Two-stroke engines are noisy yet create exhaust emissions resulting in harsh scrutiny in recent times.
- Four-strokes are heavier and larger for beginners.
Depending on personal preference, both models are great dirk bikes worth consideration. But it is advisable to check out a handful of things before you settle for one. The two types of engines share similarities in some ways.
- Both models feature pistons that keep the engine running
- They’re integrated with lubrication systems to ensure smooth riding
In motocross, you’ll find the term stroke everywhere.
Which one is best for beginners?
Although it goes down to personal preference, a 2-stroke dirt bike is ideal for beginners. The starters will have an easy time in terms of handling and controllability. The model is lighter and easy to rebuild.
While you’ll want to consider cost-effectiveness, 2-stroke bikes won’t burn your pocket when it comes to repair and maintenance. The upkeep for moving parts is fair as well. Less material, less money!
Things to Look for When Choosing the Best Dirt Bike
Every rider wants to take a shot and be a high-jump hero. As much as all dirt bikes will ignite the engine and get going, not all models will perform to the very best. This guide sheds light on the important factors of consideration when looking for the top dirt bike.
Height and weight
It’s obvious that the rider’s height and weight should inform you of the model suited for you. Since people vary in stature, manufacturers recommend that you follow specific size criteria.
Pay attention to your height, as it will determine the bike’s seat height. Some people have longer legs and torsos. Adult-sized bikes are different from kid-sized bikes as they feature taller seat heights (about 34-inch to 38-inch).
Test the bikes in person to know the best fit. Make sure your feet are firmly touching the ground without forcing the move.
When it comes to weight, consider the balancing power. Light bikes are fit for beginners so that even if you trip, it will be easy to sit up and move it around. A heavier bike with a 4-stroke engine will work best for experienced riders.
Types of bikes
How and where you’re going to use the dirt bike will determine the type of dirt bike to get. You don’t just go for any bike blindly in the market. The main types include:
- Dual-sport dirt bikes. Dual-sport motorcycles come with a set of features of off-road riding. If you’re planning for on- and off-road trips, these street-legal bikes are worth the hype.
- Trail dirt bikes. These bikes dominate in long-run off-road trails. With their cutting-edge performance, long-travel transmission, responsive handling, lightweight chassis, and innovative gearbox, they’ll cut through any terrain.
- Adventure dirt bikes. Adventurers will look for these budget-friendly motocross bikes. These bikes are constructed with modern technologies to maximize comforts. The unique styling makes you cover miles without suffering from any fatigue.
- Competition bikes. Competition motorcycles take part in short and long off-road races. Most of them are reserved for more experienced riders and experts of all skill levels. They’re sharper, lighter, and sharper in the air.
All these dirt bikes have the most advanced hydraulic brakes since they take part in competitive landscapes.
Controllability and performance
Performance is a vital factor that defines any bike. Of course, riders would want to perform to their very best without any compromise. Some features like transmission and suspension will influence the final results.
A dirt bike with the best-performing suspensions will uphold its name in the market. Honda and Kawasaki’s motorcycles are good examples.
A suspension consists of a system of shock absorbers and springs that enhances the movements. Any bike with ideal suspension will be characterized by:
- Maximum traction
- Minimal harshness
- Controlled harshness
The suspension goes hand-in-hand with sprung and unsprung mass. Sprung mass is generally the mass above the bike’s spring, including the engine, frame, tank, and seat.
On the other hand, the unsprung mass moves up and down with the wheel, brake caliper, axles, and lower slider.
The transmission consists of the gears that determine the amount of energy used to turn the wheel. The gears control the speed and acceleration of the bike.
Dirt bikes will either have a two-stroke or four-stroke engine. Experienced riders know about all this, but beginner riders aren’t aware of the difference between the two.
A 2-stroke engine fires a single revolution every time the piston moves up and down. The lightweight and smaller bikes, by default, come with two-stroke engines.
In comparison, a 4-stroke engine fires twice to create power. Bigger engines are likely to be four-stroke models. Choose the right model depending on the intended use.
Starting with the frame, the construction material has to be light to boost controllability in the air. It will be easy to handle when you fall off your bike while riding.
Most high-end motocross bikes weigh less than 250 pounds. Dirt bikes for kids weigh less than 150 pounds so that they jump off bumps and hills effortlessly.
Dirt bikes aren’t cheap. But without doubt, it’s an investment that you expect to get the value for your money.
Reputable brands like Honda or Kawasaki are pretty expensive because of the features they come with. Stay within your budget. You can even get a used dirt bike with good conditions at affordable prices.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is a 4 stroke faster than a 2?
In terms of efficiency, 4-stroke is the best all-around choice. In a 2-stroke, the combustion occurs with each revolution of the crankshaft? The engine, therefore, puts out more power that results in top speed.
Consumers argue that 2-stroke bikes can reach 100mph. Even though they’re fast, the bikes aren’t a good choice for long races. They’re less durable yet prone to tear and wear.
Are cheap dirt bikes any good?
Second-hand or used dirt bikes are cheaper. If the bike is in good condition, it will perform better on trails. For beginners, these motorcycles are easy to learn.
You don’t have to spend a staggering amount of money on a new dirt bike. But if you’re on the budget, just visit any showroom for a new model.
What’s the best age to ride a dirt bike?
A 13-year old kid can start learning how to ride a dirt bike. Nonetheless, you can introduce your younger kids to this sport as long as there’s proper supervision.
Where can beginners learn to ride a dirt bike?
While it’s illegal to ride a dirt bike on public roads, there are areas recommended for starters to learn dirt bike riding. The well-known options include:
- Private land so that you don’t disturb the public
- Forest or desert as they’re designed for such off-roads
- Tracks designated for learning bikes.
We’ve debunked a wide range of top dirt bikes from brands like Honda, Kawasaki, Husqvarna, KTM, and Yamaha. Whether you’re a beginner or an expert, you’ll want a model that cuts across the performance.
For this round-up, KTM 250 SX-F is the winner. It adopts modern technologies without falling behind on performance, durability, and superior controllability.
The 4-stroke engine, alongside other crucial features like five-speed transmission, heavy-duty moving parts, aluminum frame, and gear position sensor, takes it to ridiculously high extremes. It’s worth it!