Best 4 Stroke Dirt Bike [Trail vs Enduro vs MX]

Trying to figure out what the best 4 stroke dirt bike is? I’ve owned, written, or researched countless hours on all of these bikes to determine what the best one is.

However, there is no perfect dirt bike for every type of dirt bike riding. I had to make separate categories to give you the 4 stroke that will be best for you.

Are 4 stroke dirt bikes reliable?

It mainly depends on how well you take care of it. This includes your maintenance routine as well as how you ride it. 

4 stroke top end maintenance
Putting this 250 4 stroke engine back together in the garage.

I have personally not had a 4 stroke dirt bike blow up on me yet, but I know plenty of riders that have. I can tell you, an engine rebuild gets expensive quickly, especially for a modern mx or enduro 4 stroke. 

Want your 4 stroke dirt bike to be reliable? Change the oil when it gets dirty or low, keep the air filter clean, and don’t constantly hit the rev limiter. The higher you rev the engine the less hours you’ll get out of it before needing a rebuild. 

Best 4 stroke for beginners

Looking for your first dirt bike? 4-stroke bikes are generally easier to ride because the power is smoother and more predictable. You want to start out on a beginner friendly bike so that you don’t crash and get hurt right away.

So, the best 4-stroke dirt bikes for starting out on are:

  • Kawasaki KLX140/L/G
  • Kawasaki KLX230R
  • Honda CRF250F

Top 4 stroke trail bikes

Whether you’re a new Rider or you’re looking to do some technical trail riding there are four strokes specifically designed for each type of riding

An air cooled four stroke is typically going to be better for a new Rider, while an Enduro bike is better for hardcore woods riding.

Single track trail on my CRF230F 4 stroke dirt bike
Even a “little girls bike” can ride technical trails

The best 4 stroke dirt bikes for trail riding are:

  • Honda CRF250F
  • Kawasaki KLX300R
  • Yamaha WR250F
  • Honda CRF250RX
  • Yamaha YZ250FX
  • KTM 250XCF
  • Yamaha WR450F

The overall best 4 stroke if you’re a beginner that’s riding trails is the Honda CRF250F because it’s a full size bike, it has electric start and fuel injection, making it virtually frustration-free, and it’s super reliable. 

Best 4 Stroke Enduro Bike

2 strokes tend to dominate the 4 strokes in hard enduro riding. However, the moderate to high speed trails and terrain is perfect for these enduro 4 stroke bikes:

  • Honda CRF250RX
  • Yamaha YZ250FX
  • KTM 250 XC-F
  • Kawasaki KX250XC

Are the closest thing to motocross bikes, but still have suspension that is designed for off-road riding. The power characteristics are great if you’re an aggressive rider that wants a lot of snappy power. 

Best 250 4 stroke Dirt bike

There are a lot of 250 4-stroke dirt bikes available now, so you need to know what kind of riding you want to do to find the best one. There are 250cc Trail bikes, enduro bikes, more across bikes, as well as dual sport bikes.

The best 250 4-stroke dirt bike for a beginner is the Honda CRF 250f.

The best 250 4 stroke for intermediate level Trail Riders are the Honda CRF 250X Yamaha wr250f, and KTM 250 XCF-W.

Most Reliable 250 4 Stroke

The most reliable 250 4-stroke is the one that you properly maintain. In all seriousness, air cooled four strokes are generally the most reliable because they are low performance. 

This means that the Honda CRF250F is the most reliable four stroke. Regular oil changes and cleaning the air filter are the two most important factors to reliability. 

Most reliable dirt bike

Basically any trail bike is going to be reliable. Air cooled dirt bikes aren’t high performance, but they’re capable on single track trails with the right rider.

What will make you a better trail rider?

Starting on the right bike is a good starting point, but there’s one thing that will help you the most.

It starts with how you ride. Learning proper riding technique will give you more control, confidence, and make you a faster & safer rider. Ready to get started? Tap here now.


Kelley Fager

I help newer riders learn to safely ride with confidence by teaching basic techniques in a way that's easy to understand. Learn To Ride With Control Here

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