Enduro bike vs motocross – the main differences

It takes approx. 4 minutes to read this article

Beginner motorcycle enthusiasts very often face a difficult choice. Enduro or motocross? We present the most important differences and applications of each type of off-road motorcycles.

What is an enduro motorcycle?

What are enduro motorcycles for? This discipline is a type of motorsport that involves traversing an off-road or asphalt route using a special type of motorcycles. The length of the route can vary depending on the competition, but it is usually 200-300 km. Enduro motorcycles must meet a number of requirements before a rider can compete. They are divided into E1, E2 and E3 classes – according to what the engine allows.

  • Class E1:
    • motorcycles with a capacity of 100 to 125 cm3 two-stroke engine,
    • 175 to 250 cc3 with a four-stroke engine.
  • Class E2:
    • motorcycles with a capacity of 175 to 250 cm3 with a two-stroke engine,
    • motorcycles with a cubic capacity of 290 to 450 cm3 with a four-stroke engine.
  • Class E3:
    • motorcycles with a capacity of 290 to 500 cm3 with a two-stroke engine,
    • motorcycles with a cubic capacity of 475 to 650 cm3 with a four-stroke engine.

Enduro motorcycles boast homologation, making them very versatile vehicles. Additionally, they must meet a number of standards under the highway code.

Hard Enduro

Hard Enduro is a high-performance motorcycle, most similar to a cross bike. It differs from a cross mainly by its homologation, changed engine characteristics and different tyres. The Hard Enduro has a full electrical system – which sometimes changes its off-road performance. Due to emission norms, the popular two-stroke engines are becoming less common, and four-stroke engines are more common

Soft Enduro

These motorcycles are much more resistant to any failures and defects than high-performance motorcycles. They are heavier and have less power, and are characterized by versatile tires. They are suitable for both on-road and off-road riding, thanks to better suspension tuning. Capacities range from 50 to over 600 cc. The most popular model in Poland is the Yamaha Dt.

Touring Enduro

Fans of amateur off-road travel should get acquainted with the tourist enduro, a motorcycle from the adventure segment. This vehicle is also perfect for everyday trips through crowded cities. Technically it is very different from Hard and Soft Enduro, however, you can find some common features. They are characterized by a powerful and flexible engine, functional tires and durability.

What is motocross?

Cross bikes are sporty vehicles designed for motocross tracks made of sand, clay or earth. There are approximately forty participants and the duration of each competition can vary. Motorcycles must meet certain requirements, such as engine capacity ranging from 50 to 525 cc

Motocrosses are very similar to enduro motorcycles – the main difference is that they cannot be ridden in traffic. They have no lights, no mirrors and no homologation, so you will need a trailer to transport the machine to non-urban areas. A very big difference can also be seen when comparing the weight of the two motorcycles. Crosses are usually 8-10 kilograms lighter than enduros, so they will be ideal for racing. The difference between the two is also due to the drivetrain itself. Among the most popular motocross brands are Honda, Kawasaki, KTM and Yamaha motorcycles.


Which motorcycle to choose?

Both variants can be successfully used in various types of motocross competitions. These motorcycles perform very well on the bumps and rough surfaces.

Enduro motorcycles are very popular because of their functionality and capabilities. It is an absolutely universal vehicle, which will allow us to ride both on city roads and more demanding ones. Cross roads are not a problem either. For a potential user the homologation may be crucial. To sum up, enduro will be a good choice for those who appreciate comfort, durability and versatility of the vehicle

In case of cross bikes, the matter is a bit more complicated due to the lack of homologation. These motorcycles do not have such elements as lighting, mirrors, indicators, which makes it impossible to move on city roads. Despite these shortcomings, this vehicle has many supporters, especially among true professionals. Motocrosses are ideal for use on tracks during competitions, mainly due to their light weight

(Photo: pixabay.com)

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