The Best Dirt Bikes for Enduro And Off-Road Riding


Are you looking for best enduro dirt bikes? Dirt bikes offer a phenomenal experience when it comes to enduro and off-road riding. In this post, I have compiled some of the best dirt bikes for enduro and off road riding.

However, if you’re on the lookout for a bike that can perform exceptionally on both environments, then you can rest assured that none of the aforementioned will deliver.

This is the gap that adventure motorcycles fill.

Adventure motorcycles provide you with both the utility and build of a dirtbike as well as the handling and balance of a sport standard.

The bike also has the endurance to travel for long stretches at a time with minimal strain. You could comfortably spend half the time on a paved road before transitioning with ease to a forest road.

You may also like: Best Dirt Bike Boots for Enduro and Off-Road Riding

The range of adventure bikes present in the market is expanding everyday owing to their increased popularity. The following is a list of the best bikes for enduro and off-road riding.

Kawasaki KLR 650

The Kawasaki is specially designed to endure rough treatment for long spells of time with remarkable ease.

This bike boasts one of the strongest suspensions in the market. The springs, for example, are now 40% stiffer on the front wheel and 63% stiffer on the rear wheel.

The 650cc single cylinder engine will provide you with the requisite power to reach high speeds.

You can buy a Kawasaki KLR 650 engine from Amazon by clicking here.

A typical Kawasaki KLR 650 will comfortably cover a distance of 250 miles which should prove sufficient for the consummate adventurer. The bike has a weight of 432 pounds.

Honda Africa Twin

The difficulty of traversing harsh terrain continually leads to the development of remarkable features. The Honda Africa Twin has one such feature.

The bike’s engine is capable of shortening the front wheels which has the effect of bringing the front wheel closer to the engine.

You can buy the Honda Africa Twin engine from Amazon by clicking here.

Thus, the bike will now be able to easily cope with rapidly changing terrain.

The Honda Africa also features a six-speed transmission system, a strong steel subframe and a mass of 511 pounds.

This bike is capable of navigating the muddiest trails and rough terrain and still be able to handle well and reach high speeds on paved roads.

Triumph Tiger 800 XCX

A list of adventure bikes would be incomplete without a Triumph making it into the listing.

More so a Triumph model that is specially designed to be highly effective when making long trips.

You get a liquid-cooled 800cc engine that is as reliable as it is powerful.

You can buy Triumph Tiger 800 engine from Amazon by clicking here.

This adventure bike offers you three different modes that are meant to cater to the type of trip you are making.

You also have the benefit of traction control which serves to give your trips a bespoke quality.

Moreover, a computer installed on the bike consistently records travel data throughout your trip which can then be used for future reference.

The tech accompaniments don’t end there. There’s a LCD display on the dash which gives you digital access to all necessary instruments.

The bike’s hardiness is best exemplified by its sturdy build and its formidable suspension. The bike weighs 432 pounds.

Yamaha Super Tenere

The Yamaha Super Tenere has a miniature sized engine that’s surprisingly powerful.

The bike’s lightness coupled with the powerful 1119cc engine makes it the ideal bike to have when journeying through windy mountain roads.

A heavier bike will be able to go through such lands but not without difficulty.

You can read this post that I wrote: Best 4 Stroke Dirt Bikes for Trail Riding

The Super Tenere also has a traction control feature which takes over a few bike functions in order to ensure your trip is calm and relaxing.

Such functions include the opening of the throttle valve, the timing of the ignition and fuel injection.

The bike also has both a unified and antilock braking system which is meant to keep you safe.

While there’s plenty of power for those moments you want to speed things up, an accommodation is also made for those periods when you aren’t.

The cruise feature, for example, comes in handy for those long uneventful journeys. You can also adjust your seat in case you feel uncomfortable.

The handlebar allow a firm grip and you can buy them from Amazon by clicking here.

Ducati Multistrada 1200 Enduro

The Multistrada is the ultimate toy for the consummate adventurer.

The 160hp 1198 cc engine places plenty of power in your hands and promises a great off-road experience.

