A 2-Stroke 85 or a Mini 4-Stroke?
By Jerry Matta
It seems many kids have a tough decision, they don't know whether they should buy a 2-stroke 85 or a 4-stroke mini such as a TTR125, XR100, CRF150, or DRZ125. For an adult, it's a no brainer you get the 4-stroke, most likely because you have a 450f or 250f in your garage as well. But for a kid, they want to go fast, be competitive, and most of all Jump. All these things are pretty hard to do on a mini 4-stroke unless your a well seasoned rider.
So for kids here's the bottom line. A CR85 has about 20hp more or less, weighs about 150lbs, has real suspension and in the hands of a fast 80 rider can beat just about anyone on the planet. They say Bubba is just as fast on his 80 compared to his 125. A CRF150, TTR, XR, DRZ goes OK, weighs a ton, has a rear drum brake and has about 6-10hp depending on whose dyno you use. However, the CR80 has about zero bottom and the powerband is like a light switch, which makes it hard to ride (fast). The CRF150, TTR, XR, DRZ is pretty easy to ride and can (with a little work) keep up with most bikes when ridden right, which means don't shut off on the throttle through a turn. This makes it a fun trail and play bike, and if you're a fast rider, can be a fun mx bike bike. if you're thinking about a 2 stroker, I would serious consider a RM85 big wheel. It has great bottom and pretty easy to get used to. I tested one last week and it was a blast. If you want a serious 4 stroke mini-bike, I would get a XR120, CRF150, or XR200 CR80 Conversion, It's the best of both worlds, you get the suspension to handle any jump, and the motor to actually clear the jump. Then you can easily keep up with any 2 stroke 80. I just sold one of my conversions and the guy got first place in his first race against 2-stroke 80's and did all the doubles they were doing. Just weigh your options and determine which direction you want to go.