What Is the Difference Between a Motocross Bike and an Enduro Bike?

by Brenton Shields
Enduro bikes have several features that make them street legal.

Enduro bikes have several features that make them street legal.

Matt Cardy/Getty Images News/Getty Images

Enduro and motocross bikes are both small motorcycles designed for either racing or stunts. Motocross bikes are typically used more for brief dirt races and stunts while Enduro bikes are designed to take prolonged abuse in long races in forests and other environments (hence the term "Enduro" for "endurance). The two bikes are closely related and similar in appearance, but there are several physical differences.


Enduro bikes include a headlight. The headlight can be used for on-road or off-road racing. Standard motocross motorcycles do not have a headlight. The headlight also aids in making Enduro bike street legal. Enduro bikes also employ brake lights, another feature that most motocross bikes lack.


Enduro bikes are equipped with protective coverings. "Bark busters," for example, are specialized pieces of hardware on Enduro motorcycles that keeps the riders hands protected from passing tree trunks and other obstacles. Shields placed around the bike may also protect your brake discs to keep falling rocks and pebbles out of your brakes.

Gear Ratios

Enduro motorcycles have wider gear ratios than standard motocross bikes. The wider gear ratios compensate for the long stretches of riding that racers endure along tracks as opposed to the shorter tracks and sharper turns found in standard motocross events.


Enduro exhausts are quieter than motocross exhausts. The mufflers for Enduro motorcycles are typically street legal in case a course ever takes riders into the streets. Motocross mufflers do not typically reach legal street noise levels since they are only used on dirt tracks.


Enduro motorcycles have narrower handlebars than motocross bikes. This is to compensate for navigating between trees on forested routes.

Flywheel Weight

Enduro bikes have heavier flywheels than motocross motorcycles. Motocross bikes have flywheels between 4 and 8 ounces while Enduro bikes have flywheels between 8 and 12 ounces. The heavier weight makes them more durable.

Photo Credits

  • Matt Cardy/Getty Images News/Getty Images