You not only get an aggressive bike, but also a big fuel tank (30 liters) to go with it too.

You can buy a Multistrada engine case from Amazon by clicking here.

The Multistrada has its own app which allows you to keep tabs on the bike’s all round performance.

All you have to do is pair your bike to the app and wait for the updates.

The app will provide you with information regarding power, lean angle, speed, and fuel consumption.

KTM 640 Adventure

The KTM 640 Adventure has earned a reputation as the bike of choice for individuals who wish to be initiated into an elite club of riders.

This lightweight bike makes a strong case for itself in terms of speed and power owing to its 625cc single cylinder engine.

This engine gives you 54hp at 7000rpm.

The KTM 640’s features and performance have the curious effect of making it seem like a hybrid of a dirt bike and an adventure bike.

The bike’s formidable suspension is remarkable off-road especially in single tracks and deep sand.

A full tank will keep you on the road for 300 miles.

The one disadvantage of the bike is the nature of its seat which gets progressively uncomfortable the longer one stays on the road.

It is recommended than one should ride at 2 hour intervals before the discomfort starts to take effect.

You can easily get spare arts for this dirt bike from Amazon by clicking here.

BMW G 650 GS Sertao

The Sertao has a single cylinder 652cc engine of the 4-stroke variety. This remarkable specimen of BMW engineering excels in difficult trails be they sandy or muddy.

This bike is designed to handle rough landscapes while also maintaining your comfort the entire time.

The Sertao also excels on large stretches of flat roads where you can enjoy its sportiness. The bike’s warm grips make the bike comfortable to handle when the weather gets chilly.

Additionally, the bike’s state of the art braking system brings the bike to halt superbly both on forest roads and in west asphalt.

If your journeying requires that you move through cities and through bumpy landscapes then the Sertao is the bike for you.

It’s sporty and has great balance on paved roads while reserving the aggression for the off-road part of your trip.

KTM 690 Enduro R

This model boasts a number of upgrades that not only place it above its predecessors but also above its direct competition.

For starters, this bike features an optimized new shape that makes it both ideal for all types of roads, whether paved or unpaved.

The suspension has 10 inches of travel which allow it to deftly navigate bumpy terrain.

The bike also boasts an upgraded braking system that is more reliable and powerful to counter the engine’s power.

The upgrade also extends to the cylinder along with its swingarm and trellis frame. As a consequence, the bike demonstrates remarkable tracking stability.

BMW R1200 GS Adventure

The BMW R1200 GS Adventure is the product of over 30 years of improvements. Such improvements touch on aspects such as styling and bodywork.

The end result of this arduous journey has been a bike with a minimalist style, a refined look and aggressive bodywork.

The BMW’s biggest selling point is its versatility. You get an excellent anti-lock braking system that is adjustable electronically.

Additionally, the bike also comes with traction control and a 125 hp 1,170cc engine

The bike’s range is 400 miles long during which you’ll have the option to choose a rider mode depending on the road you’re on.

The modes available include Enduro pro, Enduro, Dynamic, Road and Rain. The bike weighs 580 pounds.

Suzuki V-Strom 1000 ABS

The primary advantage of this model is that it provides you with a top notch riding experience at reduced cost.

It could, therefore, be said to make great engineering more attainable. The bike features an anti-lock system, adjustable suspension as well as traction control.

The V-Strom is in its element in all kinds of terrain be it hills, gorges, mountainous regions or sandy areas.

The only catch is you have to get the right dirt tires in order for it to perform as expected. The V-Strom’s powerful engine is its biggest selling point.

The engine boasts a respectable 1,037cc and 99 hp along with 76 lb-ft of torque.

The rider modes available to you include TC1 (low sensitivity) and TC2 (High sensitivity). The third option is to switch it off.

KTM 1290 Super Adventure R

KTM make the claim that this model has the best Enduro chassis in the world. While such a claim is bound to attract skeptics, many of them would be hard-pressed to deny that it’s quite exceptional.

Neither would they readily disparage the engine’s power which stands at a 1,301cc.

