2. 2005-2016 Honda CRF450X
Honda’s CRF450X is still around in the same configuration that it has been since it was first introduced in 2005. That might sound like a knock, but it isn’t. The X has proven itself as a stone-reliable, EPA-legal trailbike as well as a capable, championship-winning off-road machine in the hands of Johnny Campbell Racing and the OX Motorsports Honda team in the wilds of Baja California, Mexico, where race-modified versions of the CRF450X have captured the SCORE Baja 1000 win nine out of the past 10 years.
Electric start is a major bonus feature of the CRF450X, but you may want to avoid first-year models which are reported to have weak starter motors [Honda reportedly beefed up the starter motor in 2006, solving the problem]. Find a stone-stock model and you’ll have a bike that can be ridden in any OHV park in the country, but we doubt that you’ll find a stocker. The CRF450X takes to engine modifications like a duck to water, and that usually means tampering with or removing its emissions equipment. Clapped-out versions can be brought back to life with relative ease, but there are plenty of clean CRF450Xs on the market, so you should be able to find a really good one in the $3000-4000 price range.