Unraveling the Results: Insights from our 2024 125cc Two-Stroke Shootout

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Unraveling the Results: Insights from our 2024 125cc Two-Stroke Shootout
Unraveling the Results: Insights from our 2024 125cc Two-Stroke Shootout (Credits: Motorcross Action Magazine)

Our 2024 125 two-stroke shootout has just wrapped up, leaving us scratching our heads. Comparing the latest models to our last review two years ago, where we pitted the 2022 Yamaha YZ125 against the GasGas MC125, we found the GasGas to be faster, lighter, and almost as adept in handling as the Yamaha.

Back then, with both bikes priced equally, the GasGas was the clear victor. However, in the intervening two years, the landscape has changed significantly.

Updates have poured in for the KTM 125SX, Husqvarna TC125, and the GasGas, all receiving enhancements like electric start, throttle-body fuel injection, and electronic power valves. Surprisingly, the Yamaha remains unchanged.

Unraveling the Results: Insights from our 2024 125cc Two-Stroke Shootout
Unraveling the Results: Insights from our 2024 125cc Two-Stroke Shootout (Credits: Motocross Action Magazine)

In our shootout process, the last step is always a visit to the dyno. We prefer to keep the dyno results hidden from our test riders to avoid influencing their subjective reviews.

Yet, this time around, the dyno results didn’t quite align with the riders’ impressions. Despite testers feeling that the new Austrian models had lost power (which was indeed the case), they mistakenly perceived the Yamaha as the new horsepower champion (which it wasn’t).

Here are the peak power and torque figures from the Pro Circuit dyno:

PEAK POWER

  • Husqvarna TC125: 37.02 hp @ 11,430 rpm
  • GasGas MC125: 36.51 hp @ 11,530 rpm
  • KTM 125SX: 35.94 hp @ 11,430 rpm
  • Yamaha YZ125: 35.78 hp @ 11,670 rpm

PEAK TORQUE

  • Husqvarna TC125: 17.18 lb-ft @ 10,950 rpm
  • GasGas MC125: 16.91 lb-ft @ 11,060 rpm
  • KTM 125SX: 16.88 lb-ft @ 10,960 rpm
  • Yamaha YZ125: 16.47 lb-ft @ 10,940 rpm

As evident from the dyno readings, the peak horsepower figures across all four bikes are quite similar, with just a 1 ¼ hp difference between the strongest and weakest performers at the top end.

However, the Yamaha falls behind the others before reaching peak power. Testers like Sean Lipanovich, Mark Tilley, Carson Brown, and Jared Hicks felt that the Yamaha was strongest in the mid-range, attributing this sensation to its lighter flywheel and more free-revving engine.

The updated Austrian engines, with their throttle body fuel injection, tend to feel more like enduro bikes and aren’t as responsive to clutch manipulation.

While the dyno offers valuable insights, it’s not the ultimate judge of a bike’s performance. The true test lies on the track, and the comprehensive results will be detailed in the April 2024 print edition of Dirt Bike.

Moving on to other news, more manufacturers have announced contingency programs for 2024. Last month, Kawasaki unveiled a program that represents a significant improvement over previous offerings.

Winners at events like the Loretta Lynn’s Amateur National Championship stand to earn $2000 in many classes, while a GNCC XC1 Pro win commands a hefty $10,000 payout. Similar payouts are offered in various off-road series, with smaller classes also receiving recognition.

Honda’s program offers $1500 for a win at the Loretta Lynn’s Amateur Nationals and substantial rewards for victories in off-road competitions.

This week, KTM entered the fray with a $7 million contingency program, with payouts comparable to those of Husqvarna. Both professionals and amateurs stand to benefit, with winners receiving debit cards or dealer debit cards, respectively.

In the realm of Supercross, the Glendale event promises to be a thrilling spectacle.

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By Annie Linardos

I'm a journalist student and completed my masters in Journalism and Mass Communication. With a strong track record as an intern at Mathrubhumi News and The New Indian Express as a reporter and content writer, I'm creative, motivated, and have a keen eye for the truth and attempting to use the expertise and talents to contribute to the emerging field of journalism. I have also been working as a freelance writer and have the capability of producing interesting and bold articles.

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