This powerful adventure bike packs 160 hp, 118 lb-ft of torque and weighs 478 pounds.

Other remarkable features include the advanced suspension, traction control and the adjustable fuel mapping. Rider modes include Off-road, Sport, Rain and Street.

Yamaha WR250R

The Yamaha WR250R doesn’t pack a lot in terms of speed but makes up for that deficit by being an exemplary off-roader.

If power is less of a priority for you than endurance over long hours of travel in difficult terrain then this is the bike you should go for.

You’ll get a liquid-cooled 250 cc engine with 6-speed transmission and a suspension that is tailored for long travel.

The suspension allows for smooth rides while the bike rummages through forest trails and gravelly roads.

Honda CRF250L Rally

The Honda CRF250L is the product of the attempt by Honda to import characteristics from their rally bikes into a road-legal bike.

This bike has a lot in common with the CRF250 dirt in terms of off-road competence but exceeds it terms of comfort.

If you intend to spend hours travelling on the road, you need a bike that is a comfortable as it is reliable.

The Honda CRF250L Rally has 249.6cc single cylinder engine. The brakes are of the ABS variety and you get dual sport tires along with LED lights.

An additional benefit of riding this bike is the presence it exerts on the road which will make motorists think twice about bullying you.

Suzuki DR-Z400S

The Suzuki DR-Z400S has been around for quite a while and it won’t be long before it’s regarded as a classic.

It’s a remarkable feat that it still manages to compete with newer models while preserving its old-school feel and functionality.

The design of the DR-Z400S hasn’t changed much over the years and its engine still has a carburetor instead of fuel injection.

An additional positive attribute is the bike’s consistency in being a resilient off-roader and adventure bike.

Moreover, it makes an easy transition when you want to switch from adventure to everyday practicality.

The old-school design also makes it easy to find spare parts.

You’ll also appreciate the fact the bike is easy to ride and service. The powerful 398cc engine along with the sturdy build gives the DR-Z400S the aggression and endurance it needs to take on the wild.

You also get to experience plenty of comfort and great balance during the ride.

Honda XR650L

The fact that the production of all off-roaders in the Honda XR line was cancelled with the exception of the Honda XR650L is a testament to its indispensability.

It really is one of a kind in terms of endurance, versatility and reliability. This is confirmed by the fact that Honda has barely upgraded the bike since its introduction to the market.

Consequently, the XR650L still has old-school styling and design. Nevertheless, its dowdiness becomes inconsequential them moment the 644cc engine comes to life.

This bike will give 47.2 lb-ft of torque and 40 horsepower.

The suspension is still formidable and reliable despite minimal improvements.

The Honda XR650L is an all-out off-roader with the sufficient grunt and aggression to ride up precarious slopes, around boulders and gorges as well as on bumpy trails in the woods.

Suzuki DR650S

The Suzuki DR650S is an excellent adventure bike that is both versatile and great fun to ride.

It’s just as great on the asphalt as it is off-road and it is this balance gives it its biggest appeal. The disadvantage, however, is that you can’t push it too hard.

The DR650S can travel for long distances with ease but it won’t be a comfortable ride for you.

Conversely, its excellent off-road but the suspension won’t be able to cope with intensive racing with dirt-bikes.

This bike is, therefore, ideal for those who don’t mind operating within its limits.

On the upside, however, you’ll get a ferocious 650cc engine that will have you traveling through the countryside with ease.

The bike is in its element riding through mud, sand, gravel, bushes and thicket as well as the long grass.

Kawasaki Versys

The Kawasaki Versys is ideal for those tough off-road adventures that would take a toll on any regular bike the more difficult the terrain gets.

The ease with which the Versys rides through such areas is due to its powerful 649cc engine and reliable suspension.

Its slimness also proves to be an advantage in windy mountainous regions where the resistance increases with size.

A common view about the Versys is that it gives the impression of being an adventure bike without being one.

That’s a misconception that will be rectified with one off-road trip that will undoubtedly reveal the bike’s versatility.

It will also provide an opportunity for the rider to appreciate the bike’s adjustable windscreen.

