View Full Version : Why KTM over Can-Am?

03-13-2008, 08:48 PM
I really don't want this to turn into some sort of fan boy war, but I've been comparing the two top (in my opinion) 450's the DS and the KTM.

The price difference is pretty huge for the non X package DS and the KTM, about 1300 dollars. So my main question is why is the KTM worth 1300 dollars more?

I realize the stock Ohlins suspension is very nice, what else does it have going for it? Its carburated (cheaper) to the DS's EFI, the frame is (arguably) not any better.

Do the ohlins have high and low speed compression adjustment? If you get the X package from the DS it comes with better suspension, and Nerf bars, one less thing you have to buy to make it 'race ready'

So why is the KTM worth the 1300 dollars more? or the 400 dollars more compared to the DS450X.

03-13-2008, 08:53 PM
dude, if you have to ask, then you might be nuts.
!! Just kidding , ride both. I have and the KTM is smoother, more power, handles better, feels light, and ready for awesome bolt ons like the ohlin or elka steering stab.

my money was and is on the KTM. Or just buy the can am so I can beat another guy in the woods!

03-13-2008, 09:16 PM
The higher price is from the higher quality of components on the KTM. Chromoly frame, hydro clutch, Razrs, Fat bars, castor/ camber adjustable a arms, adjustable axle, light weight and the OHLINS....sorry but the DS450X shocks do not even come close to the ohlins on the KTM quads.

03-13-2008, 09:38 PM
I can't say i've riden can am but we have 9 ktm's in our series and 1 can am all the ktms have finished our first 2 races and the can am has yet to finish. also look at gncc the ktms are doing great can am not so great. i think there is you answer.

03-14-2008, 05:32 AM
ive herd people hae been getting the ktm for about the same as ds 450x and theres no comparison between them, the ktm is built so much better for example(tie rods steering stem etc..)while the ds has thin parts whitch do not look very strong like the a arms and the ds is still a heavier quad even with its aluminum bolted together frame

03-14-2008, 06:17 AM
Look at the results in the last 2 GNCC's that might help!! All the guys that were good last year on the honda's that switch to the Can Am are not doing good this year!!

03-14-2008, 09:50 AM
Is GNCC the only thing the KTM's are racing this year? I see they are doing very well in it, 4th and 5th the first round, and 1st and 2nd the second round.

03-14-2008, 10:16 AM
I would agree it is the overall package. The motor is known to be rock solid on the KTM. Maint on the motor is straight forward, and not as intense as a lot of the other brands. It is a great product. The Can AM is a great product as well, a few more questions about its reliability, but a great product still. I think it comes down to do you feel more comfortable on either of them? What about dealer support in your area. Some areas have more or none of the Can AM or KTM dealers. I don't think you will be sorry with either quad. I love my KTM so far.

03-17-2008, 03:52 AM
Heres your answer


03-17-2008, 05:29 AM
I watched all 4 of those video's and they really were informative about everything that has to do with the bike.

The KTM has quite a bit of nice things about it, but it is approximately 1300 dollars more than the competition.

If you're a racer, definitely worth it. Just a trail rider? Maybe yes, maybe no.

Simon MX49
03-17-2008, 07:33 AM
Adam Mcgill and Taylor Kiser are killin the competition this year on the GNCC circuit. The Can AM's run good with the right rider aboard, but they have yet to show me with an average rider they can hang with the KTM

No one is racing the KTM on the MX circuit in the pro class this year because the MX version is not yet out. I talked to a rep from KTM, and no one will officially race MX on it until the MX version is released. They mean it when they say 525 "XC"

03-17-2008, 08:22 AM
i got my ktm last month, i love it.

the DS is also an extremely fast and able bike, you cant go wrong with either one, but KTM is definetly my pick, i could have had the DS or the KTM, but after riding the KTM there was no question, super smooth power, awesome in the corners too.

another thing, the KTM's carb is not just a carb, it is a carb with an accrlerator pump and a Throttle position sensor. it reacts just like an EFI, with the tunability and simplicity of a carb.

plus, the DS450 is just plain UGLY!

03-17-2008, 01:47 PM
the frame on the KTM is actually stronger, the shocks are worth 3G's alone, the a arms are camber and caster adjustable, the front brakes are oversized floating rotors, and 4 piston calipers, the bars and stem are 4 way adjustable, the clutch is hydraulic...the list is endless.





03-17-2008, 04:32 PM
While it does have a lot of nice things, i really don't think the Ohlins are worth 3 thousand dollars by themselves.

And yes as i said in an earlier post i viewed all 4 of those videos already, very informative.

Do any after market companies make a dual piston comp set up in their rear shock to replace or 'upgrade' from the stock? I'm sure they will eventually.

03-18-2008, 03:37 PM
There are compelling arguments both ways and it's a testament to how well they executed the designs of each quad.

IMO you will not do yourself a disservice if you chose one or the other. So let's do a rundown of the two....

Looks: Ok, purely subjective, I like both but then again, I enjoy interesting design which both have.

Frame: KTM went traditional geometry with chrome-moly upgrade to improve strength and make it lighter, win win both ways. Light gusseting is needed to race full time. Can-Am went with aluminum lock bolted together, very advanced design that will benefit through it's geometry and dimensions more than light weight...this frame is strong. Recommend gusset/crossbrace for upper a-arm mounts for full time racing, though it is bolt on.

Motor: KTM, solid, proven motor that works very well, great choice too because of the ability to go 525 easy, advanced carb works quite well.
Can-Am, new motor, reliability needs proving, could have first year gremlins but nothing major so far. Power is top end heavy, but with EFI Can-Am gives you additional power map for free with pink wire snip allowing for freer flowing intake and exhaust.

Suspension: KTM has some good shocks with Ohlins to be sure. They seem to have gotten that right on the nose. Adjustable camber and caster are a plus. Can-Am, do not be fooled, KYB (Kayaba) makes more shocks than Ohlins by a wide margin and they do know how to make more than a standard OEM type shock. Tests have shown these to have great responsiveness as well as bottom resistance. No camber-caster adjustments, however most agree the front end is quite spot on for the quad.

Brakes: Both have great brakes total wash.

Steering: KTM has made their bike handle well using traditional geometry...it feels like any good race bike you have ridden. Can-Am has corrected the traditional geometry we have all grown used to and once you turn some laps with proper geometry, you'll really notice the flaw in tradition...all the way back to the 250r and LT250...

Odds and ends: You do get some nice goodies on the KTM, hydro clutch, bars etc....I can see with a few things why the price is a bit more and most don't have a problem with it. To me, the only real thing that is worth the extra money is the adjustable front geometry, the rest is a wash and if I was going to race either, I'd swap out the front end anyway.


Simon MX49
03-18-2008, 05:18 PM
Im not very experienced when it comes to bike set up, so I have to say the adjustable front end on the KTM is not of much significance to me, but I know some people will value it much more than I do. As for the shocks, I took the KTM through a 2 or so mile trail loop and the shocks felt somewhat comparable to my PEP big bottles, which impressed me big time. KTM's attention to detail, the intake is almost fully sealed, I dont think you can find a better set up, no tools required to swap out air filters.

I have to agree that you cant go wrong with either, let us know what you decide :eek2:

03-19-2008, 10:05 AM
the name ktm sounds cooler the can am , can am sounds like a question can am? and ktm sounds like a statement . lol

03-19-2008, 04:25 PM
Originally posted by bryishre
the name ktm sounds cooler the can am , can am sounds like a question can am? and ktm sounds like a statement . lol

Thanks for um...your...input?

03-19-2008, 06:16 PM
hey no prob im partial because i own a ktm its one of those thing where you compare for yourself and make the decision and be happy with the choice you have made