Husqvarna 701 Enduro

The Husqvarna 701 Enduro doesn’t easily lend itself to any category. It neither falls in easily with dirt bikes nor does it have the gizmos that one associates with most adventure bikes.

What makes it unique and a cut above the rest is its engine’s performance.

The Husqvarna’s 690cc engine is not only powerful but also acutely responsive at any rpm. The responsiveness is characterized by a sustained revving of the engine that makes riding the bike an immense delight.

Moreover, the top of the range WP shock and WP 4CS fork ensure that the bike handles well off-road. 

BMW G310GS

Commonly called the ‘baby GS’ this is the ideal choice for people who are developing a keen interest in adventure bike riding.

It also offers a low cost alternative for people who can’t afford the BMW R1200 GS Adventure. The G310GS is easy to handle and it won’t be long before you skillfully ride off-road.

The bike is rather small weighing a modest 374 pounds. The seat height on the other hand is 32.9 inches with the low seat option being 32.3 inches.

The bike’s engine isn’t very powerful (313cc) unlike those of other models but will make up for it with its nimbleness and handling.

Triumph Tiger 1200 XCA

The formula that went into making previous versions of the Triumph Tiger was strictly followed in this 1200 XCA model.

What differentiates it from the rest, beyond the increased power, is the new gizmos that have been installed to improve the driving experience.

You get a keyless start, a 5-inch colored TFT dash, cornering lights and backlit controls. You’ll also be denied semi-active suspension and get a bike that is 22 pounds lighter.

The bike’s performance remains as impressive as ever with 1215cc capacity and 140 horsepower. The Triumph Tiger 1200 XCA weighs 547 pounds.

BMW F800GS

In a battle to determine which is the best 800cc off-road motorcycle to buy, the BMW F800GS would easily beat most of the competition.

This bike boasts 85 hp along with 60 lb-fit of torque. The top speed is a strong 130 miles per hour which is sufficient for an adventure in the wild.

The BMW’s sturdy build and stability on dirt makes for a comfortable ride that is made exciting by the ease of its handling.

You’re also provided with all the additional features that one would expect in a proper adventure bike i.e., bolt on additions and luggage options. The one disadvantage of this bike is its foot pegs which aren’t as large as they should be.

Royal Enfield Himalayan

The Royal Enfield Himalayan isn’t specifically designed to be an enduro motocycle but is able to ride through difficult terrain with ease.

The bike’s 411cc air-cooled engine generates up to 32 lb-ft of torque and 24.5 horsepower. What makes the Himalayan stand out from the pack is its high level of productivity coupled with its affordability.

Honda CRF 230L

The Honda CRF 230L is widely considered to be a good enduro bike for beginners and with good reason.

It’s deft, easy to ride and unthreatening which serves to boost the rider’s confidence and self-assuredness the more he rides it. The fact that its unthreatening shouldn’t, however, be construed as weakness.

The Honda CRF 230L is not only remarkable in all sorts of terrain but also great fun to ride.

The suspension is strong but won’t be able to cope with large jumps for extended periods of time.

Other advantages of this motorcycle include its impressively low fuel consumption, its reliability and its low maintenance costs.

Kawasaki KLX250S

Buyers of this bike model should expect to have a romp riding it due to its impressive suspension.

An additional reason for the popularity of the KLX is the ease with which you can modify it to make it more powerful.

The 249cc engine packs 18.5hp and 13 ft lbs of torque which, while being low, don’t prevent it from providing a fun off-road experience.

Choosing The Best Bike for You

The typical enduro motorcycle has become a jack of all trades in recent years. They are now sportier, sturdier, more stylish, more powerful, and excel at both touring and commuting.

The best motorcycle for you will be determined by what your priorities are.

It’s also prudent to choose a bike that corresponds to your riding skills and the amount of power you can handle.

Daniel Mose

Daniel is a big fan of dirt biking. I own KTM 250 SX-F. I love learning how to maintain this dirt bike and ensure it lasts long while serving me without any issues. Join me in this journey as I document stuff that we, as dirt bike lovers, ought to know.

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